Forgetful Nation

Stuff here and there
Blue sky. 

Blue sky. 

Wavefield at Storm King. 

Wavefield at Storm King. 

A sunny, cool, fall day makes for a nice trip to Storm King Art Center.

A sunny, cool, fall day makes for a nice trip to Storm King Art Center.

Memorial Day Weekend in Vermont.

Marsh Billings Rockefeller National Historic Park

Marsh Billings Rockefeller National Historic Park

Is the Internet a Public Service?


Last month, the New York Times published an article about rules proposed by the FCC, allowing Internet Service Providers (companies like Comcast/TimeWarner and Verizon) to charge for access to faster internet. Some people are referring to this new allowance as “internet fast lanes”. To a business, charging for premium service sounds ok, but in this case foreshadows the end of an equal opportunity internet. These rules effectively change the playing field for companies and startups trying to reach an audience on the internet. 

Consumer groups immediately attacked the proposal, saying that not only would costs rise, but also that big, rich companies with the money to pay large fees to Internet service providers would be favored over small start-ups with innovative business models — stifling the birth of the next Facebook or Twitter.

I found this following statement intriguing and inspired the title of this post. I think internet is an important part of the fabric of our society and should be considered a public service (or utility).

The court said that because the Internet is not considered a utility under federal law, it was not subject to that sort of regulation.


On May 15th, the FCC’s proposed rules moved to public consultation, where people can comment on the rules. It appears that as I write this post more than 25,000 people have commented to the FCC about these rules. I read ten comments, and all of them opposed the new rules eliminating net neutrality.  

For those who don’t want to write a full comment, there are petitions available where you can do express your point of view simply by lending your name. 

The Whitney.

The Whitney.