Your access to a free and open Internet is under attack

Your access to a free and open Internet is under attack

MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - Where would we be without the Internet? Your access to information takes seconds. But soon, things might change.

The FCC announced last week a final proposal that would do away with net neutrality. This means it's goodbye to a free and open Internet and hello to paying more in services or even a slower Internet speed.

Net neutrality is a word we always hear all the time but what exactly does it mean? An analogy used to describe it often is like driving on the freeway. As a driver, you're an Internet user and all the other drivers are also Internet users. It doesn't cost you anything to drive on the fast lane but if net neutrality is rolled back, that means drivers will have to start paying more for faster service.

"Some of your services may cost more, so if you're a person who uses Netflix, Hulu, or one of those services, you might notice there has to be an increase in those prices in order for them to get preferred priority so that you don't get those stoppages," said Dennis Sever, Vice President of Information Technology and Facilities at Midland College. "You might find there has to be a subscription to Facebook that you have to pay in order to not get stuck in the slow lane so you can have more access, of course."

Doing away with federal regulations is a win for the big companies like AT&T or Verizon, companies that are providing your Internet service.

"I'd hate to see the commercial interest rule the Internet," said Sever. "Of course, I'm an old guy and I think information ought to be free. Whatever happens is going to happen."

FCC chairman Ajit Pai is calling net neutrality regulations a "flawed approach," and that those regulations were never needed in the first place.  But the proposal will be voted on December 14, where the fate of your Internet usage will be determined.

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