Rasmussen-Just 27% of Americans now believe the Federal Communications Commission should regulate the Internet like it does television and radio. That marks a 22-point drop in support for federal regulation of the Internet since June 2008.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 53% of adults oppose FCC regulation of the Internet, with another 19% not sure whether it’s a good idea or not.
Among those who use the Internet every or nearly every day, opposition to FCC regulation rises to 63%.
Sixty-four percent (64%) of Republicans and 58% of those not affiliated with either major party oppose government regulation of the Internet, while Democrats are closely divided on the question.
A U.S. federal appeals court on Tuesday ruled against an FCC effort to impose so-called “net neutrality” rules on Internet providers which would force them to treat all Web traffic equally. But some Internet providers have been attempting to slow the traffic of major downloaders, arguing that they slow Internet service for other customers.
The court ruling, says The Washington Post, “could prompt the FCC or Congress to write new rules or laws to more concretely establish the agency as a regulator of Internet services.”
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Thirty-four percent (34%) of Americans think Internet providers should be able to slow down the downloading of large amounts of material so other customers are not effected. Thirty-eight percent (38%) disagree and say the providers should not be able to slow down those large downloads. Twenty-eight percent (28%) are undecided.
Among those who download music or movies from the Internet several times a week, not surprisingly, 72% say Internet providers should not be able to slow large downloads.
Fifty-one percent (51%) of all adults now say they use the Internet every day or nearly every day, with another 11% who say they use it several times a week. Just 19% say they rarely or never go online, while another 11% describe their Internet usage as occasional.
Sixty-nine percent (69%) of those who use the Internet every day or nearly every day say they rarely or never download music or films. Just seven percent (7%) of these regular Internet users say they download films or music at least once a week.
Opposition to government regulation of the Internet is highest among adults under 40. Fifty-seven percent (57%) of investors oppose such regulation, compared to 50% of non-investors.
Internet usage is highest among those ages 30 to 49.