We have an opportunity as Pirates to bring our own point of view and make a program about net neutrality at SCATV, to air on Monday, December 15th 6-6:30pm. We’d love to hear from you (Pirates and non-Pirates alike) at firstname.lastname@example.org, send us footage, and articles that you think would be good to show on a half-hour program in a few weeks. Below are some ideas that Pirates have been expounding on in Massachusetts. In theory, the show might be taped and aired before the FCC announces any decision regarding net neutrality.
For people who are keeping bipartisan score out in media-land the Democrats are for net neutrality these days and the Republicans seem to be against it. As Pirates, we’re pro net neutrality for a lot of differing reasons.
When every single innovator, regardless of the size of their bank account, can step into the arena this keeps an entire sector vibrant and competitive. Creating paid priority fast lanes erects a barrier to entry that isn’t based on technological aptitude or market potential. We should concern ourselves with keeping the market competitive and reestablish net neutrality.
Getting rid of net neutrality will not solve the many technical issues that telecoms face in creating new networks as well as maintaining existing networks. Money alone has never been a good motivator with telecoms, who often insist on monopolies when they enter Massachusetts towns and cities, if they enter at all. On average, most citizens of the Commonwealth have one to two choices of ISPs if they want broadband, and the cost per speed has either increased or been stagnant for several years here while actual speeds have remained the same.
Lack of net neutrality will have consequences that echo throughout our society and not just affect companies and citizens who can actually pay for whatever broadband is available. Much of meatspace life is heading online: education, banking, filing taxes and applying for jobs are just a few of the things that have become digital at least in part. As life and the ability to live healthy, productive lives heads online, ensuring that all people have secure access to internet is not just a question that should concern conscious consumers, but also a question that should concern people who care about human rights and socioeconomic justice.