FCC’s Baker Wonders Why Neutrality Plan isn’t Public

This seems to be a troubling trend lately …

The FCC vote on their new neutrality rules is coming December 21, and nobody (other than we assume the wealthiest stakeholders) know what the rules contain, outside of a general understanding that they echo previous, paper thin proposals by Henry Waxman, Verizon and Google — making a point to exclude wireless. Yesterday we noted how there have been unheeded calls for the rules to be leaked. At least one FCC Commissioner agrees, Meredith Attwell Baker urging the FCC to at least unveil the rules for a brief public comment period, something that would make sense given all the FCC’s talk about transparency:

“If this agency is to operate in the most transparent and inclusive manner, we should proactively put out a copy of our draft Net Neutrality rules for comment today. The comment cycle can be short, but putting some sunshine on what we are doing would inform our process.” She said that would be a way for the chairman to fulfill his pledge of openness and transparency.

Of course the Republican Baker will likely vote strictly along party lines against the vote, but she still has a point — even if it might be a disingenuous one made during a game of political chess. As we noted yesterday, the question shouldn’t be whether or not consumers can now view a neutrality proposal after it was hashed out in private meetings (most of which with carriers), it should be why weren’t consumers absolutely integral in crafting it? AT&T has met with the FCC half a dozen times in the course of three weeks and likely knows precisely what’s in this plan — do you?
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