When the FCC rolled again web neutrality protections in December, advocates for the free, open web got here out en masse. Though the choice has been made, the struggle isn’t over but, and that’s what FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn reiterated at present on the fifth annual Lesbians Who Tech convention on the Castro Theatre in San Francisco.
“What the FCC did was to depress — was to strip away the freedoms of essentially the most enabling platform, essentially the most equalizing platform of our time,” the commissioner stated onstage this morning.
Due to web neutrality and an open web, the best actions in fashionable historical past, like #BlackLivesMatter and #MeToo, unfolded in entrance of the general public, Clyburn stated. With out the open web, she continued, the plenty wouldn’t have heard about what was taking place in Ferguson, Missouri. The native press, she stated, didn’t suppose that it was vital.
“However a hashtag and a presence over the web enabled that story to be advised,” Clyburn stated. “The struggling of these individuals in Missouri was not buried on the again pages of anybody’s headline.”
The query in entrance of us at present, Clyburn stated, is in regards to the public’s willingness to do no matter it takes to maintain an open web.
Final month, the FCC’s “Restoring Web Freedom” order formally went into impact when it was entered into the Federal Register. Its entrance into the Federal Register, nonetheless, meant residents, attorneys common and different legislators may formally begin battling in opposition to the FCC’s unpopular December vote to repeal web neutrality.
Simply final week, Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) launched laws to reestablish 2015’s web neutrality guidelines. As TechCrunch’s Devin Coldewey famous, the invoice is unlikely to succeed in the president’s desk, however it’s an vital step on this long-term battle over web regulation.
As Clyburn stated in her discuss, the gatekeepers shouldn’t be those to regulate and dictate the general public’s on-line presence.
She later stated, “That’s the problem we’ve got in entrance of us at present.”