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Internet Openness In Grave Danger With Net Neutrality Ruling

Freelance writers speak outYesterday the Washington DC Court of Appeals imposed limits on the FCC’s ability to regulate the internet.

What’s up is the media corporations who bring us internet connections desire to earn even more money by being able to slow or squeeze connections based on how much they are charging. They don’t want competition, they want to charge more money to advertisers by controlling where our “eyeballs” can go.

Some will argue that the owner’s of the net infrastructure should be able to charge whatever the market will accept and that those owners should have the right to regulate what they display to their users. They will say this is the “free market” at work. I ask you to consider how much government support is required for that market to exist, and to consider the meaning of the word “free” in that contest.

Others believe the ‘net is part of the commons, that which we as a people hold together, like air, air waves, water, national and state parks, and the like. (You can read more at OnTheCommons.org)

This issue is important for freelance writers and other freelancers for many reasons, including:

  • The net is the way we find work;
  • We work in the net cloud.
  • Much of our research is done on the net.
  • Much of our writing now appears on the net.

The notion that a corporation might restrict my words or yours with a net slowdown or discriminatory prices is an anathema to me.

It’s the beginning of an important fight and I urge you to follow it and take action to protect everyone’s rights to a neutral internet, not filtered by price.

Here are three resources I trust on the subject of Net Neutrality:

There will be more.

There also will be specific action to take. I’ll try to keep you updated.

And yes, I want your comments… pro, con and in between.


Image from http://www.sxc.hu

{ 9 comments… add one }
  • This scares me. How am I supposed to do research? What if, in addition to bandwidth, they begin to squeeze content as well? Writing crime fiction, I have to look up some pretty weird stuff I can’t find anywhere else. I’m probably already on a list, ha ha, but I sure don’t want / can’t afford to pay a crapton of money to access it. The Internet is more and more a utility and not a luxury.

    Also, part of the problem is that the cable companies don’t WANT you to watch shows on the Internet. They want to vastly overcharge you for fifteen God channels, 12 shopping channels, plus the six you actually watch, along with all the ones that show nothing but 80s sitcom reruns all day.
    .-= Elizabeth West´s last blog ..Growth =-.

  • My understanding is that the problem is about bandwidth. Some users are downloading movies; some are only reading text. The latter are essentially subsidizing the former. More important, bandwidth intensive applications (like Hulu and Skype and audio file players) are taking business away from telephone companies, movie theaters, CD stores, and other companies with large infrastructure investment. I’m not sure how this will play out, but the likelihood is that without Congressional intervention, bandwidth providers will hike the rates for video AND audio AND text. And governments will then tax the hell out of it.

    There may be other more vital issues, too, but the main stream media probably won’t report them. (Example: Quickly, based only on what you’ve heard in the media, tell me how Arctic ice area compares to the 30 year seasonal average right now.) Remember, it’s the blogs that are now blowing the whistle on government lies and malfeasance, not the newspapers. Some even say that Al Gore has been shown up as an idiot in the blogosphere so often he now regrets having invented the Internet.
    .-= jorgekafkazar´s last blog ..Tenirax, Ch V =-.

  • Samantha

    The notion that the federal government might restrict my words or yours with a net slowdown or discriminatory prices is an anathema to me. Why is giving the FCC power to regulate the internet somehow a better idea?

    • Anne

      Samantha, how would you have it regulated… or how would you handle the situation?

  • Wow-I had no idea. Thank you, Anne, for sharing this information. I need to get myself educated.
    .-= Cathy Miller´s last blog ..Can We Talk? =-.

    • Anne

      we all do, on lots of things… spread the word.

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