Netwrok Neutrality


In 2002, the term Network Neutrality became a big word in US history and across the globe. Tim Wue, a law professor at Columbia University, coined this subject. Network Neutrality “is the principle that Internet service providers should enable access to all content and applications regardless of the source, and without favoring or blocking particular products or websites.” Wue, felt there were gatekeepers for certain sites and it wasn’t right. Something had to change. As a result, he brought it up to the United states government claiming there should be a  “rule that would ensure a level playing field among Internet applications.” This should only make sense because, according to President Obama, “Ever since the Internet was created, its been organized around basic principles, fairness, and freedom.” Isn’t using the Internet freely and without cost the whole point of the Internet especially in a country like ours where the American dream exists? The american dream is to be able to access the whole world at your fingertips, to do whatever you want, whenever you want, without any restrictions. The internet is a place where millions upon millions of people access unlimited information and if there is someone/something getting in the way of that, there will be problems. The scenario is, without network neutrality, there is no “american dream”, there is no freedom on the internet.  As seen in the article, “Cable companies might want to slow down services such as Netflix that compete with their paid television service.” This is an example of the Internet in 2002 and over 4 million people complained to the government about this issue. If I knew how to complain to the FCC about this, I would be part of these 4 million. I personally use the internet everyday, and if I was restricted to use certain sites, or wanted to start a new company, it would be difficult for me to handle and me and many other would be flat out frustrated. People need the Internet to be a free open market where anyone, anywhere, at any time can access whatever they want. As a result of this scenario, President Obama assigned Julius Genachowski to be chairman of the FCC, and announced regulations that “prohibited ISPs from blocking online content, prohibited “unreasonable” discrimination, and required ISPs to be more transparent about their policies.” Of course Verizon went to court to fight against this claim arguing that they went beyond the powers Congress had granted to the FCC. Shorty after, Verizon lost this case. Thankfully, the new chairman of the FCC, Tom Wheeler, proposed new, stricter network neutrality regulations, and the FCC’s Democratic majority approved them in February 2015. With Network Neutrality, statistics say Network Neutrality is a big reason there has been so much innovation on the internet over the last two decades and hopefully will only continue to grow and develop. Thanks to President Obama, the FCC, and to citizens across the globe, the Internet is now a free place to learn and explore.


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