The Internet

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Of all the technological advances made in recent history, the internet is the one that symbolizes the era we live in the most. Besides being ubiquitous – it is available on an ever-increasing number of electronics - it offers access to an expansive pool of information, and the ability to connect with people across the globe instantly. In the right hands, it can even be a tool to affect change on a grand scale, as social media has made spreading messages easier than ever. It is the driving force behind technologies that make our lives easier. Throughout all the years that the internet has changed and evolved, however, it has been largely unregulated. In more recent years, there has been a push to enact certain restrictions and regulations on the Internet. The pressure for a more strictly regulated Internet comes from many places, each with their own agenda. Net neutrality is the idea that ISPs (Internet Service Providers) and governments should not discriminate between content on the internet, and should instead treat it all equally. It is the general policy that the Internet has operated under since its creation. However, there is a difference between policy and law. Currently, net neutrality is not enforced by any actual laws, and as such, is under review by the FCC. The debate on net neutrality has arisen from the fact that ISPs are not classified as “common carriers”. Common carriers (examples of which include telephone and railroad companies) are legally required to only provide their services, without any discrimination. According to the FCC, the internet is instead classified as an “information service" (Sommer BU. 1). This opens the topic of net neutrality up for debate. The most significant opposition against net neutralit... ... middle of paper ... ...More Than A Third Of Peak Traffic." Time.Com (2014): 1. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 17 May 2014. Oxford Economics. The New Digital Economy. Oxford: Oxford Economics. n.d. Web. 13 May 2014. Sommer, Jeff. "Defending the Open Internet." New York Times, Late Edition (East Coast) ed.May 11 2014. ProQuest. Web. 13 May 2014 . Stelter, Brian. “Netflix stock soars 16% on huge subscriber growth.” Money.cnn.com. Cable News Network, 23 Jan. 2014. Web. 17 May 2014. Wilson, Kevin G. "The Last Mile: Service Tiers Versus Infrastructure Development And The Debate On Internet Neutrality." Canadian Journal Of Communication 33.1 (2008): 81-100. Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 May 2014.

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