The Federal Communications Commission issued rules to preserve the Internet as an open platform. These rules went into effect on November 20, 2011 and can be found at this link.
All Internet service providers are required to post information regarding various issues so that consumers, both residential and business, can make informed choices about choosing an Internet service provider.
The FCC’s rules focus on three primary issues:
- Transparency. Fixed and mobile broadband providers must disclose the network management practices, performance characteristics, and terms and conditions of their broadband services.
- No blocking. Fixed broadband providers may not block lawful content, applications, services, or non-harmful devices; mobile broadband providers may not block lawful Web sites, or block applications that compete with their voice or video telephony services.
- No unreasonable discrimination. Fixed broadband providers may not unreasonably discriminate in transmitting lawful network traffic.
- Reasonable network management. ISPs may engage in reasonable network management to maintain a high quality of service for broadband Internet access.
ISPs must disclose their network practices, specifically in the four general areas listed below. ISPs may not block lawful content, applications, services, or non-harmful devices, subject to reasonable network management. An ISP may not block consumers from accessing lawful Web sites, subject to reasonable network management; nor shall the ISP block applications that compete with the provider’s voice or video telephony services, subject to reasonable network management.
ISPs may not unreasonably discriminate in transmitting lawful network traffic over a consumer’s broadband Internet access service, although, reasonable network management shall not constitute unreasonable discrimination. The FCC’s rules state that a network management practice is reasonable if it is appropriate and tailored to achieving a legitimate network management purpose, taking into account the particular network architecture and technology of the broadband Internet access service.
Congestion Management: Race Communications does not engage in congestion management, nor limit usage.
Application-Specific Behavior: None.
Device Attachment Rules: None.
Security: Race Communications engages in network monitoring to detect potential intrusion and denial of service attack. Additionally, end-users whose systems are compromised and which are sourcing malicious traffic may be contacted or suspended until the system is secured. Additionally, we may block traffic to or from customers when a denial of service attack is in progress, and which is impacting shared network elements.
ISPs must disclose the following network performance characteristics:
Service Description: Race Communications provides broadband internet access via ADSL, unlicensed wireless, T1, T3, Metro Ethernet and Fiber. Actual speeds vary by location and product selected. See our website for details. All services are suitable for real-time applications. Typically latency is typically less than 50ms.
Impact of Specialized Services: No specialized services which affect last-mile capacity are currently offered.
ISPs must disclose the commercial terms of its broadband Internet access service including those listed below.
Pricing: Please refer to product information at http://www.race.com/services/ . Invoices will be sent via email for free or by U.S. mail for $2/month.
Privacy Policies: Customer browsing information is not stored. Network traffic management practices are limited to protocol flow analysis (header information only.) Traffic information is not provided to third parties, nor used by the ISP.
Redress Options: Race Communications is responsive to all complaints.
If a customer believes that these open Internet rules are not being met, the customer may file an informal complaint at the Federal Communications Commission. The FCC urges customers to submit any complaints via its website at the following address: http://esupport.fcc.gov/complaints.htm. Customers may also file a formal complaint at the FCC using Part 76 of the Commission’s rules.