FCC's Ajit Pai cancels CES appearance

05 January, 2018, 13:46 | Author: Gladys Mathis
  • FILE-Federal Communication Commission Commissioner Ajit Pai speaking during a FCC meeting in Washington Friday Aug. 9 2013. President Donald Trump designated Pai as FCC Chairman in 2017

After the commission voted in favor of repealing net neutrality, several companies, advocacy groups, and other organizations voiced the intent to sue the FCC. Now that his plan has passed, it appears that Pai has simply chose to avoid his critics altogether.

One week before his scheduled appearance at CES 2018 in Las Vegas, the Consumer Technology Association announced that Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai will no longer be attending the show. Pai has stated that he and his family have been threatened both in public and online and he and the rest of the FCC were forced to briefly suspend their December 14th vote on the net neutrality rollbacks after a bomb threat was issued.

Digital Music News, which has covered the net neutrality debate, cited two unidentified "sources on Capitol Hill" in reporting the reason for the cancellation just days before Pai was scheduled to appear.

The current threat that will mean no FCC chairman will give his annual CES chat, a change that was confirmed on Wednesday.

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Pai became a target of death threats after he unveiled his plan to repeal the regulations put in place under former President Barack Obama in 2015. Under the rules, the FCC was given the authority to regulate Internet service providers (ISPs) such as AT&T, Comcast and Verizon - similar to utilities - subjecting the entities to more government oversight.

This will be the first time Pai has not attended the conference in five years. A spokesperson for Pai did not comment on the nature of the threat but sources said that federal law enforcement had intervened in the matter.

The FCC released the full text of its Restoring Internet Freedom order on Thursday.

It has been nearly a month since the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted 3-2 to dismantle Obama-era net neutrality rules, and Thursday (4 January) saw the release of the final text of its repeal.

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