The Federal Communication Commission has extended the comment period on its proposed net neutrality rule to midnight Friday, July 18. The FCC's venerable "electronic comment filing system,'' installed in the days when only early adapters had dial-up modems, buckled under the weight of thousands of comments filed just before the Tuesday deadline.
"Not surprisingly, we have seen an overwhelming surge in traffic on our website that is making it difficult for many people to file comments through our Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS)," wrote FCC press secretary Kim Hart in statement. "Please be assured that the commission is aware of these issues and is committed to making sure that everyone trying to submit comments will have their views entered into the record."
This is the second time a burst of comments on the proposed Open Internet Order, with its controversial provision allowing Internet "fast lanes", has crashed the ECFS, the first being in the wake of a scathing commentary by comedian John Oliver. Oliver famously said FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler protecting net neutrality was analogous to hiring a dingo as a babysitter.
Wheeler later stated publicly he is "not a dingo."