'Net neutrality' battle may sink sweeping telecommunications reform bill (USA Today) Thu Jun 29, 2006 at 12:55:40

The Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday approved sweeping telecommunications reform that would allow phone companies to more easily offer pay TV services, giving consumers a new alternative to cable. But the measure could face an uphill fight in the Senate after Republicans defeated an amendment to limit the ability of phone and cable giants to charge websites fees for faster services.

By a 15-7 vote, the panel approved a bill that, among other things, would force communities to negotiate a franchise with video providers within 90 days. The process can take much longer now.

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