You may have heard by now that certain broadband service providers are trying to increase their profits by charging more from websites with a lot of streaming content. However, the Federal Communications Commission– along with a variety of different consumer advocate groups– are devoted to preventing such commercialization of the Internet by private companies. Here’s the scoop on those money grubbing ISPs and what the FCC is doing to try and keep things fair.
Fighting for a Level Playing Field
The F.C.C. has recently presented a proposal aimed at stopping companies like Verizon and Time Warner Cable from capitalizing on the Internet by being able to charge certain companies that offer content through streaming– such as Netflix and Amazon– higher fees to enjoy better connection speeds that could potentially boost their profits and improve prospects regarding revenue.
Consumer advocate groups and the F.C.C. have expressed concern over the possibility that such manipulation of the Internet by private companies might prevent ingenuity among would-be Internet developers capable of creating the next Facebook or Twitter.
Searching for Legal Grounds
The F.C.C. is remaining persistent on this point despite the fact that two of its proposals for maintaining net neutrality have already been shot down by the United States Court of Appeals. Previous proposals have been strongly opposed by prominent broadband connection service providers. In particular, Comcast and Verizon have made efforts to fight the F.C.C.’s efforts to work towards net neutrality by preventing excessive interference from businesses providing Internet connection services.
Yet the most recent proposal from the F.C.C.– which was officially revealed on February 19– differs significantly from previous proposals in some key technical details. The F.C.C.’s latest proposal focuses on Section 706 from the Communication Act to defend many of its key provisions.
Further Threats to Net Neutrality
A recently developing deal between Time Warner Cable and Comcast has presented further threats of the compromise of net neutrality in the eyes of the F.C.C. A merger between two such broadband giants could give those promoting the ability of Internet service providers to manipulate Internet connection speeds and cost the upper hand.
While many consumer advocate groups support the net neutrality measures that the F.C.C. is taking, others support more freedom for companies such as Verizon and Time Warner Cable, recognizing the business potential of allowing individual companies more control over the Web.