The Sunlight Foundation, a Washington DC-based political transparency focused group analyzed the 800,000 comments left in response to Federal Communication Commission’s network neutrality plan. Here are some highlights of what they found:
- Less than 1 percent of comments were clearly opposed to net neutrality
- 60 percent of comments submitted were form letters written by organized campaigns
- Around two-thirds of commenters objected to the idea of paid priority for Internet traffic, or division of Internet traffic into separate speed tiers
- Around two-thirds of comments discussed the importance of competition among ISPs.
- Around 40 percent of comments discussed the importance of consumer choice.
- Almost half of comments discussed the economic impact, or the impact on small businesses and innovation, of the end of net neutrality.
- Around 5 percent had anti-regulation messages.
Sunlight’s data analysis isn’t very different from the analysis from San Francisco-based data analytics company, Quid. (Those were first published on the NPR blog.) As most of you are pretty well aware that I have been an active proponent of two things — consumer choice and competition. If we have those in the marketplace, we don’t even have to get to any talk about net neutrality because it will force a different kind of behavior amongst Internet providers.
For past four years, my Gigaom colleagues and I have been arguing that there is direct correlation between network openness and neutrality and ability to create current engines of growth and nothing really has changed my thinking. It is heartening to know that others too feel that way.
The graphic is courtesy of Quid via NPR