Sample donated: Stephanie Hodges
Last updated: September 23, 2019
If Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were alive today, theywould fight for freedom of the Internet – like they defended the freedom of thepress – and oppose the end of Net Neutrality.Imagine a future whereyour monthly Internet costs as much as your mortgage payment, or every time youtry to go to a website not in your Internet package you are stopped by afirewall and prompted to pay another $100 to access it.If I had a chance tosit down with legislators and ask them questions, I would ask them if theythought freedom of the Internet is as important today as freedom of the presswas in 1791, when the Bill of Rights was ratified. Also, I would ask what canbe done to prevent Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from taking advantage ofconsumers.
We need Net Neutralitybecause of the Internet’s ability to spread community messages, educate us andpower our economy. Currently, the Internet is an open source space whereanyone is free to access legal content and add to it. If Net Neutrality isdead, ISPs could regulate where you can go.
For example, if you want to viewthe latest news on the Democratic National Convention, you may not be able tobecause Comcast is your ISP and the current Comcast CEO is a Republican. Or youmay have to pay an extra fee or deal with a slower Internet speed whilevisiting that website. At the same time, the same thing may happen tobusinesses wanting to access customers.
They can pay more or face slowerspeeds. A big reason someISPs want to abolish Net Neutrality is their monopolies in many markets. Mostmajor ISPs have standing agreements to provide service in a way that doesn’tcompete with other providers meaning they can raise or lower the cost of theirservice without worrying about other ISPs’ prices. Even though they could stilldo this under the old Net Neutrality rules, the fact that Net Neutralityexisted kept ISPs in check because if their rates went too high and too manypeople complained, the FCC could have classified ISPs as utilities andregulated their territories and rates (Captain). All in all, NetNeutrality is a very important thing to preserve. The result of the vote toabolish it could very well change the course of history of the United States. That is why I would aska legislator to put themselves in the place of America’s founding fathers whenthey were deciding on how much freedom a new country needed.
I would ask themto think carefully before they did something that could harm our power to shinelight on the powerful and keep an eye on our government.