Net neutrality has become a volatile, high-profile news story, and with good reason: Americans are in danger of losing it. But what is net neutrality, and why is it important? Why are some lawmakers fighting so hard to make it a thing of the past?
The answer is complex, rooted in technological progress, a changing economic landscape, and a society and culture that is seeing greater class divisions than at any other time in our history. Some in our government are determined to make the internet a profit-driven product, and while this may sound understandable in a capitalist society, the dangers are very real.
In learning about net neutrality, consider these two main points. First, granting access to information based an individual or business' ability to pay -- which is the goal of the FCC and others against net neutrality -- is a way to keep poor and working-class folks in a vicious cycle of poverty, cutting them off from information, education, and, in a way, liberation. Second, the loss of net neutrality would mean that a handful of internet service providers (ISPs) and their preferred corporate clients are legally allowed to skim a massive profit off those individuals and businesses who are able to pay for higher levels of service. Things you consider simple Internet tasks today like checking social media or emailing a silly meme could become expensive, slow, and even impossible.
Make no mistake: the loss of net neutrality is a loss of freedom. Keep reading to learn all about net neutrality and the tangible threats it poses.
With Net Neutrality In Place, You Have Quick, Easy Access To Most Everything On The Web At Any Time Of Day
Without Net Neutrality In Place, Internet Service Providers Have The Ability To Slow Down Your Internet At Whim
Having No Net Neutrality Will Cost You A Lot More For A Lot Less
Without Net Neutrality, Trying To Use The Internet Will Be Like Trying To Order A Buffet -Sized Meal And Paying For It À La Carte
The Internet Would Have Fast And Slow LanesPhoto: Creative Commons
Your Days Of Easy Internet Access Would Be Over