The final nails are being put in the coffin and soon there will be discussion about what will replace the Obama era free internet

I believe in Net Neutrality. Net Neutrality is a bit complicated, but if you don't know what it is, in short, it's the idea that internet speeds remain the same no matter the source or site. This is the system we currently have. As someone who is constantly online throughout the day — as I'm sure many of you are — this seems like something that should be without contest. But the big internet companies, and all the congressmen they "donated" tens of thousands of dollars to didn't think so. Tate Ericson

If internet speeds weren't legally required to be neutral, companies would nickel and dime you even more than they already are. They would achieve this by charging you extra for certain, more popular sites. Say you want to watch Netflix, unless you paid your internet company extra to use your speeds on Netflix, they would throttle it, making your internet far too slow to watch. This eventually racks up, because for many of these popular sites you are already paying a subscription fee. Internet will become much like the current state of cable or satellite television where you need to buy different packages on top of the base fees. This is scummy because it's not as if these companies weren't raking in enough money already. This presents an even worse situation for less wealthy people who can barely pay for internet as is. It will basically render internet useless for these people.

And this fate of internet has basically already been sealed with current President Donald Trump putting a gung-ho, anti-open internet chairman at the helm of the Federal Communications Commission. The final nails are being put in the coffin and soon there will be discussion about what will replace the Obama era free internet. And it will likely benefit the internet companies, who don't care about their consumers, and never have. This could even lead to violation of our first amendment, because if the free internet goes, censorship comes in. Internet companies will be able to censor whatever they want by throttling your internet speeds. Earlier this year, your privacy and identity were sold out when 265 congressmen voted that ISPs could sell your data. And now your freedom of speech and freedom of internet is being torn down too.

Visit for more information about this and to become involved.

Tate Ericson is a junior at Wilsonville High School.

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