“This isn’t just an issue for Silicon Valley or large telecommunications shops. This is a Main Street concern that affects businesses and consumers across the country. We intend to make our voice heard on this important issue.”
On December 14, the FCC voted to kill Net Neutrality, now what? Linda Liberatore of Secure Pay One answers a few questions about net neutrality, what it is and how it could impact real estate investors.
For those of you who had not realized this ruling happened, let’s take a look deeper, starting with the basics.
What is It?
As found in Merriam Webster:
Definition of net neutrality:
The idea, principle, or requirement that internet service providers should or must treat all internet data as the same regardless of its kind, source, or destination.
“… a philosophical contest that’s being fought under the banner of “net neutrality,” a slogan that inspires rhetorical devotion but eludes precise definition. Broadly, it means everything on the internet should be equally accessible—that the internet should be a place where great ideas compete on equal terms with big money. -Sarah Rabil
On Thursday, December 14, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to not regulate internet service providers and providers will now be governed by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) Net Neutrality covered issues that ensured providers could not block or throttle content based on media that might impact speed. Some advocacy groups feel that American people and small businesses may suffer without net neutrality to protect big business from having the pockets to buy the speed and access they need to deliver their message.
For investors that could mean you might have to pay to access certain websites such as social media channels, or other listing websites, to advertise rentals or property sales to include finding deals.
Will it Impact Me?
“It is too soon to tell,” was the common reply I received when I reached out to some sources. As I contacted people for their reaction Friday many were not aware of the issue. I quickly scrolled through comment boards to news articles and blogs. People’s reactions ranged from nervous and somewhat panicked to anytime government is out of the way it is a good thing.
Senate and House Democrats hope to use their authority under the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to stop the repeal. CRA bills require a simple majority in the House and Senate, plus the president’s signature, to overturn recently passed legislation. On Friday, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said that he would be forcing a vote on the issue.
“One, this CRA doesn’t need the support of the majority leader,” Schumer said at a press conference Friday. “We can bring it to the floor and force a vote. So, there will be a vote to repeal the rule that the FCC passed.”
What do the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Think?
The rollback will impact the majority of REALTORS®, who operate small businesses with typically no more than two principals, Elizabeth Mendenhall, 2018 NAR president noted. She vowed that NAR will fight to have net neutrality rules reinstated. “The last thing small businesses need today is additional costs and competitive disadvantages that put them on the defensive,” Mendenhall said. “This isn’t just an issue for Silicon Valley or large telecommunications shops. This is a Main Street concern that affects businesses and consumers across the country. We intend to make our voice heard on this important issue.”
Being a small business myself, taking advantage of free resources for content, education and tools to run my business, I will be keeping a close eye on the lobbying that goes on. I’m interested to get your feedback. What do you think? Send your comments to LindaL@securepayone.com or leave a comment below. You can also use our social share buttons below to discuss this issue with your colleagues, friends, and family.