Industry News

Feds OK Fee for Priority Web Traffic

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Justice Department on Thursday said Internet service providers should be allowed to charge a fee for priority Web traffic.

The agency told the Federal Communications Commission, which is reviewing high-speed Internet practices, that it is opposed to “Net neutrality,” the principle that all Internet sites should be equally accessible to any Web user.

Several phone and cable companies, such as AT&T Inc. (ATT), Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) (VZ) and Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) (CMCSA), have previously said they want the option to charge some users more money for loading certain content or Web sites faster than others.

The Justice Department said imposing a Net neutrality regulation could hamper development of the Internet and prevent service providers from upgrading or expanding their networks. It could also shift the “entire burden of implementing costly network expansions and improvements onto consumers,” the agency said in its filing.

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