What is net neutrality?
Here is a quote from Wikipedia (Net neutrality)
Net neutrality is the principle that Internet service providers and governments regulating the Internet should treat all data on the Internet the same, not discriminating or charging differentially by user, content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or mode of communication. The term was coined by Columbia University media law professor Tim Wu in 2003, as an extension of the longstanding concept of a common carrier, which was used to describe the role of telephone systems.
The loss of net neutrality would allow companies like Comcast and Verizon to charge higher rates for faster service, so websites that do not pay those fees would load more slowly. This means that internet service providers would be in a position to control who is heard over the internet.
What is happening now?
The FCC’s new chairman, Ajit Pai, has made a proposal to weaken the rules that ensure net neutrality. Many organizations have mobilized to encourage citizens to send a message to the FCC in support of net neutrality.
On Thursday, May 18, the FCC voted to consider Chairman Pai’s proposal, but before a final vote can be taken, a period of public comment is required. Some additional details can be found a recent CNN Tech article: FCC votes to move forward with net neutrality rollback.
How can we help support net neutrality?
1. Send a message to the FCC voicing your support.
The link below takes you to a page where a form is available. It is provided by Demand Progress, the organization cofounded by Aaron Swartz. This page also provides many additional references.
Mozilla, the developer of the Firefox browser, also urges comments to the FCC in support of net neutrality. Visit the link below, which provides a form.
2. Participate in the July 12 Internet Day of Action
The Columbus Institute for Contemporary Journalism has been involved with Freepress newspaper and activism since the 70s.
In partnership with Amazon and other corporations, Freepress.net is organizing an “Internet Day of Action” to demonstrate popular support for net neutrality. Quoting their website (see link below):
… on July 12, websites, internet users and online communities will come together to fight back.
Please click on the following link to receive information about how to participate: