Posted in The Publications

Net Neutrality and Retro Living

Now that the FCC has approved the splitting up and selling off of individual internet services such as (but not limited to); streaming, social media, gaming and many things we all use every day, all that separates it from reaching the public is a vote in the Supreme Court. This partitioning and selling off of services is part of the downward spiral that occurs when greed is allowed to control policy decisions as a result of legalized bribery, courtesy of the Citizens United ruling that allows companies and corporations to be seen as people. We are witnessing what is a desperate attempt by some ISP’s to squeeze every last possible cent from their customers while providing less service for more money. With each service sold there is potential for fees for providing the service that you are already paying for. Ultimately, this results in a capital gain for the upper 20% of shareholders in the service package providers, while stripping clean the wallets of those potential consumers.

So here’s the real question: How is this at all relative to the retro lifestyle? As a result of the death of the internet, it may be harder to keep and utilize these services, therefore; we as a nation will have to learn to adapt to the true pre-internet way of life. One of the most valuable services to us on the internet is Google, a search engine that makes information around the world available to us without very much effort. I suspect that if you do not want to pay for the new unregulated internet services you may want to subscribe to the encyclopedia Britannica so that you can open up a volume of this knowledge-rich book to find out things that have been included and added to the volumes over the years (if only an instant access information site was available). If you can’t afford to pay for unregulated internet check out the encyclopedia Britannica store to stay up to date with last year’s current events!The Encyclopedia Britannica

Most exciting for me is that if streaming becomes a pay for access services (such as YouTube (where I publish my videos on this site and my own gear reviews and music antics), and Spotify (and all other streaming platforms)), the overall packages will become extra expensive for residential use. If you are paying for Spotify Pro then you will be spending even more, if only these services didn’t cost more than they already do. This could lead to the resurgence of the record store while the public resorts to buying albums, as well as the expansion of the market for CD, vinyl, DVD, and blue-ray. Yes, Netflix and Amazon Prime video will still be available (but both losing customers if net neutrality is lost and streaming becomes a separate service). Feel free to join my protest by voting with your wallets and canceling online services while the FCC helps ISP’s attempt to drain us of our last penny. Youtube will be losing many creators as part of this as well, and they may lose my patronage because I won’t be able to watch their videos. This will hopefully lead to the resurgence of the movie theatre and the video rental store, I genuinely miss the fun of going into a blockbuster or family video and renting a B movie and laughing with friends about how bad it is: truly retro in the best way. This new market for physical products does, however, mean that the price of physical media may go up as demand goes up. While not a pastime of mine, the “Netflix, and chill” method of spending time with a special someone will have to become dates out at a movie theatre, and some people may have to learn the subtleties of communication and courtesy of spending time with someone else and not being able to go to a nearly limitless movie theatre on their home tv systems or computers. Record Stores in the USA

Another advantage of not having access to Youtube or streaming could be the resurgence of live music scenes when people no longer have easy affordable access to live streams and mp3’s or any of the nearly infinite convenient services that bring the music to them! The transfer of information will suffer most; with corporate-owned newspapers that control their messages and do not report honestly regarding their sponsors if there are genuine matters of concern regarding the will become our main source of news and information, while responsible reporting would be hoped for, it is not guaranteed. We would also be living in a world where we find out tomorrow about an event happening as opposed to immediately. TV services are going to still exist, but this doesn’t mean that the corporate owned networks that may even own the ISP’s that are trying to parcel off the different aspects of the internet that we use will be honest in their reporting if a sponsor or donor doesn’t want specific and potentially vital news getting out about a public health or safety issue brought on by the constant deregulation of business practices and the deregulation of environmental protections.

Most interestingly we may see the protection and utilization of libraries again if the internet is minced into tiny chunks as the FCC ruling would allow, which offers some more public interest in their libraries. We should enjoy them regardless of the greed-fueled systemic cannibalism we are in the midst of witnessing.

In addition to the dangers of bias being integrated into the National and global news, the chances for shopping pattern shifts are high. Without the Amazon and Ebay luxuries that power our abilities to purchase a variety of goods sight-unseen, many major retailers like ModCloth, Groupon, Airbnb, Uber, and ASOS will lose out entirely on a profound percentage of their overall consumers. What might save our collective asses is that the barons of these fallout companies will find themselves rather outraged at the greater system responsible for their n-dollar losses. We digress… This does sound like the greatest resurgence of Harpie’s favorite piece of furniture: the gossip bench! Used for telephones, phone books, and notepads for taking messages, this mid-20th-century staple is an icon of 40s modern living. With enough catalogs to contemporary that of Sears Roebuck back in the day, Americans may find themselves dialing in from landlines to get all their fulfillment in dry goods. What a shame it would be to have to speak to someone and learn effective communication skills through a telephone order. We may even learn delayed gratification if the lines are busy.

Now, we at the RR blog are rather adverse to the use of Chromebooks by school-age children to basically take the place of all their scrap paper and assignments, but this is exactly why on overdependence on technology when unmitigated is bad as well. While it would cost parents a tuition or a severe localized tax increase, the Chromebook technology has taken a toll on children’s learning in the united states. The use of writing and repetition helps to affirm in the minds of students the concepts they study. Without net neutrality, these parents will additionally have to pay for their at-home services to allow students to complete coursework at home when dependent upon Chromebooks. The implications for Online college and postgraduate scholars are frightening as well. Would school require certain internet packages? Would it be possible to depend purely upon libraries and Starbucks for Wi-Fi for school work? With what money will they pay for their Blackboard or eCollege residential packages?

Let’s be clear. The Retro Revival Blog and its authors strongly advocate against over-dependence on the internet and technology as a whole. We think that in a healthy balanced way, the internet and its comforts can be beneficial. America especially can use a serious wake-up call with how severe its addiction to the internet is. Consider this scare your wake-up call. You do not necessarily need to purchase with one-day shipping on a routine basis or constantly ‘Like’ your neighbor’s erratic posts about her twelve obese cats, but these are comforts that have improved life to some extent and hindered social skills and understanding as well.

In case the FCC ruling flings us back into the 1970’s we will be making a newsletter so that the Retro Revival lives on regardless of the FCC destroying the internet as we know it. 

If you want to fight for Net neutrality please go to http://www.goFCCyourself.com and go to the express link in order to tell them that you stand for net neutrality.

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