net neutrality

Great news! The net neutrality rules you all fought so hard for (and won!) have gone into effect. The FCC’s Open Internet is Order is officially official.

Pop open a bottle of whatever you celebrate with, but don’t get toooo comfortable yet. In a bogus and sneaky move, some members of Congress are using a funding maneuver to prohibit the FCC from implementing its own net neutrality rules.

If you care about internet freedom and you have a spare minute, you can help make sure Congress doesn’t screw up this victory. Call up one of these key members of the House Appropriations Committee and and ask them to take out the anti–net neutrality language from the House Appropriations bill for fiscal year 2016, specifically sections 628, 629, and 630: 

More details: This is a general appropriations bill that funds independent agencies, including the FCC, through the coming year. Legislators on the Appropriations subcommittee are trying to thwart net neutrality by attaching specifically targeted riders to the bill. Considering that the FCC’s monumental ruling was the culmination of a remarkably open and participatory debate, these background moves are a particularly cynical circumvention of the democratic process and the will of the people.

It’s nasty business, and President Obama won’t be able to do anything about it except by vetoing the entire bill. Let’s not put him in this pickle. Call up and demand the fair and open internet you fought for (and, again, won!).

FCC Chairman finally admits there will be internet taxes...after passing Net Neutrality, of course

Repeat this to yourself: Government never gets smaller.

When we tried to warn everyone that so-called “Net Neutrality” would eventually lead to massive tax hikes we had people laugh at us and write us angry emails, politely informing us that we didn’t know what we were talking about. Well how about now?

From CNS News:

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler acknowledged in congressional testimony today that an Internet tax–which he had previously said would not be imposed–could be imposed in the future.
Wheeler’s remarks came during a Tuesday appearance before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, where he was asked to shed light on the process by which the FCC passed rules last month regulating the Internet.
Wheeler’s admission came after Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) asked him to go on the record with his previous assurances that there would be no new taxes.
A fact sheet Wheeler issued about the rules on February 4 stated: “The Order will not impose, suggest or authorize any new taxes or fees–there will be no automatic Universal Service fees applied and the congressional moratorium on Internet taxation applies to broadband.”

However, the new FCC rules reclassified Internet Service Providers (ISPs) as Title II utilities, which are normally subjected to a USF fee. The fund is meant to enable the provision of universal service to customers of the utilities that contribute. The commission’s decision granted ISPs “forbearance” from the requirement to pay the fee, but it would not protect them from contrary decisions in the future. In fact, two FCC members warned in dissenting opinions that a new Internet tax was imminent.

Read the Rest

“If you like your health care…” Good grief.

  • American Government:Hey, let's come up with some stupid distraction for the public to obsess over so we can pass something stupid without them noticing.
  • American Government:*releases stupid fucking picture of a damn dress*
  • America:OMFG WUT COLOR IZ IT I AM SO CONCERNED?!?!?!!
  • American Government:*passes net neutrality*
  • American Government:Nailed it.
Verizon's response to the FCC's decision to regulate the internet using a law from 1934 is perfect

Yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission decided on a 3-2 party-line vote to begin regulating the internet using a law from the 1930s.  The law is the Communications Act of 1934, specifically Title II, and it gives the FCC broad power to tax, censor, and disrupt the free enterprise of the internet.  

Verizon responded to the news in appropriate fashion, using morse code, the form of communication that the original 1934 law would have been regulating. 

Here’s the translation:

Today (Feb. 26) the Federal Communications Commissionapproved an order urged by President Obama that imposes rules on broadband Internet services that were written in the era of the steam locomotive and the telegraph. The following statement should be attributed to Michael E. Glover, Verizon senior vice president, public policy and government affairs: 

“Today’s decision by the FCC to encumber broadband Internet services with badly antiquated regulations is a radical step that presages a time of uncertainty for consumers, innovators and investors. Over the past two decades a bipartisan, light- touch policy approach unleashed unprecedented investment and enabled the broadband Internet age consumers now enjoy. 

“The FCC today chose to change the way the commercial Internet hasoperated since its creation. Changing a platform that has been so successful should be done, if at all, only after careful policy analysis, full transparency, and by the legislature, which is constitutionally charged with determining policy. As a result, it is likely that history will judge today’s actions as misguided. “

The FCC’s move is especially regrettable because it is wholly unnecessary. The FCC had targeted tools available to preserve an open Internet, but instead chose to use this order as an excuse to adopt 300- plus pages of broad and open- ended regulatory arcana that will have unintended negative consequences for consumers and various parts of the Internet ecosystem for years to come. 

“What has been and will remain constant before, during and after the existence of any regulations is Verizon’s commitment to an open Internet that provides consumers with competitive broadband choices and Internet access when, where, and how they want.”

Think the net neutrality fight is over? Think again.

When the Obama administration approved strong new net neutrality rules earlier this year, advocates rejoiced. “We have won on net neutrality,” Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak told The Guardian. President Barack Obama declared victory and thanked Reddit, the self-proclaimed "Front Page of the Internet” for its community’s activism on the issue.

But these celebrations may have been premature. Telecom and cable companies, which provide broadband access to the vast majority of Americans, are challenging the Obama administration’s actions in court. If they get their way, a federal appeals court will soon delay some rules that aim to protect net neutrality, the principle that all internet traffic should be treated equally. Open-Internet advocates fear that an unfavorable decision may open the door for harmful business practices while the court battle—which could take years—plays out. A stay on part of the new rules would also likely embolden Republicans on Capitol Hill who seek to pass laws gutting the rules.

Read more here.

Yesterday, the Federal Communications Commission voted to regulate access to the Internet as it would a public utility, under something called Title 2 of the Communications Act of 1934. Critics of the FCC say it’s an old, dusty law meant to apply to phone service, not the complexities of the modern Internet. But there are some parallels to the days when Title 2 was enacted.

Flash back to the 1920s and early 1930s. When you picked up a phone in that era, you would hear a voice (always a woman’s) asking what number you wanted to reach. An army of hundreds of thousands of women operated America’s manual telephone switchboards. They were the public face of American Telephone and Telegraph.

“The telephone operator was right there bringing in people who could help correct the problem,” says Dan Schiller, professor emeritus of communication at the University of Illinois, “or even talking to subscribers to reassure them that help was on the way.”

Long Before Net Neutrality, Rules Leveled The Landscape For Phone Services

Net Neutrality- INDIA

Tumblr, for the love of god don’t fail me now.

Net Neutrality is a crucial juncture in India where telecom companies could penalize the usage of apps such as Whatsapp, Facebook, Skype, Viber and so on because it eats into their profits. 
If you’re Indian, that means if the TRAI does follow what these companies want, then we’ll have to pay more for our internet usage on these sites or apps, or be forced to deal with much much slower internet speeds on these sites unless the websites purchase data from the companies. 

here’s a link to a change.org petition.

The TRAI has asked questions pertaining to these. Email them at advqos@trai.gov.in with answers to the questions mentioned here and argue for customer friendly policies.