A couple of months ago when net neutrality was being threatened in the US, Stack Exchange put up a post and a notice (among other things) to try and help to organize people to resist.

Well, it looks like net neutrality is once again on the chopping block.

In an article from Ars Technica, it is explained that:

In addition to ditching its own net neutrality rules, the Federal Communications Commission also plans to tell state and local governments that they cannot impose local laws regulating broadband service.

This detail was revealed by senior FCC officials in a phone briefing with reporters today, and it is a victory for broadband providers that asked for widespread preemption of state laws. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai's proposed order finds that state and local laws must be preempted if they conflict with the US government's policy of deregulating broadband Internet service, FCC officials said. The FCC will vote on the order at its December 14 meeting.

Barring something exceptional, not only will net neutrality be gone in 22 days, the FCC wil also ban states from instituting it themselves.

Will SE take a stand once again or has this course of action been discontinued?

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    Presumably much like much of the rest of the internet. You can't downvote google though. Can ya? Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 7:05
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    I upvoted this question because I want to know what the company thinks, not as an endorsement of any particular plan of action. Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 7:32
  • Just for adding context for previous discussion: Net Neutrality and Stack Overflow / Stack Exchange Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 9:44
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    Heh the FCC doesn't have the authority to ban states from instituting their own regulations in areas they do not cover. It will go to court and be ruled unconstitutional like everything else this administration tries to do.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 14:41
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    The FCC is also obstructing an investigation into fake comments using real people's names, according to the NY attorney general. Anything the FCC says about citizen support for their plans is highly suspect. (Not that citizens' voices mean much, but still... the integrity of the system is suspect.) Commented Nov 23, 2017 at 18:35

2 Answers 2


We'd definitely be interested in talking about adding our collective voice to a stronger, well-organized effort; if anyone has any suggestions, we're more than happy to hear them. We very firmly believe that folks have a right to unfettered internet access, and this is one more threat to that on the heap that the world has to deal with.

At the same time, we have to continue to reiterate that we're firmly against all threats to unfettered access to information - this includes comprehensive firewalls and content filters put in place by certain governments. Whether the motivation is political ideology or corporate greed, it stinks.

I don't think we could mount an opposition to the changes that seem to be looming in a timely or even meaningful sort of way, and our users are very sensitive when it comes to mixing politics with Q&A unless there's a very clear threat and something actionable for those that can to undertake in order to help.

If folks can identify a broader effort and really feel that us working to add our voice to it could have an impact that would offset the disruption it would create, we're totally open to talking about it. But, leading the charge? While the majority of people we reach probably do have strong feelings about the issue, we're not sure how many of them are capable of doing more than talking about how much it stinks. Actual constituents really need to be picking up telephones and calling congress critters.

So, totally open to talking about it, but our internal discussions didn't yield any ideas that would add up to more than simply making a lot of noise that wouldn't really influence much.

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    Thank you for your answer, Tim, and letting us know that it has been discussed internally at SO. I think there is a concrete threat to SO/SE. SO is a content provider and could find itself in a "slow lane" if an ISP decided so. Let's hope some people here have ideas for helping in a meaningful way. Commented Dec 13, 2017 at 20:57
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    @S.L.Barth afaik, the vote is literally today. So it is already too late by now to do anything
    – Magisch
    Commented Dec 14, 2017 at 8:39
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    @Magisch The FCC voted against net neutrality. As I understand it, it now goes to Congress, and we have 60 days. Commented Dec 15, 2017 at 10:21

To note, there never really was an SE call to action as far as Net Neutrality was concerned, so much as SE took part in an internet wide protest.

I highly doubt SE would lead the organization of such a protest, however, I would also highly expect them to take part.

As SE is a content provider, they stand to be negatively affected by such a law, as ISP's would prioritize their local video traffic over something like SE's data.

If it truly is time to take a stand to protect Net Neutrality, then why should it be limited only to the company when the entire community here would be affected?

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