This could be your last chance to stop ISPs from messing up your Internet.
The FCC is about to announce a vote to slash net neutrality rules, allowing ISPs like Verizon to block apps, slow websites, and charge fees to control what you see & do online. Once they announce the vote, it’s hard to stop. But if we flood them with calls now, *Congress* can stop the vote.
What is net neutrality? Why does it matter?
Net neutrality is the principle that Internet providers like Comcast & Verizon should not control what we see and do online. In 2015, startups, Internet freedom groups, and 3.7 million commenters won strong net neutrality rules from the US Federal Communication Commission (FCC). The rules prohibit Internet providers from blocking, throttling, and paid prioritization—”fast lanes” for sites that pay, and slow lanes for everyone else.
We are Team Internet. We support net neutrality, freedom of speech.
Nearly everyone who understands and depends on the Internet supports net neutrality, whether they’re startup founders, activists, gamers, politicians, investors, comedians, YouTube stars, or typical Internet users who just want their Internet to work as advertised—regardless of their political party.
They are Team Cable. They want to end net neutrality, to control & tax the Internet.
Cable companies are famous for high prices and poor service. Several rank as the most hated companies in America. Now, they’re lobbying the FCC and Congress to end net neutrality. Why? It’s simple: if they win the power to slow sites down, they can bully any site into paying millions to escape the “slow lane.” This would amount to a tax on every sector of the American economy. Every site would cost more, since they’d all have to pay big cable. Worse, it would extinguish the startups and independent voices who can’t afford to pay. If we lose net neutrality, the Internet will never be the same.
On July 12, 2017, thousands of us protested to defend Internet freedom.
In just one day, websites large and small participated in one of the biggest online protests ever, reaching tens of millions of people, driving over 2 million comments to the FCC and over 5 million emails—and over 124,000 calls—to members of Congress. See the screenshots.
Now, we must convince Congress to stop the FCC. Can you display an alert?
We need your help. Congress could come out to stop the FCC, but generating calls in every House district requires massive amounts of traffic. You can display a prominent alert on your site that shows the world what the web will look like without net neutrality—and asks your visitors to call. Click here for a demo or grab the code on GitHub. None of these will actually block, slow, or paywall your site. But, they will let your users contact their representatives in Congress without having to leave your page. They appear once per user per day and users can easily click away. Just add this line of code to your site’s header:
Where do your members of Congress stand? Find out, and tweet them!
To win, we need to bring more members of Congress onto “Team Internet”—especially Republicans. Republican members of Congress face massive pressure from party leadership to oppose Net Neutrality, partly because of lobbying by Team Cable, and partly because they see it as “Obama era” policy. But Net Neutrality predates Obama, has always been a design principle of the Internet, and does not need to be a partisan issue. Some Republicans are open to the need for rules—but they won’t break ranks from party leaders unless they hear from constituents. Tweets are surprisingly effective—and you should still call too.
Want to go above and beyond? Visit your member of Congress.
Meeting in person with your member of Congress is by far the most high-impact thing most people can do right now. Ever since the July 12 Day of Action, we’ve been helping set up Team Internet meetings with members of Congress. Click here to find a Team Internet drop-in visit, scheduled meeting, or town hall near you. If you’re a local business owner who could be harmed by a loss of net neutrality rules, that’s even more persuasive. Be in touch.
Here are some excellent articles for additional depth. They cover the issue, its political history, the struggles we’ve overcome, and the fight ahead in Congress and at the FCC.