Net Neutrality

 

Net Neutrality

On December 14, 2017, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted 3-2 to repeal net neutrality protections enacted by the FCC a few years ago  The vote was along political party lines and reversed the policy set into place in 2015, when Democrats controlled the FCC. The repeal was supported by ISP (Internet Service Providers) companies and opposed by most in the tech industry, consumer advocacy groups and the general public [83% opposed reported by Wall Street Journal(https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/12/21/netn-d21.html)].

As explained in the same Wall Street Journal article:

Net neutrality is the principle that the owners of the cable and wireless infrastructure of the internet must treat all information and data equally and deliver it to the public without regard to content or source. In 2015, the FCC voted to formalize net neutrality and block the ISPs from implementing paid prioritization, “throttling” download speeds and alternately restricting or promoting web sites that their customers access. (https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/12/21/netn-d21.html)

By repealing net neutrality, the ISPs will be able to charge their customers and/or content providers a fee for faster transmission of the signal.  An ISP may provide its own content faster than that of competitors. (i.e. AT&T providing DirecTV Now substantially faster than competing services such as Hulu and Netflix.)For this discussion board, you might want to research net neutrality and the FCC’s action.

Then discuss your views on net neutrality and the FCC’s actions.  A broader question that arises from these circumstances, what is the role of the government?  When an overwhelming majority of Americans have a particular position, should the government act contrary to that desire of the public?  Remember, administrative agency officials are not elected and do not suffer repercussions for their actions.

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