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.

Josh Tabish

Josh Tabish

Josh Tabish is the Campaigns Coordinator for Access campaigns at OpenMedia.ca. He joined OpenMedia in 2013 and is passionate about helping those in the struggle for open communication systems. Before...