Congratulations, we all fell for it. With websites from here, there and all over pleading for us to support Net Neutrality. Politicians and news anchors clamored that this is a much needed regulation. Well it’s official as of June 16th, the FCC Net Neutrality agreement was upheld in Federal Appeals Court. We all win, the Internet is no longer a luxury, it is now regulated as a utility. We can binge watch YouTube and Hulu without interrupted streams.
Net Neutrality was upheld as part of Title II of the Federal Communications Act of 1934. This act was originally designed around phone lines that transports only one type of data. Since the Internet moves so many types of data, to restrict everything on the same plateau eliminates the quality of service currently used. Restricting internet service providers in this way eliminates their ability to offer multiple speeds for their customers and removes the opportunity for them to prioritize the available assets as needed. This will force smaller service providers to new standards they may not be able to handle and regulates ISPs business models in a way that will make it harder to serve their customers.
The implications of how Net Neutrality will impact Internet users is important. These includes the Internet being subject to regulation by the Federal Communications Commission. The truest form of deregulated media may be a thing of the past. Independent content creators could potentially be fined or subject to the current regulations of terrestrial broadcasts. Another implication of Net Neutrality is having service providers submit how their data is being dispersed and that it is being done according to this agreement. While I know that the Congressional push back has been against the violation of privacy, I am more worried about the cost involved. The expansion of administration or the creation of some agency to ensure that the dictums are met . Regardless, we will all pay for this. An additional concern is that Title II allows regulated utilities to be put under Eminent Domain.
Net Neutrality is unnecessary and overreaching. It chokes the free market and will only cost more money to everyone involved. From businesses to Internet users to taxpayers. Through the use of misleading language, this act will be harmful long term. I oppose this entire thing and I hope that it will be appealed in the Supreme Court. Ideally, this is something that will go away, but my gut feeling is it will haunt Americans the way the Patriot Act has.
Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here or download his e-book here. Be sure to follow us on Twitter or Facebook.