Well, it finally happened. Today the FCC passed new tough rules to impose strict new regulations on Internet service providers (cable companies). Internet Service Providers including landline and mobile carriers, will now be subject to stringent oversight on how they handle data that flows over their networks. The regulation will prevent the companies that operate the internet’s infrastructure from striking deals to give preferential treatment to content providers. That means no more having companies pay money to be placed on some so called “fast lane.” And before you start criticizing me, most modern and advanced countries in the world regulates the internet providers.
The new rules reclassify broadband internet under Title II of the Communications Act, meaning the companies will be now regulated in a manner similar to utilities. But ISP’s will not be subject to certain parts of Title II regulation, such as price controls and forced sharing of infrastructure. As most on the internet are celebrating, some are already criticizing the new rules. And you know this fight is not over! Because those cable companies are already getting ready to take the FCC to court, or bribe some members of Congress to get new legislation passed. Why do I believe the cable companies knows what’s best for the internet? I mean, our local cable company Cable One can not even provide us with a decent internet speed.
Some are even calling this Obamacare for the internet, or Obamanet. Some are even quoting a Ronald Reagan quote when he said “I am from the Government and here to help.” I mean, I am sorry if some of you out there are offended by this news today. But most of the internet, and most of the geeks and nerds, are applauding this move! For starters, the new rules keeps internet providers from forcing small businesses to pay access fees to compete with large corporations. Meaning I can’t be slowed down because Geek Alabama can not pay huge fees to stay on the fast lane, while another site like The Anniston Star pays those fees to stay on a fast lane. It also stops corporations from being able to block access by paying off providers.
Second, without net neutrality, companies would be able to package the internet up and sell it the same way that the cable company sells you stations. How many people enjoys that today? Would you like to purchase the internet with the Google, Ebay, and Amazon upgrade? Well that will be an additional $10 a month. Oh, you want to be able to access Netflix, well that puts a strain on the network, so we’ll require an additional $20 for that and I see you have two computers that game in your home so that will be an additional $20 right there. This already happens with cable, and for now it won’t happen with the internet.
I am on the boat saying that net neutrality is a very good thing. Without it the internet companies can charge you more to use sites like Facebook and the price of using Netflix monthly could increase dramatically. The new rules takes the internet away from big business/corporations and allows it to remain free and open the way it has been. Do you like the Internet the way it is? Good, because that’s what this bill does is allows it to stay that way.
Without net neutrality you would have corporations packaging the internet up and selling it to you at the highest bidder. It would be throttled and only those that could pay the most money would get the best positions. The new rules would allow any mom and pop organization to have an online presence. If you want to start a business online, you can! All you have to do is build a website and start selling things or services. It allows that one time American Dream of being a possibility. Without Net Neutrality, sadly corporations can force small businesses to the background or closure the way Walmart does to small businesses when it enters a town. This keeps things fair and equal.
Originally, the rules were supposed to be very different! But then John Oliver came to the rescue with that Net Neutrality video.
I commented to the FCC along with millions of other people. To be fair, I am not against the cable companies, they do some good things. But they have shown in the past about how greedy they can be and how much poor service they can provide. Yes, the new rules might slow down new high speed internet access to people who don’t have it. But most people does not want the internet to become the wild, wild west of the tech world where the cable company is the sheriff, and everyone must bribe the sheriff to get their way. And for fun, Verizon who sued the FCC to begin with, issued a press release in a 1930’s style typewritten press release. They also did it in Morse code, I call them sore losers, as most of the internet is doing as well.
And yes, the fight is far from over! There are going to be more lawsuits and backroom deals with lawmakers to stop these new rules. But one thing is for sure, if the courts overturns the net neutrality rules. Or if Congress passes legislation stopping these new rules. And if the cable companies change the internet forever with slower speeds and more costs, the internet is going to go into revolt! And it will be a very ugly time in America!