Why We Will Continue to Support an Open Internet
During this important debate on the future of internet regulations, Charter has been consistent and clear: we support a vibrant and open internet that enables our customers to access the lawful content of their choice when and where they want it. We commend the FCC Chairman and Commissioners for their action today that re-establishes the light touch regulatory framework that had been in place for decades when the Internet took root and grew into an important tool for daily life and a major engine of economic growth.
Charter supports an open internet because we believe delivering superior broadband to our customers is an essential ingredient to growing our business. Without an open internet, that isn’t possible. We don’t slow down, block, or discriminate against lawful content. Simply put, we don’t interfere with the lawful online practices of our customers and we have no plans to change our practices.
We are constantly improving our network to keep pace with new, data-hungry apps, streaming video and other bandwidth intensive services. We’re proud to offer the industry’s fastest entry level broadband speeds of 100Mbps across virtually our entire 41 state footprint. Importantly, Charter doesn’t impose data caps or engage in usage-based billing, meaning our customers can engage with the content they want as much as they want. These policies are part of our business objective of providing our customers with a high value broadband experience.
The FCC’s action today will help Charter serve our customers even better. Rather than applying Title II regulations designed for 1930’s telephone companies, we need a regulatory framework built for the 21st century. Our objection to Title II has never been about not wanting to provide our customers with an Open Internet. Rather we have been concerned about its overly broad and vague prohibitions as well as the potential for rate regulation. By bringing its approach into the 21st century, the FCC is helping provide regulatory predictability so companies like Charter can be confident in making even greater investments in our broadband networks.
These infrastructure investments are critical to our ability to innovate and improve our broadband service and deploy it to parts of the country that are harder and more expensive to serve, like rural communities. Since 2014, we’ve invested $21 billion in our infrastructure and technology. Earlier this year we said that given the appropriate regulatory environment, a big part of which is removing Title II, we would invest an additional $25 billion in technology and infrastructure in the next few years.
This is why Charter also supports Congress pursuing bipartisan legislation that enshrines an open internet into law and spurs broadband deployment and investment. Such legislation would provide permanent regulatory assurance and create an environment that allows for more long-term planning that will help us continue to provide even better broadband across our country.
Charter recognizes this debate has stirred passions. But in the days and weeks ahead, we hope our customers remember two things: 1) we will continue to provide them with a superior broadband service that includes an open internet; and 2) by bringing internet regulations into the 21st century, we can ensure more future innovation, improvement and availability of our broadband.