Today is the end of net neutrality.
I called this post Net Neutrality Revisited because it’s a topic that I have written about in the past, and it’s just as near and dear to my heart today as it was last year, or several years ago. I’ve been an active participant in the internet as we know it, going back to the days when it was simply a place for people to buy books and porn.
I despise Ajit Pai, current chair of the FCC, just as much as I despise any other vapid little crook who lies about his crookedness and pretends to be something he’s not. And what he is not is a defender of the internet for the little guy, the start up company, or the family run business.
He’s a vulture. A vulture of the worst sort, having spent plenty of time being paid by Verizon, and having been lobbied mightily by the very same Verizon, ATT, Comcast and other telecom companies over the years to do their bidding. The fact that he comes attached to a regime that appears to be attempting to put America back into the 1950s is just one more stake through the heart of the matter.
How did we get here? And what are we going to do about it?
Funny story happened on the way to net neutrality revisited becoming the blog post topic for this week for me… my other (perhaps better) half called me from out of town to let me know that he’d been put into slow internet hell by ATT, because he had reached the max download on his grandfathered, old as the hills, unlimited wireless plan, and was being restricted to speeds so slow for the next 8 days that he might as well just call me and ask me to look at Google Maps for him – it would be faster that way.
This is the same hell that killing net neutrality could lead to for us all – sites we want to visit, videos we want to stream, information we want to search for – it could all become so slow and ungainly to actually do, well hell, we’d all just give up and fall back to the convenient search results, watch a different movie, or go to another site that might not be quite what we are looking for in the end.
The entire reason we had to go to net neutrality as a rule proscribed the FCC is that we simply cannot trust companies like ATT, Verizon, and other ISPs. Perhaps we can still trust companies like Google, Apple, or even Facebook, or maybe we can’t trust them either, since killing net neutrality could make it very expensive for someone with a competitive idea and no money to compete against these behemoths.
I dumped Netflix last year, because of their turncoat attitude about net neutrality.
That’s right, after I wrote letters to at least two dozen members of Congress a few years ago when they were crying the blues along with the rest of us, I have now dumped them flat and they’ll never see another dime of my money. Even if they change their tune.
When Reed Hastings said they were big enough that net neutrality no longer was a real issue for them, well, hey – it has the potential to be a BIG issue for my clients, my friends, even my own business. So anyone that’s not onboard with preserving net neutrality is not a company that will get anything from me if I can avoid it.
It pissed me off to pay our wireless bill today.
Like seriously, I was grinding my teeth when I was giving ATT a chunk of change, and it will be the same thing when Cox Cable gets their payment the next time. These are companies that don’t give a rats ass about their customers and they would screw us over the first chance they get.
[OR MAYBE READ: What does net neutrality mean to the average person? BLOG ARTICLE]
This is their opportunity to push through their own projects, their own partnerships, and their own content – at the expense of others. It won’t be long before you see Google, Apple, Yahoo, even Facebook, being forced to pay up, partner up, or watch their profitability go down the tubes since the ISPs will now have them by the nuts.
Congress is doing too little, too late.
I am one of those people who writes to their representatives so much they probably think I am a stalker. Big issues, little issues, let marijuana companies bank their money, don’t shit on the national parks, don’t take away health care, don’t tax business too much, don’t tax business too little, you name it, I am a faxing, calling and letter writing fool.
But they could have done something permanent about this a lot sooner than the effort was made. And the Senate passing a bill that they know will never be taken up by the House is like the House passing a budget they know the Senate will never agree to because they can’t do it on procedural grounds.
One big circle jerk. And we’re the ones who are being made into the jerks.