Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson has joined the roster of state officials who plan to sue the Federal Communications Commission over the repeal of the net neutrality rules.
“Without net neutrality, broadband companies are free to block content they don’t want you to see, to slow it down and make it harder to access, or to prioritize content based on who pays them money,” Swanson said in an email sent to supporters, according to the Star-Tribune.
Earlier this month, the FCC revoked a set of open internet rules passed in 2015. Those rules prohibited broadband providers from blocking or throttling traffic, from charging higher fees for prioritized delivery, and from unreasonably impeding consumers and content providers from reaching each other.
Critics of that move, including Swanson, say the 2015 rules are necessary to prevent carriers from discriminating against competitors and small companies that can't afford high fees for fast lane service. "Mega corporations can dominate the content people see online by paying money to obtain faster speeds," Swanson reportedly wrote. "This will make it more difficult and more expensive for consumers to access the content they want.”
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said two weeks ago that he will lead a multi-state lawsuit against the FCC. Attorneys general in at least eight other states have indicated they will join the suit.
The law enforcement officials can't file suit until at least 10 days after the rules are published in the Federal Register, which hasn't occurred yet.