I don’t think I’ve ever chimed in on “Net Neutrality”, but reading this article this morning irritated me.
The Justice Department is against Net Neutrality, saying that “Internet service providers should be allowed to charge a fee for priority Web traffic” and “imposing a Net neutrality regulation could hamper development of the Internet and prevent service providers from upgrading or expanding their networks.”
I’m paying around $40ish a month for AT&T’s DSL Extreme 6.0. Download speeds range anywhere from 3 to 6 Mbps and upload speeds range from 384 to 512 Kbps. The moment AT&T starts manipulating how quickly I can access sites, I’m through with them. I’m paying to connect to the Internet, not their version of the Internet. If I wanted to inflict that sort of punishment on myself, I’d go back to using AOL.
The moment we lose net neutrality is the moment where ISPs start deciding what we can or cannot see based on how much we or the sites we’d like to visit are paying them. If SiteA.com doesn’t pony up with some cash, and SiteB.com does… SiteB.com’s going to be easier to access when users are connected to the ISP. It’s tantamount to the Mafia visiting local businesses soliciting for protection money.