Net Neutrality Levels the Playing Field

May 2, 2024

a pen and ink drawing of an old fashioned scale weighing two things to represent the internet and they are equal in weight

This last week, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted 3-2 to reinstate net neutrality rules after a seven year hiatus enacted during the Donald Trump administration. They said that the pandemic made it clear that the internet is used more widely than ever before, including for school, work, and healthcare. 

These net neutrality regulations block internet companies from pushing some sites or apps to internet users over others. Net neutrality considers all content on the internet as equal. An internet company can no longer prioritize some content over others–meaning, they can’t cut a deal with a content company to move their data faster. It also requires websites or videos to load at the same speed. ISPs cannot block, slow down, or speed up the delivery of online content at their discretion.

So, picture this: You have a bucket of popcorn in hand and settle down in your comfiest socks to watch TV. Since all videos now load at the same speed, you won’t be more likely to click Netflix every time. It levels the playing field for all content companies. 

In simple terms, online experiences will no longer be controlled by those with bigger wallets. The rules will come into effect in 60 days. You won’t immediately see a change while using the internet, but it could affect people who are looking for new providers, plans or services. 

According to, the average user and site owner can expect:

  • Greater accessibility – Net neutrality ensures that everything on the internet is available to everyone, democratizing access across demographics.
  • Lower costs – By preventing ISPs from charging companies for better access, services won’t need to lump the financial burden onto regular internet users with paywalls and paid subscriptions.
  • Better user experience – The regulations ban internet providers from slowing down internet providers for certain sites, resulting in a better, and faster browsing experience for most Americans.
  • Greater freedom of expression – Net neutrality prohibits ISPs from blocking specific content they don’t agree with, ensuring that the internet is free from censorship, and encouraging freedom of speech online.
  • Better opportunities for small businesses – Smaller enterprises with smaller budgets will benefit from the open internet, as they can enjoy the same site speeds as larger corporations.

While this might be a heated topic on Capitol Hill, this move is supported by the majority of Americans. “Unless you’re a broadband conglomerate with vested interests in privatization, it’s unlikely you’re going to be negatively impacted by the FCC’s recent bill.” (Isobel O’Sullivan, “Net Neutrality Has Finally Been Restored, But What Actually Is It?”, April 26, 2024)