Inside Net Neutrality: Is your ISP filtering content?
by: Mathew Honan
Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) acts as a gateway between you and the Internet. It’s the pipeline that allows you to access everything from your e-mail to remote file servers where you back up your important data—not to mention browsing the Web.
But what happens if, instead of a pipeline, your ISP instead acts as a filter? In some cases, that scenario is beginning to play out as ISPs increasingly seem to be moving toward favoring some types of traffic over others.
The idea that all Internet traffic should be treated equally is known as network neutrality. In other words, no matter who uploads or downloads data, or what kind of data is involved, networks should treat all of those packets in the same manner. To do otherwise, advocates argue, would amount to data discrimination.