Obama: Firmly Committed to Net Neutrality

President Obama has done it again – re-affirming his unyielding commitment to an open Internet. It happened this time during an announcement on Friday of a new initiative to beef up the nation's defenses against cyber-attacks.

The Web-savvy commander-in-chief said he planned to select a new “cyber-czar” for the job, but also pledged not to trample on the civil liberties of Net users.

“Let me also be clear about what we will not do,” the president said during the announcement. “Our pursuit of cyber security will not -- I repeat, will not include -- monitoring private sector networks or Internet traffic. We will preserve and protect the personal privacy and civil liberties that we cherish as Americans. Indeed, I remain firmly committed to Net Neutrality so we can keep the Internet as it should be -- open and free.”

It’s not the first time that Obama signaled his support for Net Neutrality. In February, the president signed the economic stimulus bill that included $7.2 billion to get fast and open Internet to the nearly half of American homes that don’t have it. Net Neutrality was written into the DNA of the broadband stimulus.

While on the campaign trail, Obama pledged to “take a back seat to no one” in his commitment to Net Neutrality. And the administration’s technology policies posted on the White House Web site list Net Neutrality as the top priority.

Obama’s pick to head the FCC, Julius Genachowski, was one of the principal architects of the president’s pro-Net Neutrality platform. Expect Genachowski’s nomination to go before the Senate in the coming weeks.

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