How the Net Neutrality Ruling Could Affect Gamers

Gaming could see a negative effect from the ruling on net neutrality if the FCC fails to fix their policy.

Big news in the technology sector has been about the court ruling about net neutrality and how FCC can regulate broadband providers. As it stands now according to the ruling, the FCC can’t regulate the way ISPs charge for their services and render content. Due to this, they could throttle certain activities and allow other activities full streaming. Cable providers that offer tv could offer their service full speed and serve Netflix at a slower rate, or charge Netflix for optimal streaming.

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Without net neutrality allowing an open-streaming internet, it’s possible that companies could throttle gaming activities. With so many services offering game downloads and multiplayer games, it is easy to see how this could affect gaming abilities. Microsoft could pay more than Sony so that the Live service is faster. While this might put Microsoft one up on Sony, it would be stifling innovation the gaming world needs to evolve.

MMOs are also a high source of traffic from gaming households, especially when there are more than one gamer in the household. This adds another issue to the fire brewing. With the FCC unable to regulate ISPs, they could charge more to accounts who use a lot of streaming services than someone who uses less. So while a person’s neighbor only uses their internet for web browsing, they could pay significantly less for the same speed since the gaming house uses more bandwidth for their streaming services such as games or video.

Thankfully, net neutrality is not yet dead. There is still time for the FCC to change how they categorize ISPs in order to ensure that the internet remains free and open as we have become accustomed to.


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Author
Mary Yeager
I am a wahm mom of two who loves gaming, both electronically and table top.