Can’t stand buffering videos? Support net neutrality, a growing issue in consumer privacy.
The media storm in the last few months surrounding net neutrality can sometimes cloud up the term’s exact definition. To sum it up, net neutrality is the push to keep the Internet free and open, as certain websites may have an advantage over others if certain legislation passes.
As of late, the Federal Communications Commission has been under fire for reviewing certain Internet policies. The commission has failed to explicitly support net neutrality. Representatives from titan Internet service providers say that the government should not have the power to regulate the Internet as much as it regulates television companies.
They have a point, but the fact is that these Internet providers are actually titan media companies, like Comcast and AT&T, who have ulterior motives. If the FCC does not support net neutrality, this gives these companies the option to create Internet fast lanes. In other words, sites like Hulu could pay a fee to Comcast for their site to load quicker than others.
We need an open Internet; it’s the closest thing we have to a true democracy. Some of your favorite sites have been working together to raise net neutrality awareness. Last month, popular sites like Netflix, Urban Dictionary and Tumblr caught the attention of frequent users by placing mock buffering signs on their homepage.
The net neutrality issue may gain more heat in the coming months. Contact your home state Congress members and spread the word about the issue. We must stop media conglomerates from controlling streaming speeds.
Net neutrality is just one of the big issues underneath the growing umbrella of consumer privacy and civil liberties. There is haziness on what qualifies as private and public in the Internet age. As millennials, we have the voice to limit greedy corporations and protect an open Internet.