DE­CEM­BER | #Net­neu­tral­ity

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On De­cem­ber 14, 2017, the Fed­eral Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Com­mis­sion (FCC) voted to re­peal net neu­tral­ity, the prin­ci­ple and un­der­ly­ing reg­u­la­tions by which In­ter­net ser­vice providers must treat all data the same, with­out dis­crim­i­nat­ing or charge dif­fer­ently by user, con­tent, plat­form, ap­pli­ca­tion, type of equip­ment or method of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, de­spite the fact that 83 per­cent of Amer­i­cans op­posed the re­peal in a re­cent sur­vey. This de­ci­sion can very well be detri­men­tal to web users as its po­ten­tial ef­fects could in­clude slower In­ter­net, higher con­sumer cost, paid pri­or­i­ti­za­tion and block­ing con­tent that is deemed in­ap­pro­pri­ate by In­ter­net providers. And while the FCC in­sisted that the re­peal is set to help cus­tomers and cre­ate com­pe­ti­tion, many crit­ics view it as a ma­jor threat to the In­ter­net as we know it and its users, high­light­ing the lack of com­pe­ti­tion among In­ter­net providers. The #Net­neu­tral­ity de­bate took Twit­ter by storm both be­fore and af­ter the vote, as count­less users flocked to de­nounce the re­peal and sup­port the fight for an open in­ter­net, and does not seem to be over just yet given that many in­flu­en­tial fig­ures/or­ga­ni­za­tions are push­ing for the Congress to over­turn the FCC'S de­ci­sion.

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