Free Our Internet Statement on Today’s Net Neutrality Brief from Google and Facebook’s Largest Trade Associations

Below is a statement from Christie-Lee McNally, Executive Director of Free Our Internet:

Today’s brief from Google and Facebook’s largest trade associations arguing that Obama’s “Net Neutrality” regulations ensure that consumers “decide what websites and apps they can use,” reeks of desperate irony.

As we have stated time and time again, the fake 2015 Net Neutrality rules that the monopoly tech companies helped to craft in coordination with the Obama Administration were never about consumer protections, they were about big tech protections. The rules were designed to protect big tech’s business interests and ensure that companies like Google and Facebook would never be subject to so-called neutrality principles, in turn allowing them free reign to censor content and decide what their billions of monthly global users can and cannot access and view, with zero transparency. As the Internet Association routinely neglects to mention, the 2015 rules did not cover the edge providers, who regularly censor and block lawful content on their monopoly platforms. It is laughable they would be so arrogant as to file a response citing protections against the ability to block access to apps, when the duopoly of Apple and Google often shut out access to applications from their marketplace. It is more laughable that they would cite the importance of access to websites and content, when Twitter regularly shadowbans and blocks users, YouTube blocks and de-monetizes content, Google manipulates search reviews and results, and Facebook essentially does all of the above.

Far from ensuring protection for consumers, the only thing that the 2015 rules ensured was stronger monopoly power and content control for the Internet Association’s largest members. This is why we support real net neutrality, which should also be applied to Google, Facebook and Twitter.