Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Net Neutrality

We’re reporting on a bit of hopeful news today – the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) just yesterday proposed a formal set of rules to help ensure “net neutrality”. Basically, this means that the FCC is taking the idea that the Internet should be free very seriously.

The organization has also set up OpenInternet.gov, a site that will track the progress of the FCC’s new initiatives. They’re boasting a tagline that we can get behind – “Together we can preserve a free and open Internet to promote greater innovation, job creation, and a more connected America.”

The new policy expands on the principles outlined in a 2004 message, with two new principles: non-discrimination and transparency.

The fifth principle is one of non-discrimination -- stating that broadband providers cannot discriminate against particular Internet content or applications.

This means that ISPs would not be allowed to block or degrade lawful traffic over their networks or favor some content or applications over others. An ISP could not, for example, give its subscribers faster access to its own streaming video site, but slow down similar content from another site that is owned by a competitor.”

As ardent supporters of net neutrality and a safe, free online experience for all citizens, we’re happy to see the FCC take a clear, unwavering stand on the issue.

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