The FCC’s vote on net neutrality is scheduled for Thursday morning. If it passes as expected, the plan will guarantee musicians a level playing field against major corporations. Without net neutrality, we revert back to times when only major label acts get distributed to the masses, and musicians are required to go through corporate gatekeepers just to reach their fans. Who wants that? Certainly not musicians. Nearly 100 artists have announced their support for net neutrality and the FCC’s current plan to reclassify internet service under Title II in an open letter addressed to FCC chairman Tom Wheeler and published through the Future of Music Coalition.
“We write to you at a crucial moment for net neutrality, as we probably don’t have to remind you. We understand that your position can be thankless and that it is difficult to take a stand for what is right when there is so much pressure from powerful interests and their political allies. As musicians and composers, we want to thank you for moving forward with strong net neutrality rules. As so many creators have already noted, reclassification under Title II is the best way to ensure that the Internet remains open for us to build businesses, reach audiences and earn a living in what is a challenging marketplace for creative content.”
Corporate interests have waged a last-ditch effort to stop reclassification, with the absurd claim that “Obama wants to regulate the Internet”, but it appears we are about to see a historic move by the FCC, bowing to public pressure to keep the Internet open — a move that is really important for musicians.
Net neutrality allows musicians access to a wide audience, and gives them the ability to build businesses selling their work online. As stated in the letter:
“Net neutrality is not only a powerful engine of creative expression and civic discourse, it is the very oxygen of a free and competitive marketplace built on technological and cultural innovation. And artists are drivers of both.”
Make your voice heard — Rock the net and support net neutrality for the benefit of musicians and fans everywhere.