A Time Line of the Struggle for Open Internet
In December of 2017, the FCC repealed the Net Neutrality regulations passed in 2015. These regulations ensured an open Internet, where everyone has equal access to the web, and ISPs were required to be transparent with consumers. Since its repeal, many Net Neutrality proponents have promised to fight for its reinstatement. One of the strongest Net Neutrality champions has been Maine Independent Senator Angus King.
Senator King Fights to Save the Internet
Just yesterday, Senator King introduced the Save the Internet bill. This bill would reverse the 2017 repeal, ensuring that the Internet stays out of the control of “big business” who stand to exploit it. According to the Senator “There is no tool more fundamental and vital to success in the 21st-century economy than the open internet.” He insists that without Net-Neutrality “the ‘big guys’ can drive up costs – which would stifle innovation and make it harder for Maine small businesses to compete in the global marketplace.”
The Free the Internet bill is just the latest in a decades-long struggle to protect Internet consumers. As the Internet began to grow so did concerns over how best to regulate it. In 1994, Vice President Al Gore asked: “How can we ensure that [the Internet] fulfills the enormous promise of education, economic growth, and job creation?” Since then, the FCC has been trying to find the best way to ensure that everyone has equal access to the web. To help our readers better understand this journey, OTELCO has created a Net Neutrality timeline.
OTELCO stands with Senator King in his effort to reinstate Net Neutrality regulations. We have always believed in a free and open Internet for all and have spoken out loudly and often against its repeal. In 2017, we promised our customers that we would continue to keep our networks open, and our practices transparent. That is a promise we intend to uphold, no matter what happens with the Free the Internet Bill.
Please join us in our support of Senator King and the Free the Internet Bill by contacting your elected officials and urging them to vote with Senator King to bring back Net Neutrality.