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FCC blames John Oliver for “hack”

by on09 May 2017

Kill the comics

Not happy with trying to censor comics who make jokes at Donald Trump’s expense, the FCC is now wading into Late Night telly host John Oliver for leading a campaign against its net neutrality rules.

On Sunday night, Oliver devoted a chunk of his Last Week Tonight show to condemning a plan by the FCC's new chairman, Ajit Pai, to tear up current net neutrality rules.

For those who came in late, Pai wants to kill off net neutrality so that telecos can charge twice for their “tubes” and ordinary people will have to pay more for their internet services.

Oliver urged viewers to visit a website called "GoFCCYourself," which redirects users to a section of the FCC site where people can comment on the net neutrality proceeding, known as "Restoring Internet Freedom" in Pai's parlance.

Unfortunately for the FCC, viewers took up Oliver's offer and the FCC's servers were overwhelmed by the flood of traffic. The comment page is loading with delays and, according to reports from several outlets, the site went down altogether for a while.

The FCC could not understand that so many people really hate it giving the internet to the telcos and insisted that it was not a protest by a large number of people. Instead it must be a denial of service attack.

The FCC said it "was subject to multiple distributed denial-of-service attacks. These were deliberate attempts by external actors to bombard the FCC’s comment system with a high amount of traffic to our commercial cloud host".

The FCC added the attacks "made it difficult for legitimate commenters to access and file with the FCC".

We guess those legitimate commenters must have been the telco PR people and Trump supporters moaning about left wing bias in the media.

On Monday, Ashley Boyd, VP of Advocacy for Mozilla, also published a blog post to remind people that the next 10 days are critical for the internet's future. Much like Oliver, Mozilla is also making it easier for people to voice their opinion. The post adds: "Add your name to our letter, and we'll deliver your message straight to the FCC. You can also record an impassioned voicemail using Mozilla's call tool." So far, internet users have recorded more than 50 hours of audio for the FCC's ears.

Last modified on 09 May 2017
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