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What is net neutrality? How neutral should Net be? What arguments are ...

  Dec 25, 2016

What is net neutrality? How neutral should Net be? What arguments are being advanced to regulate it? Evaluate the same.

Net Neutrality means an Internet that enables and protects free speech and expression  It means that Internet service providers should provide us with open networks — and should not block or discriminate against any applications or content. Without Net Neutrality, cable and phone companies could carve the Internet into fast and slow lanes. An ISP could slow down its competitors' content or block political opinions it disagreed with. ISPs could charge extra fees to the few content companies that could afford to pay for preferential treatment — relegating everyone else to a slower tier of service. This would destroy the open Internet.
In India there is an opinion that the profitability of the ISPs requires them to treat some sites preferentially. They will pay the ISP but the consumers are provided free digital services to access these sites. Thus, the ISPs can raise money and built infrastructure to continue to supply quality services. It can partly break down the digital divide. The counter opinion is that such discrimination works against those sites- usually the start ups- that do t pay. They will be slowed down. Access to such applications will be chargeable. They can not come up commercially as a result. Such regulation can also have undemocratic effects.