Net Neutrality: The New Pay to Play?


Net Neutrality is a term used everywhere, especially in the last couple of weeks. It sounds as if it’s a term for censorship or some fight against leanings or twists in internet news reporting. But it’s not, no unfortunately, it’s about something much closer to home…. and our consoles. Money. It’s all about the Benjamin's yall.

It seems the tech companies have not been making enough money recently. They have been arguing with the standards, or lack thereof, of cost management. As we are talking about data and information, it is a almost inexhaustible resource to draw from. Awesome, right? But how if anybody, anywhere, can add to this resource and possibly profit from it, do the rich get richer from it? By controlling and taxing the actual data that carries it.

This idea of making certain people pay more for preferential treatment, i.e. faster data speeds, more bandwidth for more money etc. was shot down a few years ago to essentially charge more for less. Allowing only the wealthiest subscribers to get viewed due to, not the content, but the ability to pay for it to be shown. Gone are the days of random videos being easily uploaded for all to enjoy.



It will fracture the internet even more than is already happening. On a technological level it will make pay to win essential. Just think, you will be signing up for games that not only will you deal with people buying better weapons than you, but also better data rates. Or what about random YouTube videos, imagine having to pay for storage of your videos, or if you watch for too long, you will have to pay bandwidth fees.

Now I always likened internet gaming as like a public park. It’s not a place where you show up with pads and a team to play, but you could. Mainly, it was a place to compete and mess around using whatever equipment you had. It’s possible to be the best with whatever was around. Now, if these rules are repealed, you might have to pay just to enter the park. And to win, there will be no freebies anymore folks.

Beyond that, we will be losing our last free form media outlet. The bandwidth providers will be in complete control of what they view as “Watchable Content”. It was a big issue the first time these regulations were put under review. It essentially allows complete control over what data is presentable by private corporations. Bye bye freedom of speech. And it will be taken completely legally. According to them, charging and controlling our voices will encourage growth. Only time ever that hindering and controlling something will cause it to grow. And strangely enough, this issue really hasn’t been revisited in the recent discussions.

So, once again, our values and freedom will be up for the highest bidder. Thankfully, a myriad of groups has filed a lawsuit over this issue and it will be some time for it to be sorted out. Its consequences will be felt by all, negative or positive. But as a community the more we are aware the better we will be able to adapt and perhaps change.