Don’t let monopolists call the shots, save the internet

Do we want an internet which is free and open or one controlled by gatekeepers, censorship and unfair competition?
Net Neutrality banner - The internet as we know it - open, fair and free - is under attack.

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.

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 on July 4, 2017.

Join the Conversation

  1. The internet was NEVER “open, fair and free”. It can’t be “open” as long as there are people without computer or other access to that internet, since it is CLOSED to them. Secondly, what seems “fair” to you may be UNFAIR to me (or anyone else, for that matter), as you might see from my later analysis. And, finally, in a CAPITALIST economic system (or any economic system for that matter), EVERYTHING has its cost to produce / create / distribute, etc. To have a “free internet” would lead (in its logical conclusion) to an Internet that will quickly COLLAPSE, since there is no such thing as a truly “free lunch”.

    When I did my research on this “net neutrality” concept, I immediately figured out that the concept was bogus for this reason: PEOPLE created the Internet, and people have inherent BIASES (for example, most “journalists” have biases that lean toward the political Left). Therefore, something that people create HAS to be biased to a certain degree (toward one extreme or the other). A good example is this: no matter how much FAKE NEWS there is out there (and there is a lot of it, mostly coming from the so called “mainstream news media”), those that create the FAKE NEWS will be in control as long as they have the MONEY / CAPITAL to do so– especially in a (and I’m repeating myself) CAPITALIST ECONOMIC SYSTEM.

    And because of that capitalist economic system, people who can afford “more Internet” (be it speed, preferred website access, etc.) should be allowed to get more (of the) internet than those who can not afford to do so– which is the exact OPPOSITE of “net neutrality” as I understand it.

    This is why the “dark web” is more of a problem than you may want to recognize — because it is trying to do an END RUN around capitalism through criminal activity. It is the place where most “computer viruses” / spyware / adware probably gets their start. I feel if net neutrality were truly ENDED, this perversity would also end as well — cyber criminals love “net neutrality”, because they can use it to do what they do. No net neutrality would make it easier for those who actually OWN the bandwidth / servers, etc. (like Spectrum, AT & T, Verizon, etc.), to be able to ‘discriminate’ against those certain (potentially criminal) users or content creators of destructive code, which would actually allow American society to be BETTER OFF in the short AND long run.

  2. Jon, you have to leave the FCC in dust, just scrap it all, consider them to be a hopeless case and then, prove me wrong!
    They have wasted $billions in promoting CDMA, tried to ban GSM from the USA – I was along when they tried to sell this to the Chinese. Well we called Microsoft on my Nokia Communicator from both Shanghai and Beijing but it is amazing how they talk of “Chinese state sponsored technology”. They sat beside me, a director of one of their “corporations” who spoke to my team in the US using the BST/BSC on the roof tops around me, and walked into meetings promoting their “novel innovative technology”. Bring ITU-T to the US, with STMxxx transmission and wipe out the “digital divide”. You then have the LON powerline transmission, and we can provide Internet at 2Gbps at FTTH speed, just remove the FCC and replace it with plain vanilla, international standards.
    the last time we spoke of DNS and I suggested that Vivaldi could offer an “alternative” DNS – just a snippet where you “approved” of the address using a lookup from some other host, or a group of hosts – and well, if your ip-address is another one than what DNB nettbank uses, then make the screen yell at me. It is too easy to pollute the DNS and divert requests via some other site, and trace everything. The “encryption” on the net is standard, just break the password and it is plain text. So break my Vivaldi password and you probably have my password to hundred other sites (not DNB nettbank).
    You can make a good trace cookie and “trace” me: I can open a window to the Vivaldi site, give you a token and you can offer a security key / token to all other site and warrant (1) you are in touch with me at another site, and (2) can warrant to me that the site I hit is the site that I want to use. This “cookie” does not need to be “persistent” – it is a token with high security that all three parties use and discard – session only. I am open to help you here – just ask for a prime P.
    You can do this
    You can set up this tonight, and modify “getipaddress()” to include a hit a a list of DNS hosts that runs the mirror. And on top of this: I will grant you pemission to use the DNS commercially, provided you offer an open list of companies asking for the information and allow discussions of the nature of these requests and allow me to stop “me” from using these site: I can elect not to surf on but allow reference to – you or the other way. Vivaldi can “see” this, and can track just like Google – so why not grant you the right to earn if they are willing to pay. Just be fair and open, and allow me to stop it. And allow us to say that Facebook and Instagram are the same, and “elections around the world” are not only sitting in Russia, but most of these sit among us, and are ready to bend every rule in the book, twist every word to get to whatever they want to know.
    I am here and well never has considered myself a “hacker” despite the code lines I admit I have coded…

    -Knut H.