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Fake net neutrality comments might have been filed under your name

Wesley Venteicher
gtrag01042717
Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
Attorney General Josh Shapiro, talks to the Tribune-Review editorial board, at their office in Greensburg, on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. (Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review)
gtrag01042717
Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
Attorney General Josh Shapiro, talks to the Tribune-Review editorial board, at their office in Greensburg, on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. (Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review)

Fake comments might have been submitted under your name to the Federal Communications Commission as it weighed whether to undo net-neutrality rules that guaranteed equal access to the internet.

You can search for your name at this site , set up by Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro.

The FCC voted 3-2 last week to undo the rules, created under former President Obama.

A Pew Research Center analysis found that, among 21.7 million comments posted, just 6 percent were unique. The rest were submitted multiple times, sometimes hundreds of thousands of times, according to Pew. The comment period lasted about eight months, ending in September.

Shapiro, a Democrat, has said he plans to take legal action over the FCC’s change, saying it “undermines free speech and is bad for consumers and business.” Shapiro is part of a group of 18 state attorneys general who raised concerns with the FCC over the fake comments before a Thursday vote.

Republican FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said at a July FCC meeting that the raw number of comments wasn’t as important as the substance of issues raised, according to the Associated Press.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, a Democrat, has said he will lead a multistate lawsuit to stop the FCC’s rollback of the rules.

Wes Venteicher is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-380-5676, [email protected] or via Twitter @wesventeicher.

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