Many people fearful of net neutrality changes look at censorship issues and editorial control of the internet as part of the net neutrality debate. But there have been many proposed laws to control what content is allowed on the internet, and these laws have been for the most part, independent of the net neutrality debate.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is digital rights organization founded in 1990. As one of the oldest and most well established organizations in understanding the interaction of government and technology the EFF put the recent FCC ruling into context.
The EFF states the delicate balance of governments role in net neutrality pretty clearly: "Reclassification under Title II was a necessary step in order to give the FCC the authority it needed to enact net neutrality rules. But now we face the really hard part: making sure the FCC doesn’t abuse its authority."
You hear many people telling us we need to get excited about net neutrality, but beyond the buzzwords in the media, do people understand the concept?
The main issue behind net neutrality is about controlling traffic on the internet highway system. The internet service providers are commercial businesses that maintain lanes of access to the highway, but they are regulated by the Federal Communications Commission.
In December 2010, the Federal Communications Commission approved rules that would forbid internet service providers from blocking or slowing online services, or favor their own services at the expense of smaller rivals.
The aim of the net neutrality sounds good in concept, requiring internet service providers to treat all internet traffic equally. Where it can become a conflict of interest for companies like Comcast, is that they are a major provider of content, which creates the traffic on the highway, as well as a large internet service provider, which controls the traffic on the highway.