Net Neutrality and Education

Jim Reams, edCircuit, Nov 23, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

In the United States the chair of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced the end of 'net neutrality' policies. This will allow internet service providers to charge different rates to different content providers, to favour certain providers with faster speeds, and in a worst case scenario, could result in some content providers (eg., Netflix, Major League Baseball) to disappear entirely from certain provider networks. This article briefly describes the potential impact to education. Some more education-related coverage: Brookings ("a shameful scam that sells out consumers"), Education Dive ("larger companies will pay for faster delivery of their content"), Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) ("Internet socialism is dead; long live market forces"), Ian Bogost ("internet providers will abuse their power absent net-neutrality oversight"), TechCrunch ("no mention of the 22 million comments filed"). It's worth noting that Canada has taken a very different path and "emerged as a world leader in supporting net neutrality."

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