Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) supported Barack Obama’s call for tougher regulations to guarantee net neutrality. President Obama backed the idea that the consumers should decide the best and worst on the Internet, not broadband service providers, Netflix said yesterday on its Facebook page.
New discussion fanned by president
President Obama has fanned the discussion over the regulation of web services, suggesting “an explicit ban on paid prioritization.” Currently, Netflix has to pay the Internet service providers to make sure that its video streaming is prioritized. The U.S. Federal Communication Commission is working on a plan that may allow so-called Internet fast lanes.
The online video streaming company applauded President Obama’s suggestion that the FCC should re-categorize broadband under Title II. The company said in a statement that it backs both White House and the FCC’s efforts to offer free and open internet. It also added that stricter rules regarding Net Neutrality will help curb the possibilities of Internet service providers abusing their gatekeeper power by levying charges on companies who want to reach their customers or establishing paid fast lanes.
Additionally, the company wants the FCC to include paid peering and interconnection deals in discussing and framing new network neutrality rules. If the plan suggested by President Obama is implemented, it will prevent restricting of legal online content and web sites and ban paid prioritization.
Blame game between Netflix and ISPs
Netflix has long requested the FCC implement “stronger” Net Neutrality rules after it entered into recent paid interconnection deals with Comcast, Verizon Communication, AT&T and Time Warner Cable. According to the online streaming company, such charges are equivalent to “arbitrary tax” on it and on other providers, saying that they signed these deals only so they could offer a high-quality experience to users.
Internet service providers such as Comcast have argued in the past that Netflix created congestion to get political attention. The company said that it was the part of a strategy by Netflix to create issues and escalate the point to a broader platform “that had nothing to do with the consumer interest, which was that they wanted to make the point that it was better for them to have free interconnection.”