democracy) took a hit in 2015 when policy-driven fervor led the reluctant FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler to change course from his proposed net neutrality rules and instead impose the most draconian of price regulatory regimes on the innovative internet — Title II regulation. The general lack of analytic rigor in the underlying analysis of that 2015 order was well documented at the time (here and here, for example) and the “economic analyses” and predictions on which the order relied have already been proven false.
no actual law has been changed. But the truth is that the current furor over eliminating digital privacy protections is just late — the FCC removed privacy protections for consumers more than a year ago by passing the Open Internet Order. Although the timing is off and the legal issues involved have been incorrectly framed by the popular press, the current uproar over online privacy is by no means unproductive.