Net Neutrality

(via Donklephant)

Net Neutrality is the principle that traffic to and from all website should be treated equally by Internet Service Providers (ISPs). They should not be allowed to slow down or speed up traffic based on what it is or whether they were paid a toll by the website operator. Basically, you paid for your connection to the internet and the people who ruin the website paid for their connection. The ISPs want to charge the web site providers an additional charge on top of that.

The effect is that they can extort fees from richer companies and prevent new companies and new services from prospering. They can also use this technique to crush competitors such as when they drop VoIP calls that are from competing companies or slow down video or music downloads that come from a competitors site instead of their preferred service. The effect of this practice (which has already happened and is happening) is to stifle innovation and competition, which hurts consumers and to raise the cost of doing business online to cover the new tolls. This is bad for everyone that isn’t an ISP and frankly it’s not that great for them in the long term as the Internet suffers.

The Internet was developed on the principle of Net Neutrality, it is part of the model that has made it a global success. Allowing a few greedy companies to break that model hurts everyone. Their networks exist in large part thanks to taxpayer subsidies and government granted monopolies and they run through public right-of-ways. It is well within our rights to demand that they act as neutral carriers of data packets and not as the gatekeepers or censors of what is on the Internet.

Visit Save the Internet to learn more and take action.

Kevin Hall
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