ALA: FCC’s consideration of net neutrality principles key to preserving free Internet

Contact: Jenni Terry

Press Officer

ALA Washington Office

(202) 628-8410

For Immediate Release

October 22, 2009

Washington, D.C. – The American Library Association (ALA) strongly supports Chairman Julius Genachowski’s efforts to move the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) forward in consideration of principles to protect the free and open nature of the Internet.

The FCC voted unanimously today to proceed with issuing a notice of proposed rulemaking, which would add two principles of non-discrimination and transparency to the existing four principles of network neutrality, and to allow a period of public commentary.

“We thank the FCC commissioners for establishing a way for the American public to participate in this important debate,” ALA President Camila Alire said.

“ALA has long supported network neutrality. As information professionals, we know how essential it is to have a diversity of information sources, and we believe an open Internet benefits all. Chairman Genachowski is heading in the right direction by revising and expanding the principles of net neutrality.”

ALA’s principles center on intellectual freedom and access to information. Network neutrality extends these principles to online content; it also encourages innovation and allows even the smallest provider of online information access to a level playing field. The Internet developed as a neutral, democratic technology, and ALA believes the FCC must preserve it.