Imagine visiting your favorite website, only to discover a spinning image on it instead of the latest post. A minute later, no difference. The image is still spinning on the screen.
That scenario is not too far off in the future, if current rules in the United States are repealed.
Today, July 12, 2017, thousands of people and organizations in the United States will join together to Fight for the Future and save net neutrality.
Fight for the Future is an online event, a Day of Action to protest against the United States Federal Communication Commission (FCC) plans to repeal existing net neutrality rules.
What is Net Neutrality?
Net neutrality refers to all traffic on the Internet being treated equally in terms of speed.
Whether it’s a blog post like this one, a YouTube video, your favorite Netflix movie, photos of your dog—no matter what the content—would be delivered to you at the same speed.
In other words, your Internet Service Provider (ISP)—ATT, Comcast, Verizon—would not be able to block content or throttle the speed of your Internet connection to deliver content at a slower speed.
And they would not be able to make you pay for a “faster lane” to the Internet.
Why Should You Care About Net Neutrality?
In 2015, people and organizations in the United States applauded when FCC enacted new rules restricting ISPs from throttling and blocking content.
The new rules enacted in 2015 called out specific practices:
- No blocking: consumers get access to what they pay for
- No throttling: no degrading lawful Internet content, applications, services, and devices
- No paid prioritization: providers can’t accept payment to manage their network for the benefit of specific content, applications, services or devices
However, with the changes in leadership in 2017, the FCC is now considering repealing the rules Americans (me included!) fought for in 2015.
Join the Fight!
I encourage you to join the fight today with thousands of people and organizations who are defending Internet freedom and supporting our existing net neutrality rules.
Join the Day of Action and contact the FCC to let your voice be heard.
Sharing your comments with the FCC is a bit complex.
You’ll need to visit their filings site and submit your feedback. I discovered their Express submission form was easiest to fill out.
Enter “17-108” in the “Proceedings form field” which will replace the content in the form field with the Restoring Internet Freedom proposal.
Yes, that’s what it’s called. I believe the “freedom” it’s referring to is the freedom for ISPs to charge you more!
If you’re active on social media, or have your own website, add or share a Net Neutrality Day of Action graphic (avatars, banners, ads, Instagram clips, video ) to your social media account.
One of my favorite videos is this one from Vimeo (~ two-minutes long):
WordPress Site Owners
If you have a site on WordPress.com or a self-hosted WordPress site, you can install the Net Neutrality plugin to show your support.
I’ve installed the plugin on this site. For today only, it will display a “Still Loading” spinner graphic and will slow down a few pages to show what it will be like on an Internet without net neutrality.
Net neutrality is essential to a free and open Internet. I hope you’ll join me today in fighting for the future!