Legal Updates for January 2018

Repeal of U.S. Net Neutrality and What it Could Mean for South-East Asia

On 14 December 2017, the United States Federal Communications Commission ("FCC") voted to repeal the net neutrality regulations set in place during the Obama administration in 2015 ("2015 Regulations").

Net neutrality generally refers to network providers treating all sources of Internet content equally as well as consumers’ rights to access content and services on the Internet on a non-discriminatory basis. Generally, this means that Internet Service Providers ("ISPs") should not be allowed to block legal content of a consumer’s choice, throttle legal internet traffic to slower speeds or sell “fast lane” services to content providers who can pay more than others. Effectively, net neutrality seemingly creates a more level playing field for businesses.

This Update provides a summary of the changes to the United States' position on net neutrality, followed by our comments on the potential impact of the FCC decision to the net neutrality policies in certain parts of South-East Asia.