Over the past couple of months, an issue has arisen that has the whole internet in an outrage. This problem is the repeal of the net neutrality law, under the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). While not many have heard of net neutrality until it was in danger, it is more than essential for the life of the internet. This law prevented any internet provider or carrier from prioritizing certain websites and throttling others, meaning that companies could not make specific websites faster or slower than others and having the ability to block individual websites. This also restricted them from using this tactic to charge consumers more for these prioritizations and blocking websites unless they pay, very much like cable companies and television. Technically, internet providers will be allowed to charge you like a cable company for certain websites or prioritization. This seems terrible for anyone with common sense and anyone who does not want more costly internet bills, therefore causing a massive outrage. Now, with the victory of the FCC and the net neutrality law in the process of being removed, society is confused and is standing in very different spots, many being quite misinformed. Here’s what this act will mean for the consumers and companies.
The first thing that everyone should be aware of is that the act will not take effect for another couple of months after the vote that took place on December 14th, mainly because more parts of the government have to put the act into effect. For example, the new rules must be entered into the federal register, which takes some time. This gives us some thinking room to truly find out what these internet providers plan for us, and for the ordinary people to calm down and understand the effects of this act. During this period, we will be able to understand better what the loss of net neutrality truthfully means for us, how tech companies and ISPs (internet service provider) will act upon this, and which companies will take advantage of it.
The second point is the myth that every single ISP will start deliberately slowing down people’s internet. The main talk about the net neutrality repeal is the belief that people will need to pay extra for certain websites, social media, services, or internet. In reality, this would most likely never happen because of how bad of a business move it is. If an ISP started slowing down its speed for lesser paying users or charging for certain websites, most customers would simply switch to a new provider. This would create a giant platform for any companies who proclaim that they will “never slow down their internet” or “never block websites” or refuse to throttle based on money paid. While people who fear this say that the big tech bodies (such as Verizon, AT&T, etc.) will create a monopoly, the real winner in the situation is any companies who choose to be fair with their service and ultimately attract the majority of customers.
In conclusion, the removal of net neutrality will not be the “death of the internet” like everyone says. In reality, this will most likely have little to no effect on the consumers who read writing pieces like this on the internet every single day. You should stop worrying about paying for website packages or paying monthly for social media, which is a big misconception on the internet. The plan will have some time before any difference will take place, and it is improbable that the plan will result in one or two companies taking over the internet and entirely monetizing it.