D4DME – Net Neutality

Net Neutrality, in a nut shell, is a network design paradigm which argues for broadband networks providers to become detached from the information thats sent over their networks. It believes in the idea that there should be no piece of information that is prioritised over another. In other words, information networks (the internet) are most efficient and useful when they are more attentive and responsive to multiple users. (Ocf.berkeley.edu) Net Neutrality is described as the Internets guideline principle – preservation of our right to communicate freely online and accessing an open internet. (Press)

In my opinion, after researching into the subject, Net Neutrality is the idea that internet providers are unable to access private information as like phone companies cannot access your private information stored in your phone or over phone calls. It frees up space where information may have been stored and allows the internet to become open and free for all to use and surf.

Some argue that Net Neutrality is needed in order to become equal with telephone and cable companies who, as providers, have to pay to use the service – whereas providers of companies online don’t incur this cost. Net Neutrality proposes to charge both the user and the provider – doubling the money made from the internet. (Wiki.openrightsgroup.org)

Contrasting this, there are many arguments against Net Neutrality. People believe that no on wants the government to regulate the internet due to it steering away from being an ‘open internet’. Also, companies such as Google, Yahoo and Microsoft will benefit greatly from a rise in profits which they won’t be paying for.

FCC is a US independent agency which regulates all communications. Net Neutrality in the US meant that companies like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon wouldn’t be able to offer a pay-to-play fast lanes due to users speaking out. The FCC originally allowed these companies to offer the service before proposing a change which gave internet users the best possible protection. (Press)

A more relevant discussion is about OFCOM – the UK government approved agency which regulates and manages communications in the UK. (Wikipedia) Ofcom stated in 2011 that due to growth in the use of the internet may require new approaches to traffic management.

I was able to have a clearer understanding about the problem Net Neutrality is aiming to fix after researching into OFCOM as it explains that due to increases in demand from users – providers/network officers find it more challenging to meet this demand and have no way of distinguishing between users – therefore bringing the idea of users paying for a prioritised service. It became even clearer when the example of eBay seller fees was given – with it being something I personally pay, and I can now understand that I pay this fee because I have used eBay as a platform for personal business and if I didn’t pay these fees then the traffic for this service would be uncontrollable.

References:

Ocf.berkeley.edu,. ‘NET NEUTRALITY: Definition’. N.p., 2015. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

Press, Free. ‘Net Neutrality: What You Need To Know Now’. Free Press. N.p., 2015. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

Wiki.openrightsgroup.org,. ‘Net Neutrality – ORG Wiki’. N.p., 2015. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

Wikipedia,. ‘Ofcom’. N.p., 2015. Web. 22 Mar. 2015.

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