FCC’s Comcast BitTorrent Decision Vacated by D.C. Appeals Court

Apr 6, 2010  •  Post A Comment

A Washington D.C. Appeals court vacated the Federal Communications Commission’s ruling against Comcast, saying the FCC didn’t explicitly prove its authority to make such a decision regarding Comcast’s network management, B&C reports. 

The FCC originally sought to take action against Comcast,  claiming that Comcast was "covertly interfering" with users using peer-to-peer downloading software BitTorrent.  Comcast challenged the ruling, saying that its network management fell outside of the FCC’s jurisdiction. 

The Appeals court agreed with Comcast, saying that Congress had given the FCC an expansive jurisdiction in order to keep up with expanding communication technologies, but that it failed to prove in this case that its ancillary jurisdiction presided over Comcast’s management systems. 

The ruling could force the FCC to reclassify Internet service under the same regulations as phone service, in order to set the FCC’s authority as the commission takes steps towards establishing Internet neutrality rules. 


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