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Image credit: Lucas Jackson / Reuters

New York AG blasts FCC for refusing to help fight net neutrality spam

It's probably not going to get a warm response.
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Lucas Jackson / Reuters

Were you frustrated that the FCC did nothing to look into bots flooding its public comment system with anti-net neutrality spam before deciding to kill net neutrality? So was New York. State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has posted an open letter chastising the FCC for refusing to help investigate this "illegal conduct." New York made requests for records "at least 9 times" between June and November, and asked key FCC officials (including Chairman Ajit Pai) for help, all to no avail -- there was "no substantive response" to any of the inquiries, Schneiderman said.

This comes despite the scale of the apparent crime. There may have been "tens of thousands" of New York residents whose names were fraudulently used in the comments to oppose net neutrality, Schneiderman said, let alone those from other states. Impersonation is an issue that "should concern everyone" regardless of where they live or their political affiliation, he added, pointing out the similarities between this and Russia's election influence campaign.

Schneiderman might not want to stay up all night anticipating a response. As we've seen in the past, the FCC under Pai has rejected any requests to look into attempts to skew net neutrality comments, whether it's bot spam or the alleged cyberattack that made it difficult for net neutrality advocates to have their voices heard. Many critics have accused Pai of railroading the net neutrality repeal through the FCC, public opposition be damned, and one official's letter is unlikely to make him change his mind.

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