Net Neutrality is the Internet’s guiding principle: It preserves our right to communicate freely online. This is the definition of an open Internet. Network neutrality (or open inter-working) means that you are in control of where you go and what you do online. Companies that provide Internet services should treat all lawful Internet content in a neutral manner. It is the founding principle of the Internet and what allows the Internet to be the largest and most diverse platform for expression in recent history.
Why Network Neutrality?
In recent months, network neutrality has become a broad and ill-defined term that encompasses a range of policy objectives including free expression, user choice, and discrimination as well as business issues including network traffic management, pricing, and overall business models. Amongst all this, transparency is key.
Building a Common Understanding
The debate on network neutrality has flared up in recent months. Net neutrality was one of the most controversial issues at global level. A session at the 2014 Internet Governance Forum aimed to build a common understanding of Net Neutrality to help develop local solutions with global impact.
Why is Net Neutrality important for businesses?
Net Neutrality is crucial for small business owners, startups and entrepreneurs, who rely on the open Internet to launch their businesses, create a market, advertise their products and services, and distribute products to customers. We need the open Internet to foster job growth, competition and innovation.
Net Neutrality lowers the barriers of entry for entrepreneurs, startups and small businesses by ensuring the Web is a fair and level playing field. It’s because of Net Neutrality that small businesses and entrepreneurs have been able to thrive on the Internet. They use the Internet to reach new customers and showcase their goods, applications and services.
No company should be able to interfere with this open marketplace. ISPs are by definition the gatekeepers to the Internet, and without Net Neutrality, they would seize every possible opportunity to profit from that gatekeeper control.
Without Net Neutrality, the next Google would never get off the ground.
So what can we do now?
The cable and phone companies — and their allies— will do everything they can to dismantle this win.