Net Neutrality and Nonprofits

The current presidential administration has shown interest in changing the net neutrality regulations and this could have a surprising impact on nonprofit organizations.

What is net neutrality?

“The principle that Internet service providers should enable access to all content and applications regardless of the source, and without favoring or blocking particular products or websites”

What happens when net neutrality is lost?

Those with less resources, like many nonprofits, are unable to keep up with other businesses on the internet. An example of this would be one website taking much longer to load than another. Christopher Worman, senior director of alliances and community engagement for TechSoup in San Francisco, believes that nonprofits will be at a disadvantage because these organizations are already on tight budgets. Nonprofits have been leaders in using social media because it is “low cost and a means of connecting with the next generation of supporters” but with the possibility of restrictions and regulation, there may be less access to those important tools.

What should nonprofits do?

Christopher Worman thinks that “organizations should try to understand the effects of net neutrality now as opposed to having a reactive conversation in the future.” Woman suggests brainstorming possible courses of action for a situation like everything taking twice as long to load online and how that would affect the nonprofit’s ability to continue their services.

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Andy Segedin. “Possible Net Neutrality Changes Will Block Access, Cost More”. The NonProfit Times.

 

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