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On February 26, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) passed rules that reclassifies the Internet as a public utility. This allows the FCC to regulate all Internet Service Providers (ISP) to prevent them from creating “slow and fast lanes” for web traffic effectively allowing all websites, streaming services, and consumers to have equal access to data on the Internet.

WHAT IS NET NEUTRALITY?

Net neutrality states that ISPs should give consumers access to content and applications on an equal basis without favoring some sources or slowing down, even blocking, others. In other words, the data you’re streaming from Netflix isn’t the same as Joe Schmo’s video blog. In fact, your Netflix data is probably faster. Same goes with Comcast, Amazon, and other big name players.

This video from CNN Money does a great job of simplifying net neutrality.

CNN Money net neutrality

WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR SMALL BUSINESS?

Small businesses will now be able to compete with larger ones. As it stands right now, larger companies can pay an additional fee to an ISP to deliver their data faster. Net neutrality prevents big companies with more resources from gaining a competitive advantage over small ones. They can no longer pay more money for faster delivery of their ads and marketing content.

For example, let’s say your startup is a video streaming company. A customer decides one weekend to use your service to binge watch the new season of House of Cards. With net neutrality now in place, an ISP will now be prohibited from slowing down the delivery of your data simply because it’s streamed from a company that is a direct competitor with ones who pay to get their data delivered faster.

The Internet has become as vital and necessary as running water and electricity. It’s a public good and should be regulated like one. With the passing of these new rules, the FCC has effectively leveled the playing field for all.

We know all about leveling playing fields. That’s the whole reason our CEO, Dan Price, started this business: to make it easier for small business owners to achieve the American dream by making financial services fair for all. He saw his community’s businesses being ripped off and he knew that wasn’t fair. Gravity Payments was formed to make it easy and simple for independent businesses to accept credit cards.

To learn more about how we can help level the playing field for your business, contact us today! We’d be happy to help out in any way we can.

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