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FROM THIS EPISODE

A ruling yesterday by the FCC  means that cable companies and telecoms cannot discriminate between content providers—delivering some at faster speeds -- and higher prices -- than others. We hear about winners, losers—and more battles to come over "net neutrality."

Also, the US and Cuba meet for second round of diplomatic talks. On today's Talking Point, pot smoking's a federal crime, but it's legal — in Washington DC.

Photo: FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler gestures at the FCC Net Neutrality hearing in Washington February 26, 2015. (Yuri Gripas/Reuters)

Producers:
Jenny Hamel
Katie Cooper
Benjamin Gottlieb

US, Cuba Meet for Second Round of Diplomatic Talks 6 MIN, 30 SEC

US and Cuban diplomats are meeting today with the focus on reopening embassies closed since 1961. President Obama wants relations restored by April, when he goes to the Summit of the Americas. But Cuba is making demands that may not be negotiable. David Cloud, national security correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, explains.

Guests:
David Cloud, Los Angeles Times (@DavidCloudLAT)

Round One Goes to Net Neutrality 33 MIN, 54 SEC

After massive lobbying, and four million public comments, the Federal Communications Commission has endorsed "net neutrality." That means your cable or telephone company has to treat all Internet traffic the same way. It can't deliver some content at a higher speed for a higher price. Content providers — from Netflix and Facebook to teenage bloggers — are big winners. Comcast and Verizon are among the losers. 

Speaking of yesterday's ruling, which reclassified ISP's for regulation as public utilities, Commission Chair Tom Wheeler called the Internet, "the most powerful and pervasive platform on the planet" simply too important to be left without rules and without a referee on the field." But the FCC was divided between three Democrats and two Republicans, and the battles are far from over in the courts and in Congress.  

Guests:
Timothy Lee, Vox (@binarybits)
Ted Johnson, Variety (@tedstew)
Robert McDowell, Wiley Rein (@McDowellTweet)
Michael Copps, Common Causes (@coppsm)

More:
Lee explains network neutrality
Johnson on whether ISP's brought net neutrality action upon themselves

Legal Pot in the Nation's Capital 9 MIN, 37 SEC

Last November, 70% of Washington, DC voters approved recreational marijuana in the nation's capital city. Despite last-minute threats from some members of Congress, the Mayor and the City Council held firm and, yesterday, the will of the voters went into effect. So, although marijuana is still prohibited under federal law, you can now smoke pot in Washington, DC. Marc Fisher, senior editor at the Washington Post, has more on this victory for home rule in the nation's capital.

Guests:
Marc Fisher, Washington Post (@marcfisher)

More:
Congressman Chaffetz's letter to DC Mayor Muriel Bowser on the marijuana initiative

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