My comment for the FCC’s Proceeding on Preserving and Promoting the Open Internet. You can add your voice HERE.
Net Neutrality goes beyond a cable company’s purported desire to allow “faster” access to those willing or able to pay more. In fact, it removes a device and incentive for internet providers to effectively blackmail providers into paying more for first-tier access in order to remain competitive. It shifts the balance of power from a distributed, worldwide content-based one, to an extraordinarily powerful oligopoly in an effectively unregulated telecommunications minefield. Moreover, it reverses all the gains the FCC and the Federal Government obtained when AT&T’s communications monopoly was disbanded. A large, and growing number of citizens now depend on the Internet as their primarily telecommunications vehicle. Through applications such as Apple’s FaceTime, Skype, or Facebook’s Messenger, U.S. citizens now make innumerable audio and video calls domestically and internationally. I, for one, use the Internet to stay in contact with my fiancée who currently lives in Europe, and with other friends and family across the U.S.
Imagine my concern if say, Verizon or Comcast has the power to disrupt my ability to make low-cost or FREE phone calls because they feel they can get more money, irrespective of bandwidth usage. Already, these providers have the ability to reduce bandwidth. With the end of net neutrality, the FCC will effectively add the ability to hold such companies as Facebook and Apple hostage, forcing them to pay more lest they have their valuable applications rendered useless. Is this the FCC’s intent? Is it the Federal Government’s objective to make internet providers the policemen of the Internet? I hope that is not the case. As someone who has been “riding the information superhighway” since its FTP roots in the 1980s, I would hate to see it destroyed by greed and millions of Comcast dollars dumped into Congress. I implore you, preserve Net Neutrality. Thank you.
Bonus Video (He’s not always wrong):