Recently President Obama made a statement regarding Net Neutrality and Title II. I am here to say I couldn’t agree more. I have been following the debate about Net Neutrality and the various pros and cons. For the most part the only option I see for continuing the open free expression that is for the most part the internet of today is to make sure that no one can manipulate, slow down, create toll booths, nothing, is to make any ISP simply a pipe and if that means Title II status then so be it.
Title II of the FCC regulations for those that are not aware is the common carrier provision. In it’s most simple terms means that any communications system deemed to be a Title II entity is unable and disallowed from treating any traffic they carry any differently than any other traffic.
Why is a level playground so important? – If the ISP’s are allowed to wheel and deal for separate channels of internet traffic the entire look and feel of the internet will be changed forever. Do you want the internet to be like Cable TV is now? With tiers of service, one includes fast netflix, the others don’t. One includes facebook, on the others it’s blocked. This is what will happen if the ISP’s are allowed to continue down the path they are pushing congress and the american people. It is a destructive path and only leads to one place. A place where ISP’s control the flow of information. That is not why the internet was created and certainly not what anyone except the ISP’s could want.
But wait I don’t like Government intervention – And neither do I. I like small government, government for the people, government that helps creates an america of widespread knowledge and information. Making ISP’s fall under Title II will not harm or stifle any innovation. It will create an internet where “Garage” companies can continue to create new ways and amaze the world with what can be accomplished with an open and free connected world.
Wait, won’t Title II status force the ISP’s to slow down or change the reach of their services? – This is the biggest lie being told by the ISP’s. It is a FUD campaign of the highest priority for them and only them. The ISP’s are worried that their grand business plans where they conquer the world and become the gateway to all information for a price is in jeopardy. My answer to that, of course this threatens their business model, of course they will make less money. Of course it will be harder for them to build out service to those areas that don’t have high speed internet or have slow internet. To that I say fine, if the current companies don’t want to take the ball and run with it let’s force them to sell their companies to people who will work within the new rules of Title II and finish the job. Where is it written that a few greedy people have to get their way and become even more rich at the expense of the rest of us. The entire idea that the internet will come to and end because the business model changes is IMHO complete and utter nonsense.
If I haven’t convinced you yet here is my last attempt – Many people like to compare the internet under Title II to the National Electric Grid. Let’s do that. The usual response is look at our Electrical infrastructure it’s horrible, terrible, it’s outdated, it’s hard to maintain, keep going, blah, blah. That is not really the point. The American Electrical System works at a level that far exceeds the level of internet access today. By making the Electrical Grid a Utility a wonderful thing happened EVERYONE HAS ELECTRICITY, Period! That can not be said of our internet today. The second biggest misconception about the Internet under Title II is that the innovation will cease, it will decay and stop in it’s tracks. So let’s compare the electrical appliances that we have today under the tyranny of the electrical system being a utility with the appliances we had 50 years ago and see if innovation stopped because the source of our power was regulated and a utility. The TV was invented, My refrigerator can know when I’m out of milk. The entire computer revolution. It’s amazing any of these electric devices where created and brought to market.
In closing as this nation moves forward and tackles this problem lets keep some perceptive and see things as they are. The best tools we have as human beings is our ability to think and reason for ourselves. To ask questions and demand answers from our leaders.