First off, I need to issue an apology. I acknowledge that this is my third post responding to a clip from John Oliver’s show, “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”, however I believe that it’s an incredibly engaging program that is also very educational and entertaining. In the clip posted below, back from this past June, Oliver explains Net Neutrality and how relevant it is to our lives in our internet-driven society.
As Oliver explains, an end to Net Neutrality would mean that large corporations would be able to buy their way to a ‘fast lane’ to the internet. An example of this is telecommunication companies that intentionally slow down the streaming productivity of certain websites, to enforce higher fees and penalties. Large companies like Netflix and YouTube would be able to pay the fees to continue to stay competitive, while smaller websites like Paper Tiger television would never be able to compete. This would result in an absolute loss of democracy in our society, with the dismemberment of independent groups’ ability to create new media on online forums.
Another concerning thing that Oliver brings up in this clip is that the United States has some of the slower internet rates in the developed world, though the costs for internet service is amongst the highest. The United Nations has considered making Internet access a human right, and yet the United States continues to allow cable companies to charge an outrageous premium on shoddy internet access. As the Internet has become such a common part of our society and how we communicate with each other and access our news and other important information, it is imperative that we continue to have Net Neutrality, while also reforming the ability for corporations to charge for Internet access.