Though the Federal government is taking steps to eliminate net neutrality, not all states are playing along. Earlier this week, Washington became the first state in America to pass legislation protecting net neutrality.
In a bipartisan effort, legislators in Washington passed House Bill 2282. Governor Jay Inslee promptly signed it into law. “Washington will be the first state in the nation to preserve the open internet,” said Inslee on Monday.
The bill was approved by the legislature last month and exists to safeguard net neutrality protections. As you may remember, these were repealed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and are scheduled to end by April 23.
What is net neutrality? Essentially, it requires internet service providers to treat all online content the same. Without it, internet service providers can deliberately speed up or slow down the rate at which websites load. This gives certain sites and companies advantages over others.
The FCC’s decision has been hotly criticized in recent months. As MSN reports, “Attorneys general from more than 20 red and blue states filed a lawsuit in January to stop the repeal.” So far, Washington is the only state to pass legislation protecting net neutrality rules.
According to Inslee, the new measure will protect an open internet in Washington. In his own words, the law allows “the free flow of information and ideas in one of the greatest demonstrations of free speech in our history.” HB2282 will go into effect June 6.
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