UPDATE 12/14/2017

By Bob Weaver

The Federal Communications Commission voted today to dismantle landmark rules regulating the businesses that connect consumers to the internet.

The five major US media corporations will earn billions more dollars with the move, a move widely supported by Sen. Shelly Moore Capito.

A 3-to-2 vote along party lines granted broadband companies the power to reshape Americans' online experiences.

Gutting net neutrality will cement the power of a few giant corporations.

The dream of having the net equal access is over, and big money has won.

The vote ignored US polling which favored net neutrality 3 to 4.

The taking over by big money creates "fast lanes."

FCC Chairman Pai says it will be good for business, but small internet companies and start-ups will suffer, plus consumers.

The FCC received 2 million fake comments supporting the change, the emails stealing the names and addresses of real people.

The internet change, according to President Trump, will help make America great again.

By Bob Weaver

Sweeping Plan Would Overturn Equal Access To The Internet

While most US polls say Americans disfavor ending net neutrality by 3 to 4, it appears Trump's FCC appointee is on the fast track to help make the net a new multi-billion dollar industry.

Sen. Shelly Moore Captio (R) supports ending neutrality to promote business opportunities.

Internet Users Would Be Charged For "Fast Lanes"

Access to a relatively free and open internet is rapidly coming to an end in America?

Federal regulators unveiled a plan that would give Internet providers broad powers to determine what websites and online services their customers can see and use, and at what cost.

If the changes are approved, internet service providers (ISPs), the corporations that plug us into the internet, will also be able to decide what we should see and what will be out of reach. What a tool for political elitists, and moving America further into oligarchy.

The move sets the stage for a crucial vote in Dec. at the Federal Communications Commission that could reshape the entire digital ecosystem.


By Bob Weaver

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai, a Trump appointee, is following through on his pledge to repeal 2015 regulations designed to ensure that internet service providers treat all online content and apps equally.

The concept, known as net neutrality, imposed utility-style regulation on ISPs such as Comcast, AT&T and Verizon to prevent them from favoring their own digital services over their rivals.

If it is repealed, it will allow money driven providers to divide, meter and charge internet service at highly profitable rates, and speed up their service.

Small companies, which have increasingly turned to the internet, worry that a pay-for-play system online could price them out of doing business.

Pai believes the net neutrality rules adopted during the Obama administration discourages the ISPs from making investments in their network "to provide even better and faster online access."

Pai's attack on net neutrality has triggered protests from consumer groups and internet companies, a case being lobbied by big money, creating more profitable layers of service.

It will fall to the judiciary to stop this latest travesty.


By Salvatore Angotti and Nathan Tauger, Morgantown Aug. 8. 2017

On July 12, Netflix, Amazon, Twitter and dozens of other websites protested to protect net neutrality, the principle that internet service providers should provide access to content and applications regardless of the content's source, without favoring or blocking products or websites. This internet-wide day of action is meant to combat special interests and keep the internet fair.

Many cable TV providers are also internet service providers. Without net neutrality, these companies can charge for "fast lanes" to certain websites. Comcast could slow down its customers' connection speeds to competitor Netflix, or charge more for its customers to use Netflix, while giving cheaper and faster access to Comcast services NBC and Hulu.

Imagine if General Motors controlled lanes on the highway and set two speed limits: one for GM cars and one for everyone else. Don't have a GM car? Go slow or pay up.

Former Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler, a cable-industry lobbyist, almost ended net neutrality until public outcry stopped him. President Donald Trump made a former Verizon lawyer, Ajit Pai, head of the FCC. Pai plans to end net neutrality.

Big Cable calls net neutrality government meddling but, in fact, net neutrality allows the internet to run on free-market principles. Without net neutrality, large providers could extort small businesses while discouraging competition.

West Virginia's rural communities have much to lose from a repeal of net neutrality. Areas with just one ISP would be at the whim of monopolies — internet providers that act like the company store.

Net neutrality is not a partisan issue. It is monopolistic special interests against those of us who want the internet to remain a place for self-starters and free expression. Open internet access is key to West Virginia's economic future. Do our elected representatives agree?

Hur Herald from Sunny Cal
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