Killing Net Neutrality Has Brought On a New Call for Public Broadband
by Zaid Jilani
Posted December 26, 2017
The Federal Communications Commission’s 3-2 vote to repeal net neutrality rules has many worried that Internet service providers will now build the same sort of tiered Internet that some other countries have — where individual providers can collude to throttle traffic to certain websites and services in order to shake money from consumers or the companies themselves — or both.
For instance, in Morocco last year, multiple Internet service providers worked together to briefly block voice chat services like WhatsApp and Skype, in what was interpreted by some as an attempt to push consumers to subscribe to their phone subscriptions instead.
It may sound radical but it’s not unheard of. Today, around 185 communities in the United States offer some form of public broadband service. Because these services are controlled by public entities, they are also accountable to the public — a perk that anybody who has tried to get a broadband company on the phone can appreciate. More…