Net Neutrality: Prepare to Fight

Given that the FCC has ceded almost all regulations on internet service providers and consumers are on their own (modulo being able to use the FTC, where you are up against the finest lawyers your ISP money can buy), the first thing we need is the baseline. How fast is your internet service *today*, before the regulatory rollback goes on the books? Go to SpeedTest.net and have it test your actual download and upload speeds. Take a screenshot of the results, or at least get them written down and saved. Yes, this will only be of service in the grossest of cases where your entire account gets degraded, but some people may run into that situation. Be prepared.

I should note also that what few bits of regulation FCC Chairman Ajit Pai proposes that the FCC will impose likely will be found illegitimate by the courts soon enough. There is precedent, a court finding that without Title II classification the FCC could not impose regulations on ISPs. And Title II is exactly what the FCC is rescinding. So anyone who feels that the FCC will in the future be doing anything for you in your interactions with an ISP, you very likely are wrong about that. It is possible that what Pai proposes is so weak and laughable that all the ISPs will fail to contest it in court, but the first one that does is going to bring everything down in short order.

The SpeedTest site also had a handy link for calling Congress and let representatives know that you want congress to make a “resolution of disapproval” of the FCC’s action and that you do want Title II regulation of internet service providers. I made a couple of calls with it, which went quickly and easily. I believe they are using the Battle For The Net services, so there’s the direct link if you’ve already documented your internet service speeds now.

From the “Battle For The Net” home page:

The FCC just voted to gut net neutrality rules, letting Internet providers like Verizon and Comcast control what we can see and do online with new fees, throttling, and censorship. But we can still get Congress to stop this—by passing a “Resolution of Disapproval” to overturn the FCC vote. We can win. Write and call Congress now!

If your member of Congress hasn’t supported net neutrality yet, you need to make them.

Now that the FCC has voted to end net neutrality rules, only Congress can keep the rules in place. With a simple majority vote in both houses, they can use the Congressional Review Act to vote on a “Resolution of Disapproval” that overrules the FCC vote. But to do that, they need to hear from constituents. Click their faces below to Tweet them. Then, call them too. Then try to schedule a meeting.

Update: The two FCC commissioners who voted “no” on the rescinding of Title II regulations for internet service providers have made their comments prior to the vote publicly accessible.

Update: You pay ISPs. They lobby Congress and fund campaigns. The Verge has an article listing members of Congress and the amount of money flowing into their pockets from ISPs since 1989. My representative, Tim Walberg, opposes Title II net neutrality regulation and has gotten about $138,000.

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Wesley R. Elsberry

Falconer. Interdisciplinary researcher: biology and computer science. Photographer. Husband. Christian. Activist.

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