Skip to main content

Why are the billionaires always laughing?

Because they know the corporate media will never call bullshit on their bullshit.

In a letter sent Thursday to FCC commissioner Ajit Pai, more than a dozen victims asked for the comments made under their names to be removed from the website—which the commission has yet to do. (Photo: Image Catalog/flickr/cc)

Anti-Net Neutrality Spam Victims Demand FCC Investigate 'Slander'

"For the FCC's process to have any legitimacy, they simply cannot move forward until an investigation has been conducted. We need to know who is doing this"

Nadia Prupis

People whose names were used to spam the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) website with anti-net neutrality comments are demanding an investigation into the identity theft.

In a letter sent Thursday to FCC commissioner Ajit Pai, more than a dozen victims asked for the comments made under their names to be removed from the website—which the commission has yet to do—and warned that hundreds of thousands of other people may have been impacted.

"Whoever is behind this stole our names and addresses, exposed our private information in a public docket without our permission, and used our identities to file a political statement we did not sign onto," the letter states.

The stolen identities included those of recently deceased people, they said, writing:

We call on you, the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, to take the following actions:

  • Notify all who have been impacted by this attack   
  • Remove all of the fraudulent comments, including the ones made in our names, from the public docket immediately    
  • Publicly disclose any information the FCC may have about the group or person behind the 450,000+ fake comments    
  • Call for an investigation by the appropriate authorities into possible violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1001 ("making false statements") and other relevant laws.

"In my nearly 30 years of being an Internet user, I've been extremely judicious about using my real name online. On those rare times when I have chosen to do so, it's been for something I feel strongly about. To see my good name used to present an opinion diametrically opposed to my own view on net neutrality makes me feel sad and violated," one signatory, Joel Mullaney, told Fight for the Future. "Whoever did this violated one of the most basic norms of our democratic society, that each of us have our own voice, and I am eager to know from what source the FCC obtained this falsified affidavit. I have been slandered."

Fight for the Future launched a website last week allowing users to check if their identities were used in the spamming operation. Comcast, which opposes net neutrality protections, threatened to take legal action against the digital rights organization for trademark infringement. But Fight for the Future's website, Comcastroturf.com, returned dozens of verified reports from people around the country.

"There is significant evidence that a person or organization has been using stolen names and addresses to fraudulently file comments opposing net neutrality," Evan Greer, campaign director of Fight for the Future, said Thursday. "For the FCC's process to have any legitimacy, they simply cannot move forward until an investigation has been conducted. We need to know who is doing this."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

AOC Warns That Corporate Lobbyists Would Love People to 'Give Up Before the Deal Is Done'

"It's way easier for them to try to get away with the things that they're lobbying for and against if people at home aren't watching," said the New York Democrat

Jon Queally ·


Tlaib Leads Call for Biden to Take 'Commonsense Steps' to Aid Afghan Evacuees

"Our country has long offered shelter to those seeking refuge from catastrophe. Now is the time to continue that tradition and stand beside Afghan evacuees in need."

Jessica Corbett ·


'Huge Win': Green Groups Applaud Biden Move to Protect Minnesota Watershed

"You don't allow America's most toxic industry next to America's most popular wilderness," said one environmental campaigner.

Brett Wilkins ·


Taking Aim at Predatory Equity Firms, Warren Leads Bill to 'Stop Wall Street Looting'

"Now is the time," asserted Sen. Bernie Sanders, "to end Wall Street's greed, protect workers, and create an economy that works for everyone, not just the 1%."

Brett Wilkins ·


Arizona Groups Demand Sinema 'Stop Obstructing' on Medicare Expansion

The diverse coalition called on the Democratic senator to back "bold drug pricing reform" and "critical improvements to Medicare's coverage" in the reconciliation package.

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo