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Internet service providers could be required to release "broadband nutrition labels" with detailed information about prices, speeds, and data caps under legislation introduced by US Rep. Angie Craig (D-Minn.).
Craig's "Broadband Consumer Transparency Act" would bring back expanded transparency requirements that were eliminated when then-Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai repealed net neutrality rules and deregulated the broadband industry in December 2017.
The bill "would require straightforward disclosures in an easily understandable format to help consumers better understand the services they are purchasing and protect against hidden fees and sub-standard Internet performance," Craig said in a press release yesterday. The press release said the bill "would require sellers of broadband services to provide the following information to all consumers":
The bill is simple and barely a page long. It directs the FCC to adopt "regulations to promote and incentivize the widespread adoption of broadband consumer labels" like the ones described in a public notice issued by the Obama-era FCC in April 2016. The bill would give the FCC one year to issue these rules.
The bill's language saying the FCC must "promote and incentivize" adoption of broadband labels makes it sound like they would be optional for ISPs. But Craig said her bill would "require" the disclosures, and the bill text could be updated to make sure it matches the intent.
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