The Federal Communications Commission has voted on party lines to undo sweeping Obama-era 'net neutrality' rules that guaranteed equal access to the internet. (Dec. 14) AP
Like many other celebrities, late-night hosts were not happy to learn that the Federal Communications Commision (FCC) voted down net neutrality rules, rescinding customer protections that inhibit Internet service providers (ISPs) from slowing down, blocking, or charging more for certain content.
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
"And that's wrong," Colbert said, "'cause the only thing that should slow your Internet speed is the number of people also sitting at Starbucks working on their screenplays."
The comedian also joked that he and his "Etsy shop" Steve's Sleeves could be personally affected.
"Some people sell shirts with the sleeves cut off, Steve's sells sleeves with the shirts cut off," he told viewers of his made-up online store. "Steve's Sleeves: You have the right to not bare arms."
The Daily Show with Trevor Noah
Setting up a bit, Noah explained to Daily Show viewers that he wasn't "too worried" about the ruling. "There's no evidence that this is going to break the Internet, or whatever people are saying," he reasoned.
"So, if you're watching this show right now, online right now, I just want to remind you, that — that..." he said before trailing off, simulating a disrupted stream.
Late Night with Seth Meyers
Meyers mentioned the FCC vote during his monologue, advising viewers: "If you're not sure what that means, better Google it while you still can."
He focused his attention on the decision once more during his "Closer Look" segment, targeting FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who has supported "light-touch" regulations that require ISPs to disclose any blocking or prioritization of their own content or from their partners.
"Please stop using the term 'light touch,'" Meyers requested. "You sound like someone defending themselves to HR. What did Deborah say I did? That was a light touch. You were there."
Jimmy Kimmel Live
Kimmel called the rollback "absolutely despicable" and set his sights on Pai.
"I just want to say thank you, President Trump, thanks to you and this jackhole you appointed to run the FCC," he said showing a photo of Pai, "big corporations are about to take control of the Internet. So Merry Christmas, everybody."
Pai and other opponents of net neutrality have downplayed fears that repealing regulations will lead to a slower, toll-gated Internet.
The FCC's action "is not going to end the Internet as we know it. It is not going to kill democracy and it's not going to stifle free expression online," Pai said.
Mike Snider and Jefferson Graham contributed to this report.