The Trump administration is trying to kill the only media that have consistently held him to account, independent media. Now they are about to ensure that in order to report broadly, you may need big bucks to do so, this unless you act now.
The head of the FCC, Ajit Pai, will unveil plans to reverse the landmark 2015 net neutrality order which forbids carriers from blocking or slowing web content. We are about to enter the pay to play era even for news distribution which means monied interest will ultimately control all news.
So what is net neutrality?
The tenets of net neutrality are vital. All data packets are treated equally throughout the Internet. Specific services like streaming, file transfers, etc. cannot be restricted. Websites cannot be blocked by ISPs.
Why is net neutrality important?
It is evident that absent net neutrality every American citizen will be at the behest of corporate ISPs, either directly or indirectly inculcated with the corporate line. Websites exposing wrongdoing by corporations or the state could be silenced. Livecasting protest could be silenced. Podcasts, videos, and news from alternative news sources could be throttled down or simply made inaccessible.
We all share ownership of the Internet equally and we all have a right to the same access. It was invested by our tax dollars. Just because corporations have made investments in the Internet (which have resulted in huge profits for them) does not mean they have the right to dictate the access to or speed in which we use the Internet we already own.
The death of Democracy will accelerate as net neutrality goes away.
The Internet is the last bridge left between democracy and the people. If the Internet becomes shackled by corporate interests and corporate profits as traditional media has, democracy is not only in peril. It is unattainable.
Now more than ever, Americans are responsible for finding their own sources of fact-based information. These sources are only available via independent websites and blogs. These alternative sources provide non-corporate written news, podcasts, and videocasts. The Internet is their basic transport. The Trump administration along with various corporations see freedom of information as a threat to their continued pilfer of the American people.
People’s movements are dependent on the Internet and social networks, using video and audio communication tools like Skype and Maestro. They transmit live feeds via tools like Ustream. The world was provided video in real time from Occupy Wall Street, the Iranian Green Movement, Black Lives Matter, the Women's March, the Arab Spring, and much more.
I co-wrote the piece titled "Is Net Neutrality Really Necessary? You’re Damn Right!" that was cross-posted to Common Dreams where I explained the importance of net neutrality. It holds true today especially with Donald Trump in office.
So what can you do? Call your politicians and let them know you understand what is at stake and will hold them accountable. They need to know we are watching.
Also published on Medium.