The End of the Web as We Know It?

Net Neutrality can be defined as the principle that Internet service providers have to treat all the data that is on the Internet the same. So this basically this means companies like Time Warner Cable and Comcast (Internet Service Providers; ISP’s) are not allowed discriminate on any site based on content, its users, etc. Until recently Net Neutrality is a rule that the ISP’s in the United States had to abide by thanks to the FCC. However, a judge recently struck down what little control over Net Neutrality the FCC had. Thus making big companies like Verizon, Time Warner Cable, and Comcast the new gatekeepers of the Internet.

Advocates for Net Neutrality are worried that without it these large companies will block or even slow down the content that they don’t own or whatever they would choose. While opponents of Net Neutrality claim that these ISP’s have no plans block content or lower network performance. However, there have been signs that the ISP’s will start doing that seeing as Comcast has already slowed peer-to-peer (P2P) communications with other companies beginning to do the same. Opponents also say that with the FCC controlling Net Neutrality there are many privacy concerns. With the FCC controlling the Internet it makes it easier for the government to view what you are doing on the Internet. Unfortunately, these big companies will also be able to monitor what you’re doing on the Internet and use it for their financial advantage.

With Net Neutrality controlled by the FCC the people that benefited were the creators and the users. But with it now controlled by the ISP’s, the ISP’s are who benefit because they are the ones that can and may make a profit.

These ISP’s are not only in the Internet Service Provider business but they are also in the media business, so there is nothing stopping them from picking favorites when it comes to you accessing the web. This cut of Net Neutrality also hurts creators, if these ISP’s decide to block sites and have people pay more or even the creators pay more to view them, that money doesn’t go to the website it goes straight to the company. Its technically cutting off the audience of these sites thus cutting the income these sites receive. Granted none of this has actually started yet and may not, but without Net Neutrality it does give them that power.

Take this for example if we pay for electricity in our house why should the electricity companies decide what we do with our electricity. Same with paying for water and gas, they can’t take away your right to do with it as you please as long as you pay. So, why should paying for Internet be any different?



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