On my daily journey through some top webmaster resources I stumbled upon an article feature over at WebProNews on net neutrality. It’s odd that I didn’t think to cover this in a previous post as I did touch on it on Webmaster Radio last week. The issue at hand was the neutrality of the Internet which, while the Republicans held Congress the fate of the democracy of the Internet and the way it functions was being threatened. Republican Senator Ted Stevens lead the charge though, as WebPro author Jason Miller so delicately reminded us, he has no real understanding of the way the Internet function referring to it as,”a series of tubes.” And as Jon Stewart would point out, “that’s OK, he’s only the one in charge of regulating it.” (See the video below if you’re up for a chuckle)
The issue at hand is the placing of control over the Internet and how all those 1’s and 0’s are handled into the hands of the major telco’s such as AT&T.; What this would effectively do is allow them to charge for preferential treatment to those who could pay for it giving enormous advantages to major corporations and reducing those who can’t afford to pay the extra to settle for slower access to their websites from visitors. Hosting companies should fear this as should small companies that couldn’t afford to pay the extra fees (and we all know how “fair” telco’s are when they hold monopolies right?)
There is still a chance that the bill could be pushed through in the time it takes for the Democrats to takeover in the Congress and Senate however this may be difficult as any opposing Republicans (and there were some) are more likely to vote with their conscience rather than tow the party line.
While I try keep away from politics in the blog (though I love it as a hobby) I’m truly grateful that the Internet just might maintain its democratic structure. We might not always like what we find there but when we do, it’s almost worth the 300 spam emails we had to weed through to find it 😉