Sherrod Brown column: We must protect net neutrality


High-speed internet is an absolute necessity, and the free flow of information is vital to our everyday lives. It impacts the way we live, work, study and enjoy our free time.

But right now, net neutrality rules that help ensure we have a free and open Internet are under attack.

The Federal Communications Commission voted last year to repeal the rules that say Internet service providers (ISPs) will not be allowed to slow down your Internet access, block certain websites, or charge you more based on the shows you watch, the teams you cheer for, or the politicians you support.

The FCC is set to announce the date net neutrality rules will cease to exist in late April. Starting this spring or summer, ISPs could take the reins and begin shaking down consumers for every last penny.

Rolling back these consumer protections would destroy the Internet’s level playing field. Without net neutrality, broadband providers could create Internet fast lanes and slow lanes, which would squeeze out startups, nonprofits, consumers, and academic institutions who cannot afford to pay exorbitant fees for reliable service.

Right now, I’m working with my Senate colleagues to pass a resolution in Congress to overturn this disastrous decision. My resolution would reinstate the rules that guarantee us an open Internet. With 50 votes at the ready, we only need one more Republican who is willing to work across the aisle and stand up against corporate special interests.

The Internet doesn’t belong to a wealthy few. It belongs to Ohioans and ordinary people across this country.

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Sherrod Brown

Guest columnist

 

 

Sherrod Brown is a U.S. Senator, representing Ohio. You may contact him at his office in Cleveland, 801 W. Superior Ave., Suite 1400, Cleveland, OH 44113. You may call his office at 216-522-7272 or 1-888-896-6446.