How cryptocurrencies are fighting back against the net neutrality repeal

3 min read

By Henry Benjamin, Skycoin

With the recent repeal of net neutrality rules, many people are genuinely afraid of what the future holds.

Although the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) touted the decision as a way to increase competition, improve internet infrastructure, and help the consumer in having more choices, many skeptics are afraid that the exact opposite will happen.

People are afraid that internet service providers will throttle speeds to popular websites, force businesses and consumers to pay for certain internet packages, and even affect privacy and anonymity over the internet.

Though internet service providers have promised that they won’t do such things, it’s quite difficult to believe such a promise.

With the recent boom in cryptocurrency, traders are also afraid that internet service providers will unethically block traffic to specific crypto exchange platforms or force these platforms to pay premiums to allow users access.

This, of course, will have a very adverse effect on the success of cryptocurrency. If people find it difficult to exchange cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, then they will undoubtedly stop using them. This will not only affect their price but can also lead to the complete death of what most believe to be the currency of the future.

But not all hope is lost. If ISPs and large corporations do decide to take advantage of the lack of regulations, there are still ways to fight against the repeal.

What is the internet doing about this?

Luckily, the internet isn’t taking this issue lying down, especially traders and cryptocurrency creators. In preparation for if ISPs do decide to limit internet usage, people have started creating their own nodes or peer-to-peer internet services.

These nodes are entirely free from ISP control and are instead controlled by the user community. This model ensures greater security, more anonymity, faster speeds, better customer service, and lower costs.

In this way, these individuals are creating unique and innovative solutions to fight back against the net neutrality repeal and helping to keep the internet an open and equal forum for everyone. At the heart of these initiatives is blockchain, the distributed ledger technology that underlies Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Blockchain enables networks and applications to exist and function without relying on centralized authorities and gatekeepers.

Cryptocurrencies’ role

Certain cryptocurrencies such as Skycoin and Substratum have created their own “internet” to circumvent the challenges of the post–net neutrality era. Substratum, for instance, involves one user acting as a host for websites and applications using the Substratum interface.

From the host, nodes are created that help forward content from that user to other internet users. The final outcome is that anyone viewing content that is being hosted through Substratum can see that content in its entirety with absolutely no censorship, same fast speeds, and no paywall.

Skycoin is also similar to Substratum, but it is currently thought of as a much more advanced and reliable way for users to create an open internet service. Skycoin can work in conjunction with Skywire, a sophisticated mesh network technology that can fight against the FCC’s repeal of net neutrality.

Though ISPs can potentially throttle internet speeds because of the repeal, these ISPs have always been able to collect and sell people’s browsing habits to large scale corporation. This is thought of as a severe invasion of privacy by most people.

Also, the fact that ISPs often have unreliable services, expensive rates, and low security, Skywire has been introduced to make users feel more in control. With Skycoin, the more people who use it to host websites and other content, the more people can use Skycoin to consume media or other virtual resources.

This makes Skywire a truly self-sustaining and efficient network that is completely controlled by the user base.

Skywire is also extremely fast and well protected, allowing users to feel safe and anonymous.

With Skywire, specific Skywire miners are used to provide a very strong backbone for this new decentralized form of internet. In a way, the miner acts as a unique VPN that allows users to create their own nodes for content distribution.

Final thoughts

With the FCC’s decision to gut net neutrality, traditional cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum are in jeopardy.

Luckily alternative coins like Skycoin are stepping up to the plate to combat this decision and bring fast, reliable, and secure internet to everyone.

Though it is still unsure if internet service providers will try to take advantage of consumers and block internet access, it is reassuring to know that there are alternatives like Skycoin and Substratum in place to protect the average person from large corporations and selfish ISPs.

The improvements in privacy and bringing back power to the average, everyday person is something that many people are looking for as the current state of the internet becomes more and more threatened.

Henry Benjamin is marketing coordinator at Skycoin

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