Last week, we asked about your opinion on net neutrality following news that the FCC is considering rule changes that would ostensibly create a "fast lane" for Internet-based companies willing to pay for it, which critics contended would lead to a "have-and-have-not" internet benefit monopolies in the vein of the proposed Time Warner-Comcast merger. The votes are in, so let's take a look.
- Just over half (57.14%) opted to keep things as they are. If it ain't (really) broke, don't fix it.
- A solid third (30.95%) opted to reclassify broadband as a telecommunications service, which would give the FCC a broader regulatory mandate since its authority is greater when dealing with "common carriers," a move many net neutrality advocates think is the most sustainable. Nonprofit corporation Mozilla recently submitted a petition advocating for this very change in regulatory ability.
- Only 2.38% thought it was a good idea to allow a "fast lane," which would allow companies willing to pay for faster access to get it, at the expense of those without the means or desire to do so.
- Slightly more, 7.14%, believe in the utopian ideal that the revenue generated from these "fast lanes" should be used to invest in broadband infrastructure, so that everyone can wind up benefiting from the deal. That's basically the same premise as taxation, but the continuing problem of income inequality in the U.S. demonstrates that runoff from those with the resources to pay for greater access don't always share the wealth.