Yet another blow to free speech on the Internet was delivered this week, as a D.C. District Court of Appeals upheld that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) can regulate Internet providers through a control system called Net Neutrality.
All of this, we are told, will allow government to protect us from the big, bad corporations. When in reality, they’re all in on it together.
Wait. That does sound paranoid.
But consider this. It’s pretty delusional to believe we have free speech on the Internet right now. And it’s even more delusional to think that powers-that-be would suddenly reverse that trend, when their goal is to control every narrative.
Net Neutrality is no different than the government and the insurance industry working together on Obamacare and telling us it provides better, more accessible, and more affordable health care. When in reality, it caused healthcare costs to skyrocket and amounted to nothing more than a tax on the uninsured, except for the poorest people in the country.
It’s no different than the government telling us the Patriot Act was a way to preserve our freedoms and protect us from terrorist attacks. In reality, it was a way to strip away our freedoms and surveil us with invasive technology.
Still, people believe these supreme liars.
Net Neutrality is billed as a way to prevent Internet providers from limiting access to legal content.Supporters maintain it will bar Internet providers manipulating speed and other factors to promote certain businesses or voices.
Following Tuesday’s ruling, AT&T pledged to appeal it to the Supreme Court. This is the same AT&T that contracts with the Department of Defense and works with the National Security Agency (NSA) to spy on Americans.
Some members of Congress have also displayed their showmanship by publicly blasting the FCC for pushing Net Neutrality without having Congressional approval.
But the FCC is not the only problem. A full shutdown of free speech will likely enlist multiple agencies and corporations. Some of the other tools waiting in the wings are government-issued Internet IDs, stricter copyright laws, and the regulation of political speech online. All of these have been pushed for quite some time.
Again, the Internet is no sanctuary for free speech. Everything we see online is given prominence because it promotes a government narrative or it was blessed by Google.
Six corporations control virtually all of the news put out by mainstream television, radio stations and newspapers. In turn, Google ensures these same companies appear at the top of every search result. Meanwhile, some alternative news outlets are banned from appearing in Google News. That, of course, keeps much of the public from seeing the information.
And it doesn’t stop there.
Political debates have long been one of the most protected forms of free speech in this country. But in February 2015, the Federal Election Committee (FEC) discussed whether it should regulate political speech online. The FEC said blogs, YouTube videos, and alternative media websites could be targeted.
In addition, proposed copyright laws would severely limit or bar websites from linking to other articles, commenting on them, or criticizing them.
Again, it’s all about limiting certain voices while promoting others.
Social media is another example. When they first began, Twitter and Facebook were handed to the public as if they were free gifts from the Internet Gods.
Twitter and Facebook have since revealed their true colors. They are constantly exposed for censoring unpopular opinions and shutting down or suspending accounts that post “unpopular” opinions.
Social media giants are also famous for ruthlessly selling our information to data brokers or handing it off to government agencies. Matt Drudge, who runs the popular website Drudge Report, accurately said social media hangouts are “ghettos” designed to track our ideas, steal our energy and demoralize people.
True offenses such as violence and death threats are often left to languish on social media.
In one horrific example, a woman’s boyfriend murdered her, posted the grisly pictures to Facebook, and replaced her banner photo with an image of a coffin.Grieving family and friends were not only traumatized by the images, they had to fight for days to get them taken down.
A Dallas television station reported friends of Jennifer Streit-Spears were initially told by Facebook “customer service” that the photos could not be removed. The coffin banner photo remains on her Facebook page.
The highly-political FCC agency is not going to protect the public or change directions when it comes to Internet freedom. It’s going to continue the same course we’ve been on.
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