SOURCE: Electronic Retailing Association

Electronic Retailing Association

October 22, 2009 17:35 ET

Electronic Retailing Association's Statement Regarding Network Neutrality and FCC Rulemaking to Preserve the Free and Open Internet

ARLINGTON, VA--(Marketwire - October 22, 2009) - The Electronic Retailing Association (ERA), the leading trade association for direct-to-consumer commerce, issued the following statement on today's announcement by the FCC to draft rules to preserve a free and open Internet:

Network neutrality is not only essential to the free flow of information, but it is the crux of a vibrant and competitive online retail space. ERA's members are particularly vulnerable to the market distortions that would be caused by anti-competitive agreements giving preferential treatment to some content on the Internet. ERA fully supports and commends the FCC's vote today as a step towards an even playing field. These rules do not impose any costs on ISPs, but they do provide tremendous benefit for everyone who uses and relies on the Internet in today's connected world.

"The open Internet advances the spread of knowledge and provides otherwise unfathomable opportunities for new businesses in the online and mobile marketing spaces," said Julie Coons, president and CEO of ERA.

ERA's diverse membership includes hundreds of companies that sell goods directly to consumers via the Internet, television and radio. Without network neutrality protections, ISPs will be allowed to become gatekeepers of online content and information and through discriminatory practices degrade consumers' online experience to the detriment of all.

About the Electronic Retailing Association

Representing a more than $300 billion market, the Electronic Retailing Association (ERA) is the only trade association in the U.S. and internationally that represents leaders of the direct-to-consumer marketplace, which includes members that maximize revenues through electronic retailing on television, online and on radio. ERA strives to protect the regulatory and legislative climate of direct response while ensuring a favorable landscape that enhances e-retailers' ability to bring quality products and services to the consumer. ERA members include some of the industry's most prominent retail merchants, including Acorn Corporation, eBay, Discovery Communications, Gaiam, Google, Guthy-Renker Corporation, HSN, Jewelry Television, QVC, ShopNBC, and Thane. For more information about ERA, please visit

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