The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) looks set to repeal net neutrality. However, a host of internet pioneers have made a last-ditch attempt to prevent this from happening. These pioneers include people who literally helped create and develop the internet we all use every day.
The FCC, headed by Chairman Ajit Pai, is holding a vote on Thursday (December 14) to repeal net neutrality. We have documented the ways in which repealing net neutrality is bad for ordinary internet users, but it looks as though the FCC is determined to follow through on its dumb plan.
These Internet Pioneers Have Our Backs
In advance of the FCC vote, a group of “internet pioneers and leaders” have written an open letter to the FCC and members of Congress asking them to postpone proceedings. The short and unsubtle letter has been published on Tumblr, and the signatories haven’t pulled any punches.
The signatories include Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the world wide web, Vint Cerf, who helped create the underlying technology, Steven Bellovin, who helped develop Usenet, Mitchell Baker of the Mozilla Foundation, and Steve Wozniak, the other Steve who co-founded Apple.
Beyond the usual complaints that repealing net neutrality means ISPs could create slow lanes, the letter states that “the FCC’s proposed Order is based on a flawed and factually inaccurate understanding of Internet technology.” In other words, the FCC is acting out of ignorance.
Then there’s the fact the FCC has ignored millions of comments by U.S. citizens, and the lack of “a single open public meeting to hear from citizens and experts about the proposed Order.” The letter closes by saying this is “an imminent threat to the Internet we worked so hard to create.”
Is This All Too Little, Too Late?
It looks unlikely anything will deter the FCC from repealing net neutrality at this late stage. However, even if this letter doesn’t change the outcome it’s good to see internet pioneers lining up alongside ordinary internet users who realize this is bad for everyone other than the ISPs.
What do you think of the FCC’s plans to repeal net neutrality? Are you concerned about the possible consequences? Or do you think it’s mostly scaremongering? Do you think this letter will have any impact on the forthcoming vote? Please let us know in the comments below!
Image Credit: Eric Fischer via Flickr