#NetNeutrality: The Battle to Save the Internet

Posted November 22, 2017 by Chris Berto in Video Games

Dear Reader,

I hope this post finds you in good health and cheerfulness because the website you’re reading this on may soon no longer exist, or be accessible in the coming weeks and months. If you’re unaware, there is a battle raging on across the very internet that gives a voice to a multitude of people, and a generation of free thinkers and innovators. The very medium in which millions upon millions of citizens of not just America, but citizens of planet Earth use every single day is under attack by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and it’s newly appointed Chairman, Ajit Pai.

Before we get into the meat and potatoes of this letter, let’s discuss what is happening, and why. Way back when in the distant year of 2015, the FCC ruled in favor of net neutrality by reclassifying broadband as a common carrier under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934 and Section 706 of the Telecommunications act of 1996. What does that mean exactly? What IS Net Neutrality? Net neutrality is the principle that Internet providers like Comcast, AT&T, Time Warner & Verizon should not control what we see and do online. The rules prohibit Internet providers from blocking, throttling, and paid prioritization—”fast lanes” for sites that pay, and slow lanes for everyone else.

Is this the future you want?

Ok, so what does that mean for you, me, and every single internet user across the globe? It’s simple really: if the FCC overturns Net Neutrality then your ISP wins the power to slow sites down, and they can bully any site into paying millions to escape the “slow lane”. This would amount to a tax on every sector of the American economy. Every site would cost more, since they’d all have to pay big cable. Worse, it would extinguish the startups and independent voices who can’t afford to pay. If we lose net neutrality, the Internet will never be the same.

Need another example? Most Internet Service Providers are also the same ones who bring you your cable and/or satellite TV. Ever try flipping to a show or movie that’s airing on a channel you don’t subscribe to? Ever get frustrated that Comcast, Time Warner, et al try to nickle and dime you at every turn just so you can watch Lifetime, Spike, and Nickelodeon instead of PBS? Now imagine a world where your ISP can segregate websites the same way they do TV channels. Want to access social media, that’ll be $5/month. Want to visit sports sites. that’ll be $5/month. Want to access streaming content like YouTube and Netflix, that’ll be $15 a month. Losing Net Neutrality gives your ISP the freedom to do exactly this!

Net Neutrality keeps this from becoming a reality

FEAR NOT, DEAR READER!! There is hope! We can fight back! YOU. CAN. MAKE. A. DIFFERENCE!

There is a movement happening right now and you can join! You can be an active participant in the war to save the internet and you can do so from the comfort of your home. There are several options available and none of them are taxing, or require much effort and I encourage you to try all of them.

Spread the word! The more people that we make aware of the situation the more informed we are as a society. Tell your friends. Share this and other blog sites on Facebook. If you’ve got your own website/blog, write about this very topic. If you have a podcast, or a flourishing YouTube channel, make content dedicated to sharing the information to your fan base. We need to inform and educate as many people as we can.

Make your voice heard! We are going to rely on Congress to tell the FCC that their plan to destroy Net Neutrality is damning to innovation, free speech, and democracy on the internet. You have a voice, and you can share it with your Senators. You can simply text “resist” to 504-09. It’s a bot that will send a formal email, fax, and letter to your representatives. It also finds your representatives for you. All you have to do is text it and it holds your hand the whole way. I’ll even share my letter to Senator Marco Rubio as an example:

Text “resist” to 504-09 and you can fax your state Senator too

Join the resistance! You can take the fight directly to the source. You can dial (202) 418-1000 and talk directly to Ajit Pai (or at least leave a voicemail for his secretary). Call and leave your message about your concerns, and about why you think Net Neutrality is important and worth preserving. Be polite, but be firm. Let the FCC know that they don’t have the consumer’s best interest at heart.

Get informed! Please visit BattleForTheNet to get all the facts presented here and so much more. This fight is bigger than any one of us, but together we’re strong and we can make the FCC reconsider. You’re not alone in your concern, and the good folks at BFTN are organizing this fight in a grander method than I could ever hope to do so here on this blog post. The time to act is now! On December 14th, the very fate of the internet will be voted on and if the movement to repeal Net Neutrality passes, sites like this and hundreds of thousands more could cease to exist. Fight for the net. Fight for your freedom to browse without limitations.

About the Author

Chris Berto