internet drama
April 7, 2018

The Department of Justice on Friday seized Backpage.com, a classified ads website. While many of the site's listings are similar to what one would find on Craigslist, the DOJ says Backpage also hosts ads facilitating sex trafficking and prostitution. Backpage was previously under congressional investigation, after which it edited its listing policies.

Visitors to the site and its affiliates will now see a notice of seizure from the FBI, the IRS, and several other agencies. The statement describes the seizure as part of an "enforcement action" but provides no further details. Bonnie Kristian

December 16, 2017

The Federal Communications Commission voted on Thursday to rescind Obama-era net neutrality rules. Supporters of the change argue it will foster innovation and give customers more options, while opponents raise the specter of the "end of the internet as we know it" — and they have the sympathy of 83 percent of voters (including 75 percent of Republicans).

That broad support for retaining the previous regulatory scheme may fuel efforts to revive net neutrality in Congress. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced Friday he intends to force a net neutrality vote under the terms of the Congressional Review Act (CRA). "It's in our power to do that," Schumer said. "Sometimes we don't like [administrative rule changes] but now we can use the CRA to our benefit, and we intend to." Were a net neutrality law passed by Congress, it would be more impervious to repeal than the agency-level policy the FCC rescinded.

Meanwhile, public interest groups and attorneys general in states including New York, Oregon, and Washington are gearing up to sue the federal government over this week's decision. "I don't think the courts are going to approve of the wholesale deregulation of telecom," Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) told The Hill. Bonnie Kristian

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