Dries Buytaert

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Updated: 10 hours 45 min ago

Niagara Falls by night

31 July 2017 - 7:12am

I had a chance to visit the Niagara Falls last week on a family trip. If you like nature, it's a must see — both during the day and at night when they lit up the falls. I love this photo but it still doesn't capture the majesty and beauty of the Niagara Falls.

Categories: Drupal

Niagara Falls by night

31 July 2017 - 7:12am

I had a chance to visit the Niagara Falls last week on a family trip. If you like nature, it's a must see — both during the day and at night when they lit up the falls. I love this photo but it still doesn't capture the majesty and beauty of the Niagara Falls.

Categories: Drupal

Acquia a leader in 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management

28 July 2017 - 12:23pm

I'm on vacation this week, and I've been trying to disconnect and soak up time with my family. However, I had to make an exception to write a quick but exciting blog post, as Acquia was named a leader in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management. This marks Acquia's placement as a leader for the fourth year in a row, solidifying our position as one of the top three vendors in Gartner's report.

Acquia recognized as a top 3 leader, next to Adobe and Sitecore, in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management.

Early in my career I didn't fully understand or value the role of industry analysts like Gartner. Experience has taught me that strong analyst reports provide credibility and expose vendors to new markets and customers. It's easy to underestimate the importance of this kind of recognition for Acquia, and by extension for Drupal. If you're not familiar with the role of analyst firms, you can think of it this way: if you want to find a good coffee place, you use Yelp. If you want to find a nice hotel in New York, you use TripAdvisor. Similarly, if a CIO or CMO wants to spend $250,000 or more on enterprise software, they often consult an analyst firm like Gartner.

This year's report further cements Acquia's position as an industry leader as we received the highest marks for "Cloud Capability and Architecture". The report further highlights how Acquia enables our customers to use Drupal to the fullest extent. We enhance Drupal with services like Acquia Lift that empower organizations to not only meet the needs of their customers, but to be ambitious with digital. Today, a variety of organizations, ranging from DocuSign to the Tennessee Department of Tourism are using Acquia Lift to create significant value for their businesses.

In addition to tools like Acquia Lift, Gartner also highlighted the flexibility inherent to Acquia's platform. Acquia's emphasis on Open APIs, ranging from Drupal 8's API-first initiative to APIs for Acquia Cloud, Acquia Site Factory, and Acquia Lift, allows organizations to deliver critical capabilities faster and better integrated in their existing environments. For example, Wilson Sporting Goods delivers experiential commerce by marrying the abilities of Drupal and Magento, while Acquia supports Motorola's partnership with Demandware.

Our tenure as a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management has enabled organizations across every industry to take a closer look at Acquia and Drupal. Organizations like Nasdaq, Pfizer, The City of Boston, and the YMCA continue to demonstrate the advantages of evolving their operating models with Drupal in comparison to our proprietary counterparts. Everyday, I get to witness firsthand how incredible and influential brands are shaping the world with Acquia and Drupal, and our standing in the Gartner Magic Quadrant reinforces that.

Categories: Drupal

Acquia a leader in 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management

28 July 2017 - 12:23pm

I'm on vacation this week, and I've been trying to disconnect and soak up time with my family. However, I had to make an exception to write a quick but exciting blog post, as Acquia was named a leader in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management. This marks Acquia's placement as a leader for the fourth year in a row, solidifying our position as one of the top three vendors in Gartner's report.

Acquia recognized as a top 3 leader, next to Adobe and Sitecore, in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management.

Early in my career I didn't fully understand or value the role of industry analysts like Gartner. Experience has taught me that strong analyst reports provide credibility and expose vendors to new markets and customers. It's easy to underestimate the importance of this kind of recognition for Acquia, and by extension for Drupal. If you're not familiar with the role of analyst firms, you can think of it this way: if you want to find a good coffee place, you use Yelp. If you want to find a nice hotel in New York, you use TripAdvisor. Similarly, if a CIO or CMO wants to spend $250,000 or more on enterprise software, they often consult an analyst firm like Gartner.

This year's report further cements Acquia's position as an industry leader as we received the highest marks for "Cloud Capability and Architecture". The report further highlights how Acquia enables our customers to use Drupal to the fullest extent. We enhance Drupal with services like Acquia Lift that empower organizations to not only meet the needs of their customers, but to be ambitious with digital. Today, a variety of organizations, ranging from DocuSign to the Tennessee Department of Tourism are using Acquia Lift to create significant value for their businesses.

