Both Republicans And Democrats Considering Supporting Basic Internet Freedom Principles With New Platforms

from the follow-through-matters dept

There’s been an awful lot of important talk about internet freedom and its importance this year. It’s certainly permeated the political sphere. But is it a national political agenda item? We’ll see. The Republican National Convention kicks off in a couple weeks, followed a few weeks after that by the Democratic National Convention. The folks at Demand Progress are urging both parties to add basic internet freedom issues to their official platforms. According to US News, both parties are considering it, with the Republicans saying they’ll be discussing the topic at the RNC, while the Democrats have said that early drafts of their platform “advocated Internet freedom globally,” though its unclear if the provision remained in.

Either way, both seem to at least recognize that this the internet is a major area of interest for a very large number of voters.

That said, just having it in a party platform may be a bit meaningless if they don’t live up to it. But recognizing the issue is, at the very least, a first step in truly understanding how important it is. I doubt very much that the leadership of either party truly understands the importance of internet freedom, or is really willing to go all out in support of it. Yet. But, building up interest and general support — along with the recognition that voters care about this stuff — is at least an important first step in having politicians recognize that they can’t just sell out internet freedom when lobbyists or “friendly” repressive governments come calling.

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Comments on “Both Republicans And Democrats Considering Supporting Basic Internet Freedom Principles With New Platforms”

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Wally (profile) says:


As my wife (teaches High School English) always says to her students
“The Internet makes my job a ton easier. In my class, if you make a mistake, all I’d have to do is make red marks, but of you get something spelled wrong on the Internet [or your grammar wrong], God help your soul.”

Someone is going to ask how I connect this to the article and it’s simply this:

Both sides of the political spectrum in law making are totally unprepared. Make one mistake or break one promise you make to the Internet community and it will most certainly be the end of your political career.

Don’t get me wrong, it is nice that they are contemplating and thinking about us in a “get a voter” perspective, but my experience tells me they will be in a world of shock when they are suddenly held accountable for any freedoms they try to take away. Especially from American users….we love our freedom.

Anonymous Coward says:

Any “internet freedom” law would probably be similar to laws like the recent “patent reform” law; lip service that solves no problems and potentially creates new ones.

However, I suspect that their seemingly receptive feedback means that the political world hasn’t forgotten the SOPA backlash. That’d be good news for the constituents; fear of public outcry weakens the lobbyists’ hold over them.

Anonymous Coward says:


“The political world hasn’t forgotten the SOPA backlash.” That’s the most important part here. They now realize we are watching them much more closely than before. SOPA was really bad for the political world. Honestly its got at least me watching their moves way more closely and with much more scrutiny even on non-internet related things.

Wally (profile) says:


Chosen Reject, according to my wife, my soul is in a lot of trouble….she saw my commentary about the revisions to FISA 2007 and FISA 2008 =P

And no first AC to respond, it is not Satan who doesn’t like bad grammar, it’s God you have to worry about. God sends you to see Satan for bad grammar where you are forced to see it and listen to it every day =P

I LOL’ed with both of your comments (my wife did too).

Wally (profile) says:


John Fenderson I can definitely relate to your comment. I remember a day (im sure you can too) when it really was left or right and now a days it definitely become a blur. I can no longer find conservative values in the politicians on the conservative right, nor can you find the ultra high humanities and tree hugging (term used as endearment) on the liberal left.

BentFranklin (profile) says:

There’s this old joke about two guys in the woods and a bear appears. On guy starts putting on his tennis shoes and the other guy says, “What are you doing, you can’t outrun a bear, and the other guy says “I just have to outrun you.”

I am distraught that the Republicans are going to take the lead on internet freedom and steal what should be a Democratic strength. But the Democrats have been corrupted by Hollywood and lawyer money so even if they do end up taking a better position than the Republicans, it will only be by a little bit, because they don’t have to outrun the bear, just the other guy.

hegemon13 says:

Re: Re:

Yeah, because Democrats are such lovers of liberty. Right. Give me a break. NEITHER party should be adding this to their platform because neither party has seen an authoritarian law they didn’t love (as long as the other party didn’t come up with it first).

Libertarian Party, Reform Party, Green Party — these I could see. But neither Republicans nor Democrats have any intention to give “Internet freedom” anything more than lip service.

Dave says:


Having closely followed (from across the pond) all the legal shenanigans that USA politicians have tried to impose on the net – blatantly obvious that most were at the behest of Big Entertainment, I’ll believe it when I see it. They’ve obviously only just woken up to the existence of people power and are afraid of being voted out of office if so much of a whisper is mentioned of any more bills, rules and regulations being introduced to stifle the net. A bit more serving of the people and not of industry would probably not go far amiss.

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