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New York attorney general will sue to stop the FCC's 'illegal rollback of net neutrality'

Todd Haselton
Michael Cohen is under criminal investigation by federal prosecutors in New York in connection with his business dealings.

Minutes after the FCC voted in favor of rolling back net neutrality rules , New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said he will lead a multistate lawsuit against the "illegal rollback."

"The FCC's vote to rip apart net neutrality is a blow to New York consumers, and to everyone who cares about a free and open internet," Schneiderman said in a statement.

"The FCC just gave Big Telecom an early Christmas present, by giving internet service providers yet another way to put corporate profits over consumers. Today's rollback will give ISPs new ways to control what we see, what we do, and what we say online. That's a threat to the free exchange of ideas that's made the Internet a valuable asset in our democratic process."

The FCC voted 3-2 on Thursday afternoon to roll back the 2015 Open Internet Order. The change classifies internet service as an information service, rather than a utility, and allows ISPs to treat internet traffic differently depending on its type, origin or destination. For instance, ISPs could create bundles of various internet services at different prices, or slow down video traffic from rival services.

Opponents, including two FCC commissioners, have suggested this will drastically change the way consumers use and pay for the internet.

"Today's new rule would enable ISPs to charge consumers more to access sites like Facebook and Twitter and give them the leverage to degrade high quality of video streaming until and unless somebody pays them more money. Even worse, today's vote would enable ISPs to favor certain viewpoints over others," Schneiderman said.

Schneiderman also said the FCC's "public comment process was deeply corrupted." Instead of holding public hearings, the FCC allowed people to submit millions of comments, some of which were fake.

"The FCC's decision to go ahead with the vote makes a mockery of government integrity and rewards the very perpetrators who scammed the system to advance their own agenda," Schneiderman said.