In an effort coordinated with net neutrality activist group Fight for the Future, some military veterans have launched an open online letter, vetsforthe.net, to try and pressure House members to sign on to an effort to restore open internet rules.
Looking to get some July 4 attention, the letter, which launched Tuesday (July 3), said "the loss of net neutrality will allow cable companies to throttle services to online communities used by service members, censor free speech, and charge new fees that veterans can’t afford."
The letter juxtaposes that supposed service throttling cable operators will get to do with the service and sacrifice of veterans defending basic freedoms, which it ties to enforceable net neutrality rules.
"We are asking our representatives to sign the discharge petition and vote for the Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution to reverse the FCC’s repeal and restore open internet protections that are essential for American’s online freedom," they said.
Backers of the House effort, which is led by Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) is still several dozen votes short, including some Democrats who have not signed on.
The Senate passed its own version of the CRA, but it is not expected to pass in the House, or if it does, be signed by a President on record as favoring that and other regulatory rollbacks.
Fight for the Future said that over a thousand veterans have already signed the letter.
“Both as a soldier and as an activist, I’ve worked hard to defend democracy. A free and open internet is an essential platform for bringing people together and having the important conversations that make democracy possible,” says Tim Ellis, who FFTF identifies as an Army Reservist motor-manning the letter. "We cannot stand idle while it’s sold off to the highest bidder. Our elected officials have the power to reverse the FCC’s decision and restore net neutrality. Veterans are asking them to do the right thing.”
Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.
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