I didn’t think I was going to wind up writing a post about this because usually I find that ones that have been going around suffice, but I’d like to address this specifically in light of the fact that the bet neutrality tag has started being automatically unfollowed, and share some information that will help those who are interested in protecting net neutrality.
1. Don’t be a dick to the politicians who are still saying no to net neutrality– in written letters nor on social media. It makes you seem petty and certainly does not further the cause in any sense. You have to remember that you are addressing a human (albeit, probably a little out of touch) and consider what you’re saying and how it would sound if you were in their shoes.
2. Don’t use neutrality bots, at least Ajit Pai has started ignoring them entirely, and I imagine the others are probably going to follow suit. You are best off hand-writing a letter to the representatives from an email account that includes your full, legal name. Even if it’s something short– make sure you research and make points about why ending net neutrality is NOT going to benefit them or the policies they stand for.
3. Include a few personal reasons why ending net neutrality will harm you personally, or if you own a business, how it will negatively affect your business.
4. YES, YOU CAN EMAIL REPRESENTATIVES IF YOU ARE UNDER 18, in fact, it’s one of the few ways that minors can actively get involved with politics in the country. In fact, please do, sometimes hearing from younger children and teens can help to swing representatives– it helps to keep in touch with a younger generation.
5. If ending net neutrality does wind up happening– DON’T LET IT REST, continue to petition, speak, and resist it through legal means. It doesn’t always work, but the more kickback that representatives see to a vote can also influence their opinions on how they may vote if it comes up again.
6. Reblog posts that you see that don’t advocate the use of bots and that spread factual information about what’s happening. Which, guess what, means source checking your info of what you’re recovering. I CANNOT stress how important this is.
So you may still be asking why net neutrality is so important, which, I suppose is fair. The best answer that I can give is to do the research yourself, so that you have direct information, but I will give you a few reasons as to why it’s so important to be involved:
-Content creators, including artists, musicians, writers, etc will be impacted because internet providers can choose to charge extra money to use sites which host their art– meaning self supporting artists will lose traffic and visibility.
-Companies can limit our access to sites via pay walls and slow speeds, which can make it harder to contact family and friends in other parts of the country and world.
-Low income households may struggle to fund internet use, and many will lose it entirely.
-It inhibits the creation of jobs in internet based ventures because it is harder for companies to fund and advertise– especially when companies can choose to exclude them from their searches.
-You could lose access to certain browsers without paying for them. Ex: Yahoo, whom is owned by Verizon, may force you to pay to use browsers that are owned by other companies– such as google and fire fox.
-You may have to pay to use services such as steam, iTunes, google play, dropbox, google drive etc.
-Unemployment will rise because job searching websites may be placed under a pay wall.
-Homeless housing, libraries, and other free Wi-Fi establishments may no longer be able to provide internet because of the price jump.
-College tuition may jump in price– and instead of the funding going towards better housing or facilities, it would need to be used towards functional internet because of how much of today’s schooling requires the use of the internet.
-This could lead to a decrease in safe spaces for many people, including but not limited to– LGBT individuals, people of color, assault Victim support groups, and groups coming from certain political views.
-Many countries may look at the political process in the US with Net Neutrality and be influenced to get rid of it there as well.
… and I’m sure there are a lot more I haven’t thought about or read about. Please spread this information if you can, it does matter a great deal.