The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) has voted on the policy to ban blocking lawful traffic but to also allow Internet providers to manage network congestion and charge consumers based on their Internet usage.
Jason Stverak, President of the non-profit journalism organization, Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity, sees the policy change as a retrograde step.
The non-partisan Franklin Center promotes government transparency aided by technology, and net neutrality is needed. According to their website, “promotes social welfare and civil betterment by undertaking programs that promote journalism and the education of the public about corruption, incompetence, fraud, or taxpayer abuse by elected officials at all levels of government.”
The Franklin Center says the aim is to control the internet and then journalism. They say the policy will be intrusive and costly. They quote statistics relating to the use of the internet for reading news by the people.
The FCC’s attempt at regulation is expected to be detrimental. The internet must be protected from government bureaucracy and the attempt to control it.
“This change of policy by the FCC is stepping stone for additional control of the internet and the eventual regulation of journalism itself. This policy will not only be financially cumbersome and intrusive, it will also hinder the way Americans use the internet. This regulation comes at a time when the internet serves for many as the sole source of news. A June 2010 Pew Report found that roughly a third (34%) of the public say they went online for news and 44% of Americans say they got news through one or more internet or mobile digital source. Both of these statistics are considerably higher than those who said they turned to their local newspaper for their news coverage.
Excessive regulation by the FCC will be detrimental to internet growth and the companies that utilize the internet for their business model, like the many online news organizations. The Franklin Center believes that the internet must be a protected and safe to all users but cannot support a proposal that will lead to unnecessary regulations that will trickle down to affect the news business.”
For more information, see Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity