Net Neutrality

On Jan. 14, 2014, a federal court of appeals struck down the Federal Communications Commission’s Open Internet Order, which was designed to prevent Internet service providers from blocking or slowing users’ connections to online content. The court did not comment on the validity of these rules but simply said that the FCC had used the wrong legal foundation to justify them.

In response, on May 15 FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler released flawed Internet rules that would let ISPs charge content companies for priority treatment — relegating all other content to a slower tier of service.

Wheeler’s plan would let telecom giants like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon pick winners and losers online and discriminate against online content and applications. And it would destroy the open Internet.

Without Net Neutrality, ISPs would be able to devise new schemes to charge users more for access and services, making it harder for us to communicate online — and easier for companies to censor our speech. The Internet could come to resemble cable TV, where gatekeepers exert control over where you go and what you see.

Without Net Neutrality, ISPs would be able to block content and speech they don’t like, reject apps that compete with their own offerings, and prioritize Web traffic (reserving the fastest loading speeds for the highest bidders and sticking everyone else with the slowest).

The tools ISPs use to block and control our communications aren’t different from the ones the NSA uses to watch us. Whether it’s a government or a corporation wielding these tools or the two working together, this behavior breaks the Internet as we know it and makes it less open and secure.

We must fight to ensure the Internet we love doesn’t become a platform for corporate speech or another tool for government spying. We must protect the Internet that lets us connect and create, that rejects censorship and values our right to privacy.

The Internet should remain a forum for innovation and free expression. Open, affordable, fast and universal communications networks are essential to our individual, economic and political futures.

For our 101 on Net Neutrality, click here.

Blog Posts

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Press Releases

  • The Trouble with the Fake Net Neutrality Bills

    January 21, 2015
    WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, the House and Senate Commerce Committees will discuss companion bills introduced by Sen. John Thune and Rep. Fred Upton. Both bills fail to even mention nondiscrimination.
  • Sprint Supports Title II, Too

    January 16, 2015
    WASHINGTON — Telecommunications provider Sprint told the Federal Communications Commission that it would support the agency's effort to reclassify Internet access under Title II of the Communications Act.
  • Net Neutrality Supporters Launch 535 Websites to Get Congress on the Record

    January 14, 2015
    WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, Net Neutrality advocates launched 535 websites, one for each member of Congress, to identify where the officials stand on the open Internet and generate calls in favor of protections.
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Resources

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News from Around the Web

  • Cozy With Comcast: Fred Upton, Greg Walden, Architects Of GOP Net Neutrality Plan, Receive Big Cable Cash

    International Business Times
    January 23, 2015

    Republicans are in a race to craft open-Internet legislation before the Federal Communications Commission imposes its own rules, and some core principles of Net Neutrality may hang in the balance. In the meantime, there should be no shortage of cash to fuel the fight.

  • Here's How the New Republican Congress Plans to Undercut Net Neutrality

    The Verge
    January 21, 2015

    The widespread national popularity of Net Neutrality principles have pushed the new Republican Congress, however tentatively, to embrace some of its core concepts. With two congressional Net Neutrality hearings scheduled for today, Republican lawmakers have released draft legislation that would ban broadband providers from discriminating against certain kinds of Web traffic. But even as the draft bill appears to enforce fundamental tenets of Net Neutrality, it explicitly undermines the legal authority of the FCC.

  • The GOP's Plan to Legislate Net Neutrality Is Here. And Internet Activists Already Hate It.

    Washington Post
    January 16, 2015

    Congressional Republicans are circulating the draft of a long-awaited, much-rumored bill that would clarify federal regulators' ability to enact strict rules governing broadband providers.

Learn More

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  • Cybersecurity

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People + Policy

= Positive Change for the Public Good

people + policy = Positive Change for the Public Good