As it currently stands, the Federal Communications Commission is planning to repeal net neutrality. Net neutrality effectively prevents internet service providers from being able to slow speeds for those websites and internet users who don’t pay extra.
Overwhelmingly, people want to keep Net Neutrality: 77 percent of Americans support net neutrality, including 80 percent of Democrats and 73 percent of Republicans. However, the FCC has chosen to side with corporations like Comcast, Charter Communications, AT&T and Verizon instead of with the general public.
Losing net neutrality is a symptom of a larger problem: the control of internet services by a corporate oligopoly. ISPs will deliberately avoid competing with each other in different areas, allowing them to create regional monopolies and duopolies that help keep prices high.
Beyond this, there’s very little incentive for ISPs to extend their service to rural communities, which tend to be poorer and have fewer potential customers; as a result, many non-urban Americans lack access to any internet.
In this contemporary era, the internet is more than just a way to argue with your weird uncle, or collect cartoon frogs. The internet is a public utility: it is, for the modern day, what the developments of the railroads, electricity, and telephone were for times past. Beyond this, the internet was established with public funding, and it has been extended through work and research performed by government institutions.