There seems to be a lot of confusion over the new Net Neutrality regulations. Hopefully, this article will help clarify some things. The main thing is consumer protection. You pay for your internet, you should be able to use it how you want when you want. Your ISP should not be able to tell you that you are watching too many videos and cut off or slow down your access to them. Followed by provider protection. ISP customers are already paying to use the network, why should a business also have to pay to put their content on the network. Imagine the outrage if UPS did that!
- It prevents the double billing: customer pays to access, the business pays to provide.
- Customers get the content they want when they want
- Businesses send the content customers to want without having to pay a ransom.
Think of the internet as a large pipe. Water, rocks, and logs all share the same pipe. Before the ISPs had strainers that would catch and temporarily hold larger debris like rocks and logs from entering the pipe until the stream of water flowing through the pipe become smaller. They may not allow the log to even enter the pipe if they wanted. This is great if you just wanted a glass of water, but it’s terrible if you were waiting for a rock that has gold in it or a log that had the winning lottery numbers on it. Now, everything enters the pipe at the same time, so logs, rocks, and water all flow at the same rate. So while it may take a little longer to fill up your glass of water, you will now receive your rocks and logs at the same time.
Say the lumber yard wants to send a log that you ordered. Your ISP could say the log will take up too much room in the pipe and won’t send it to you unless the lumber yard pays money. So now the ISP is double billing, they are charging you to receive the log, and the lumber yard to send it to you. The new Net Neutrality regulations prevent that, as a customer, if you order a log, you now get a log. The flow of water and rocks will just take a little longer to get through.
For businesses: It prevents the tiered lane system. ISPs can’t provide faster access to companies because they pay more. This means that larger companies no longer have the advantage over smaller companies and startups in delivering content.
For businesses: If I am a small business and I launch a new product that becomes very popular, Verizon could say I am using too much of their network and throttle or even completely block their customers from accessing my software unless I paid a fee. They can no longer do that.
For consumers: Did you know that your ISP prioritizes their network. Say you are using torrents or watching streaming video, they could throttle your bandwidth for those applications to give maximum speed to normal web browsing. While this may be good for loading websites, it sucks if you are downloading a game or movie or watching Netflix. With the new Net Neutrality rules, they can no longer do that. Anything you want to do on your internet is given the same priority.
For consumers: Most cell providers throttle your mobile bandwidth after you use so much. Meaning while you pay for that 5GB of data usage, after the first 2GB, you no longer get those super fast LTE bandwidth speeds, they throttle it down to 3G speeds. With the new regulations, they can no longer do that. You now have access to the full speed.
These are just some of the main issues that Net Neutrality focuses on. And if it’s so great for the ISPs as a lot of people claim… why are the ISPs the only people making lawsuits to remove it?