The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced the start of a three-month consultation process over the future of America's broadband infrastructure.
The FCC voted 3-2 to move forward with plans to allow it to regulate internet providers by classifying broadband as a telecoms service rather than an information service.
The latter is subject to much less regulation compared to telecoms, and would allow the FCC to enforce net neutrality, a key part of its ongoing case against Comcast.
The FCC is now asking for comment from the industry and the public over the issue, and how the broadband market should develop.
"A recent decision of the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit cast doubt on prior understandings about the FCC's ability to ensure fair competition and provide consumers with basic protections when they use today's broadband internet services," said the FCC in a statement (PDF).
"Today's action begins the process of identifying the best way forward to ensure a solid and narrowly tailored legal foundation for implementing key recommendations of the National Broadband Plan."
The recommendations include refocusing the federal universal service programme on promoting broadband deployment and adoption, ensuring consumers have access to relevant information about their broadband services, customer privacy, access for people with disabilities and preserving the open internet.
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