The Information Superhighway…. Introducing Tolls?

By: Hugo Sanchez *

The Internet. It holds more information than all of the libraries on earth, it’s where you go for inspiration, to waste time, to study, to work, or even just to have something to do. Everything and anything you can think of is on the internet somewhere. Pretty soon though, this may all be changing. The Federal Communications Commission is currently deliberating on new legislation to change the way we surf the web forever.

The FCC’s plan would give cable companies the power to create Internet fast lanes. These fast lanes would be similar in how tolls operate in that companies that could afford it would be able to pay fees to vastly improve their priority and speed of delivery. An example of this would be you would be constantly buffered if Youtube doesn’t decide to pay this fee and your Internet Service Provider throttles them. Another potential outcome is that ISPs would start offering bundles very much similar to how cable companies have bundles.



President Obama released a press release on November 10 expressing his stance on the matter. He spoke out in favor of Net Neutrality and suggested that the way to protect the Internet was to classify it as a utility under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. President Obama urges the FCC to follow his guidelines, but the FCC is an independent organization, so in the end the decision is all theirs.

Tom Wheeler, the chairman of the FCC, released a response to the President’s proposal on November 11 saying that he will take into consideration what President Obama has said, but nonetheless the FCC is an independent agency and the choice will belong to it.

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