Title II of the Telecommunications Act, heralds a new beginning for the Net Neutrality supporters.
For those of you who are not familiar with the term or for those who have recently been teleported to Planet Earth, Net Neutrality is “the principle that Internet service providers should enable access to all content and applications regardless of the source, and without favouring or blocking particular products or websites.”
The Open Internet Order is not a newly-fangled concept but has in fact been floating around as early as December, 2010 but was finally pushed through end of February by the FCC. This order “implements strict net neutrality rules, including prohibitions on site and app blocking, speed throttling, and paid fast lanes.”
The argument that advocates of net neutrality, present is that similar Internet access should be available to everyone, without classification based on fast lanes for those who can afford it while the “common man” always lags behind.
Needless to say, this Utopian concept has generated a lot of criticism from both major telecommunications companies like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon, who are expected to oppose this ruling in court. Within the FCC realm itself, the FCC commissioner Ajit Pai blasted the proposal by saying that it “would open the door to new taxes and create more litigation and less innovation.”
President Obama also lend his support to FCC’s Open Internet Order, along with “major websites like Netflix, Kickstarter, and Tumblr”. This has also drawn further backlash from Republicans who see this support as “improper influence over an independent agency.”
Although this is a major win for the net neutrality advocates, but the battle is not over yet. All the major telecommunication companies are already sharpening their proverbial claws and it seems like it is going to be veritable Clash of the Titans, so get your battle gear ready!