Why Small Business Owners Need to Fight for Net Neutrality & How

Lauren Ronquillo
Dec 4, 2017 · 3 min read
Image by Lauren Hom & Lauren Ronquillo

Small business owners & all else who have worked too damn hard for any additional fuckery: On December 14th the FCC is voting to dismantle Net Neutrality- and right now the odds are not in our favor.

WHAT IS NET NEUTRALITY: Put most plainly, Net Neutrality allows all websites and the information or products available on all websites to be treated equally. Without it, companies like Verizon, AT&T, Comcast will be able to speed up or slow down websites based on their corporate or political interests. Essentially, Net Neutrality allows for a level playing field so that larger corporations cannot undermine small companies before they even have the mere chance to take off.

WHY YOU SHOULD GIVE A SHIT: Getting a business off the ground is freaking hard- but the internet has made it possible and is directly responsible for the rising modern culture of nonprofits, start ups and successful small businesses. Large companies like Facebook and Amazon have a ton of cash; they could easily cough up the dough and essentially wipe out all of their competition done and done, but they are standing up to preserve it. Why? Because it’s such an outrageous degree against “The American Way” (Whatever the fuck we pretend that is) that not even they can get down with that level of corruption. NN is the one regulation that preserves true capitalist competition- there is no “competition” without it, the conglomerates with more money will dominate the market, end of story. Small businesses would never stand a chance.

Without NN these broadcast companies just say “Sure, your website can have a decent connection to your consumers as long as you pay $X for prioritization.” Thing is, you can’t afford $X, but your multi-million dollar competitors can. Who has clicked a link or a video these days just for the wifi to be a little slow and said “ah fuck it” and closed the window and moved on with their life? Without Net Neutrality, that “ah, fuck it” website is yours.

*****CONGRESS ALONE CAN STOP THE FCC, AND THEY KEEP THEIR SEAT IN OFFICE DIRECTLY BY THE PUBLIC’S POPULAR VOTE- THEY NEED YOU. CONTACT YOUR CONGRESSMEN NOW!*****

HTTPS://WWW.BATTLEFORTHENET.COM/ WILL SHOW YOU YOUR REPRESENTATIVES WITH A DIRECT LINK TO CONTACT THEM. YOU WILL ALSO FIND INFORMATION REGARDING ATTENDING OR HOSTING A PROTEST OF NATIONWIDE VERIZON STORES ON DECEMBER 7TH.

NEVER FORGET: You have so much power in where you spend your money, and you’re the one who decides where it goes. You are absolutely a part of a collective that ruuuuns thiiiiiis shiiiiiit. (“They” know it, thats why they are trying to take it from you.) Make them scared to be against NN, threaten THEIR business if they vote or lobby in favor of something that harms your own.

Openly state that, as a consumer you are prepared to no longer support corporations who lobby for the killing of a neutral internet, like Verizon. That you will vote against X,X & X congressmen for the state of X in the next election due to their support of dismantling this vital regulation.

IN CLOSING: I grew up with very little money. I have felt the amount of opportunity run parallel with the amount of money in my wallet since I can remember. My story is not a rare one. The internet, full of Kim K, puppy videos, ridiculous memes and all its glory, dare I say, is our only chance for a fair economic playing field.

And if we lose, one last thing to say to all those who allowed this to go down, from the bottom on my heart-

(This is the first and last time i’ll reference Kim K in my writing or life in general.)

Lauren Ronquillo

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Graphic designer finding her voice | Laurenronquillo.com | @laurenronquillo on Instagram

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