In addition to tools like Acquia Lift, Gartner also highlighted the flexibility inherent to Acquia's platform. Acquia's emphasis on Open APIs, ranging from Drupal 8's API-first initiative to APIs for Acquia Cloud, Acquia Site Factory, and Acquia Lift, allows organizations to deliver critical capabilities faster and better integrated in their existing environments. For example, Wilson Sporting Goods delivers experiential commerce by marrying the abilities of Drupal and Magento, while Acquia supports Motorola's partnership with Demandware.

Our tenure as a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management has enabled organizations across every industry to take a closer look at Acquia and Drupal. Organizations like Nasdaq, Pfizer, The City of Boston, and the YMCA continue to demonstrate the advantages of evolving their operating models with Drupal in comparison to our proprietary counterparts. Everyday, I get to witness firsthand how incredible and influential brands are shaping the world with Acquia and Drupal, and our standing in the Gartner Magic Quadrant reinforces that.

Categories: Drupal

Acquia a leader in 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management

28 July 2017 - 12:23pm

I'm on vacation this week, and I've been trying to disconnect and soak up time with my family. However, I had to make an exception to write a quick but exciting blog post, as Acquia was named a leader in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management. This marks Acquia's placement as a leader for the fourth year in a row, solidifying our position as one of the top three vendors in Gartner's report.

Acquia recognized as a top 3 leader, next to Adobe and Sitecore, in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management.

Early in my career I didn't fully understand or value the role of industry analysts like Gartner. Experience has taught me that strong analyst reports provide credibility and expose vendors to new markets and customers. It's easy to underestimate the importance of this kind of recognition for Acquia, and by extension for Drupal. If you're not familiar with the role of analyst firms, you can think of it this way: if you want to find a good coffee place, you use Yelp. If you want to find a nice hotel in New York, you use TripAdvisor. Similarly, if a CIO or CMO wants to spend $250,000 or more on enterprise software, they often consult an analyst firm like Gartner.

This year's report further cements Acquia's position as an industry leader as we received the highest marks for "Cloud Capability and Architecture". The report further highlights how Acquia enables our customers to use Drupal to the fullest extent. We enhance Drupal with services like Acquia Lift that empower organizations to not only meet the needs of their customers, but to be ambitious with digital. Today, a variety of organizations, ranging from DocuSign to the Tennessee Department of Tourism are using Acquia Lift to create significant value for their businesses.

In addition to tools like Acquia Lift, Gartner also highlighted the flexibility inherent to Acquia's platform. Acquia's emphasis on Open APIs, ranging from Drupal 8's API-first initiative to APIs for Acquia Cloud, Acquia Site Factory, and Acquia Lift, allows organizations to deliver critical capabilities faster and better integrated in their existing environments. For example, Wilson Sporting Goods delivers experiential commerce by marrying the abilities of Drupal and Magento, while Acquia supports Motorola's partnership with Demandware.

Our tenure as a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management has enabled organizations across every industry to take a closer look at Acquia and Drupal. Organizations like Nasdaq, Pfizer, The City of Boston, and the YMCA continue to demonstrate the advantages of evolving their operating models with Drupal in comparison to our proprietary counterparts. Everyday, I get to witness firsthand how incredible and influential brands are shaping the world with Acquia and Drupal, and our standing in the Gartner Magic Quadrant reinforces that.

Categories: Drupal

Acquia a leader in 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management

28 July 2017 - 12:23pm

I'm on vacation this week, and I've been trying to disconnect and soak up time with my family. However, I had to make an exception to write a quick but exciting blog post, as Acquia was named a leader in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management. This marks Acquia's placement as a leader for the fourth year in a row, solidifying our position as one of the top three vendors in Gartner's report.

Acquia recognized as a top 3 leader, next to Adobe and Sitecore, in the 2017 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management.

Early in my career I didn't fully understand or value the role of industry analysts like Gartner. Experience has taught me that strong analyst reports provide credibility and expose vendors to new markets and customers. It's easy to underestimate the importance of this kind of recognition for Acquia, and by extension for Drupal. If you're not familiar with the role of analyst firms, you can think of it this way: if you want to find a good coffee place, you use Yelp. If you want to find a nice hotel in New York, you use TripAdvisor. Similarly, if a CIO or CMO wants to spend $250,000 or more on enterprise software, they consult an analyst firm like Gartner. Large enterprises continue to rely heavily on leading analyst firms.

