It wasn’t that long ago that the Internet was abuzz regarding ‘net neutrality’ and seemingly everyone had some sort of position on the matter… or, more accurately, seemingly took a position by ‘sharing’ stories or photos that appealed to some sort of principle of freedom or inequality underlying the prospect that some data traffic may be given priority over others. Now the FCC is set to allow Internet providers to give certain traffic priority over the masses of people posting photos of their lunch or videos on Youtube. If you’ve the money to pay, then the equivalent of a carpool lane will be available for firms interested in ensuring the speed and priority of their data flow. However, the question remains whether this will actually stratify the Internet experience even further than the ever widening divide that is termed, as Thomas Piketty, Robert Reich, and Paul Krugman term it, the ‘New Gilded Age‘ encompassing nearly every other aspect of the United States?
The basis for enabling Internet providers to charge for privileged speeds of content flow is based upon a court decision that struck down ‘open Internet’ rules with the justification that, “the court said that because the Internet is not considered a utility under federal law, it was not subject to that sort of regulation.” Read More