Standing up for young americans

You should learn what net neutrality is before it’s gone

One of the best things about the internet that you’ve probably never even thought about is the fact that every website is created equal-no matter who your provider is, or what website you’re on, the internet speed is always the same. A tiny start-up company’s page will load at the same rate as a huge competitor’s. This idea is called ‘net neutrality.’ But those major competitors want to change that, and the government might let them.

In January, a D.C. court struck down the rules created by the Federal Communications Commission (the government agency which creates rules for internet providers, among other responsibilities), which were put in place to ensure net neutrality. This opens the door to a new system, where certain sites, like Netflix, have to pay providers to keep them from slowing down their site’s loading time. These costs get passed on to-you guessed it-the consumer.

As a response to the court ruling in January, the F.C.C. voted in early May to allow an open debate on the rules enforcing net neutrality. Cable companies like Comcast, who have powerful lobbying groups on their side, are now able to push against stringent regulations call for a tiered-system, while other groups like Facebook and Google support strict net neutrality.

In essence, this debate is an argument about the nature of the internet. Is it a luxury, which can be controlled by corporations, or a public utility, which should be accessible to all?