The Predator

Net Neutrality

Smith Bradshaw

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In today’s age of technology, the internet is becoming more and more involved in peoples’ lives. As the Internet grows more popular than ever, it becomes clear that equal accessibility is one of the things that makes the internet great. However, this could all change now that the Federal Communication Commission has voted to repeal net neutrality. Essentially, net neutrality prevents internet service providers (ISPs) from filtering your internet access. Without it, the internet would be very different from the way that it is now, affecting all of our daily lives.

Before net neutrality was enforced, ISPs were abusing their abilities and blocking certain services from their customers, and this could happen again if net neutrality is repealed. For example, the ISP AT&T blocked its users from using the popular video calling app FaceTime, according to the website “whatisnetneutrality.org”. This was before net neutrality was established, when companies could filter people’s internet access without any limitations. Since we have lost net neutrality again, the internet will become like it was before, and ISPs could simply block any services that they are competing against or just don’t like.

Plus, with most of the Landrum students interviewed spending three or more hours on the internet every day, this change will affect huge chunks of many students’ daily lives. For this reason, many students are not happy with the coming changes. As Will Mathis, a 7th grader here at Landrum, put it, “I am opposed to the repealing of net neutrality because it would make internet more expensive and allow ISPs to have monopolies on the internet.” To clarify, without net neutrality, ISPs could divide the internet into several packages, such as social media, videos, etc. This would make the internet much harder to access and enjoy, since people who want to use all of the services on the internet would have to pay for 5-6 different bills. Additionally, “[ISPs] could put severe caps on internet use, potentially limit individual subscribers who are critical of them, or charge enormous fees for services so that internet access is available to only a wealthy few”, according to the website “vittana.org”. To illustrate, without net neutrality, ISPs could severely hike their prices for certain services. This would make the internet almost impossible to fully access for people who have better things to do with their money than to fork it over to huge companies.

In conclusion, even though net neutrality is often overlooked, it is one of the most important parts of the internet as we know it. It keeps ISPs from monopolizing the internet by keeping them from making the internet more expensive and less open and equal. So, now that the FCC has voted to take away our neutral net, we must hope that Congress will vote against this action. To get involved, you can visit battleforthenet.com for information about how to contact Congress men and women regarding net neutrality. We must act fast; net neutrality is a part of the internet that we cannot afford to lose.

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Net Neutrality