The new chairman of the FCC, Ajit Pai, has started to attack net neutrality and other consumer protections. In Pai’s first week as chairman he talked a good game about bridging the digital divide, but he recently decided to go about it in a different way. He called for Title II to be rescinded and have pre 2015 rules back on the internet. Ajit Pai claims that repealing net neutrality is “a fight that we are going to win.”
Title II says that the internet is classified as a “common carrier.” Thus ISP’s (internet service providers) cannot discriminate against certain cites. Therefore, you couldn’t be given less internet based on where you lived. For example, take Comcast who owns NBC. Why wouldn’t Comcast decrease the bandwidth of their competition if net neutrality wasn’t there to stop them?
If you are a gamer, think about having your ISP limiting your connection with Steam in order to entice you to play more Blizzard games? Imagine your internet provider restricting your internet access when you use their competitions products online. There is no guaranteed that companies won’t do this if net neutrality were to be rescinded, but no one could stop them. In today’s economy, it’s all about profit, so the probability of this happening is concerning for consumers due to it’s profitability for big companies.
Pai’s reasoning behind the recall of Title II is about entrepreneurs. He wants more people to use their ideas of the internet to not only make the internet better, but also to find new uses. However, since the consumers would have to pay to increase the bandwidth for the service that the ISP’s limit, internet providers would be making a massive profit. Pai thinks that with saving ISP’s by lifting restrictions on them, they will increase the services of their companies for the contents they want to provide their consumers. There is a lot of restriction ISP’s have from net neutrality. Without Title II, ISP’s would have more free range over what they want to do to consumers.
If net neutrality was gone, ISP’s wouldn’t be worried about the quality of their companies as much. The competition wouldn’t be there anymore because it would then be all about how much they can limit their rivals. If people live in a rural place where only one or two ISP’s reside, they would have a monopoly over what that area wants access to. Even in urban areas, families with low income wouldn’t have a say in who their ISP is or may not have access due to the increase in prices. Net neutrality needs to stay to protect consumers from big companies taking advantage of people with low income or little options due to location.