This conversation started by @patrickc is a great discussion on all things #netneutrality

Nearly three years after the FCC voted to undo Title II, Where do things stand? Are tweets still free? Was this much ado about nothing? What is next?

I have some thoughts 🧵
Since the FCC's Restoring Internet Freedom Order took effect two years ago. We've seen:

-US Internet speeds are up!
-None of the hyperbolic predictions occurred (and/or never happened in first place)
-Increased broadband deployment
These 🔼 are all points that can (and should) be debated. Many (included myself) have discussed them ad nauseam.

So instead of rehashing those sticking points, I'm going to to share a few things, not often discussed.
First off: In a surprise to many net neutrality activists, the light touch framework set by @AjitPaiFCC has worked very well during COVID.

And.... concerns people have, such as the "homework gap," would not have been solved by net neutrality rules.

usatoday.com/story/opinion/…
We currently have bipartisan conversations about next steps to solve our nation's digital divide.

Ideas like enabling new innovations (think Starlink), reducing barriers for thousands of small providers, and rethinking public investment.

Title II doesn't solve this problem...
Additionally, the US's current light touch approach means we are better prepared to reap the benefits of 5G compared to Europe (where net neutrality absolutism is potentially leaving providers and innovators in a regulatory quagmire).
Prioritization for 5G requires dynamic network management. However onerous Title II framework creates a "mother may I" approach that could dramatically discourage the creation and adoption of new applications.

(It will be interesting to contrast US v Europe on this front)
In some ways, Title II (net neutrality) as it relates to network management is similar to a tech platform needing a federal agency permission before use a new algorithm.

Which brings to me the real upshot of this thread.
The current conversations on Capitol Hill and during Presidential Campaign about the power of Internet gatekeepers (IE the platforms) originate from this central net neutrality debate.

Both sides have real questions about competition, free speech, "bias," and "deplatforming."
So if Joe Biden wins, and a Democrat-led @FCC brings back net neutrality regulations, I believe it will be nearly impossible for them to parse out this one issue from the lively and relevant discussion dominating tech policy.
This holistic approach has been foreshadowed by former Sen. Al Franken (an early proponent of net neutrality), who called for expanding net neutrality-styled regulations on the platforms as well.

shorturl.at/ptDI9
Interestingly former FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler (the "Dingo" as called by John Oliver) has also signaled interest in expanding Net Neutrality rules on the rest of the Internet.... As he calls "A holistic approach..."

wired.com/story/former-f…
This new regulatory paradigm, coupled with the political realignment on the right (where leading Republicans are rethinking free market ideology and the concept of regulatory humility), could result in a drastic bipartisan overhaul of our Internet landscape.
A sort of Digital New Deal could be brewing. And consequently it could be those corporate interests and Internet activists who backed net neutrality in the first place, who stand to lose the most.

(See Section 230 debate for example)
This was predictable. Back in 2009, @BerinSzoka and @AdamThierer wrote a prescient paper saying as much. Explaining how the net neutrality would kickstart tech's mutually assured destruction. pff.org/issues-pubs/ps…
Now is the time for advocates and policymakers to step back and rethink whether it is possible to reshape this aspect of the Internet ecosystem without dramatically altering the rest? And is that a future that is better or worse outcome for American public?

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