Do we want an internet which is free and open or one controlled by gatekeepers, censorship and unfair competition?
The internet as we know it – open, fair and free – is under attack. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the U.S. wants to kill net neutrality and give cable companies there the power to decide what we see and do online.
Net neutrality rules ensure all online content is treated equally. If slashed, powerful cable companies would be calling the shots on whether or not to slow and break the websites you love. The question is, are we going to be happy with their choices?
For me, the answer is a clear no. That is why Vivaldi is joining the internet-wide Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality scheduled for July 12, alongside many others who care about the future of the web.
The success story of the Internet is that it has never been owned by anyone. I have devoted my life to bringing internet to people, and what we’re seeing today is a serious push back on everything we have achieved with this technology.
Slashing net neutrality is a bad political move and a terrible economic one.
Without net neutrality, there is a real threat to democracy and freedom of speech – the behemoths of the web could block certain websites or push them back to slow lanes, which would make it harder, if not impossible, for certain voices to be heard.
— Vivaldi Browser (@vivaldibrowser) July 4, 2017
Net neutrality ensures both big and small companies can compete, create and innovate without the need to negotiate deals with the giants that hold the reins. Dismantling net neutrality would mean the power to decide which companies win or lose would shift from customers to monopolists.
Every time we see an attempt to limit the internet in one way or another – typically for monopolistic reasons – we see innovation stop. Monopolists create barriers to entry for entrepreneurs and innovators. Killing net neutrality would only give these large companies even more power. Do we really need more gatekeepers?
If that is the direction we are about to take now, we’re heading down a slippery slope. We need to encourage the U.S. Congress to make the right decision and save the internet.
We need a thriving internet for the users – not a limiting space controlled by a handful of monopolists. This is a battle we can’t afford to lose.
What you can do about it
- Leave a comment with the FCC to let them know what you think. Every comment makes a difference. Don’t miss your opportunity to be heard.
- Spread the word. Join the protest and share links to it with friends, family, coworkers – anyone who will be impacted by the loss of net neutrality (aka everyone).
This article was originally published on the Vivaldi Blog at vivaldi.com on July 4, 2017.