This year's report further cements Acquia's position as an industry leader as we received the highest marks for Cloud Capability and Architecture. The report further highlights how Acquia enables our customers to use Drupal to the fullest extent. We enhance Drupal with services like Acquia Lift that empower organizations to not only meet the needs of their customers, but to be ambitious with digital. Today, a variety of organizations, ranging from DocuSign to the Tennessee Department of Tourism are using Acquia Lift to create significant value for their businesses.

In addition to tools like Acquia Lift, Gartner also highlighted the flexibility inherent to Acquia's platform. Acquia's emphasis on Open APIs, ranging from Drupal 8's API-first initiative to APIs for Acquia Cloud, Acquia Site Factory, and Acquia Lift, allows organizations to deliver critical capabilities faster and better integrated in their existing environments. For example, Wilson Sporting Goods delivers experiential commerce by marrying the abilities of Drupal and Magento, while Acquia supports Motorola's partnership with Demandware.

Our tenure as a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management has enabled organizations across every industry to take a closer look at Acquia and Drupal. Organizations like Nasdaq, Pfizer, The City of Boston, and the YMCA continue to demonstrate the advantages of evolving their operating models with Drupal in comparison to our proprietary counterparts. Everyday, I get to witness firsthand how incredible and influential brands are shaping the world with Acquia and Drupal, and our standing in the Gartner Magic Quadrant reinforces that.

Categories: Drupal

Arsenal using Drupal

20 July 2017 - 12:11pm

As a Belgian sports fan, I will always be a loyal to the Belgium National Football Team. However, I am willing to extend my allegiance to Arsenal F.C. because they recently launched their new site in Drupal 8! As one of the most successful teams of England's Premier League, Arsenal has been lacing up for over 130 years. On the new Drupal 8 site, Arsenal fans can access news, club history, ticket services, and live match results. This is also a great example of collaboration with two Drupal companies working together - Inviqa in the UK and Phase2 in the US. If you want to see Drupal 8 on Arsenal's roster, check out https://www.arsenal.com!

Categories: Drupal

Arsenal using Drupal

20 July 2017 - 12:11pm

As a Belgian sports fan, I will always be a loyal to the Belgium National Football Team. However, I am willing to extend my allegiance to Arsenal F.C. because they recently launched their new site in Drupal 8! As one of the most successful teams of England's Premier League, Arsenal has been lacing up for over 130 years. On the new Drupal 8 site, Arsenal fans can access news, club history, ticket services, and live match results. This is also a great example of collaboration with two Drupal companies working together - Inviqa in the UK and Phase2 in the US. If you want to see Drupal 8 on Arsenal's roster, check out https://www.arsenal.com!

Categories: Drupal

Arsenal using Drupal

20 July 2017 - 12:11pm

As a Belgian sports fan, I will always be a loyal to the Belgium National Football Team. However, I am willing to extend my allegiance to Arsenal F.C. because they recently launched their new site in Drupal 8! As one of the most successful teams of England's Premier League, Arsenal has been lacing up for over 130 years. On the new Drupal 8 site, Arsenal fans can access news, club history, ticket services, and live match results. This is also a great example of collaboration with two Drupal companies working together - Inviqa in the UK and Phase2 in the US. If you want to see Drupal 8 on Arsenal's roster, check out https://www.arsenal.com!

Categories: Drupal

Arsenal using Drupal

20 July 2017 - 12:11pm

As a Belgian sports fan, I will always be a loyal to the Belgium National Football Team. However, I am willing to extend my allegiance to Arsenal F.C. because they recently launched their new site in Drupal 8! As one of the most successful teams of England's Premier League, Arsenal has been lacing up for over 130 years. On the new Drupal 8 site, Arsenal fans can access news, club history, ticket services, and live match results. This is also a great example of collaboration with two Drupal companies working together - Inviqa in the UK and Phase2 in the US. If you want to see Drupal 8 on Arsenal's roster, check out https://www.arsenal.com!

Categories: Drupal

The reason why Acquia supports Net Neutrality

12 July 2017 - 3:44am

If you visit Acquia's homepage today, you will be greeted by this banner:

We've published this banner in solidarity with the hundreds of companies who are voicing their support of net neutrality.

Net neutrality regulations ensure that web users are free to enjoy whatever sites they choose without interference from Internet Service Providers (ISPs). These protections establish an open web where people can explore and express their ideas. Under the current administration, the U.S. Federal Communications Commision favors less-strict regulation of net neutrality, which could drastically alter the way that people experience and access the web. Today, Acquia is joining the ranks of companies like Amazon, Atlassian, Netflix and Vimeo to advocate for strong net neutrality regulations.

