You’ve probably heard a lot about the FCC (Federal Communication Commission) and net neutrality recently. In case you’re unfamiliar with the concept of net neutrality, it is basically the principle that all internet service providers treat all content equally. Essentially, net neutrality prevents these internet service providers (ISPs) from slowing down connections for people who want to access certain online services, apps, and sites. Without the concept of net neutrality, ISPs will be able to prioritize certain services and websites.
Net neutrality is extremely important because without it, both phone and cable companies could alter the way we access the internet. Internet service providers could do things like block political opinions it doesn’t stand for or slow down the content of its competitors. This kind of behavior could easily destroy the open internet.
Back in 2015, net neutrality rules were put in place, which gave the Federal Communications Commission the authority to stop ISPs from unfairly degrading your service. The rules that went into effect in 2015 stated that ISPs weren’t allowed to block apps or websites in order to discriminate against lawful content. The rules also stated that internet service providers couldn’t the transmission of data according to the content’s nature. Finally, ISPs weren’t allowed to create internet fast lanes for people who pay premiums.
Despite the fact that almost every consumer supports net neutrality, the FCC decided to repeal it recently. The only ones who seem to have a problem with net neutrality are the huge internet service providers in the United States. So, it shouldn’t surprise you to find out that companies like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon spent more than half a billion dollars over the last nine years trying to repeal it.
The main reason why ISPs managed to accomplish what they set out to do was because they had a powerful friend on their said, a man named Ajit Pai. Pai was appointed to the Federal Communication Commission in 2012, and became chairman this year, soon after Donald Trump took office. In 2015, Ajit called the net neutrality ruling a massive intrusion in the internet economy. He has always shown support for the repeal of net neutrality, and made it pretty clear that he didn’t really care about the 22 million comments submitted through the FCC’s website that were in support of net neutrality.
Unfortunately, the repeal of net neutrality will likely affect consumers in a negative way. Many believe that ISPs will soon start selling internet in bundles. This means that you will have to pay a premium subscription if you want access to certain apps and websites. Basically, if you wanted to have access to your favorite social media platforms, you would have to subscribe to a premium social media package.
Apart from that, many fear that most consumers would end up on a slow lane, while those willing to pay more would access content faster. Small business owners are especially shaken up by the FCC’s vote to repeal net neutrality, since they worry that other big companies could pay to have their services and websites load faster.
Although it may seem scary, there is a way to experience a secure, safe, and censor-free internet. Certain organizations, like TurnOnVPN are focused on spreading the message that you can go around internet service providers. By using a VPN (Virtual Private Network) all your internet traffic is encrypted between the VPN service and you.
Although the repeal of net neutrality looks like it could have devastating consequences for consumers, it’s important to remember that these changes won’t happen overnight. Additionally, it’s important to spread the word that by using VPNs people can prevent internet service providers from slowing your connection and affecting your connection in other ways.