Thanks to your support, Techdirt has reached its funding goal with just days to spare!
Detailed and in-depth reporting on the issues around net neutrality and why they’re important. This will include timely “news” updates, as well as more in-depth explorations, interviews and reporting into the issues, the challenges, the players and the opportunities.
Open Q&A sessions around net neutrality, interviews with key players and infographics to try to explain complex issues.
Access to every story, by every writer on Beacon.
The fight over net neutrality is nothing less than a fight for the way our internet will be in the future.
The future of the Internet will be decided in Washington, DC over the next year. Techdirt will be on the front lines of the battle.
Will it be an open and free platform that allows anyone with a computer to build the next great internet service, or will it increasingly be balkanized and limited so that only the richest companies can truly participate – and with the big broadband players getting to call all the shots (and setup toll booths around the internet).
If net neutrality isn’t maintained, internet service providers might be able to throttle your download speeds from certain sites unless you pay more.
A recent study by Pew Research found that there was barely any mainstream media coverage of net neutrality in the first half of 2014, even as the issue re-emerged as a key fight for the future of the internet thanks to an appeals court ruling, and the FCC’s planned efforts. In part, this is because the issue is complicated and nuanced – two things that often scare off the mainstream media. In part, it’s because many in the mainstream media have vested interests as well (NBC, for example, is owned by Comcast). But it’s vitally important that there be more detailed coverage of this pivotal battle.
Comcast spends millions lobbying against net neutrality, and owns NBC, who’s expected to report on the issue. Techdirt’s reporting is wholly independent.
Many people remember the big fight a few years ago around SOPA/PIPA – which was another pivotal debate in what kind of internet we, the public, wanted to have going forward. Techdirt was not only one of the very first to report on that legislation, but a Harvard study found that it was a key player in moving that debate forward, building awareness and getting people involved. Techdirt has also been deeply involved in both technology and policy issues for over 15 years, and knows or has access to many of the key players in this upcoming fight within the activism community, the tech world and the policy space.
According to a Harvard study about the SOPA/PIPA debate, Techdirt was the “single most important professional media site over the entire period, overshadowing the more established media.” The chart above tracks the number of in-links to media coverage about SOPA/PIPA. Techdirt was linked more than any other source.
Patrick J. Casey
Let’s keep this going.
Thanks to your support, Techdirt has reached its funding goal with just days to spare! But we can still do more. The latest fad in crowdfunding is stretch goals, and we’re all for experiments like that.
With another $5,000 in support beyond the target, we’ll add a monthly online Q&A for backers. This will be a place to chat with Techdirt authors (and maybe special guests) about the latest happenings in the net neutrality fight and anything else as well.
With an additional $10,000, we’ll design an infographic concerning the net neutrality fight. We’re not yet sure exactly what the infographic will show, but there’s plenty of stuff happening, and we’ll figure out something good. If you haven’t seen our infographic skills, check out https://www.techdirt.com/skyisrising2/
If we can really stretch and hit $15,000… well, we’ll have another surprise stretch goal. We’ll reveal that if we get close… so make it happen.
Thanks to all of you, we’re only 14% away from our funding goal. We have two days to do it but we’re confident we can get there.
Please share our campaign with friends and family on social media and email: http://www.beaconreader.com/projects/the-net-neutrality-battle
To give you an idea of what this project can do (and what we have done), here’s a a note of support from Jen Hoelzer, ex-Communications Director and Deputy Chief of Staff for Senator Ron Wyden
“If you care about a free and open Internet, you want Techdirt to be at full strength in the Net Neutrality debate. You want them to be educating more lawmakers and their staffers (like my former self) to understand these issues and be confident enough in their knowledge to take a stand against the cable companies and their lobbyists.
I’m donating to Techdirt’s campaign because I know where I would have been without their work and I don’t want a tech debate to take place without them. I hope you will do the same. It’s also a great way to say thanks.”
Hello Techdirt backers,
First off, thank you so much for backing the projects and getting us this far. You guys absolutely rock. We’re currently over 60% funded with about a week to go, and it’s really thanks to each and every one of you for contributing – and to our matching donors, including Twitch.tv and Namecheap.
If you know of others who recognize how important a free and open internet are, and who might want to support our in-depth and independent reporting on it, please share the link with them, however you can (email, social, smoke signal: it’s all good).:
We’re going to need your help if we’re going to reach the funding target.
Assuming the project reaches the goal—and I’m confident it will—we’ll immediately be able to ramp up our net neutrality coverage, including bringing in guest writers, conducting interviews with key players, talking to a variety of stakeholders about what’s at stake, hopefully getting some interviews with key officials and actually digging deep into the over 1 million comments that were submitted to the FCC on this matter.
We’ve already found some oddities (see: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20140718/07115427928/guy-files-dishwasher-user-manual-as-fcc-comment-net-neutrality.shtml ) but I’m putting together a bigger list of interesting comments and really want to spend some time finding some gems and exploring what they have to say.
Also, if you missed it, I did a Reddit AMA this week about net neutrality and a bunch of other issues: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2bf512/mike_masnick_here_founder_of_techdirt_blogger_net/
Thanks again, Mike
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