What is Net Neutral all about?
Net neutral is about equal and open access to all content without blocking or restriction. Some of the larger internet providers want to be able to charge extra for access or greater speeds to for connections to 'premium' websites. They also want to be able to limit access to video streaming sites such as YouTube, possibly even charge you extra for access to this kind of content.
On February the 26th this year the American FCC (Federal Communications Commission) ruled that the providers would not be allowed to selectively restrict parts or the internet. The FCC and other authorities are now locked in legal battle that could run for years.
So why is this such an important issue?
Currently the internet is in the most part open or Net Neutral. All content is equally accessible by you and me without any sort of selective restriction. Imagine if that wasn't the case. A company such as Amazon may well pay a premium to the providers to ensure their websites got a 'premium' service with plenty of bandwidth and speed of access. On the other hand the high street shop would not have the budget to pay the extra so could suffer their website content being slowed in favour of companies that paid for the premium service. It doesn't take a genius to see where this would lead. In time the internet would lead to being controlled by the corporates and larger business while the smaller interests would barely get a look in.
There are plenty of campaigning groups on this issue and it is important for all of us to work to keep our internet neutral.
Do a search and you will find plenty on the subject. Please don't let us lose the amazing internet we have.
Cavespider, keeping it fair.
- Written by Crispin Jones