Net neutrality What you can do to help

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On February 26th 2015 the FCC ruled in favor of of Net Neutrality and reclassified the open internet as a telecommunications service applying Title 2 (Common Carrier) of the 1934 Communications Act to it. What this would mean is all data is treated the same, and specific data could not be either blocked/slowed or given preferential treatment. Extreme examples of this would be Comcast being paid by Microsoft (Owner of Bing.com) to request that subscribers are blocked access to Alphabets Google.com search engine. This would give Microsoft a huge advantage over competition even if users would rather use Google or another search engine.. Another example of consequences that can occur would be Netflix paying for their service to have better speeds than other video streaming sites such as Hulu or Sling TV. Net Neutrality is very simple to understand in that all regardless of content, money, or owners is treated exactly the same. No fast lanes, and no blocking/slowing.

Net Neutrality in the last couple years has seen great success in the United States however on December 14th 2017 the Ajit Pai the current chairman of the Trump administrations of the FCC passed a resolution in a 3-2 vote along republican lines to repeal the 2015 ruling of Net Neutrality protections. Millions of comments flowed into the FCC pleading to keep the current protections however some comments were fraudulent giving the current Chairman personal justification to ignore all comment.

While the fight over Net Neutrality is not over yet, and several lawsuits are pending against the FCC as well as over 20 states pledging to sue the FCC over the ruling, it now more important than ever for every individual to help in whatever form they can. So the main question you may be asking is “How can I help?”.

Without a doubt the most important thing you can do before doing anything else is to become more educated and familiar on exactly what it is you are fighting for when talking about Net Neutrality or any policy change in general. Many different outlets seem to simply giving you options to sign up for daily caller lists, or telling you exactly what to say before contacting representatives. The more you understand on why this is important the more you are going to feel empowered when you do contact your representatives and senators. Personally I found Andrew Couts article on the Daily Dot to be well written and thought out which you will find http://bit.ly/2zILzI2, and if you are familiar with the legal jargon of the world you can attempt to read through the Common Carrier portion of the Communications Act http://bit.ly/1RoIazq.

After you have become familiar with Title 2 of the 1934 telecommunications act, and net neutrality as a whole finding out your representatives is generally very simple. https://whoismyrepresentative.com/ is a great resource to use and I highly recommend using it. Typing in your zip code will give you your Representatives for your district, and your senators for your state as well as their current registered party. Alternatively https://www.battleforthenet.com/ is doing a lot of the ground work for you informing you of whom in your state is supporting Net Neutrality, whom is not, allowing you to contact them via multiple social media methods, and signing up to be a daily caller. Contacting your Representatives can feel awkward the first couple times but just remember they represent you this is their job. I would recommend typing up a small script on what you would like to say or using one of many sites fighting for an open internet scripts as a starting point. Common questions to ask are what their stance is on an issue, if they have heard about specific legislation regarding Net neutrality, or simply telling them your stance on a issue. Most offices will offer to get back to you if you would like a direct comment via postal service or email.

I do apologize that this post has been more wordy than others, but I just want you to know my stance on this issue is very clearly in favor of a an open internet otherwise I might not be able to bring you guys hopefully what you consider great content. Do consider following me at Whatever you do don’t give up or be discouraged and remember “It is always darkest just before the Day dawneth”(Thomas Fuller, 1650).

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