Net Neutrality: Why It Matters

Here's a new concrete example for you to digest, courtesy of the band Pearl Jam:
After concluding our Sunday night show at Lollapalooza, fans informed us that portions of that performance were missing and may have been censored by AT&T during the "Blue Room" Live Lollapalooza Webcast.

When asked about the missing performance, AT&T informed Lollapalooza that portions of the show were in fact missing from the webcast, and that their content monitor had made a mistake in cutting them.

During the performance of "Daughter" the following lyrics were sung to the tune of Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall" but were cut from the webcast:

- "George Bush, leave this world alone." (the second time it was sung); and

- "George Bush find yourself another home."
Sorry, but I'm not buying the content monitor making a coincidental mistake during the airing of these specific lyrics. Disagree all you want, but it's not conspiracy. It's fact. And it's right there in front of you. What kills me is that this song clip would've easily made it past the censors on regular network television, without any audio editing of the performance.

AT&T has shown, as clear as day, how they can manipulate content at their own discretion without any fear of consequence. Providers simply have no right to censor content for any reason whatsoever, not to mention come up with some dumbass excuse when they do. As SaveTheInternet points out, AT&T has an established PR problem:
AT&T’s history of breaking trust with their customers includes handing over private phone records to the government, promising to deliver services to underserved communities and then skipping town, pledging never to interfere with the free flow of information online while hatching plans with the likes of Cisco, Viacom, RIAA and MPA to build and deploy technology that will spy on user traffic.
This really is a no-brainer bi-partisan issue that everyone could agree upon. Provider-manipulated (or censored) content is simply unacceptable. Unfortunately, it looks like we'll need to be the huge squeaky wheel once again after our beloved Congress returns from their break.

For more info, head to SaveTheInternet.

[H/T to ThinkProgress]

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