ars technica: The FTC on Thursday petitioned the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals for a rehearing in a case involving AT&T’s throttling of unlimited data plans. by Jon Brodkin
'A 9th Circuit panel previously ruled that the FTC cannot punish AT&T, and the decision raises questions about the FTC’s ability to regulate any company that operates a common carrier business such as telephone or Internet service.
'While the FTC's charter from Congress prohibits it from regulating common carriers, the agency has previously exercised authority to regulate these companies when they offer non-common carrier services. But the recent court ruling said that AT&T is immune from FTC oversight entirely, even when it’s not acting as a common carrier.
'It isn’t clear whether the ruling sets an ironclad precedent preventing the FTC from regulating any company with a common carrier business. But the FTC’s petition for a rehearing describes that outcome as a real possibility.'