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      Texas Republican wants ISPs to block a wide range of abortion websites

      news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Wednesday, 1 March, 2023 - 21:16 · 1 minute

    The Texas state flag hanging on the outside of the state Capitol building during daytime.

    Enlarge / Texas State Capitol Building. (credit: Getty Images | Brian Bumby)

    A proposed state law in Texas would force Internet service providers to block websites containing information on how to obtain an abortion or abortion pill. Republican lawmaker Steve Toth, a member of the state House of Representatives, introduced the bill last week.

    Texas already has several laws that heavily restrict access to abortion, but the new proposal is notable for its attempt to control how ISPs provide access to the Web. "Each Internet service provider that provides Internet services in this state shall make every reasonable and technologically feasible effort to block Internet access to information or material intended to assist or facilitate efforts to obtain an elective abortion or an abortion-inducing drug," the bill says.

    The bill lists six websites that would have to be blocked: aidaccess.org , heyjane.co , plancpills.org , mychoix.co , justthepill.com , and carafem.org . ISPs would also have to block any website or online platform "operated by or on behalf of an abortion provider or abortion fund" and any website or platform used to download software "that is designed to assist or facilitate efforts to obtain an elective abortion or an abortion-inducing drug."

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      Biden DOJ halts Trump admin lawsuit against Calif. net neutrality rules

      Jon Brodkin · news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Monday, 8 February, 2021 - 22:32 · 1 minute

    An Ethernet cable and fiber optic wires.

    Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Rafe Swan)

    The Biden administration has abandoned a Trump-era lawsuit that sought to block California's net neutrality law. In a court filing today, the US Department of Justice said it "hereby gives notice of its voluntary dismissal of this case." Shortly after, the court announced that the case is "dismissed in its entirety" and "all pending motions in this action are denied as moot."

    The case began when Trump's DOJ sued California in September 2018 in US District Court for the Eastern District of California, trying to block a state net neutrality law similar to the US net neutrality law repealed by the Ajit Pai-led FCC . Though Pai's FCC lost an attempt to impose a blanket, nationwide preemption of any state net neutrality law, the US government's lawsuit against the California law was moving forward in the final months of the Trump administration.

    The Biden DOJ's voluntary dismissal of the case puts an end to that. "I am pleased that the Department of Justice has withdrawn this lawsuit," FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said today. "When the FCC, over my objection, rolled back its net neutrality policies, states like California sought to fill the void with their own laws. By taking this step, Washington is listening to the American people, who overwhelmingly support an open Internet, and is charting a course to once again make net neutrality the law of the land."

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      Pai’s FCC squeezes in one more vote against net neutrality before election

      Jon Brodkin · news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica · Tuesday, 27 October, 2020 - 19:49 · 1 minute

    FCC members Brendan Carr, Michael O

    Enlarge / FCC Republican members (L-R) Brendan Carr, Michael O'Rielly, and Chairman Ajit Pai participate in a discussion during the Conservative Political Action Conference on February 23, 2018 in Maryland. (credit: Getty Images | Chip Somodevilla )

    The Republican-majority Federal Communications Commission took another vote against net neutrality rules today in its last meeting before a presidential election that could swing the FCC back to the Democratic party.

    Today's vote came a year after a federal appeals court upheld FCC Chairman Ajit Pai's repeal of net neutrality rules and deregulation of the broadband industry. Though Pai was mostly victorious in the case, the judges remanded portions of the repeal back to the FCC because the commission "failed to examine the implications of its decisions for public safety," failed to "sufficiently explain what reclassification [of ISPs] will mean for regulation of pole attachments," and did not address concerns about the effect deregulation would have on the FCC's Lifeline program, which subsidizes phone and Internet access for low-income Americans.

    The FCC approved its response to the court's remand instructions in a 3-2 vote today, but didn't make any significant changes. "After thoroughly reviewing the record compiled in response to its request for additional comment on these issues, the FCC found no basis to alter the FCC's conclusions in the Restoring Internet Freedom Order," the commission said in its announcement . "The Order on Remand finds that the Restoring Internet Freedom Order promotes public safety, facilitates broadband infrastructure deployment by Internet service providers, and allows the FCC to continue to provide Lifeline support for broadband Internet access service." A draft version of the decision is available here .

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