Donald Trump and the US government are planning to end net neutrality: a very important principle regarding the treatment of data on the internet.
Net neutrality is the idea that all internet content and data is treated the same. Governments regulating most of the Internet must not discriminate or charge differentially by user, content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or method of communication, for example, internet service providers (e.g. BT, Virgin Media) can’t block, slow down or charge money for specific websites and online content.
And of course, Donald Trump wants to ruin it.
The Federal Communications Commission, under Trump’s direction, have said that it is going to repeal a law that banned internet service providers from interfering with what we see on the internet and how easy it is for us to view it.
Chairman of the commission, Arjit Pai, stated that the protections put in place stop internet companies from doing what they want and are unnecessary. The move violates a core principle of the internet that has existed since its beginning: that no website can get special treatment or allowances from companies that power the internet.
Trump’s move will allow service providers to charge websites to load quicker or force visitors to pay extra if they want to load certain pages.
Previously a group of the world’s most used websites, including Google, Netflix, Facebook and Reddit, went dark to protest what they expect will happen to them if the rules are removed.
Trump has, for some reason, been a hater of the internet for a while now, despite his love for Twitter. He’s argued to remove the protections since the Obama era, calling for the internet to fully be turned off and that he would “see Bill Gates” so that he could look into “closing it up”.