Experts say proposal to end Net Neutrality could harm local busi - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Experts say proposal to end Net Neutrality could harm local businesses, consumers

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Two local internet experts say your favorite website may take a lot longer to load if new rules regarding Net Neutrality take effect.

Net Neutrality is based around the concept that people who use the internet have equal access to any service, with no particular content having priority over any other. Its something we've all taken for granted, according to a leading telecommunications expert.

"But providers of internet service, particularly the big ones like Comcast or Charter or AT&T or Verizon, really want the ability to discriminate between users," said Barry Orton, a telecommunications professor at UW-Madison.

Orton says the Federal Communications Commission is proposing a plan to let those big providers do exactly that, by allowing them to provide a internet "fast lane" to companies that want to pay for it.

"The real forerunner of this problem is the current issue with Netflix, where they signed a deal with Comcast to get essentially a fast lane, a privileged route," said Orton.

"What they're really talking about is creating a slow lane for those who can't pay," said Bryan Chan, Chief Executive Officer at SupraNet Communications in Madison.

Chan and Orton are both guests on Capitol City Sunday this weekend.  SupraNet is a local business-to-business internet service provider.  Like the leaders of most internet companies, Chan opposes the FCC's plan.

"The idea that certain sources and certain destinations on the internet are privileged, or that need to have a different type of access, will have an effect on the businesses and consumers that we serve," said Chan.

Dr. Peter Burke from Madison Edgewood College is also on the program this weekend to talk about controversial issue policies in schools and why they are on the rise here in Wisconsin.

Capitol City Sunday airs at 9:00 a.m. on WKOW 27.


MADISON (WKOW) -- If the Federal Communications Commission has its way and approves a two-tiered system for the internet, it will impact both people who surf the web and local companies that rely on its speed to make their living.

That's according to two industry experts who tell 27 News the current FCC proposal would allow certain internet service providers, such as large cable companies, to establish a "fast lane" to content providers who are willing to pay for it.

UW-Madison Telecommunications Professor Barry Orton and Bryan Chan, the Chief Executive Officer at SupraNet Communications both say that means smaller content providers would be pushed into a slow lane.

Both Orton and Chan will be on Capitol City Sunday to discuss the issue this weekend.

Capitol Bureau Chief Greg Neumann will have a preview of Sunday's segment on 27 News at 6.

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