The New Mexico Attorney General is 1 of 22 officials fighting the rollback of net neutrality. The Federal Communications Commission’s deregulation of the Internet could affect people of color disproportionately. Folks advocating for the free flow of information say things could get a lot worse.
The repeal of net neutrality essentially dubs Internet providers as the gatekeepers of content, said Matt Baca. He’s senior counsel to Attorney General Hector Balderas. Baca said the Internet will become less accessible and more expensive, furthering the state’s digital divide.
“Our rural communities and in particular our underserved communities, communities of color, already have a hard time accessing quality internet speeds and accessing the internet at all,” Baca said. “And in this day and age access to the Internet is key.”
Baca said they were shocked that opposing testimony and commentary from top tech dogs, even Google, was simply ignored. But the FCC said the repeal will actually increase protections for consumers and bring people to the right side of the digital divide.
KUNM’s Public Health New Mexico project is funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the McCune Charitable Foundation.