The Trump administration has made it very clear that the internet is on its list of things to ruin for everyone, having already done away with privacy. Net neutrality has also been under siege, with new FCC director Aji Pai, a Trump appointee, suggesting an honor system for internet service providers in place of actual regulations. Currently, net neutrality requires iSPs to treat all data the same, which means that no one has to pay any more to stream Game Of Thrones than, we don’t know, Cake Boss (some people find it soothing, okay?).
Such regulations have proven necessary—just look up “Comcast throttling”—and for a long time, Netflix was counted among net neutrality’s proponents. But recently, CEO Reed Hastings said an open internet wasn’t “our primary battle at this point. I think Trump’s FCC is going to unwind the rules no matter what anybody says.” While he certainly appeared to be giving up, he might have just been feinting. Motherboard reports the streaming platform’s just announced its plans to participate in a day of protest.
On July 12, Netflix is joining fellow internet giant Amazon as well as Reddit, Pornhub, Imgur, and more to raise awareness and support by slowing down or disrupting service. Although that sounds a bit like punishing their subscribers, it’s really just to give people a sense of what the internet would be like without net neutrality. The protest will take place five days before “the first deadline for comments on the FCC’s proposal to roll back net neutrality protections,” so if you also want to join the fight, prepare yourself for a day of shitty internet to preserve the good (read: open) internet’s future.