DEAR reader, what kept you? Perhaps you were visiting film-streaming service Netflix, discussion forum Reddit, blogging site WordPress or any of dozens of other popular websites where users are halted at an endlessly spinning “loading” icon. If your first thought was to send an angry missive about your internet provision, the stunt has worked.
September 10th marks Internet Slowdown Day, an effort by activists and web-based firms to suggest how the web might look if rules proposed by the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) are adopted. At issue is net neutrality, the idea that all data on the internet should be treated equitably, regardless of content or provenance. One of the options mooted by the FCC earlier this year would permit broadband providers—in America, primarily cable companies—to charge certain internet firms for guaranteed levels of service. The cable companies have their eyes on Netflix in particular, whose streamed entertainment sometimes accounts for over a third of all wired download traffic in America, often in competition with their own on-demand offerings.
In Silicon Valley, where a level playing field is seen as a founding principle of the internet and start-ups consider connectivity an inexhaustible resource, this did not go down well. An open market of internet fast and slow lanes would chill innovation, opponents (and The Economist) have argued. Who would consider launching a high-definition gaming service or an online back-up website if reaching customers meant trying to outbid established industry giants? It would be much fairer, say net-neutrality proponents, for the FCC to reclassify broadband provision as a telecommunications service, rather than an information service. It could then choose to enforce the built-in content-neutrality rules laid out in “Title II”, part of the Communications Act of 1934 (legislation first deployed to wrangle the telephone industry).
The FCC has been derided for failing to exert its authority over the issue so far. Twice before it has put forward proposals to protect net neutrality, both summarily struck down by US courts. When it released its latest plan in May, protesters camped out to get a first crack at expressing their displeasure. When the commission received more than a million comments on that plan within two months—an overwhelming majority of which supported net neutrality—the commenting deadline was extended to September 15th. A final ruling may come as early as the end of the year.
The Latest on: Net neutrality
via Google News
The Latest on: Net neutrality
- Biden musn't bring back Obama's obsolete net neutrality policyon November 28, 2020 at 9:00 pm
When the Federal Communications Commission repealed net neutrality, critics heralded impending doom for the internet as they knew it. They claimed that certain websites would become unavailable — that ...
- Be careful what you wish for: A return to ‘net neutrality’ is a concern for the entire interneton November 20, 2020 at 3:28 am
The success of the internet during the pandemic has been made possible in part by the FCC's light-touch regulatory approach. Yet there is somehow a drumbeat for “net neutrality” regulations to return, ...
- How Georgia’s Senate runoff will affect net neutralityon November 17, 2020 at 7:05 pm
The Georgia Senate runoff will have implications for a number of issues—including the future of net neutrality.
- Tech Tuesday newsletter: Georgia’s Senate runoffs have big implications for net neutralityon November 17, 2020 at 12:10 pm
In this week's Tech Tuesday edition of the Daily Dot's Internet Insider, we take a look at net neutrality and other tech news.
- Net neutrality is dead, and the internet is much better off for iton November 17, 2020 at 10:40 am
On Oct. 27, the Federal Communications Commission voted to maintain its free market policy for broadband internet services. In the nearly three years since it adopted that policy, internet access and ...
- Bye-Bye, Ajit Pai: FCC Boss Will Soon Lose Top Spoton November 11, 2020 at 10:23 am
His trademark grin. The giant, oversized coffee mug. The time he ignored the public, killed net neutrality at the request of telecom lobbyists, then gleefully danced with a pizzagater thinking it ...
- 3 reasons why Biden will kill off net neutralityon November 10, 2020 at 3:19 am
There could be White House support for the policy: Vice President elect Harris supported net neutrality in the past. And executives of Facebook and Twitter — two companies that have been strong ...
- Bringing back net neutrality rules is high on Biden’s tech agendaon November 10, 2020 at 2:56 am
He said one major issue will likely be restoring Obama-era net neutrality rules that required internet service providers to offer equal access to content on the web. Current FCC Chairman Ajit Pai ...
- The US has never had strong Net Neutrality rules. Can that change under Biden?on November 9, 2020 at 1:07 am
The US has never had strong Net Neutrality. Critics of Net Neutrality have loved talking about how nothing has really changed after Trump appointee Ajit Pai rolled back his predecessor’s Open ...
- A Biden Administration Would Be Likely to Reinstate Net Neutralityon November 8, 2020 at 1:31 pm
While it’s still too early to call this year’s U.S. presidential elections, Adweek reports that leading candidate Joe Biden is likely to revive net neutrality, the principle that internet ...
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