We introduced you to the net neutrality debate back in May. Well, now that the deadline for public comments is coming to a close we’ve realized that the people aren’t just speaking –they’re yelling loud and clear. The FCC has received more than 677,000 comments on its proposed rules for how broadband providers can treat content traveling over their networks and into your homes. The majority of comments make it pretty clear that the public isn’t exactly pleased with FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s net-neutrality proposal.
The deadline for comments was originally set for midnight Tuesday, but the agency will continue to receive comments online or via e-mail until midnight Friday the 18th. After Friday, the public will get a second chance to respond with a second 60 day period to reply to the first round of comments and discussions.
The “public” who are responding aren’t just the Average Joe either. Well known companies are responding with their own comments as well:
“If the proposed rules were in place when Etsy was founded, we would never have achieved the success we have today. Etsy, an online crafts site, and other startups will suffer if the FCC allows some companies to negotiate priority or exclusive access to consumers,” Etsy Inc. Chief Executive Chad Dickerson wrote.
“We fear the chilling effect these rules would have on innovation, the negative impact they would have on our culture, and the real harm they would do to companies like ours,” Yancey Strickler, CEO of Kickstarter Inc.
“Broadband Internet access providers, however, have the incentive to discriminate and block Internet traffic. They have the tools carry this out. They also have the ability to hide their actions by distributing the blame to other stakeholders,” Internet Association CEO Michael Beckerman wrote.
Public figures and politicians are getting into the debate as well.
We have personalities like John Oliver and his epic Internet troll to arms urging people to comment against the FCC:
“Good evening, monsters. This may be the moment you’ve spent your whole lives training for. We need you to get out there,” he beseeches them. “For once in your lives, focus your indiscriminate rage in a useful direction. Seize your moment. Turn on caps lock and fly, my pretties, fly! Fly!” John Oliver.
Not all comments are against though –we do have the internet providers who insist that the change would be for the better:
“Policymakers’ light-touch approach has allowed flexibility and competition to spur incredible innovation and investment in broadband and wireless,” wrote Verizon Senior Vice President for Federal Regulatory Affairs Kathleen Grillo.
We urge you to visit the website and submit your own comments on the proposed net neutrality.
Let the FCC know how you feel about its proposal – post a comment here.