Why the FCC wants to soften net neutrality regulations

In 2015, the United States implemented strong protections favoring net neutrality after ISPs were classified as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. This classification catalogs broadband as an "essential communication service", which means that services are to be delivered equitably and costs kept reasonable. Title II was the same classification granted to telcos decades ago to ensure consumers had fair access to phone service. Today, the Title II classification of ISPs protects the open internet by making paid prioritization, blocking or throttling of traffic unlawful.

The issue of net neutrality is coming under scrutiny since to the appointment of Ajit Pai as the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Pai favors less regulation and has suggested that the net neutrality laws of 2015 impede the ISP market. He argues that while people may support net neutrality, the market requires more competition to establish faster and cheaper access to the Internet. Pai believes that net neutrality regulations have the potential to curb investment in innovation and could heighten the digital divide. As FCC Chairman, Pai wants to reclassify broadband services under less-restrictive regulations and to eliminate definitive protections for the open internet.

In May 2017, the three members of the Federal Communications Commission voted 2-1 to advance a plan to remove Title II classification from broadband services. That vote launched a public comment period, which is open until mid August. After this period the commission will take a final vote.

Why net neutrality protections are good

I strongly disagree with Pai's proposed reclassification of net neutrality. Without net neutrality, ISPs can determine how users access websites, applications and other digital content. Today, both the free flow of information, and exchange of ideas benefit from 'open highways'. Net neutrality regulations ensure equal access at the point of delivery, and promote what I believe to be the fairest competition for content and service providers.

If the FCC rolls back net neutrality protections, ISPs would be free to charge site owners for priority service. This goes directly against the idea of an open web, which guarantees a unfettered and decentralized platform to share and access information. There are many challenges in maintaining an open web, including "walled gardens" like Facebook and Google. We call them "walled gardens" because they control the applications, content and media on their platform. While these closed web providers have accelerated access and adoption of the web, they also raise concerns around content control and privacy. Issues of net neutrality contribute a similar challenge.

When certain websites have degraded performance because they can't afford the premiums asked by ISPs, it affects how we explore and express ideas online. Not only does it drive up the cost of maintaining a website, but it undermines the internet as an open space where people can explore and express their ideas. It creates a class system that puts smaller sites or less funded organizations at a disadvantage. Dismantling net neutrality regulations raises the barrier for entry when sharing information on the web as ISPs would control what we see and do online. Congruent with the challenge of "walled gardens", when too few organizations control the media and flow of information, we must be concerned.

In the end, net neutrality affects how people, including you and me, experience the web. The internet's vast growth is largely a result of its openness. Contrary to Pai's reasoning, the open web has cultivated creativity, spawned new industries, and protects the free expression of ideas. At Acquia, we believe in supporting choice, competition and free speech on the internet. The "light touch" regulations now proposed by the FCC may threaten that very foundation.

What you can do today

If you're also concerned about the future of net neutrality, you can share your comments with the FCC and the U.S. Congress (it will only take you a minute!). You can do so through Fight for the Future, who organized today's day of action. The 2015 ruling that classified broadband service under Title II came after the FCC received more than 4 million comments on the topic, so let your voice be heard.

Categories: Drupal

The reason why Acquia supports Net Neutrality

12 July 2017 - 3:44am

If you visit Acquia's homepage today, you will be greeted by this banner:

We've published this banner in solidarity with the hundreds of companies who are voicing their support of net neutrality.

Net neutrality regulations ensure that web users are free to enjoy whatever sites they choose without interference from Internet Service Providers (ISPs). These protections establish an open web where people can explore and express their ideas. Under the current administration, the U.S. Federal Communications Commision favors less-strict regulation of net neutrality, which could drastically alter the way that people experience and access the web. Today, Acquia is joining the ranks of companies like Amazon, Atlassian, Netflix and Vimeo to advocate for strong net neutrality regulations.

Why the FCC wants to soften net neutrality regulations

In 2015, the United States implemented strong protections favoring net neutrality after ISPs were classified as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. This classification catalogs broadband as an "essential communication service", which means that services are to be delivered equitably and costs kept reasonable. Title II was the same classification granted to telcos decades ago to ensure consumers had fair access to phone service. Today, the Title II classification of ISPs protects the open internet by making paid prioritization, blocking or throttling of traffic unlawful.

The issue of net neutrality is coming under scrutiny since to the appointment of Ajit Pai as the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Pai favors less regulation and has suggested that the net neutrality laws of 2015 impede the ISP market. He argues that while people may support net neutrality, the market requires more competition to establish faster and cheaper access to the Internet. Pai believes that net neutrality regulations have the potential to curb investment in innovation and could heighten the digital divide. As FCC Chairman, Pai wants to reclassify broadband services under less-restrictive regulations and to eliminate definitive protections for the open internet.

