On June 11th, 2018, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s Net Neutrality protections will no longer be in force.
This simple fact has the potential to change the internet as we know it.
From next week, your internet service provider (ISP) will technically have the right to deliver favoured content to you at different speeds, charge more for certain services and allow companies to pay more to have their content seen first.
Of course, its unlikely that the whole way we access the web will change on Monday. The telecom industry is smarter than that, and they know that changing the way their deliver content slowly, over time, is less likely to cause panic and reaction. This will be a gradual change. They are in no rush.
However, there is some hope. Thanks to tireless work from groups like the the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a group of Democratic representatives in the Senate are putting pressure on Speaker Paul Ryan to hold a vote on a bill that would save and restore the FCC’s Net Neutrality rules.
The bill passed the Senate last month, with all Senate Democrats and three Republicans voted in favour of the bill, putting it through the upper chamber, but a vote on the floor has yet to be scheduled.
All 49 Democratic Senators signed a letter urging Speaker Ryan to schedule this vote. The letter said:
Now that the Senate has taken this critical step, it is incumbent on the House of Representatives to listen to the voices of consumers, including the millions of Americans who supported the FCC’s 2015 net neutrality order, and keep the internet free and open for all.
However, to bring the bill to the floor, the Democrats will need the support of at least 25 Republicans to pass the resolution.
Meanwhile, internet users, as of the 11th, will no longer be protected. Be sure to call your representative and let them know that you’re not happy wit this situation.