It was only a matter of time. Internet Service Providers (ISP) hate Net Neutrality. Why? Aren’t they happy people are addicted to the internet? Huge profits, ring a bell?
So what is Net Neutrality? Do we have it? Do we want it? Do we even know what it is? Is there an app for it? Is it a new series on Netflix? Does it give us cancer? Should I have a T-shirt slogan for it? Does it have something to do with kittens?
Here’s my understanding of Net Neutrality. All bits of the stuff head off into the great wide open of the internet, you know: ads, porn, blogs, movies, memes of Keanu Reeves looking incredulous, recipes, scams, spam, cat fishing, videos of John Oliver explaining climate change, video games, apps telling you to take your pills, pill-pushing, videos of babies dancing, pictures of food, pictu
res of kittens, pictures of kittens cooking food – is there no end to their talents? Even this post.
In a perfect world all this information would be treated equally by your Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and governments. No discrimination or any differences in charges by content, site, platform, app, user, modes of communication or attached equipment. We hold these truths to be self-evident that all bits and bytes on the internet are created equal.
It’s sort of what we think of as an open internet.
There are places in the world where the internet is effectively a closed net with severely restricted access, some services artificially degraded and throttled, and even filtering of information. We’re aware that governments keep an eye on happenings on the net, it’s the degrees of which that maybe not be so clear.
Will losing net neutrality limit internet freedoms?
Cause rates to skyrocket?
Cause streaming for video games, movies, etc. to slow down? Blocking? Massive monopolies?
Or is this all a lot of hot air that like some many other issues will blow over and be forgotten?
Tim Berners-Lee, who created the Worldwide Web25 years ago supports net neutrality.
As does Vinton Cerf, co-inventor of the Internet Protocol.
This is where things get freaky. Activists and corporations generally seem to agree on keeping Net Neutrality. How often does that happen?
But if they agree, why is it hotly debated around the world, especially in the United States? Telecom companies don’t agree and they have very deep pockets and lobbyists who have the ear of politicians.
Is this about telecom companies trying to provide better service or just make even more profits?
Is this the next stage in net dominance? Everyone’s nicely hooked now let’s sweat even more money out of them.
This isn’t a new debate, years ago it was telephone and before that telegraph neutrality.
You already have to be able to afford inflated internet access and there are price tiers.
So what would loss of Net Neutrality do besides widening the gap further?
More haves and have nots, even for businesses.
This isn’t in the distant future, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is considering two options: allow fast and slow broadband lanes which will compromise net neutrality or reclassify broadband as a telecommunication service which would preserve Net Neutrality.
You have approximately 4 months to contact the FCCand voice your opinion.
To paraphrase John Oliver’s rant on #NetNeutrality, Good evening monsters, This may be the moment you’ve spent your whole life training for, that badly spelled bile you usually reserve for unforgivable attacks on actresses you seem to think have gained weight, politicians you don’t agree with, photos of your ex-girlfriend getting on with her life, or non-white actors being cast as fictional characters…for once in your life it’s time to focus that indiscriminate rage in a useful direction. This is it trolls, seize the moment, Caps Locks on and fly my pretties fly! (Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, HBO).
Come to think of it, it would be more effective to send well-written and thoughtful points of view, because who takes trolls seriously?
Or maybe loss of Net Neutrality would make people spent less time online and we could fix some of the problems in the world instead of just endless Slacktivism.
Instead of spending millions to make the internet into a tiered system the governments and ISPs should look into laws or ways to try to crack down on those who use to internet to stalk, steal, scam, attack, cyberbully, and commit various illegal acts.
That would be a more effective use of time, energy, and money.