Net Neutrality

dollar signs of libertySo, net neutrality has been struck down. Verizon successfully sued and got it struck down by a three judge panel, on the grounds that since the FCC doesn’t classify broadband as a telecommunications service it can’t hold it to telecommunications restrictions.

To sum it up, ISPs that were forced before to treat all websites equally in regards to showing content can now charge companies for better service. What this means is that if company A doesn’t pay a certain ISP, then the people using that ISP will not be able to access the website of company A. So lets say I can’t afford to pay Charter so that Pandagravy.com can be accessed, then people who use Charter won’t be able to access my website.

Imagine how hard this will make things for small businesses? Would the average small business owner be able to afford the cost of competing with multi million dollar companies? The golden age of the internet is now OVER.

The way to save net neutrality? The FCC can classify broadband as a telecommunications service. There’s a problem with that also- making it a telcom would mean that the internet would be under the government jurisdiction, and giving the government control over what was once a free medium.

So which do you want? Discrimination online based on how much you can pay, or government censorship?

Doesn’t sound like much of a choice. I guess the lesser of two evils would be letting net neutrality die. We could still have freedom of speech but we’d have to do it through companies that can pay the fee to be shown to the public.. Of course we’d have to abide by their rules and terms, so it would still be censored. So how could this be solved? We can’t undo the ruling, so unless the internet is changed and reclassified net neutrality is dead for good.

A solution, but not realistically

Make an all new classification, just for the internet. Just as the FCC had to be created to regulate at the time new technology, something else needs to be created to regulate the internet. That way net neutrality can be one of the things required of ISPs, but the internet wont have to follow the same regulations as telecommunications services. This way we wouldn’t have to have censorship and at the same time we would be able to protect the rights of site owners to not have to pay to be seen. Why is this an unrealistic solution? Because this solution would get spun by the media and politicians in every direction. They would call it censorship because of the word regulation, they would call it socialism because it goes against companies who want to profit off of the removal of net neutrality, they would say it would be a waste of resources and cost too much taxpayer money, they would do everything possible to make this plan look like the worst solution to any problem ever. Why would they do that? Because whichever of the two existing options win, the powers that be in our country win. Corporations would win either way, because they can afford to pay to be in the premium version of the internet without net neutrality, or they can pay to meet FCC regulations if it gets reclassified as a telcom.

One thing I find the most interesting- whichever side this goes to, independent media is what suffers and large media outlets win. Could this all be a plot designed to give us an illusion of a choice while nomatter what the result is more control of the media for the wealthy?

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