Strong net neutrality rules in the US would give authoritarian states an excuse to strengthen their grip over the Internet, Federal Communications Commission member Ajit Pai reportedly said today.
Pai is one of two Republicans on the five-member commission opposing Chairman Tom Wheeler’s net neutrality plan, and spoke today at an event hosted by TechAmerica, part of the CompTIA a technology trade association. According to The Hill, Pai said that tough net neutrality rules could provide cover to leaders in North Korea, Iran, and other states.
“If in the United States we adopt regulations that assert more government control over how the Internet operates… it becomes a lot more difficult for us to go on the international stage and tell governments: ‘Look, we want you to keep your hands off the Internet,’” Pai said, the Hill reported. “Even if the ideas aren’t completely identical, you can appreciate the optical difficult[y] in trying to make that case.”
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