Senator calls net neutrality the 'free speech issue of our time'

Senator Al Franken net neutrality
Watch Senator Franken's video below

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is messing with net neutrality, and some, including Senator Al Franken, aren't happy.

Franken, a Democrat for Minnesota, has published a video on YouTube proclaiming net neutrality "the free speech issue of our time."

In essence the FCC has proposed new rules that will allow internet service providers to provide "fast lanes" for companies, websites and services that pay for them.

The argument against that is clear: creating "fast lanes" would by definition create slow lanes as well, and services that don't pay will be at a disadvantage. The free flow of information so important to the functioning of society will be hindered.


In the video Franken points out that YouTube itself is a company that at one time benefitted from net neutrality. He says neutrality is part of "the basic architecture of the internet."

"Mom and pop stores would lose even more ground to corporate giants," Franken says. "Big media companies will be able to get their version of the news to consumers faster."

"This is the free speech issue of our time," he continues. "We cannot allow the FCC to implement a pay-to-play system that silences our voices and amplifies that of big corporate interests."

He urges internet users "to rise up and make our voices heard to preserve net neutrality" and head to

Meanwhile FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has done a pretty poor job defending the FCC's proposals, but even his own commission members and major internet corporations are feeling anxious about the measures.

Michael Rougeau

Michael Rougeau is a former freelance news writer for TechRadar. Studying at Goldsmiths, University of London, and Northeastern University, Michael has bylines at Kotaku, 1UP, G4, Complex Magazine, Digital Trends, GamesRadar, GameSpot, IFC, Animal New York, @Gamer, Inside the Magic, Comic Book Resources, Zap2It, TabTimes, GameZone, Cheat Code Central, Gameshark, Gameranx, The Industry, Debonair Mag, Kombo, and others.

Micheal also spent time as the Games Editor for, and was the managing editor at GameSpot before becoming an Animal Care Manager for Wags and Walks.