There has been a lot of debate over the whole Net Neutrality thing. Mostly everyone on the internet, including me, wants the internet to remain free. And not include so called “fast lanes” where certain websites pay more to make sure they get their content delivered via higher speeds. And for the websites who can’t pay, they would be slowed down. Now, it looks like the FCC is about to act, and their proposed rules are making many on the internet happy, including me!
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler wrote an Op-Ed for Wired, and after more than four million people submitted comments to the FCC over proposed Net Neutrality rules, and I did my part, the FCC is ready to propose some very tough rules to the internet providers. The proposed rules would place internet providers under a stricter regulatory regime, and consumers would be ensured an open Internet. Also, broadband providers would be banned from blocking content or creating fast lanes for web services that can pay for preferential treatment into American homes.
Also, the new rules would apply to cable and wireless providers. The rules would also make speeding up or slowing down web traffic illegal. And it would ban the blocking of web traffic outright. The FCC will vote on these new rules on February 26th, and it will most likely pass. The internet and wireless providers would be placed under a modified Title II (Public Utility) and what I also like about the plans is the FCC would enforce consumer privacy rules; take funds from Internet providers to help subsidize services for rural Americans, and make sure other services can build new broadband pipes more easily without a cable company monopoly blocking things.
Victory, not so fast! For starters, some Republicans are calling the new rules “Obamacare for the internet.” And some cable companies are threatening to take legal action if these new rules are passed and approved. The cable companies say the new rules will mean the internet can not thrive and will slow down growth, that’s not true! The cable companies just want to be greedy! When John Oliver did his piece about Net Neutrality last year, it got people thinking that the internet was in trouble, and action was taken!
Now, Congress is proposing their own set of Net Neutrality rules that would ban internet providers from having “fast lanes” and “slow lanes.” But the kicker, the bill would also forbid the FCC from any further rulemaking in this area. And if something new popped up in this ever changing internet world, the FCC could do nothing about it! I’m sorry Republican led Congress, over 80% of Republicans say the end of Net Neutrality threatens the future of the internet and must be protected. You know the cable companies will do anything possible to get back those “fast lanes.” So the FCC needs to have the power to tell the internet providers that they can’t discriminate on certain websites.
So to everyone on the internet, listen up! You need to keep up with these new Net Neutrality rules! You need to make sure no company or individual changes a part of these new rules. You need to make sure that the bill in Congress does not change in the favor of the cable companies. And, you need to make sure any potential lawsuits don’t force the end of Net Neutrality. You can be sure the cable companies and internet providers are going to spend a lot of money fighting these new rules. Let’s make sure they hear us loud and clear! A free and open internet is good for everybody!
Read the proposed rules from the FCC by going to: http://www.fcc.gov/document/chairman-wheeler-proposes-new-rules-protecting-open-internet
Categories: Geeks and Nerds Stuff