Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) lead the “go-slow” protest bandwagon on Wednesday to protest against proposals that could offer fast web lanes for some companies. Other companies joining Netflix in the protest are Etsy, FourSquare, KickStarter, Mozilla, Reddit, PornHub and Vimeo.
Netflix and other big names supporting net neutrality
Netflix and other firms have already installed a widget on their sites to reflect the condition of internet if Federal Communications Commission overturns the “net neutrality” rules. Namecheap, the domain name registrar and Vimeo have uploaded the video to support the movement. Other big companies such as Twitter, Tumblr and Google, also, voiced in support of net neutrality.
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After losing the cases to various cable and telecom companies in courts, FCC has been ordered to revise the rules on governing the internet. The primary aim of the protest is against a proposal that allows the cable companies to create “fast lanes” for paying users, who are using more bandwidth. Those against “fast lanes” argue that the end of net neutrality will be an end to the concept that internet is a level playing field, and internet providers cannot favor any particular individual, organisation or a company. FCC has been given September 15th as the last date to submit the new rules.
Senators support free hand to consumers
“The internet was designed to empower people. To get online, you need to use an internet access provider. But once you’re online, you decide what to do and where to go,” Derek Slater, Google’s policy manager, said in an email to the Guardian. Slater added that anyone can share their opinions anywhere and any entrepreneur, big or small can build, launch and innovate without the need to get the permission first.
Slater noted that the consumers should be given free hand in enjoying the internet. This implies that no internet company should be given the right to degrade internet traffic and should also avoid selling “fast lanes” that favor particular internet services over others. He added that the rules should be common to all irrespective of the technology they are using. Slater asked people to sign up for their Take Action campaign in support of net neutrality. So far, 3 million people have signed up.
Senators Ron Wyden and Angus King posted their statements in favor of the campaign on Twitter. Wyden said in a blogpost said that at present FCC is in the process of crafting new rules, added that innovators, members of congress and Americans are hoping to protect net neutrality once and for all.