House Passes Internet Freedom Legislation
Yesterday, the U.S House of Representatives unanimously voted to keep the Internet from being subject to international regulation. H.R. 1590, sponsored by Greg Walden (R-OR), was a victory not only for internet freedom but for the United States, who would not bow to pressure and join countries like Russia, China and India in having their internet regulated.
Speaking on the House floor, Rep. Walden said:
“The Internet is possibly the most important technological advancement since the printing press. Governments’ hands off approach has enabled the Internet’s rapid growth and made it a powerful engine of social and economic freedom. This bipartisan bill is designed to combat recent efforts by some in the international community to regulate the Internet, which could jeopardize not only its vibrancy, but also the benefits it brings to the world.”
Digital Liberty and Americans for Tax Reform have long supported efforts to push back against attempts at international Internet regulation such as those pushed through at the WCIT. Americans for Tax Reform sent a letter officially supporting the multi-stakeholder model to keep the internet free and open so that it can continue to spawn economic and social benefits .
Yesterday’s House vote is an encouraging step in the fight against what FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell called “patient and persistent incrementalists” who want to alter the multi-stakeholder model. Hopefully, efforts to resist regulation abroad will be paired with those that resist similar mistakes at home.