September 23, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — On Monday, the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) delivered a long-in-the-works plan for a new set of regulations deciding how Internet service providers (ISPs) will be allowed to interfere with the websites to which they provide access.
The mission is to write into law new rules dictating that “broadband providers cannot discriminate against particular Internet content or applications” and “providers of broadband Internet access must be transparent about their network management practices,” among other details.
According to FCC chairman Julius Genachowski, new rules are needed because of three factors: a lack of competition among broadband providers; a new market where broadband providers sell voice and TV services in addition to Internet access; and an increase in global Web traffic that’s caused some ISPs to make dramatic strategic changes to keep their networks from being overwhelmed.
In the past, some ISPs have admitted limiting certain kinds of traffic without telling their customers. For example, Comcast did it recently to suppress BitTorrent file-sharing traffic.
“The policy announcement was hardly a surprise given President Barack Obama's support for the cause during the campaign,” writes Chris O’Brien at the Mercury News. “And the rule making process will last for several months, allowing supporters and detractors to weigh in.”
So what’s all this mean for online gaming affiliate marketing? In general, it’s a sort of guarantee that ISPs can’t interfere with consumers’ web browsing, which means that affiliates won’t lose players because of provider interference. It also strives for a more fair online experience, which helps to limit the discrimination potential for the online gaming industry — a big concern, as we've seen with recent activities in the U.S.