OpenMedia

Stop the Secrecy

It's about control

Mon, 09/17/2012 - 17:17 -- OpenMedia

AT&T is about to cripple a video-calling app called FaceTime, telling iPhone users that to get it via mobile, they’ll have to pay a premium (more expensive) rate. Today, we’re collaborating with FreePress to give you a way to take a stand: Please tell the FCC to take action against AT&T's blocking.

Take action!

If you care about issues like the TPP’s Internet trap,1 then you’ll want to know about this:

It’s not rocket science—once you buy a product from a company, it shouldn’t be any of its business how you choose to use it.

Then there’s the upside-down world of AT&T.

The telecom giant is about to cripple a video-calling app called FaceTime, telling iPhone users that to get it via mobile, they’ll have to pay a premium (more expensive) rate.2

In short, AT&T is taking away your choice, and telling us which applications and services we get to use. If we let AT&T get away with this what’s to stop them restricting access other mobile and Internet services? What’s to stop them from becoming the communications gatekeeper they were before the Internet age?

Luckily, Free Press—a group we’ve worked with closely in the fight for an open and affordable Internet—is giving you a way to take a stand: Tell the FCC to take action against AT&T's blocking.

If we had actual choices for mobile phone service in America, AT&T's latest scam would never fly. You’d simply take your business elsewhere.

But we don't have real choice for mobile service in America. What we do have, however, is the FCC’s Open Internet Order that explicitly prohibits AT&T from taking control of your cell phone services in this way.

The rules state that mobile phone providers can’t "block applications that compete with the provider’s voice or video telephony services."3 And yet, AT&T is doing precisely that — violating the letter and the spirit of our essential Internet openness rules, also called Net Neutrality.

Tell the FCC to take action against AT&T's blocking.

Companies like AT&T and Verizon have shown they’ll consider all sorts of ridiculous things to prop up declining revenue streams like voice and text.

Today AT&T is blocking FaceTime unless you pay its toll. But tomorrow it could be Skype, Google Voice, or text messages.

And that’s why users everywhere need to speak out against AT&T’s harrowing vision for the future of our wireless Internet.

For an open future,

Steve, Shea, Lindsey, and Reilly—your OpenMedia team

P.S. At OpenMedia we’re working day-in and day-out to build a world-wide Internet freedom movement. That’s what we need to safeguard the possibilities of the Internet. We know we can’t do it alone, so we’re thrilled to be collaborating with FreePress to prevent Big Telecom giants from becoming Internet gatekeepers. We win by amplifying our voices through collaboration—let’s keep going.

P.P.S. Do you want to stay up-to-date with key Internet freedom developments? Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Google + , and even Pinterest.

 

Footnotes

[1] Learn more at http://StopTheTrap.net

[2] See Craig Aaron: AT&T: Pay Me, Screw Net Neutrality and Joel Kelsey: FCC Ruling Will Save Verizon Wireless Customers Big Bucks.

[3] See the FCC’s open Internet rules.