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Consumer Reports supports FCC effort to reclassify broadband as a Title II telecommunications service

Washington, DC – Today, at the National Press Club, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced her intention to introduce a notice for a proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to reclassify broadband as a Title II telecommunications service in the coming weeks.

Broadband has become a critical service as many daily activities such as work, education, and healthcare depend on a reliable, high-speed internet connection. The reclassification of broadband as a Title II telecommunications service will grant the FCC with the necessary oversight to adopt and enforce regulations that hold broadband providers from carrying out anti-competitive and anti-consumer practices. 

“Access to a fast, reliable, and affordable internet connection is more essential to Americans than ever. We applaud Chair Rosenworcel for calling broadband what it is: a telecommunications service. Title II classification will ensure that broadband providers are properly overseen by the FCC like all telecommunications services should be. Whether it is junk or hidden fees, arbitrary pricing, deceptive advertising, or unreliable service, broadband providers have proven over the years that without proper oversight, they will not hesitate to use their power to increase profits at the consumers’ expense, ” said Jonathan Schwantes, senior policy counsel for Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports has done extensive research into the broadband marketplace, including a first-of-its-kind nationwide participatory broadband study. The study found that consumers are saddled with confusing bills, high prices, and lack of competitive choices. For years, CR has asked consumers if they found that internet service is as important as water and electricity, and large majorities think that it is, with a 2022 nationally representative survey of 2,076 US adults finding that 71 percent of Americans agree with this statement. 

Contact: cyrus.rassool@consumer.org