by Christopher S. Yoo
Free State Foundation
February 12, 2014
Perspective
On January 14, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit handed down its eagerly anticipated decision in Verizon v. FCC, in which the court assessed the legality of the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC’s) 2010 Open Internet Order. The FCC’s order was struck down with respect to the nondiscrimination and nonblocking rules although the transparency rule was left in place. The fact that the D.C. Circuit deviated from its usual practice of simply remanding noncompliant agency actions and instead vacated portions of the FCC’s order arguably reflects skepticism that the agency could find an alternative justification for those rules. That said, the opinion contains language likely to serve as sources of both encouragement and anxiety to the Order’s proponents and opponents alike. One of the few clear implications is that the next round of the debate over network neutrality has only just begun.



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