Groups To Rally Against Google/Verizon Net Neutrality Principles

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Free Press, MoveOn.org and other critics of Google and Verizon's agreement on network neutrality principles are trying to stage a rally Friday at the search giant's Mountain View, Calif., headquarters.

In an e-mail call to arms, Free Press online campaign manager Josh Levy was looking for drivers to get people to the rally but also said there was a bus that was leaving from San Francisco.

"FCC chairman Julius Genachowski must denounce this deal, but he won't stand up to this alliance of giant corporations unless we show that the public is strongly against it," said Levy.

"The Google-Verizon plan would create two separate, unequal sections of the Internet -- a high-speed and exclusive fast lane for big business, and a slow lane, the 'public Internet' that would be available to the rest of us," he said.

Google and Verizon have agreed that network neutrality principles, including a nondiscrimination principle, should be made enforceable by the FCC. But they have also agreed that most of those would not apply to wireless broadband and that networks should be free to provide online services, separate from the public Internet, where content providers would be able to pay for faster or higher quality service, say for high-bandwidth offerings like medical imaging or video services like a season's worth of operas in high-definition, an example the companies used.

Free Press and MoveOn are joined by ColorofChange.org, Credo Action, and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

It is the same coalition that dropped off petitions against the companies' proposal -- with what they said were more than 300,000 signatures -- to Google's Washington, D.C., offices earlier this week.

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