What is Net Neutrality ?
Net Neutrality- a concept that did not came into vogue much before than the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) and other US companies brought it into limelight with their strife. For those who are still not aware of the jargon, to be put in simple terms, net neutrality also referred to as ‘network neutrality’ is a concept which advocates equal treatment of the Internet traffic. It stands for something known as ‘neutral Internet’. Supporters of the concept believe that Internet too as a utility is required to be open in nature and therefore there should be no restrictions from the ISP’s on the sites and its content.
The concept of Net Neutrality did not surface until the early 2000’s. Not a vital concern at that point of time,gradual interference of the internet providers turned it into an issue.This was because, without net neutrality the Internet service providers would be in a better position and that would jeopardize the position of the content providers. By ditching net neutrality, internet providers have the road open to charge extra money for a faster service which if network neutrality prevails will mean equal and uninterrupted service without the consumers realizing the need to opt for a faster service. The concept of charging extra money and the less urge to invest in infrastructure has been surfaced by two eminent researchers connected with the University of Florida and University of Hong Guo. Dr. H. Kenneth and Dr. Subhajyoti Bandhopadhyay through their research have proved what irreversible harm ditching net neutrality can have.
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Another consequence directly related to ditching net neutrality is on the investment. Internet neutrality it has been shown by the Institute of Policy Integrity to generate good amount of money for the consumers. Research have generated a fairly descent monetary figure like $5,686 per year for every user – a reason strong enough to support net neutrality. Consumers have to lose a substantial amount of profit that they had been enjoying through the open Internet platform.
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Importance Of Net Neutrality
Maintaining net neutrality was important to ditch the ‘tiered’ level of service that Internet providers were otherwise levying upon content providers to shell out money for high end services. Their objective of taking the upper hand and blocking services according to their wish was something that was not acceptable. For example big ISP’s like Verizon or AT& T might choose to put a stop on Google Voice and its unique service of sending text messages absolutely free. Any consumers Smartphone can be barred from using the service leaving him or her without any option than taking the service that the ISP’s are providing.
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Keeping this in mind, the FCC put down some regulations safeguarding net neutrality. According to the rules put down by the Federal Communications Commission, it was pictured that the Internet would remain to be an open platform, maintain transparency, block no lawful content, applications or services and not practice any kind of unreasonable discrimination.
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Though internet providers continue to oppose net neutrality as this would mean low return on investments for them, poor infrastructure development in the absence of proper compensation and limited right to run the network services as they wish, net neutrality remains to be a path that requires to be kept impediment free.