Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Gov. Jay Inslee today issued a joint statement on this week’s ruling in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia regarding the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) decision to rescind net neutrality and to vacate the FCC’s order preempting state open internet laws.
“Today’s ruling says that the FCC does not have blanket authority to stop states like Washington from passing open internet laws to protect consumers. Washingtonians will continue to have access to a fair, free and open internet, thanks to our first-in-the-nation open internet access law. This is an important victory for our state,” the statement reads.
In March 2018, Gov. Inslee signed the Washington Open Internet Access law, making Washington the first state to pass legislation protecting consumers’ access to a free and open internet. The legislation passed with strong bipartisan support. Rep. Drew Hansen, D-Bainbridge Island, and Rep. Norma Smith, R-Clinton, introduced the legislation, which Gov. Inslee and Attorney General Ferguson supported.
The law prohibits paid prioritization, “throttling” or prioritizing internet traffic based on content, and bars internet providers from blocking certain content. Violations of the state law are enforceable under the state Consumer Protection Act.