Sunday, 24 June, 2018

Protesters rally against net neutrality regulation rollback

Ajit Pai FCC The web is vital to Art Bell’s film company Dreamlike
Kelvin Reese | 10 December, 2017, 04:23

With the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) slated to vote on Chairman Ajit Pai's plan to kill net neutrality on December 14, open internet advocates and free press groups participated in planned protests on Thursday at congressional offices and more than 700 Verizon stores in all 50 states, plus D.C.

"The existing situation is good", said Wendi A. Haugh, associate professor of anthropology at St. Lawrence University, who was one of the protest organizers.

Net neutrality is the rule that prohibits internet service providers like Verizon can't slow, speed up or block websites based on their own internal guidelines.

Slim as their prospects may be, pro-regulation activists are turning to a bitterly divided Congress, pressuring politicians to intervene and prevent the FCC vote.

"For nearly 20 years, the internet thrived under the light-touch regulatory approach established by President Clinton and a Republican Congress", Pai said in a statement in November. Companies such as Google and Facebook were only able to reach the level of success that they did because of Net Neutrality.

Net Neutrality is what we all know today.

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It is ironic that advocates for the repeal of net neutrality claim that it amounts to government regulation of the internet.

"I'm seeing real democracy emerging through the internet", said Michael T. Owen. You may have seen this Thursday's protest on Broadway.

The biggest protest in the nation was at the Verizon store on 42nd Street between 6th and 7th Avenues.

Ajit Pai the chairman of the FCC, will have his name infamously etched into the history books, at least what remains of them in this near-Orwellian scenario which may very likely be our future.

Messages seeking comment were left with Verizon.

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