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FCC Chairman Ajit Pai's announcement that he will seek to restore U.S. innovation policy to the modern, bipartisan approach that has guided the internet's growth and evolution in our country for more than two decades is a huge win for consumers, our connected economy and our digital democracy. It's also a win for the argument that our technology policy must be as smart and nimble as the internet it governs.

Here's why the Pai's plan is heading in the right direction:

  • Consumers concerned about net neutrality will have the security of clean, clear and enforceable rules to safeguard our online freedoms.
  • Consumers concerned about online privacy will get exactly what they consistently say they want: One high standard of protections that applies uniformly across the internet—broadband providers, yes, but everyone online, including search, social media and commerce companies.
  • The FCC will no longer do the bidding of special interests intent on seeing the agency "save" consumers from the obvious scourge of getting free and discounted stuff online.
  • And, because this progress can be achieved without the government turning the internet into a utility, future broadband investment does not have to be held back by carbon-dated regulations written in the same year American families first gathered around the radio to hear FDR's fireside chats.

Two years after Title II was enacted, FDR bravely told the nation, "we have nothing to fear, but fear itself." Today, Chairman Pai helped wake our country from a bizarre, two-year fever dream of a policy detour governed entirely by fear and misinformation.

Nothing about the Internet was broken when the prior FCC leadership caved to intense political pressure to "save the Internet" by imposing regulations written during the Great Depression.

From the internet's earliest days, President Bill Clinton and a Republican Congress saw the abundance that might come if we worked together to stoke an American-led century of innovation. Our digital economy has delivered. And, this progressive and modern approach has had truly transformative impacts for our families and communities.

We can't stop now.

Our common task is to craft policies that dare to envision once again a U.S. innovation future that focuses on abundance rather than austerity—a future where competition is thriving, jobs are growing and American consumers continue to have both the net neutrality we demand and the thriving, innovative broadband experience we deserve.

Chairman Pai started from the right place, asking "what policies will give the American people what they want?" He should be commended for standing with so many great U.S. policymakers, innovators and consumers for the modern, bipartisan principles that have made American broadband the envy of the world.

Jonathan Spalter is President and CEO of USTelecom.

Go deeper

Woman who allegedly stole laptop from Pelosi's office to sell to Russia is arrested

Photo: FBI

A woman accused of breaching the Capitol and planning to sell to Russia a laptop or hard drive she allegedly stole from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office was arrested in Pennsylvania's Middle District Monday, the Department of Justice said.

Driving the news: Riley June Williams, 22, is charged with illegally entering the Capitol as well as violent entry and disorderly conduct. She has not been charged over the laptop allegation and the case remains under investigation, per the DOJ.

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The incoming Biden administration will reverse President Trump's last-minute order to lift COVID-19 related travel restrictions, Jen Psaki, the incoming White House press secretary, tweeted.

Why it matters: President Trump ordered entry bans lifted for travelers from the U.K., Ireland, Brazil and much of Europe to go into effect Jan. 26, but the Biden administration will "strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19," Jen Psaki said. Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday, Jan. 20 and Trump will no longer be president by the time the order is set to go into effect.

Dominion sends cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell

Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Dominion Voting Systems on Monday sent a cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell over his spread of misinformation related to the 2020 election.

Why it matters: Trump and several of his allies have pushed false conspiracy theories about the company, leading Dominion to take legal action. It's suing pro-Trump lawyer Sidney Powell for defamation and $1.3 billion in damages, and a Dominion employee has sued Trump himself, OANN and Newsmax.