Amid intense lobbying from well-heeled communications industry giants, like AT&T and Verizon, an increasingly skeptical federal court system, and a weak regulatory scheme from the Federal Communications Commission, the idea of net neutrality appears to be on shaky ground. To date, all content providers have enjoyed equal access to the internet, but, just like electoral politics and paid advertising, pay-to-play may quickly become the norm. Broadband providers are itching to set up preferred channels for their highest paying customers, leaving everyone else — including start-up potential competitors — plodding along with second-rate connections. So, is there an alternative? Patrick Lucey is a Program Policy Associate with the Open Technology Institute, and he’s the co-author of “The Art of the Possible: An Overview of Public Broadband Options.” He joined the Monday Buzz on May 12, 2014.
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