Internet service providers want to define levels of access to their networks and charge accordingly. Opponents decry the effort as discrimination.
Tim Karr, campaign director for Free Press, spoke at the December NY Tech Meetup last night about the importance of net neutrality saying that, "it was really baked into the original architecture of the Internet. The original intent of the creators of the Internet was that data could flow freely between any two users."
Free Press advocates for net neutrality as one of their commitments to the reform of media. According to the FreePress.net, "through education, organizing and advocacy, we promote diverse and independent media ownership, strong public media, quality journalism, and universal access to communications."
Regulation of the Internet has been a political topic since 1996, when President Clinton signed the Telecommunications Act. It was designed to create a regulatory framework that promoted open competition. The FCC has taken different stances on the issue of telecommunications regulation over the years, but most recently they are considering a rule-making that would "preserve an open Internet."
Karr argues that this ruling is "good for most all of us."
The NY Tech Meetup also featured demos in the standard five minute and new one minute format. Companies featured included:
- Chocri – the online chocolate bar where custom chocolate will be available for order in the US beginning in January.
- DrChrono.com – an application for doctors to schedule and track appointments.
- Soupfly.info – where users can look up NYC restaurant inspection information.
- Larva Labs – who demoed an app to reformat the home screen of Android enabled handsets.
- Hot Potato – where users can interact with others attending the same event.
- VodPod – a video bookmarking site.
- Notable – which has created a workflow management site and built an accompanying task management tool called Scrumptious.
- Ogmento – who demoed mobile augmented reality apps on an iPhone.