In the wake of the FCC’s repeal of Title II classification for ISPs, states are beginning to look to themselves to preserve net neutrality. Earlier, we reported that 22 states had signed on to a petition to appeal the FCC’s decision. Now, the Governor of Montana has taken the first steps to help preserve net neutrality in his state.
Governor Bullock signed an executive order that added abiding to net neutrality as one of the requirements of receiving state contracts. Of course this doesn’t force ISPs to treat the data of Montana residents differently, but it is an incentive for them to remain net neutral to preserve government contracting opportunities.
The executive order notably sets the terms on which the State of Montana will be making purchases and makes a preference for a free and open internet clear. The State of Montana is a significant purchaser of internet services.
Governor Bullock knows that his action, or even his method, alone will not be enough. His hope is that Montana’s action will be a framework for other states to follow on. The more states that do so, the larger the pressure there will be on ISPs.
“This is a simple step states can take to preserve and protect net neutrality. We can’t wait for folks in Washington DC to come to their senses and reinstate these rules.”
Even then, the method of pressuring ISPs through government contracting, is just the beginning. Building a big enough network of states to collaborate on preserving net neutrality, through whatever methods, is the ultimate goal.
Now if they sign a bill ending government granted monopolies over cities. That might get their attention. Although Montana has a pretty low population. So, they wouldn't care too much.
Also Government services are generally filtered(not neutral) to prevent unlawful access.
Same ISP's, different services. I know as I designed them, in Montana, among many other states. This is a good thing...
Also, the ISP doesn't limit or filter, the customer (ie the government office, school, etc) does that part. And that has nothing to do with net neutrality.
Right, but that was before we saw the signs of ISPs beginning to treat that traffic differently.
We shouldn't need a law to tell ISPs to treat youtube and this other upstart video network fairly, but the ISPs have proven, above all things, that they can not be trusted to treat anything fairly. The FCC made "be fair" a requirement. The ISPs fought it tooth and nail. Why would a good honest company fight "be fair?" We know that ISPs are not good and honest. Year after year they come in ranked at the bottom of customer satisfaction ratings. All net neutrality says is to be fair, like you were before you realized there was money to be made by throttling and blocking and generally holding hostage "customers" trapped on a monopolistic network.
Actually, neutrality was the default from the very beginning when the internet was nothing but interconnected universities and research institutions. As grimfox said, no one even thought twice about this until some ISP realized they could make an extra buck by screwing someone else. Perfectly reasonable capitalism, but it goes against the deliberate intent that has existed from day one to keep the internet a level playing field.