Big Tech

The FCC's vote to repeal net neutrality left many shocked, unsure of where to go from here. But the path to restore net neutrality and secure its future has already begun to unfold.

Citizens made their voices heard in Congress and educated themselves on the topic while 26 senators united to take a formal, unwavering stand against the repeal. Now, a group that represents the largest tech companies in the country just announced that they will join in the fight against the FCC and this repeal.

The group, known as the Internet Association, clearly stated for the first time that these large tech companies like Microsoft, Google, and Facebook are not only against the repeal, but they will stake their well-being on overturning it.

Before this, a lot of the same big tech companies were fairly passive and inactive during the initial protests of the repeal. Most did not take a firm, public stance or any action.

But now the repeal has been passed and the reality of what that means is beginning to set in. Finally, as the clock ticks down to when these new regulations will be implemented, these large players are taking a stand. Their announcement came on Jan. 5, the day after the FCC introduced the final rules that will govern the internet under this repeal.

The Internet Association

The Internet Association includes more than 40 major tech companies, including Netflix, Uber, Amazon, and many more. It seems as though the team represents the biggest and most influential tech companies while staffing previous government employees who have a high level of expertise in the tech sector. Both the president and senior vice president of the association have backgrounds in policymaking.

This combination of experience and clout could give this group a serious edge in the battle to restore net neutrality. They seem well equipped to advocate for internet regulations that make sense from both political and technical standpoints.

The group's formal announcement was brief and to the point:

The final version of Chairman Pai’s rule, as expected, dismantles popular net neutrality protections for consumers. This rule defies the will of a bipartisan majority of Americans and fails to preserve a free and open internet. IA intends to act as an intervenor in judicial action against this order and, along with our member companies, will continue our push to restore strong, enforceable net neutrality protections through a legislative solution.

The repeal of net neutrality could destroy the existing free internet in the U.S. as we know it. As enacted in 2015, net neutrality secures the existence of an open internet, where internet service providers (ISPs) don't hold the power to block sites and throttle prices with their changing corporate desires. Hopefully, the Internet Association and others fighting to restore net neutrality be victorious, or ISPs could soon be deciding which websites you can access.

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