A few weeks ago, I posted an article to Reddit.com (one of the Internet's most beloved social news sites) about the woeful prospects for Net Neutrality. I wrote, "If we want Net Neutrality (or anything else), then we need to demand it."
I proposed a grassroots political organization: One that wouldn't be beholden to any party or politician, just solely dedicated to political action on behalf of the issues we care about. That organization is now the Open Source Democracy Foundation (OSDF).
Net Neutrality was a natural choice to tackle as our first issue. We didn't just choose it arbitrarily, however. We posted our ideas and opinions on reddit.com/r/rpac. Debate ensued from the Reddit community. People proposed we take on a range of issues, from cutting defense spending to solar tax credits to Congressional term limits. But in the end, we entered an IRC chat room and cast our votes to adopt Net Neutrality as our first issue.
The case for nonpartisan support for Net Neutrality couldn't be stronger. As one of our members (g3tting3v3n) put it, "What we are doing, right here, right now, is an illustration of how the Internet can be used as a user-friendly tool of democracy to empower the masses."
Regardless of peoples' ideologies and political persuasions, we find it hard to believe anyone wants the Internet to be less free or less open. Another post from a user (wdr1) read, "I'm a 'Conservative' who feels strongly about Net Neutrality...Is the [OSDF] something for me?" The answer is, obviously, yes. The user went on to write, "I'm going to disagree with the majority of the Reddit base on a lot of issues. One issue, however, I feel very strongly about & would love to support, and help Reddit push forward, is Net Neutrality. (My livelihood is tied to the Internet. To me, helping preserve the Internet is [a] lot like the forester who plants trees.)" I couldn't have said it better myself.
So, if we agree that the Internet should remain in its current free and open form, then the question becomes: How do we keep it that way? Well, like those at Free Press and SavetheInternet.com, the members of the OSDF believe that there need to be strong guidelines in place to prevent any tampering from the Internet gatekeepers (Comcast, we're looking in your direction!). That's why we're proud to partner with SavetheInternet to send all the letters we can to Federal Communications Commissioners Michael Copps and Mignon Clyburn, telling them that we need real Net Neutrality--not a version that contains giant loopholes or leaves wireless Internet unprotected. Please consider joining our effort - take action now.
This project is not affiliated with Reddit.com.
Follow Eddie Geller on Twitter: www.twitter.com/gellered