Save The Internet

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If this site was still loading, would you still be here? What's the longest amount of time you'd be willing to wait? My guess is no more than 10 or 15 seconds. Fortunately, my site loads pretty quickly. In fact, it loads just as fast as any big name site like Apple.com or Netflix.com. That's because of this lovely little thing called Net Neutrality. 

Net Neutrality (or internet neutrality) is the idea that all content on the internet should be treated equally in terms of access. So when you come to my site, it loads no more slowly or quickly than any other site. No one can pay to have their site load more quickly than everyone else's keeping information on the internet all equally accessible. 

Until now. 

If Congress votes to end Net Neutrality by the end of this year, your ISP (Comcast, Time Warner, Charter, etc) would be able to throttle the speed at which certain websites loaded. So, for example, a site like Hulu.com could pay your ISP to load their site more quickly than a site like Netflix. We all know what that means. Some of you might be willing to wait a longer period of time for a site to load but for most a longer load time creates a deterrence for visiting that site. 

In other words, accessibility goes to the highest bidder. For a filmmaker like myself, I see this as important because if big studios can pay money for faster access than indie filmmakers, suddenly the value of independent filmmaking becomes negligible. 

But even more importantly, if net neutrality is allowed to die, the proliferation of free speech and information on the web becomes controlled by the highest bidders. 

For some this might seem like a far off notion but it's actually very real. I think John Oliver does a really great job explaining this though so I'll let him take it from here. If you watch the video and feel as strongly as I do that the internet should remain neutral, please consider writing comments to the FCC letting them know how you feel. Your voice might help turn the table in the right direction: http://www.fcc.gov/comments


Dale Goldberg