JPANet: Protect Our Free and Open Internet!

net neutrality posterThe Internet is an important communications medium that helps groups fighting for justice and equality to get their voices heard – from e-advocacy tools like the JPANet to blogs to documentaries and videos from unique and often marginalized perspectives.  The Internet has allowed people to get out their message when traditional media gatekeepers did not. 

In December, the Obama Administration’s Federal Communications Commission adopted rules ensuring that the Internet will remain an open platform for free speech.  But the new Congress is poised to repeal the new rules. 

If opponents in Congress succeed, we will be left with no protection if an Internet company decided to favor its own content, charge extra fees for noncommercial video, or just plain censor unpopular views.  

Congress will be using a special process called the Congressional Review Act that will enable it to move very quickly, jumping over many of the procedural roadblocks that might slow it down otherwise. 

This special Congressional initiative is poised to speed through Congress.  We need you to act NOW to tell your representatives in Washington you oppose repeal of rules that preserve an open Internet.

Even for legislators who might not agree with every aspect of Obama’s new rules, the proposed rollback is extreme.  The Federal Communications Commission adopted a set of compromise rules designed to protect against severe abuse – a set of rules that many competing parties could agree were a good idea, even if the UCC and other advocates hoped for stronger protections.

But with no net neutrality, large companies could pay to guarantee that their websites and video will be faster and better than everyone else’s.  Advocates for equity and civil rights could have to pay up or be forced to the back of the Internet bus.

Congress should not hand over protection of our fundamental freedoms to the private sector. 

Tell your member of Congress that you oppose repeal rules that preserve an open Internet.

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