A designer who searched a database specifically created by New York State Attorney General (NSAG) Eric Schneiderman, was shocked to find out his grandmother and grandfather, both of whom passed away before the net neutrality was passed, were among the commenters against it in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) website.
According to Morgan Knutson, his grandmother Dana Barancik and grandfather Frank Barancik passed away in 2014 and 2015 respectively. Knutson also added that Dana was a liberal.
The comment allegedly posted by Mrs. Barancik was clearly opposed to net neutrality and read as follows:
“Before leaving office, the Obama administration rammed through a massive scheme that gave the federal government broad regulatory control over the Internet. That misguided policy decision is threatening innovation and hurting broadband investment in one of the largest and most important sectors of the U.S. economy. I support the Federal Communications Commission’s decision to roll back Title II and allow for free market principles to guide our digital economy.”
Apparently, the same message was posted in comments that used fake names and identities.
Knutson tweeted his disgust with the FCC’s lack of sensitivity and indifference on allegations their website was flooded with anti-net neutrality comments posted by dead persons.
Schneiderman and 18 other attorneys general submitted a joint letter to Ajit Pai, Chairman of the FCC, to delay the vote on net neutrality pending the results of an investigation on the use of fake names, identities including those of dead persons to build support for its anti-net neutrality position.
Recently Schneiderman revealed his office’s plan to launch a suit versus the FCC for its blatant disregard on the proliferation of stolen identities on its website.
“Specifically, for six months my office has been investigating who perpetrated a massive scheme to corrupt the FCC’s notice and comment process through the misuse of enormous numbers of real New Yorkers’ and other Americans’ identities. Such conduct likely violates state law- yet the FCC has refused multiple requests for crucial evidence in its sole possession that is vital to permit the law enforcement investigation to proceed.”
The FCC responded that unvetted online comments are no longer significant. Over the next few weeks, we should expect the number of the dead among the anti-net neutrality commenters to slowly rise as more people use the NSAG’s site to confirm their own identities as well as their loved ones.