Snapshot of FCC Majority Assault on Pro-Consumer Policies

Media Contact:
David Grossman
(202) 418-2100

For Immediate Release


WASHINGTON, November 15, 2017 – The following statement can be attributed to FCC Commissioner Mignon L. Clyburn:

"Tomorrow, the FCC majority will continue down its destructive path of adopting a series of actions that fail to put consumers first:

The FCC majority (Chairman Pai and Commissioners Rielly and Carr) will

  • make it more difficult for low-income Americans to access affordable communications services;
  • adopt a new, so-called ‘voluntary’ television standard that has even more outstanding and unanswered questions than the February Notice of Proposed Rulemaking;
  • shred consumer and competition protections in times of technology transitions; and
  • open the door to massive media consolidation at the expense of localism, competition, and viewpoint diversity.

During the first 10 months of 2017, the FCC majority has given the green light to more than a dozen actions [see enclosure] that are a direct attack on consumers and small businesses, and most Americans are unaware that the agency established to protect the public interest has traded in that role for the chance to grant the wish lists of billion dollar companies.

What consumers want is fast, affordable broadband access. What consumers want is access to a free and open internet without fear of being throttled or assessed a toll by their broadband service provider. What consumers desire is programming options that reflect the diversity of their community. Sadly, what they have is an FCC majority that feels otherwise which is why I remain committed to fighting for policies that give voice to those who far too often go unheard."

Office of Commissioner Mignon Clyburn: (202) 418-2100 | Twitter: @MClyburnFCC |

This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text
of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC, 515 F.2d 385 (D.C. Cir. 1974).

A Snapshot of the FCC Majority’s Assault on Pro-Consumer Policies

Prepared by the Office of FCC Commissioner Clyburn
November 15, 2017

In the first 10 months of 2017, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and his majority colleagues have:

  1. Initiated the process of undoing the Commission’s 2015 open internet protections, despite having been upheld by the D.C. Circuit last year.

  2. Reinstated the technologically obsolete UHF discount, thereby enabling a single broadcast station group to reach more than 70 percent of television households.

  3. Deregulated the business data services market thanks to the use of faulty data and a lackadaisical market analysis.

  4. Eliminated key broadcast ownership rules that were put in place to promote localism, competition and viewpoint diversity.

  5. Proposed to reform the Lifeline program in a way that jeopardizes our efforts at ubiquitous and affordable services across the country.

  6. Eliminated transparency (eliminated rules that required) broadband providers be transparent with their consumers about things like data caps on their broadband connection.

  7. Refused any attempts to address and fix longstanding inmate calling services issues.

  8. Revoked the designation of nine entities already approved to provide Lifeline broadband service — the first time the FCC has ever revoked licenses without cause.

  9. Refused to review an $85 billion transaction that has significant implications on the communications sector.

  10. Issued a stay of the FCC’s rule requiring voice and broadband providers to take reasonable measures to secure the data that they gather from their customers.

  11. Initiated an inquiry that proposes lowering the bar for what we now consider to be high-speed broadband (changing the definition of broadband from the current 25 Mbps down/3 Mbps up to 10 Mbps down/1 Mbps up)

  12. Adopted a mobile competition report using flawed and truncated analysis, in order to erroneously conclude that the market for commercial mobile wireless services was effectively competitive.

  13. Eliminated the main studio rule that has ensured those entrusted with use of the public airwaves have a local presence in their community.

  14. Removed cybersecurity from the charter of an important federal advisory committee — the Communications, Security, Reliability, and Interoperability Council (CSRIC).