June 6, 2017
Despite claims that erasing the laws protecting net neutrality will be good for business, every notable mind in the tech community has spoken out, in one way or another, to oppose those trying to do so. Well now, they’ve taken things a step forward, by uniting to declare an “Internet-Wide Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality,” scheduled for July 12th.
Organized by the impressive minds behind the SOPA blackout and the Internet Slowdown, the day of action will focus on grassroots mobilization. Public interest groups will be activating their members, while major web platforms will providing their visitors with tools to contact Congress and the FCC.
“Politicians in Washington, DC need to learn that net neutrality is not a partisan issue and Internet users will not tolerate these attacks on our basic rights,” said Evan Greer, campaign director of Fight for the Future, in a press release. “We will come together to protect the web as an open platform for free expression and exchange of ideas.”
With companies like Amazon, Kickstarter, and Etsy, this is no small movement. 30 public interest groups and 15 major tech companies have signed on to push this message to their customers, supporters, and members on July 12th. And they are not messing around.
“A threat to net neutrality is a threat to the free exchange of ideas that creative culture and an informed public rely upon,” said Michal Rosenn, General Counsel at Kickstarter.
Other than the three mentioned above, the companies involved in the day of action include Reddit, Mozilla, Vimeo, Y Combinator, GitHub, Private Internet Access, Pantheon, Bittorrent Inc., Shapeways, Nextdoor, Patreon, Dreamhost, and CREDO Mobile. Organizations participating include Fight for the Future, Free Press Action Fund, Demand Progress, Center for Media Justice, Internet Archive, World Wide Web Foundation, Creative Commons, National Hispanic Media Coalition, Greenpeace, Common Cause, ACLU, American Library Association, Daily Kos, OpenMedia, The Nation, PCCC, MoveOn, OFA, Public Knowledge, OTI, Color of Change, and many others.
The value of net neutrality, particularly for startups, should be obvious at this point. If you want to have more than an ice cube’s chance in hell of competing and disrupting in your industry, you’re going to need equal access to the internet, something you like won’t have under the new rules.
“Net neutrality made it possible for Vimeo, along with countless other startups, to innovate and thrive,” said Michael Cheah, General Counsel at Vimeo. “The FCC’s proposed rollback of the 2015 open Internet rules threatens to impede that innovation and allow a handful of incumbent ISPs to determine winners and losers.”
If you’re interested in joining the fight to save net neutrality, you can! Just check out the website here and join the protest today.
Photo: Flickr / Steve Jurvetson
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