A federal judge in California ruled on Tuesday that the first net neutrality law passed in the state in 2018 can now be enforced, marking a major victory for advocates of a more equal Internet and paving the way for other states to start introducing open iyour own Internet rules.
After the Trump administration moved to remove net neutrality protections nationwide in 2018, California legislators had tried to take matters into his own hands by creating legislation designed to prevent meInternet service providers block or slow down web traffic.
Shortly after its approval, the digital protection law was received with legal opposition from telecommunications giants, including AT&T, Comcast, Verizon and others, as well as from the Trump-era Justice Department, which sued to block the law hours after it took effect.
But on Tuesday, United States District Court Judge John Méndez ruled that the law can proceed with enforcement and also dismissed a pending court order. from a telecommunications association whose members included AT&T, Verizon and Charter.
“The judge found that the law has a solid legal foundation and that ISPs trying to repeal it are unlikely to prevail,” Barbara van Schewick, professor of law at Stanford University, who wrote one of the legal briefs in support of the law, told the Washington Post.
“The judge found, as I have long argued, that an agency that says it has no power to regulate, has no power to tell others that they cannot regulate,” he said.
The news comes weeks after the Justice Department– under Biden favorable to net neutrality administration – announced it was leaving his Trump era lawsuit against Protections Proposed by California.
The Four business groups involved in efforts to repeal the law – the American Cable Association, CTIA, the National Cable and Telecommunications Association and USTelecom – said in Tuesday what They will “review the opinion of the court before deciding the next steps,” indicating the possibility of an appeals process that will once again delay California in enforcing the law..
“A state-by-state approach to Internet regulation will confuse consumers and deter innovation, just as the importance of broadband for everyone has never been more apparent,” the groups it said in a joint statement. “We agree with the Court that a piecemeal approach is unsustainable and that Congress should codify rules for an open Internet.”