Today, Net Neutrality became a presidential campaign issue when Senator Barack Obama answered an enthusiastic "Yes!" along with a thorough response to a question posed during an MTV event by a member of MoveOn.org.
"Would you make it a priority in your first year of office to re-instate Net Neutrality as the law of the land?" asked Joe Niederberger, a New Jersey small business owner. "And would you pledge to only appoint FCC commissioners that support open Internet principles like Net Neutrality?"
Net Neutrality--known as the First Amendment of the Internet--is the principle that prevents Internet providers from choosing what websites their customers can access (often based on which websites pay the most money). It was the law of the land until companies like AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast got the Bush-appointed FCC to slate it for elimination in 2005. For Net Neutrality to survive, it must be re-instated back into the law.
I I am a strong supporter of net neutrality," said Obama. "What you've been seeing is some lobbying that says [Internet providers] should be able to be gatekeepers and able to charge different rates to different websites...so you could get much better quality from the Fox News site and you'd be getting rotten service from the mom and pop sites. And that I think destroys one of the best things about the Internet -- which is that there is this incredible equality there...as president I'm going to make sure that is the principle that my FCC commissioners are applying as we move forward."