Net Neutrality, or as John Oliver so eloquently called it, “Preventing Cable Company f…” (this is a family site, you can use your imagination for that last part…warning, some NSFW language on the linked video) has been a hot button issue in tech news for quite some time. It’s a David vs. Goliath story where we, the typical Internet users of the world, are fighting against a colossal force (the Cable companies and Internet Service Providers) for the future of the Internet. Nearly 4 million people wrote to the FCC during an open comment period to voice their support for Net Neutrality, and today, President Obama has made his feelings on the matter known.
In a brief video and longer written statement, President Obama reiterates his belief that the Internet should be a free and open system allowing all users the same access and freedoms.
The President outlined the following points that he’d like the FCC to implement:
No blocking. If a consumer requests access to a website or service, and the content is legal, your ISP should not be permitted to block it. That way, every player — not just those commercially affiliated with an ISP — gets a fair shot at your business.
No throttling. Nor should ISPs be able to intentionally slow down some content or speed up others — through a process often called “throttling” — based on the type of service or your ISP’s preferences.
Increased transparency. The connection between consumers and ISPs — the so-called “last mile” — is not the only place some sites might get special treatment. So, I am also asking the FCC to make full use of the transparency authorities the court recently upheld, and if necessary to apply net neutrality rules to points of interconnection between the ISP and the rest of the Internet.
No paid prioritization. Simply put: No service should be stuck in a “slow lane” because it does not pay a fee. That kind of gatekeeping would undermine the level playing field essential to the Internet’s growth. So, as I have before, I am asking for an explicit ban on paid prioritization and any other restriction that has a similar effect.
The President goes on to suggest that ISPs should be re-classified as utilities – a common theme in the Net Neutrality argument. Unfortunately, the President does not hold any sway over the FCC since it is an independent agency. His suggestions are just that: suggestions. I think that many of us who aren’t the executives of an ISP would agree that President Obama’s ideas make a lot of sense, and would be in the best interest of the American public. We’ll just have to wait and see if FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is more interested in the American Public, or getting into the Cable Company’s pockets.
The rest of President Obama’s statement can be viewed at the source link below. What do you think of the President’s ideas? Good idea? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook, or Twitter.