More important than the 2000, 2004 elections

Dateline: Mon 18 Jun 2007

Seneca published this very fine piece on indyrats, which I try to promote as often as I can. With gratitude to indyrats and its writers, and with thanks for the freedom to re-publish here what Seneca had to say about net neutrality -- and with a special nod to Tim Berners-Lee, the Brit who concocted the world wide web and is our hero:

"Does anyone else out there care anything about 'net neutrality'?

"Stripped of its verbiage, net neutrality is about who controls the 'pipes,' the conduit for the internet.

"As it is now, no one controls the pipes; anyone can find anything (and put anything) on the internet.

"Thanks to Tim Berners-Lee, the internet is free to anyone who has a computer and modem.

"Berners-Lee designed and built the World Wide Web (www) and designed and built the first web browser and editor and also the first web server. Forerunner to the internet was ARPANET, built by the United States government. ARPANET was used by academia, the military and the government.

"Berners-Lee could have patented his innovations and made a fortune; however, he chose not to. He wanted the internet to be free and available to everyone. Because of his selflessness, the internet is open and free to all.

"Opponents of net neutrality (corporations, government regulators, etc.) want to regulate the internet. Should that happen, the internet will be as bland, boring and predictable as the local propaganda poop sheet published on Pennsylvania Street. And you can bet there will be costs involved.

"Speaking of poop sheets, in Thursday's edition there is a piece opposing net neutrality. The usual reasons are given.

"In my opinion, it is essential to keep the internet 'neutral.' If it isn't, the only thing the public will be allowed to access will be corporate and government propaganda, all of it promoting their respective interests and viewpoints.

"If you've never heard about 'net neutrality' before, please inform (and arm) yourselves. Find out about what net neutrality is and the ramifications of not keeping it neutral.

"And please call and write your senators and representatives. Tell them you want the internet to be free and available to everyone.

"Let's keep the internet 'neutral.'

"Thank you."

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