Letters to the editor — Tuesday (3-31-15)

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Internet rules are power grab by government

While you were sleeping, the FCC voted three to two to take over control of the Internet. The vote, instigated by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, invoked Title II, which is a 1934 law that was used to regulate “Maw” Bell during the early years of telecommunications. Instead of a passive invasion into Internet services, as had been hoped, the FCC decided instead to place controls on all aspects of the Internet with rules going back 80 years.

Before you nod off to sleep reading this, please understand that this new government involvement includes their ability to dictate, regulate and even structure prices that the customers will pay. This is all being done under the guise of net neutrality and additional competition.

Relative to competition, even Salisbury, with its small Internet footprint, has three companies (AT&T, Fibrant and Time Warner) competing for the Internet dollars. This has held down cost while offering improved service in all areas. The competition argument does not seem to have any validity in fact.

The discussion about net neutrality, which is broadly defined as, “The government knows how to do the internet more fairly,” is again an argument without merit. It is hard for me to think of a situation where government intervention into anything that is working well has been an asset. (Can you say Post Office and Amtrak?)

At this point, over 67 percent of our business comes in over the Internet and it has worked and is working extremely well. The improvements and advances each year are mind boggling and yet, the federal government has taken control to dictate the rules and regulations of Internet operations. As much as I dislike the use of clichés, “If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it,” seems to completely sum up the situation.

Please contact your federal senators and representatives and ask them to block implementation of Title II regulations. Your Internet freedoms may be at stake.

— Frank Goodnight

Salisbury

Goodnight is president of Diversified Graphics Inc.

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