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U.S. appeals court strikes down FCC net neutrality rules


By Alina Selyukh and David Ingram WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday rejected federal rules that required Internet providers to treat all web traffic equally, a decision that could allow mobile carriers and other broadband providers to charge content providers for faster access to websites and services. The Federal Communications Commissions open Internet rules, also known as net neutrality, required Internet service providers to give consumers equal access to all lawful content without restrictions or tiered charges. But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit struck down the rules, which were passed in late 2010 and have been challenged by Verizon Communications Inc. Two judges, with partial support from a third, said the commission has the authority to regulate broadband access but had failed to show that it has a mandate to impose the anti-discrimination rules on broadband providers. The ruling is a victory for Verizon and other broadband providers, who saw the FCC rules as government overreach into how they operate their networks.

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