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FCC rescinds ‘Net Neutrality’ regulations

Protester shares sign. Image courtesy Google.

Protester shares sign. Image courtesy Google.

Luke Perez, Editor

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On Thursday, December 14th, the Federal Communications Commission voted in favor of removing the rules that prevents businesses from significantly monitoring user’s daily internet experience.

Implemented under the Obama administration, the “Net Neutrality” regulations sought to keep big-time corporate businesses from having a monopoly in its internet oversight. Net Neutrality rules stated that no internet providers could not block or charge users for accessing certain content on the web in return for money. The idea behind net neutrality laws was to ensure that every person using the internet had equal opportunities as anyone else. No favorites would be allowed, and there haven’t been any since the bill’s enforcement in 2015. However, even with the approval of rescinding net neutrality, service providers such as AT&T and Comcast have assured their customers there will be no complications or added charges to their account. At least not at this moment. Potentially, what the American people could see in the future are charges for faster internet speeds, and a monthly fee of accessing such widely-used internet platforms like Youtube, Facebook, and social media outlets.

Commission chairman of the F.C.C, Ajit Pai, along with two other Republican chairman on a five-panel committee, all approved the ratification of the former Net Neutrality bill. Even before the ruling, many protests around the United States formed in response to the December 15th deadline of either reimplementing or revoking the status of Net Neutrality laws. Numerous companies such as Google and Youtube, along with movie and TV show provider Netflix have voiced their disapproval with the ruling by Ajit Pai and his colleagues.

(gracelandtower.com)

 

Many states have filed lawsuits against the Federal Communications Commission leading up to the decision made on Thursday as well. Three states have already announced their intentions to sue the F.C.C, according to Bustle Newspaper: New York, Washington, and California. However, there were eighteen states in total that co-signed a letter written by New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman in disagreement with the F.C.C’s plan on changing the laws that protect internet freedom. The states included both Republican and Democratic states too, inciting that the issue isn’t a mere political matter, but rather a potential hazard to the world’s global communication system.

 

The following months could see a slow, exponential increase in monsterization of our internet usage. The retraction of Net Neutrality rights means a limit on free public information access, education-related projects, and communications between different countries. This enactment, primarily made to generate competition between companies for potential profit, is most definitely looked down upon by millenials and the majority of the United States’ citizens, who not only use the internet for means of enjoyment, but also means of business, learning, and communication. The removal of Net Neutrality laws does not mean a “safe internet” nor does will it benefit internet service providers with an expected loss of customers in the following months. The decision will be further examined by Congress and fellow state legislatures, providing some sort of hope for the nearly four billion people who regularly use the internet throughout the world.

 

We at the Oracle believe everyone should stand up for free usage of the internet because, in some way or another, it affects the entire world and potentially our freedom.

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