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Perison JCCENG 153026January 2018 NetNeutrality Aslong as the internet has existed, there has been debates about how toregulate it. Should it be highly regulated to protect consumers, orshould the government only loosely control the web? Recently, theFederal Communications Commission voted to repeal the net neutralityguidelines that were set in 2015. Net neutrality is a heavy handedregulation of internet service providers that prevents them fromslowing down, speeding up, and blocking lawful content. It alsorequires these companies to disclose to the public what their networkpolicies are. Many people have been angered over Ajit Pai’s undoingof these regulations, which they say keeps the internet free andopen.

Others say the FCC should not have made these laws in the firstplace. However, net neutrality was beneficial to consumers and shouldnot have been repealed. Netneutrality is beneficial to consumers and web users. This is mainlybecause net neutrality makes the internet open and free for everyone.Imagine having to wait a ridiculous amount of time for your favoritewebsite to load, or even being unable to access it because yourinternet service provider has blocked or slowed it. Under netneutrality rules, this was illegal. With the repeal of theseregulations it’s possible that internet service providers will beable to slow down loading speeds for any website they want.

Consumersgenerally find this an unfavorable outcome. After all, what if theyrely on certain web services for their job or education? It’sbeneficial to just about everyone if all lawful websites can beaccessed at a reasonable speed. As Sarah Morris and Emily Hong say intheir article “Net Neutrality Opponents Have No Argument, “In thesimplest of terms, the FCC rules mean no fast and slow lanes on theinternet, no blocking of content, and no provider throttling yourstreaming video just because it can.” Throttling refers to slowingof content.

With the old FCC regulations which were just repealed,your provider can’t slow down or block content. With the repeal ofthese net neutrality regulations, internet service providers can nowthrottle content as much as they want. This is concerning. Althoughthis is by no means a guarantee that every provider will do this,it’s likely that some will use this new privilege to their advantagein order to make more money and promote their own services. Ananalogy often used to describe net neutrality and the internet is ahighway. Without net neutrality, there could be slow and fast laneson this “highway” that websites are placed into based on theISP’s attitude towards them or how much money they pay.

 

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