Can you imagine your life without the wonder called internet? Most people certainly cannot. Now, can you imagine your life with constrained, differential and monitored use of internet? Most people rightly think that it is even worse than no internet at all. Telecom and internet service providers like Vodafone and Airtel are lobbying hard to kill Net Neutrality. They are doing so in order to mint more and more moolah at the expense of their so called customers. If Net Neutrality becomes a thing of the past then it will allow these operators to block websites and applications as per their whims and fancies in order to extort money from their hapless clients. Nothing related to this discussion seems right and the young India knows it.
But what exactly is Net Neutrality? Net Neutrality in short is that all websites are equally accessible by all, the same data charges apply in order to access every website and at the very same access speed. Thus Net Neutrality means no speeding up of certain websites which the ISP has a tie-up with, no gateway selection and censorship, no licensing of internet firms and no making a few websites free and others chargeable amongst others.
Platforms like the Airtel Zero Internet thrive on the idea of killing net neutrality. This initiative by Airtel proposes that firms can pay a pre decided amount to ISPs and telecom operators in order to make public’s access to their website or app free or at a faster speed amongst others. On the face of it, things look immensely positive and beneficial from an internet user’s point of view. But if you study it in great detail, you will realize how harmful and deceitful such a scenario can be.
Not abiding by net neutrality will lead to two versions of internet, paid and free. And it is not hard to guess which internet most people will be using, obviously free right? Thus websites who are unable to shell out humungous moolah will lose out and eventually become extinct. Global websites and apps will have to line up outside the offices of telecom providers in order to get access to India’s user base. But will they go to such lengthy extent, nobody is sure. It will lead to a major chunk of Indian population not having access to these state of the art apps. This will lead to two internets once again, Global and Indian.
If firms shell out a bomb towards these unwanted marketing charges then the price of their goods and services will skyrocket. So do you want to pay more and cause a dent in your pocket? Nobody wants to. Imagine two more scenarios. In case of an exclusive tie ups, people using services of a certain operator they won’t be able to access all websites. Also smaller firms will not be able to afford these gigantic expenses and eventually get wiped of the face of the earth.
Nobody wants to live in such a world. But the worst part is that the in-power TRAI is actually considering allowing this move thus leading to a bizarre manipulation and violation of privacy and the freedom to choose.
So wake up India. SAVE THE INTERNET, it is the need of the hour after all. Send your reply to TRAI and do your bit in this fight for freedom.