This, the commission argues, would make it easier to for them streamline the handling and servicing of serious complaints against telecommunications companies. Furthermore, it would help the FCC to consolidate the complaints and have a more effective weapon to penalize erring companies.
The plan is to reroute informal complaints submitted to the commission to the service providers without even being seen by an FCC staff if it does not come with the $225 fee and a properly formatted formal complaint.
While charging a fee for formal complaints is not particularly new, the plan would make it impossible for FCC regulators to even check on the complaint without it.
Ajit Pai, who previously helped significantly to roll back net-neutrality rules, is one of the primary proponents of this plan. He had the support of the Republican party in that previous move and is expected to have the same backing in this one.
Democratic senators are Frank Pallone and Mike Doyle, members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee submitted a letter to Pai basically telling him that the plan would essentially water down the committee’s utility to the general public when they’re already highly disgruntled with their services.
The senators fear that the plan essentially tunes out the complaints and potentially strips the consumers of their right to voice out their complaints.
The FCC rebukes the senator’s claims and suggests that they must not have understood the plan fully.
Considering the track record of the FCC under Mr. Pai’s guidance, it is highly doubtful that the commission is looking out for the consumer’s welfare. Instead, the commission seems to favour the needs of the providers.