When it comes to conservatives and liberals, we rarely agree on much of anything. It’s an issue that only seems to be getting worse these last few years. But that being said, there’s at least one issue that I honestly believe we must come together on, otherwise the consequences we’ll all face are going to be much worse than most are currently imagining.
That issue is the possible end of net neutrality.
For those who might not know, net neutrality means that every website – every single one – is accessible at the exact same speed for which you’re paying your particular internet provider. So that means if you’re paying your internet provider for speeds around 40 mbps, both Walmart’s and your local mom and pop’s general store websites should be accessible at that same max speed for which you’re paying.
If net neutrality is done away with, as the FCC is essentially allowing to happen, internet providers will then be allowed to slow down the speeds for websites that refuse (or can’t afford) to pay them premiums. Meaning that you’ll get 40 mbps speeds when accessing Walmart’s website (as they’ll obviously be able to afford whatever these companies decide to charge) yet when you try to visit your local mom and pop’s website (if they can’t afford to pay) they might be throttled down to such slow speeds that their website is essentially rendered unusable.
See the problem?
And let’s not ignore that the fact that this opens the door for big corporations to possibly sign exclusive deals with internet providers so that only their company will be provided with faster speeds while throttling any competition to their product or service.
Honestly the horrors that the end of net neutrality might create seem endless.
I know, it’s not a sexy topic. And it’s a little alarming how apathetic many Americans seem to be about it. Sure, there’s been somewhat of an uproar among some Americans, but it needs to be much louder. This is a topic that needs to dominate the local news, every major media outlet, blogs, Twitter, Facebook and every other form of social media out there.
And that’s only going to happen if we demand that they do, liberals and conservatives – but that’s not happening.
Sure, it’s a nice start that the FCC’s website went down because too many Americans were sending in comments, mostly due to John Oliver’s segment covering the possible death of net neutrality. But that was most likely just a temporary rush due to the segment and not a sustained stream of outrage from Americans.
This issue needs to combine the outrage liberals and conservatives have shown over Phil Robertson’s ignorance, Donald Sterling’s racism, Benghazi, anything Obama does, guns and abortion rights all rolled into one.
If large groups of Americans want to gather in Washington D.C. to march on something, this needs to be one of those issues.
One of the greatest aspects of the internet is that it’s one of the few things we have in this country where the largest corporation and smallest startup are all essentially given a level playing field.
Losing that net neutrality would threaten the ability for many companies to ever be started, maintain their competitive levels resulting in many of them going out of business. Which, of course, would leave us with nothing but those large corporations that could afford to pay the premiums for usable internet speeds.
Oh, and this will undoubtedly lead to all of us paying more for damn near everything. Because do you really think these companies are going to pay these higher premiums for faster internet access without passing those expenses on to their customers?
Which essentially means that not only will you be paying for whatever internet speed you’ve selected (yet won’t be experiencing because the websites who don’t pay the premiums won’t be accessible to you at those speeds), but you’ll also be paying more for products and services due to corporations raising prices to cover the costs of paying these premiums to internet service providers.
Again, do you see the problem?
I implore everyone who reads this to head on over to the FCC’s website and let them know exactly how pissed off their attempt to kill net neutrality has made you. And please – let’s make this article go viral. Let’s see if we can crash that website once again.
Be sure to hit me up on Twitter to let me know that you’re with me in this fight to stop the FCC from selling the internet to the highest bidders.