Faith coalition applauds net neutrality ruling, offers webinar
Written by Gregg Brekke
November 16, 2011
Advocating to maintain principles of equal access to Internet
resources and bandwidth, the United Church of Christ Office of Communication, Inc. (UCC
OC Inc.) and the World Association for Christian Communication, North America (WACC North America) are offering a free Dec. 6 webinar to inform faith communities' use of new technologies and the importance
of net neutrality.
Sponsored jointly by the two organizations, the webinar follows the
recent decision of the U.S. Senate to uphold existing net neutrality rules
adopted by the FCC at the end of 2010.
and small businesses should have some comfort that they will not be asked to
pay to ensure that their content will get equal billing on the Internet,"
said Cheryl Leanza, UCC OC Inc. policy advisor, at the passage of the 2010
legislation. "We hope that any abuses in the future will be quickly and
firmly shut down by the FCC as promised."
Leanza warned that the legal framework of the FCC's ruling and the concessions
made to major Internet companies in the ruling.
framework will likely endanger the FCC’s power to act quickly next year to
expand broadband to all Americans," she warned. "Because the FCC gave
way to many of the concerns expressed by Internet companies in adopting this
order, we believe that next year's Congress should take a measured approach to
its response to this decision."
An ongoing concern for Leanza and a broad-based coalition of
interfaith communications advocates is the maintenance of a freely accessible
communication vehicle for faith communities. Contrasting the Internet to
broadcast radio and television, this coalition maintains the message delivered
by "pay only" means minimizes the voice of minority religious and
Earlier in 2011, UCC OC Inc. organized a letter writing and
advocacy campaign aimed at preserving the FCC's 2010 net neutrality ruling. The Rev. Jim Antal, member of the UCC OC Inc. board of directors and UCC
Conference Minister in Massachusetts, joined his voice with the members of the National Council of Churches Communication Commission, an interfaith coalition and the U.S.Conference of Catholic Bishops to support an open Internet.
Leanza and Reilly
Yeo, Managing Director, Open Media, will speak to these issues and offer
a basic understanding of net neutrality's importance to faith communities during
The webinar will be held Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2011,
1-2pm EST. There is no charge for the webinar, but participants will be
required to register online prior to the event.