Tuesday, July 15, 2014

How Not to Stay Neutral on Net Neutrality

Net Neutrality has been an issue of great concern to people who work online. The end of it may likely mean an end to those smaller operations, or new ideas looking for a place to blossom. It has also been of great concern to corporate interests and the Telecomms, who all look to cement their control on what we see and use. It all comes down to how neutral we will see information and services online treated.

FCC after Dark - from College Humor
But the FCC (Federal Trade Commission) is eyeing an end to neutrality. Not surprising from a collective largely made up of former and future executives of the Telecomm Industry. And the head of the FCC thinks it makes perfect sense to end neutrality, but make a caveat that all access must be kept at least at the levels they currently are at.

That would be great if time and technology stood still. But that's the point of the statement from the FCC. Sound good, mean nothing. Throw out a platitude while handing the power, wealth making potential, and speed to their corporate friends.

These Assholes - By College Humor
After that, we are all left to the whims of Internet Service Providers, and to the select online services that have paid up large sums to run suitably. And for many in power, that is how the world should work. You shouldn't have things if you can't pay up a nice size fee for it. Schooling. Water. Knowledge.

Well, that is garbage. The Internet is supposed to be a marketplace of ideas, amusement, and disappointment.

Among those trying to advocate for no neutrality think that not all sites deserve to be treated equal. Money should buy access. The Internet should operate like many other areas of business where the barriers to entry should be high. For many of them, Net Neutrality is a regulation. And that means taxes. And, "The government will control the Internet!!!".

The attitude is that they fear/hate the government, but tolerate/respect the old boy network of corporate elite making decision on this.

I don't, obviously, trust the people at the FCC. We need a better quality of regulator there. But if I have to choose between the power being in the FCC's and the Telecomms grasp, I pick the FCC. Whipping the FCC into shape is easier. And, once industry has it's way with the Internet, we'll have to wait a decade or more to right things.

We rely on regulation by government for a good reason. Industry rarely does a fair to decent job of watching over itself.

Now you have a right to be heard, on the record. They've received around 800,000 comments so far. We need more to make it clear that this isn't acceptable. Let's hit 1 million tonight!

At least until midnight tonight you still have the podium. Go here to enter an official electronic comment on what the FCC is planning with Open Internet. Here's the list of possible topics of the FCC you can comment on, with Open Internet at the top.

If you want to speak up, you can also go through:
If I haven't convinced you to speak...

Check out College Humor on this:

Or, John Oliver:

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