The importance of Net Neutrality

Morgan Bledsoe, Senior Staff Writer

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When using the internet, there are certain rights each and every person is expected to have.
The expectation is hat the optimal performance of the network service provider is given to the customer, whenever and wherever they are connected. It can be cell phone service, good ol’ fashioned ethernet or wireless fiber optics (Wi-Fi).
Whatever it is, you are connected.
Being connected to the internet allowsusers to have the capability to search anything and everything without service being hindered by the service provider. This is how the internet of today is, with Net Neutrality.
Net Neutrality is an important concept. Without it, cable companies like Comcast or phone companies such as AT&T can decide that if they want to block content, like webpages, applications and media like YouTube, Twitter or Facebook, they can. These providers can also slow down or speed up your internet service based on what websites you visit.
If Net Neutrality is lost, visiting a website that supports a major network, company or business can cause no lag and ease of access, no blocked web addresses or content. Just easy web browsing.
But if you visit a website for a smaller purpose, such as a school’s online newspaper or a small online forum for any purpose, they may slow the speed of your internet speed and maybe even block the site, forcing you to have to use another one that may support one of these larger and more influential companies.
Not only is this harmful to the small businesses, websites and small companies, it is harmful to free speech. It makes it impossible for activists to try and get a jump-start to their social movements.
So, how can new ideas emerge? Without the internet for people to use as their social injustice soap box, where could they go?
According to Save the Internet, without Net Neutrality the next Google or Facebook would never get off the ground.
Even though the internet can be a terrible place sometimes, it is still needed.
Many students rely on the internet for research for papers and personal growth and entertainment.
As of late, everyone seems to be using the internet as their platform for social change. For example, President Trump uses Twitter as his way to get the information he seems fit to the people. Social activists may also use the internet to help spread the word for their campaigns.
Websites have many uses, one being to make change. Organizations like Change.org, where you can sign petitions to help causes, or sites such as Go Fund Me and other crowd-funding websites, where you can publicly help fund a medical procedure or even help send a child to college, have been used to help many people in the world.
The internet needs Net Neutrality to function. It is part of the basic rights that America has given to the people. Freedom of speech is a basic first amendment right, and without a platform like the internet, it would be impossible for people’s voices to be heard.

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