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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: San Francisco | U.S. | Indymedia
Protest at FCC Chair Ajit Pai's Talk with Tech Execs in SF
While he has frozen services to low-income internet users, FCC Chair Ajit Pai came to San Francisco to talk to tech executives about bridging the digital divide for underserved communities. Protesters brought demands to the site of the meeting at 543 Howard St.
Photos by Charlie Moehle under creative commons license.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who was named by President Trump to that position in January, visited San Francisco on September 12. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) says that Pai's chairmanship to this point has been defined by actions that undermine digital rights. Not only is Pai seeking to rescind the Open Internet Order of 2015 that protects net neutrality, during his term he froze a broadband subsidy program for low-income households.
Brazenly, at the same time as freezing services to low-income internet users, Pai came to San Francisco to talk to tech executives about bridging the digital divide for underserved communities.
The EFF and other organizations organized a rally to protest Chairman Pai's meeting with tech representatives at 543 Howard St. in San Francisco's financial district. About 100 people demonstrated outside the building during his meeting; a few protesters tried to enter the building to deliver a three-foot tall coffee mug designed to look like an oversized mug parodied on “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”, a mug that had been filled with public comments in support of net neutrality. Eventually one of the event organizers came outside and took comments on behalf of the FCC Chair.
Shahid Buttar, Director of Grassroots Advocacy at EFF, spoke at the rally inviting everyone who uses the Internet to raise their voice in defense of light touch regulations that have preserved a level playing field online. Sentiments in signs raised high read, "Traffic throttling, Site Blocking, New Fees? NO THANKS!" and "Net Neutrality is a Racial Justice Issue", amongst others.
Shahid Buttar of EFF speaks