Blog: Net neutrality has been repealed. Now what?

Last week, the FCC voted to repeal net neutrality rules that have been in place since 2015, ending regulations that prohibited internet providers from blocking or slowing web content. There has been a robust debate on both sides of this important issue, with many contending that any changes to net neutrality will unnecessarily harm consumers and stifle innovation. Others maintain that it will be business-as-usual, and this change in policy will not affect the open internet millions of us have grown accustomed to.

The truth is, nobody knows what the future will hold in the post-net neutrality world. 

Regardless of the FCC’s action last week, ATA has long been a champion of accessibility, openness, and innovation, three critical pillars in the growth of telemedicine. We will continue to work to ensure that these values will be represented in any future internet or broadband access policies, and inform any future positions we take on issues like net neutrality, or any other policies affecting telemedicine.

ATA, along with other groups across many sectors, is working to evaluate and understand what the post-net neutrality world will look like. With that in mind, we are undertaking the following action plan as we seek to better understand the implications of the repeal of net neutrality:

  • Our policy team is working with the relevant Members of Congress, committees, and regulatory bodies to fully understand the impact of reversing net neutrality, and what actions might be taken in the short and long term to address it. We will keep you updated as we learn more.
  • It is important to understand the potential impact of the repeal of net neutrality, so we are asking you to send us your insights and experience as member organizations. We want to hear from you – please chime in on the discussion thread in The Source and share your thoughts.
  • Finally, once the implications of the repeal of net neutrality are clear, ATA will issue a policy brief and will look to integrate its findings into ongoing activities, such as the Capitol Connection briefing series, as well as our annual conference in Chicago.

As we always do, we will keep you informed as this issue unfolds.

Peter Yellowlees, MBBS
American Telemedicine Association

Sabrina L. Smith

Interim CEO
American Telemedicine Association