NEW YORK (FOX5NY) - The way you browse the internet could soon change. The FCC pulled the plug on net neutrality. This means that major changes could be coming to your internet service, including how fast you see something and how much you pay for it.
Protestors staged demonstrations in Washington, D.C., following the FCC's party-line vote to get rid of the Obama-era regulation designed to ensure equal access to the internet.
Broadband providers—Verizon, Comcast, and AT&T—can slow down the interface for apps by rival firms, block them altogether, or charge them for faster online performance.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said he believes net neutrality rules constrain online investment and prevent companies from innovating.
"It is not the job of the government to be in the business of picking winners and losers in the internet economy," Pai said. "We should have a level playing field."
Large tech firms—including Twitter, Facebook, and Alphabet—and many smaller ones—including Reddit, Mozilla, and Kickstarter—opposed the move. Netflix, Amazon, and other content providers also objected, saying customers may have to pay more to keep their services streaming.
The FCC also voted to transfer oversight of internet service providers to the Federal Trade Commission.
You can expect a lot of pushback on this ruling. New York's Democratic attorney general has announced a multi-state lawsuit to roll back the rollback. Plus, Democrats in Congress said this will be an issue in 2018 midterm elections.