watch John "I'm a PC" Hodgeman explain the Net Neutrality issue with Jon Stewart
This Wednesday I'll be meeting with the freshman Rep. from our district in Brooklyn, Yvette Clarke, as a representative of Save the Internet, to discuss Net Neutrality. I'm going because I was asked, and because I think that Net Neutrality ties in with a lot of issues that many may think are more important, such as the war in Iraq, post-Katrina New Orleans, the economy, and global warming.
One of the reasons why there is such a groundswell of pubic opinion on such crucial issues of our time is that more people are better informed. They are better informed, I would argue, not because of the mainstream media, but because of bloggers and online independent media. Do you think we'd have half the knowledge we have of, for example, NSA wiretapping, the Downing Street Memo, torture in American POW camps, the genocide in Darfur, extreme rendition, the Abramoff / Libby / Foley (etc.) scandals, or the deplorable non-progress in the Gulf Coast if we relied solely on FOX News, Disney, or GE for our information?
Net Neutrality is therefore a big issue, and one that the Blue Congress needs to lock down and affirm once and for all, before the corporate-fed mass media bury it under pressure from our corporate administration in Washington. If it weren't for the online grassroots movement, big telcom operators would already be preventing you from viewing some of the content you're used to accessing online. Many of the outlets that we link to from DR would be among the restricted or nearly-inaccessible sites if Ted Stevens had been able to hand over the "series of tubes" to the full control of big telcom. These include:
So this is why Net Neutrality matters, and why I ask you, no matter your political affiliation (right, left, center, or don't-give-a-damn) to sign the petition, call your legislators, and tell your neighbors why Net Neutrality matters, and why we need a free and open Internet—because it is practically all we have left of what we once knew as democracy.
Thanks again--and again: I just had a look at the web stats and was stunned. In a short month and with ten days still to go, we've set a record for monthly page views--more than 15,000 through the 18th. As I've said before, Terry and I would probably write and spout on a desert island with no one to listen except the coconuts. But having people like you around sure makes it more fun and fulfilling. Many, many thanks to you all, and if you have advice, criticism, or questions for us, use the Comments link.