Archive 2008 - 2019

Net Neutrality and You

by Matthew Payton

Information technology has become an enormous part of our society over the course of the last few decades. Many of us rely upon the internet to accomplish a plethora of different tasks. Be it students conducting research, communicating with family over long distances, collaborating as a community toward the greater good, or kicking back after a long day to relax, internet related services have often become an integral part of the process.

As consumers paying for a service, we should all expect providers to treat traffic with unbiased integrity. Historically when we sign on, users are able to connect wherever and however they like, assuming they’re not violating any legally binding guidelines or terms of service. However, Net Neutrality, one of the guiding principles which prohibit internet service providers such as Verizon, Comcast, AT&T and others from accelerating, throttling, or blocking content has come under attack recently. As of December 14th 2017 the FCC’s Chairman Ajit Pai led the charge and repealed these protections in a 3 – 2 vote.

What does this mean for Holliston outside of bandwidth related concerns? It means our internet service providers are now able to dictate what content we can or cannot access based upon their interests or relationships with a third party or political affiliations. This type of blatant discrimination and censorship is simply unacceptable. Which is precisely why State Attorney Generals from Washington, Illinois, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Oregon, Vermont, the District of Columbia, and Massachusets have announced plans to challenge the FCC.

As not only citizens of Holliston but of America we must all come together and collectively send a strong message to our internet service providers and elected officials in order to support those defending our rights and protecting the open internet. It has become an integral part of how we communicate and share information as a community, and we must all play a part in defending net neutrality.