rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Will Big Telecom succeed in this desperate last-ditch effort to force through an Internet slow lane?

Please chip in to support rabble's election 2019 coverage. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

Our impact is being felt: U.S. Big Telecom are running scared with a last-ditch effort to force the Internet slow lane.

It looks like U.S. Big Telecom giants are pushing back against our rapidly growing movement to stop the Internet slow lane. Late yesterday, Big Telecom's army of lobbyists began circulating a letter urging Members of Congress to take a stand against anything that would threaten their proposed new gatekeeper powers. Big Telecom is going all out to force through the Internet slow lane proposed by FCC Chair Tom Wheeler in rules to be announced to the public this Thursday.

These telecom giants are trying to get Members of Congress on their side, so they can convince the FCC to keep the bad rules in their upcoming proposal that would force every web service that can't pay new expensive "prioritization" fees into an Internet slow lane.

While Big Telecom's last-ditch effort to maintain control over the Internet comes as no surprise, one thing is very clear: our impact is being felt, and Big Telecom is running scared. In just the past couple hours over 35,000 people have sent the FCC a message using our hard-hitting tool -- it's no wonder Big Telecom is getting desperate.

In the past few weeks, the Internet has exploded over the FCC's plan to create an Internet slow lane for all but massive deep-pocketed conglomerates. Since the news first surfaced, millions of people have spoken out against the plan -- some have even started an encampment outside the FCC's office in Washington, D.C. -- while countless ways to fight back have sprung up online.

Earlier this week, your OpenMedia agreed to represent your voices as part of an open letter signed by nearly 100 Internet freedom and civil society groups urging U.S. President Barack Obama and FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler to reconsider the FCC's threat to create an Internet slow lane. The letter is signed by our friends and collaborators at Free Press, Fight for the Future, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Demand Progress, Daily Kos, and dozens of others.

However, in response to this enormous public outcry, the telecom giants have wasted no time going to work to undermine our efforts. But the odds are not on their side. They may have deep pockets and hundreds of lobbyists to push their proposals, but we have millions of concerned citizensdozens and dozens of leading tech companiesmajor investors, and a rapidly expanding group of people from around the world speaking out at https://OpenMedia.org/SlowLane

And you know what? Big Telecom are right to be scared. We know that a massive public upsurge like this can make a huge impact. Our recent Stop The Secrecy campaign caused one of the most influential members of the U.S. Congress, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Or), to speak out about secrecy of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and commit the U.S. government to change. We've made an impact before, and we'll do it again. But we have to all band together and do everything we can in the next 48 hours to ensure U.S. telecom conglomerates and their army of lobbyists get the message.

Keep the pressure on, and let key decision-makers at the FCC know that the Open Internet is non-negotiable. Tell the FCC their Internet slow lane idea will not stand  and don't forget to let all your friends on Facebook,Twitter, and Google+ know how important it is to maximize the pressure in these final crucial hours.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.

Comments

We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:

Do

  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.

Don't

  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.