We got some pretty good wins in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021. One of those wins was the mandate for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to implement broadband consumer labels, also known as “broadband nutrition labels.”
These labels will empower consumers with clear, accessible, and accurate information about broadband services. Clear information should enable consumers to make informed choices that align with their needs and budgets without shocking charges or service quality surprises that fall short of their expectations.
The broadband consumer labels include information on:
- Introductory rates
- Data allowances
- Performance metrics
- Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) participation
Back in November 2022, the FCC released rules for the label requirement, but the clock hadn’t officially started to give internet service providers (ISPs) time to comply with the label requirement.
Last month, the FCC set the clock by releasing a public notice. ISPs with over 100,000 subscribers must display the broadband labels by April 10, 2024. Smaller providers, with 100,000 or fewer subscribers, will have some extra time — they must display the broadband labels by October 10, 2024.
What Happens Now?
Some providers may start displaying the labels before the deadline, but we expect to see all providers in compliance by October 10, 2024.
When the FCC finalized the rules, they also asked for input about additional rules they might consider in the future. In response, NDIA emphasized the need for tapping the expertise of digital inclusion practitioners to keep the labels informative and accessible to everyone. We’ll keep everyone in the loop if the FCC makes any updates to the broadband label requirements in the future.
Getting the Word Out
The labels will only be effective if people use them–and for people to use them, they need to understand them. We encourage you to share these updates with individuals in your community and begin conversations on the NDIA listserv about your strategies for raising awareness about the labels. We look forward to supporting your effort.