Public Policy Committee News Alerts v. 3 n. 12, December 2017
Public Policy Committee News Alerts support the committee's mission to monitor public policy issues and keep the ARLIS/NA membership informed. The monthly alerts are intended to be conversation starters, help members keep up on public policy issues, and alert members to new developments. Previous issues can be found at https://arlisna.org/news/public-policy-news-alerts.
The December issue is devoted to the topic of Net Neutrality.
What is net neutrality?
Net neutrality is the idea that internet service providers (ISP) are not allowed to slow down, prohibit, or in other ways impede access to websites, applications, or online data. In practical terms, they cannot discriminate against people's access to the internet by charging more to access information, or allowing faster access to those who can pay more for this public utility.
What does net neutrality have to do with libraries/librarians?
Net neutrality is important to intellectual freedom, freedom of speech, and access to information. If access to the internet becomes regulated by the ability to pay higher fees for certain types of content, many libraries, museums, and other non-profit organizations will be forced to choose between providing crucial services and providing full access to the internet.
- American Libraries Association. "Why Does Net Neutrality Matter to Libraries?" ALA.org.
- American Libraries Association. "Net Neutrality at the End of 2017: What Libraries Need to Know." District Dispatch, November 17, 2017.
- American Libraries Assocaition. "ALA Strenuously Opposes FCC Proposed Order on Net Neutrality." ALA News, November 21, 2017
- International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions. "IFLA Statement on Net Neutrality and Zero-Rating (2016)." IFLA.org, October 11, 2016.
How do I advocate for net neutrality?
The FCC votes on Thursday, December 14, 2017. Do not wait to contact your Congressional representatives to express your opposition to repealing net neutrality.
- Call and write to members of Congress. Visit BattlefortheNet.com for quick links and contact information for your representatives.
- John Oliver made a shortcut to the hard-to-find FCC comment page: gofccyourself.com. Next to the 17-108 link (Restoring Internet Freedom), click on "express" (on the right side) and follow the steps.
- Learn more about this important intellectual freedom issue.
- Spread the word!
Who will be affected if net neutrality is repealed?
A rollback of net neutrality will adversely affect communities of color, small businesses, and low-income and rural communities, as well as users around the globe.
- The National Hispanic Media Coalition is one of many organizations working hard to keep the internet open.
- Hart, Kim. "How Will Rolling Back Net Neutrality Affect Consumers? You’ll Have to Read the Fine Print." Interview by Jeffrey Brown. PBS News Hour, November 21, 2017.
- Finley, Klint. "Here's How the End of Net Neutrality Will Change the Internet." Wired, November 22, 2017.
- Lohr, Steve. "Net Neutrality Repeal: What Could Happen and How It Could Affect You." The New York Times, November 21, 2017.
- "Q&A: What would a U.S. repeal of net neutrality mean for Canadians?" Interview by Anna Maria Tremonti. CBC Radio: The Current, December 8, 2017.
- Giles, Martin. “The Demise of Net Neutrality Will Harm Innovation in America.” MIT Technology Review, December 7, 2017.
Who is opposed to net neutrality?
Opponents of net neutrality include sectors of the telecommunications industry, including companies such as Verizon, Comcast and AT&T. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is closely aligned with these companies on this issue. Those who wish to change the net neutrality rule have argued through media campaigns that their proposed change is "no big deal" and that open internet proponents are vastly overreacting. Yet open internet advocates, including the New York state attorney general, have charged that as many as half of the nearly 22 million comments submitted to the FCC may have been fabricated, making it difficult to interpret public opinion on net neutrality.
- Brodkin, Jon. "50,000 Net Neutrality Complaints Were Excluded from the FCC's Repeal Docket." Ars Technica, December 5, 2017.
- Schneiderman, Eric. "An Open Letter to the FCC. Medium." November 21, 2017.
- Kastrenakes, Jacob. "FCC Ignored Your Net Neutrality Comment, Unless You Made a ‘Serious’ Legal Argument." The Verge, November 22, 2017.
- Bode, Karl. "The FCC Tried To Hide Net Neutrality Complaints Against ISPs." TechDirt, December 6, 2017.
Want to know more?
Net neutrality in the news:
- "Net Neutrality." Topic in The New York Times.
- ALA Washington Office. "Net Neutrality Protections Eliminated in Draft FCC Order," District Dispatch, November 27, 2017.
- Kang, Cecilia. "Net Neutrality Hits a Nerve, Eliciting Intense Reactions." New York Times, November 28, 2017.
- National Hispanic Media Coalition. "Net Neutrality is Inextricably Intertwined with Fight for Racial Justice." NMHC.org, November 30, 2017
- Roddy, Kate. "FCC's Plan to Dismantle Net Neutrality Rule Raises Serious Concerns for Educators." Edscoop, November 28, 2017.
- Smith, Gerry. "Why Trump Wants to Toss Obama's Net Neutrality Rules: Quick Take." Washington Post, November 29, 2017.
- Fung, Brian. "The FCC’s Net Neutrality Plan May Have Even Bigger Ramifications in Light of This Obscure Court Case." The Washington Post, December 6, 2017.
- Geist, Michael. "Canada and the U.S. Stand Divided at the Crossroads of Net Neutrality." The Globe and Mail, November 22, 2017.
- Koziol, Michael. "Countries Around the World Tackled Net Neutrality in Different Ways." IEEE Spectrum, December 7, 2017.
Net neutrality resources: