This article presents the opinion that net neutrality guarantees freedom. For the opinion that net neutrality is government overreach: net neutrality – back to the future
The Federal Communications Commission has abolished the principle of network neutrality. It will strengthen internet censorship.
Internet censorship has become a part of reality in the US. On December 14, the FCC considered repealing the principle of network neutrality. Ajit Pai became an initiator of this project. The idea is to allow providers to slow down the speed, and also block access to one resource. At the same time, they will be able to expand it and give priority to others.
Network neutrality: pro and cons
The principle of network neutrality sticks to the concept that any Internet traffic must be processed and provided to a user, regardless of its nature. Also, operators of Internet connection cannot charge users with an additional fee for accessing any information resources, reducing their quality or speed of the connection.
The term “network neutrality” appeared recently. Tim Wu, a professor at Columbia Law School, introduced this term in the early 2000s. Due to social networks and video hosting, many providers began to pursue a certain policy. They started charging users with an additional fee for uninterrupted access to certain resources. Because this requires high costs, for example, due to their volume.
The FCC introduced the principle of network neutrality in 2015. Many popular Internet companies and social networks supported this project. Among them are such giants as Facebook, Google, Netflix, Yahoo. They think that the Internet should remain a tool for free expression of opinion, and providers have no right to limit it.
Large corporations, owning telecommunication networks and having a lobby in the government of the USA, oppose this principle. When Trump administration came into the White House, the attitude to network neutrality changed. Trump appointed again Ajit Pai, the former lawyer of the Internet provider and mobile operator Verizon, as the FCC Chairman. According to Ajit Pai, network neutrality can cause damage to Internet service providers. It will deprive them of the incentive to develop access to the Network “in many parts of the country, in low-income areas, in large cities and rural areas.”
However, the reasons for this may not be only in the interests of private providers.
It’s no secret that most Internet providers work closely with intelligence agencies. The last ones are interested in restricting access to certain Internet resources. This is not about shock-content, which can be a threat to the security or values of society. For example, the US has a good experience in combating pedophilia and child pornography on the Internet. It is already quite effective.
First of all, it concerns political censorship. It is given to private companies now.
In other words, if the US authorities do not accept any Internet resource, the relevant authorities will block immediately it with the first signal. However, something similar was before. The same WikiLeaks can confirm it. However, one can only guess what the scale of Internet censorship in the “country of freedom and democracy” will be.