Well now there is absolutely no privacy on the internet, and all your data is going to the highest bidder. Republicans end internet privacy, because they were bought off to do so. Remember the early days of the internet with a steady bombardment of ads and pop ups. They are likely to return, but in a much worst way. Republican sold all Americans and businesses out to the telecom industry. The votes in the congress were along party lines, and the excuses were complete smelly bull.
The excuse Republican used to justify this vote is free market bull, consumer choice illusions, and using Facebook and Google as companies that already do this. This vote hurts all internet consumers individuals and businesses alike. Now your ISP has access to everything you do, and they will sell that info. Also make them a central target for hacking, and hackers will destroy lives. So let’s dissect this and show how bad it is.
Starting with the free market bull. Right now the internet is the definition of a free market, anyone can have an internet business. With the privacy rules gone and ISP selling data to the highest bidders many businesses will lose or die. ISPs can hide your website if they don’t get you to pay them, or slow it down. They can control what advertisements will pop up on your site if you sell ad space. The cost of marketing on the internet will sky rocket. Today it is affordable and to the business’s advantage. That will no longer be the case. They can promote ads that give business to your competitor. Access to important marketing data will be at a premium.This is anti-free market as it gets.
Now for the illusion of consumer choice. There is no consumer choice when it comes to ISPs you have maybe two or three in your area if you’re lucky, but most only have one option. So even if an ISP start-up venture promised privacy, you will not likely be able to get it. Most ISPs have a monopoly of the Fiber Optic network in an area. New York City for example has two major ISPs in Spectrum and Optimum, while Verizon still tries to install it fiber optic network throughout the city. For some areas it’s only one option available. So there is no consumer choice, its an illusion the Republican made up.
Lastly using Facebook and Google as examples of this kind of practice. Starting with Google, yes they sell google chrome and google search data, and they have ad programs such as adwords, ad partners, and youtube ads. However, Google chrome has incognito to block google from getting your data, and they have adblocker to block ads. Facebook uses data collected on its websites and apps mostly. They have some programs that allow companies like Amazon to advertise on my feed, but that’s ok. It’s based on my Amazon browsing. Facebook has setting to disable all of that.
The most important difference is that Google and Facebook are user focused. They want to get you relevant ads, but not saturate you with them. What does that mean? I only see Google ad words when I make a search, and the ads are based on my keywords. Facebook’s shows ads based on interest and behavior, and I am not bombarded with ads for everything I read on the internet. Also for Facebook sponsored content and ads the are liked by my friends get more time on my feed. It is not solely based on price.
So what would the ads look like under this new era of the internet? Imagine googling how to cure an upset stomach. Now google won’t put ads in front of you for this, just relevant articles. When you click on the article from WebMD for example, you may see ads for pepto bismol saturating the page, rather than just reading the article. Next thing you know that ad will follow you to other pages, because you have an upset stomach that you are looking to cure. But who says, you want medicine to cure it?
What is worst is when it comes to finances. Now if you do online banking the ISP has access to that. They can store your login credentials, and see what transactions you make. Now they know your individual income and can adjust your rate if they chose. Also they will know your location and saturate you with ads from nearby places. They will know everything about you and they will sell that information, or lose it in a cyber attack.
The biggest problem that lead to this is that Republicans don’t see the internet as a public utility like electricity, water, and heating. So they want to deregulate it and give all the power to the ISP. We use the internet for almost everything nowadays and we are connected 24/7. No one should be keeping data on everything we do on the internet. Then comes all the donations the telecom industry and their lobbyist gave to Republicans.