When the Federal Communications Commission voted in December to enact its first binding net neutrality rules, a legal challenge was widely expected. But most observers didn’t think it would come so soon.
Verizon Communications, which had harsh words in response to last month’s order, has filed a lawsuit with the D.C. Circuit Court seeking to overturn the rules, hoping to secure a friendly forum for its challenge.
It was that same court that last April struck down the FCC’s net neutrality order punishing Comcast for throttling traffic on its network in a unanimous decision. Not only is Verizon seeking to try its case in that same court, it is being represented by the same lawyer who won last year’s case for Comcast, and she is requesting the same panel of judges.
But that maneuver has sparked heated criticism from net neutrality supporters, who argue that carried to its logical extent, the technicality Verizon is using to land in the D.C. Circuit would make a mockery of all litigation involving the FCC.