The Guilfordian

Staff Editorial:Net neutrality could see changes in policy

The internet has remained relatively untouched by governmental restrictions or other forms of legislation, but this may change soon. Currently, internet users operate with net neutrality rules under Title II of the Communications Act. As the Federal Communications Commission’s Chairman Ajit Pai pushes to roll back on previously placed rules on the internet as a public and equal utility, the fate of the internet’s indiscriminate access and usability is at stake. As it stands, internet service providers such as AT&T cannot influence how fast you get access to one website over another, but in the coming months, this may very well change. With full control over internet traffic, ISPs will be allowed to choose what you, the user, can see online. These new regulations could also translate into unjust steps against free speech, allowing ISPs and interested groups to filter access to messages and content they disagree with.

The internet in its current state stands as one of the most democratic and accessible spaces in the world. However, it’s likely that commodification in the coming years stands to dismantle those freedoms. Being a newspaper, The Guilfordian believes in the people’s right to an unfiltered access to information. The internet has become a ubiquitous staple for information and communication, and if these restrictions come into place, several people may no longer have this access.

On Dec.14, the FCC will be voting on Pai’s proposition against net neutrality. We urge Guilford students to consider how integral the internet is in their daily life and what it would mean if that access is hindered.

If you wish to take action for net neutrality, we ask that you stay updated on the issue and contact your congressional representatives to let them know your opinions and why these online freedoms matter.

 

Reflecting Guilford College’s core Quaker values, the topics and content of Staff Editorials are chosen through consensus of all 14 editors and one faculty adviser of The Guilfordian’s Editorial Board.

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