It looks like the corporatist Big Boys want to squeeze us, the little people, for some more money: real time monetary units, bellicose bit-coin or pray tell, is it gold bullion they want? Maybe our heart and soul. They have that, or at least our attention. We’re used to going online, entering what we want and going about our business, private, public, social and some none-of-your-business business. That’s going to change. There’s money to be made. You’ll go to Facebook, a pop-up says sorry your bundle doesn’t include FB, but for an additional 4.95 USD a month, we’d be more than happy to accommodate you. You go to Google, a pop-up says sorry you have to use Bing because we’re Verizon and we have a contract with them and you’re out of luck. You go to NetFlix, pop-up says sorry you can have this same movie on Amazon Prime because you have AT&T and we’re going to throttle your download speed to a crawl so that you succumb to our demands.
Our illustrious President’s FCC (Federal Communications Commission) chairman, Ajit Pai, wants to eradicate Net Neutrality. Another one of those inconveniences to Big Business left over from that guy, I’m told, that preceded Mr Big himself. The Federal Communications Commission voted in May of this year 2017 to allow Chairman Pai’s “internet-as-we-know-it” killing blueprint to precede. The good news, the agency was inundated with more than 20 million comments. The majority against. I trust you called your Congressman and the FCC. No? Your email may be limited in the future. Those commenting, (except for Corporate minions and major stake holders,) they strongly urged our FCC to keep the existing Net Neutrality mandates. But money is to be made.
Net neutrality, really what is it and who cares? Your ISP, your Internet Service Provider handles all data on the Internet equally without judgement, without preference, without discrimination. I know, at times, it doesn’t seem like it. I searched for a UTC clock and a SW radio the other day and now I’m bombarded by deals on this clock and this radio wherever I go. It will only get worse. And I’ll be told where to buy it or else.
At present, I am told, 2 of 5 on the council of determiners want the change, with the vote December 14. One individual holds the balance of power in the palm of his hand. Who is he? Try looking for him online. He’s apparently, he that hides, behind the curtain, as in the Wizard of Oz, proclaiming, “Pay no attention, to the man behind the (insert for effect) silicon curtain.” Dorothy: pouting and Toto quick to expose the gravity of the situation. Reality bytes.
Here’s a thought. Why not take it a step further and have the nation’s so-called information super-highway like the interstate freeway system, free and fast, like some of those European countries we are so jealous of — with their free college education, free health care, and their higher standard of living. Who do they think they are? We’re ‘Merica! I know they have higher taxes and may have to wait, we hear, for some procedures, until they’re long past dead. Conjecture, fake news, depending on your polarity — Right? At least, they have it, unlike America, Home of the Brave, Land of the Sickly.
So, when you want to connect your CPAP machine, other health telemetry, home automation, try to read the so-called news, enter the coordinates into your autonomous car or want to watch something on YouTube, remember where that line in the silicon sand was drawn.
Jeff Worman lives in Walworth County, Wisconsin where there is water and a crisp, cool night sky conducive to the creative process. He has been drawing and writing since he was able to hold a pencil in his hand. Worman started out as a high school intern at the Bugle-American, an alternative newspaper in Milwaukee, and was a founder and long standing contributor to the Crazy Shepherd which emerged from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and is published currently as the Shepherd Express. Worman’s column The Hourly Why was conceived in 1982, published broadly in underground newspapers over the decades and can be found online today at www.thehourlywhy.com. He has a great love of the outdoors and champions charities by riding those long distance centuries on his road bike to raise funds. Contact the author.