Net Neutrality

At a Glance

eBay supports net neutrality and opposes policies that allow “Pay to Play” arrangements that block, slow, or otherwise discriminate against user access to web content.

  • Without open Internet protections, providers can create “fast lanes” for the highest bidder.  
  • These practices discourage competition by tilting the playing field in favor of large enterprises that have the resources to outspend their smaller competitors.  
  • Internet-enabled small businesses could be among those hit hardest by new fees and tiered services.

Issue in Detail

eBay supports net neutrality and opposes undermining robust open Internet.

Point-of-View

  • eBay provides an Internet-enabled commerce marketplace empowering entrepreneurs and businesses, especially small businesses, across the globe. We take public policy positions that are important to that community of users.
  • eBay supports net neutrality and opposes policies that allow “Pay to Play” arrangements that block, slow, or otherwise discriminate against user access to web content.
  • Consumers, non-profits, and businesses already pay for access to the Internet. Broadband providers should not be permitted to charge consumers premiums for prioritized Internet access.

Background

The Internet has always been governed by a regulatory regime based on principles of openness and non-discrimination. This approach has been integral to making the Internet the home to the most innovative and exciting new businesses and ideas. Internet companies have spent billions on new content and services that have transformed the lives of people across the globe, as well as fueling significant economic growth and job creation.

  • Some cable and telecommunications companies have successfully lobbied the FCC to replace the open Internet model with a system that will allow them to pick and choose which websites will operate better on their networks. 
  • Robust competition in content and services are what drive broadband Internet access adoption. Consumers who subscribe to broadband are able to use any Internet-based services they choose, including innovative start-up services. 

Impact

Taking Control from Consumers - Replacing the Open Internet takes control away from the consumer and gives it to a handful of large ISPs, who are  incentivized to cut deals that will steer Internet traffic to their preferred websites and apps. This means that websites and apps compete less on services and innovation and more on who can write the biggest check to the ISP.