Daily Revolt

October 27, 2007

Senators Want Probe on Content Blocking

Losing more rights and freedoms in Bush's America:
Two Senators on Friday called for a congressional hearing to investigate reports that phone and cable companies are unfairly stifling communications over the Internet and on cell phones.

Sens. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, said the incidents involving several companies, including Comcast Corp., Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc., have raised serious concerns over the companies' "power to discriminate against content."

[...]An Associated Press report on Oct. 19 detailed how Comcast Corp. was interfering with file sharing by some of its Internet subscribers. The AP found instances in some areas of the country where traffic was blocked or delayed significantly.

[...]Verizon Wireless in late September denied a request by Naral Pro-Choice America, an abortion rights group, to use its mobile network for a sign-up text messaging program.

The company reversed course just a day later, calling it a mistake and an "isolated incident."

AT&T reportedly changed a service agreement that previously included language permitting the company to cancel accounts of Internet users who disparage the company.

Several lawmakers, including Dorgan, earlier this year introduced so-called legislation promoting "Net neutrality," which is the principle that all Internet traffic be treated equally by carriers.

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