The Internet's major players have spoken yet again on their stance against the Federal Communication Commission's (FCC) proposed "fast lanes" that will allow Internet service providers to charge higher fees from content providers to ensure the delivery of their content to end-users.

It's a clash between the titans of the technology industry and the Internet and cable gods Comcast and Verizon as the Internet Association, composed of companies such as Google, Amazon, Facebook, Yahoo, Twitter, eBay and Netflix, formally submitted to the FCC its stand on net neutrality rules.

Things have pretty much remained the same since the commission officially announced that it is gathering comments from various parties at stake before it finalizes a new set of guidelines in the hopes of establishing a free and open Internet. The companies have aired their opposition to Internet fast lanes in the past, but this is the first time they have come together to speak up on specific issues arising from the conflict.

The Internet Association largely supports an internet that promotes a level playing field for all content providers, big or small, but says that "simple, light-touch rules" may be needed to allow ISPs to open up congested networks and ensure fast and efficient delivery of data.

"The reasonable network management provision should be narrowly tailored to permit deviations from the non-discrimination and no-blocking rules only if a network management problem cannot be addressed in 'application agnostic' ways," writes (pdf) Michael Beckerman, president and chief executive of the Internet Association in its statement.

"Reasonable network management should ensure that broadband Internet access providers expeditiously resolve network congestion issues by employing measures to maintain the efficient operation of their network," he adds.

Meanwhile, another group of businesses composed of technology startups the likes of Etsy, CodeAcademy and Kickstarter submitted a separate statement to the FCC, explicitly calling for the reclassification of ISPs as common carrier services under Title II of the Communications Act.

Back in January, Verizon succeeded in challenging the FCC's first set of proposed net neutrality rules on the grounds that the commission did not have the authority to regulate ISPS because they were classified as information service provides, not telecommunications services.

"Only reclassifying broadband as Title II will protect an open and neutral Internet," says Alexis Ohanian of Y Combinator, a seed accelerator for startups. "In pursuing reclassification, however, the FCC should choose to forebear from regulations unneeded to promote competition and innovation."

The arguments come on the second to the last day before the FCC stops soliciting public comments and starts deciding on its new set of net neutrality rules. 

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