Please bear with me, this is a bit of a long post on the grave impacts of today's repeal of #NetNeutrality, but I think it's important (perhaps even vital to the health of our Republic):
The FCC's decision to repeal Net Neutrality unfortunately means the Internet will be divided up into "media packages", much like cable T.V. packages today (this is already the business model used in countries that don't have net neutrality enshrined in law). A place that was once a haven for the underdog, the marginalized, and new ideas will now be ruled by a handful of companies, who will function as gatekeepers, marketing the most profitable, corporate websites over less-profitable, independent websites.
This means that non-profits, religious organizations, small political campaigns, individual bloggers and podcasters will likely be forced out of the market; either because the costs of internet access for developing their sites will be too expensive, or because people will naturally spend their internet budgets on access to the biggest sites (Amazon, Netflix, Google products, Facebook, etc.).
The proponents of the repeal claim this will lead to more innovation and more competition, by deregulating the internet. The problem is that ISP's are already well established in almost all markets, and maintaining equal access to the Internet (which is what Net Neutrality is) did not restrict them before. Instead, it will have the opposite effect: stagnation and monopolization, as independent voices no longer have a place to express themselves and be heard.
And the consequences could be much darker than we realize. ISP's would now legally be able to restrict access to websites which promote Net Neutrality (or whatever ideological view which irks their corporate owners), so that people who want to organize in opposition to this (or any other) decision would have to do so without the powerful tool of the internet (while their political opponents would naturally have full, free access).
As a pastor, this directly affects my ministry. Websites will likely no longer be an effective tool for outreach, as people unacquainted with our faith will now have to pay an extra fee (or buy a different media package) through their ISP to visit these types of sites. And let's be honest, they would probably rather spend it on a Social Media package, or to have access to Hulu or Netflix.
Now this doesn't mean an end to the Church by any means, as churches have always been built through the expression of love for one another found in personal relationships. The Church doesn't survive because of marketing, it survives (and thrives) as people are transformed by the Gospel through the work of the Holy Spirit. But it does mean that people curious about what we believe will likely no longer have access to our sermons or blog posts, and people who may want to attend events, won't see our calendar unless they pay for access to these types of sites.
Most of the ideals I care about will suffer in one way or another: religious freedom, the free exchange of ideas, the cultivation of art, music, philosophy, and theology, and even democracy itself.