Net Neutrality Protesters Rickroll FCC Meeting
Ashley Allen / 8 months ago
The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is on the verge of dismantling the net neutrality rules introduced under President Obama – with the full endorsement of President Trump – but not without serious challenge from pro-net neutrality and human rights groups. At a recent monthly open meeting, new FCC Chairman Ajit Pai was subjected to a most internet-appropriate protest at the impending loss of net neutrality: activists sang Rick Astley’s 1987 hit, Never Gonna Give You Up, to him in front of a room full of attendees.
The adapted lyrics included the lines “a common carrier’s what we’re thinking of / we wouldn’t sing this to any other Pai.” Pai even sang along with the chorus.
— Lydia Beyoud (@ElleBeyoud) April 20, 2017
The demonstrators are members of Free Press, a communication and connectivity rights group that played a major role in getting the FCC’s net neutrality rules enacted in 2015. The protest is just one attention-grabbing part of Free Press’ fight to protect net neutrality.
“The administration’s recent attacks on broadband privacy prove what we’ve known all along: It isn’t looking out for us; it cares only about serving AT&T, Comcast and Verizon,” Free Press writes. “And on the heels of congressional Republicans’ vote to let your internet service provider sell your private information (like your web-browsing history) to the highest bidder, Trump and his team have set their sights on Net Neutrality.”
“The Trump administration is doing everything in its power to clamp down on dissent. If we lose Net Neutrality, it will have succeeded,” the organisation explains. “It’s thanks to Net Neutrality that anyone can mobilize their friends and families online. When activists are able to turn out thousands of people in the streets at a moment’s notice, it’s because companies like Comcast aren’t allowed to block their messages or websites.”
“This administration continues to threaten civil liberties, undermine a free press and strip away environmental protections,” it adds, giving greater context to its fight. “We will be helpless to organize and resist without Net Neutrality.”