Yesterday was a big day in the world of Internet Service Providers. I'm assuming you guys may have heard of this. The F.C.C (Federal Communications Commission) is trying to pass a "net neutrality" bill that would in effect give the F.C.C (which is a government branch) the ability to regulate and monitor how companies, namely the ISP's, do business, and how they go about censoring information. Remember those internet information caps we talked about a few weeks back? It all could come to pass if the bill passes. This whole manner can be a little confusing so lets break down the sides, and show whats really happening.
THE F.C.C - This is the party that wants to push the idea of Net Neutrality. They want to say "Hey Comcast you can't censor Surfthechannel, or the Verizon webpage! (Comcast and Verizon are competitors, so they could block you from seeing Verizon's rates!) The F.C.C would give comcast a slap on the wrist. The F.C.C's policy would also do away (maybe) with ISP's tiered internet service. So if you pay 49.99 and get 2mbps speed or if you pay 19.00 for 200 kbs speed, these would be eliminated, and everyone would have the same speed, for a flat rate. This would also probably tell AT&T to rethink their data limit caps.
The Democrats - Most dems are on the side of the F.C.C. Favoring a bigger government intervention. Most feel that the internet is a utility just like water, electricity, and gas, and needs some sort of regulations so its power isn't abused by bigger companies.
The Republicans - Most Reps are on the side of the ISP's in stating that they reserve the right to set costs, and let the buyers select how much they want. Just as you go into a restaurant, you can order a small, or a large. They feel that the internet should remain open, free, and free of government interference.
The ISP's - Verizon, and Comcast are most obviously against this sort of regulation. They want to be able to regulate and direct internet traffic. They want to be able to set their own prices, and tiers, and that's something that the F.C.C wants to control
The Information Providers - The Googles, Amazons, NBC's, and Fox's- They are worried that if the F.C.C gets on a hand on control, that censorship would cause reduced viewing, and less traffic, which is how they get their money. Think upon this, Comcast which owns NBC could block all access to sites displaying NBC shows, or other competitors.
So this all adds up to finger pointing name calling and lots of accusations about the other party. Yesterday though, the decision was made that the House rejected the proposition of "Net Neutrality". Which means for now, this bill is shot down. Another chance is available to push this through the Senate though, so the battle isn't over. Quite torn, I am between this matter. This all ccomes on the heels of the FCC's demand that AT&T and VERIZON, must share their cell networks with smaller mobile companies, to encourage competition. I'm not quite sure what smaller companies even exist, but whoever they are, now have a piggy back on the two largest mobile communications networks in the world. Anyway I hope this helps break down whats going on.