In May 2017, the three members of the Federal Communications Commission voted 2-1 to advance a plan to remove Title II classification from broadband services. That vote launched a public comment period, which is open until mid August. After this period the commission will take a final vote.

Why net neutrality protections are good

I strongly disagree with Pai's proposed reclassification of net neutrality. Without net neutrality, ISPs can determine how users access websites, applications and other digital content. Today, both the free flow of information, and exchange of ideas benefit from 'open highways'. Net neutrality regulations ensure equal access at the point of delivery, and promote what I believe to be the fairest competition for content and service providers.

If the FCC rolls back net neutrality protections, ISPs would be free to charge site owners for priority service. This goes directly against the idea of an open web, which guarantees a unfettered and decentralized platform to share and access information. There are many challenges in maintaining an open web, including "walled gardens" like Facebook and Google. We call them "walled gardens" because they control the applications, content and media on their platform. While these closed web providers have accelerated access and adoption of the web, they also raise concerns around content control and privacy. Issues of net neutrality contribute a similar challenge.

When certain websites have degraded performance because they can't afford the premiums asked by ISPs, it affects how we explore and express ideas online. Not only does it drive up the cost of maintaining a website, but it undermines the internet as an open space where people can explore and express their ideas. It creates a class system that puts smaller sites or less funded organizations at a disadvantage. Dismantling net neutrality regulations raises the barrier for entry when sharing information on the web as ISPs would control what we see and do online. Congruent with the challenge of "walled gardens", when too few organizations control the media and flow of information, we must be concerned.

In the end, net neutrality affects how people, including you and me, experience the web. The internet's vast growth is largely a result of its openness. Contrary to Pai's reasoning, the open web has cultivated creativity, spawned new industries, and protects the free expression of ideas. At Acquia, we believe in supporting choice, competition and free speech on the internet. The "light touch" regulations now proposed by the FCC may threaten that very foundation.

What you can do today

If you're also concerned about the future of net neutrality, you can share your comments with the FCC and the U.S. Congress (it will only take you a minute!). You can do so through Fight for the Future, who organized today's day of action. The 2015 ruling that classified broadband service under Title II came after the FCC received more than 4 million comments on the topic, so let your voice be heard.

Categories: Drupal

The reason why Acquia supports Net Neutrality

12 July 2017 - 3:44am

If you visit Acquia's homepage today, you will be greeted by this banner:

We've published this banner in solidarity with the hundreds of companies who are voicing their support of net neutrality.

Net neutrality regulations ensure that web users are free to enjoy whatever sites they choose without interference from Internet Service Providers (ISPs). These protections establish an open web where people can explore and express their ideas. Under the current administration, the U.S. Federal Communications Commision favors less-strict regulation of net neutrality, which could drastically alter the way that people experience and access the web. Today, Acquia is joining the ranks of companies like Amazon, Atlassian, Netflix and Vimeo to advocate for strong net neutrality regulations.

Why the FCC wants to soften net neutrality regulations

In 2015, the United States implemented strong protections favoring net neutrality after ISPs were classified as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. This classification catalogs broadband as an "essential communication service", which means that services are to be delivered equitably and costs kept reasonable. Title II was the same classification granted to telcos decades ago to ensure consumers had fair access to phone service. Today, the Title II classification of ISPs protects the open internet by making paid prioritization, blocking or throttling of traffic unlawful.

The issue of net neutrality is coming under scrutiny since to the appointment of Ajit Pai as the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Pai favors less regulation and has suggested that the net neutrality laws of 2015 impede the ISP market. He argues that while people may support net neutrality, the market requires more competition to establish faster and cheaper access to the Internet. Pai believes that net neutrality regulations have the potential to curb investment in innovation and could heighten the digital divide. As FCC Chairman, Pai wants to reclassify broadband services under less-restrictive regulations and to eliminate definitive protections for the open internet.

In May 2017, the three members of the Federal Communications Commission voted 2-1 to advance a plan to remove Title II classification from broadband services. That vote launched a public comment period, which is open until mid August. After this period the commission will take a final vote.

Why net neutrality protections are good

I strongly disagree with Pai's proposed reclassification of net neutrality. Without net neutrality, ISPs can determine how users access websites, applications and other digital content. Today, both the free flow of information, and exchange of ideas benefit from 'open highways'. Net neutrality regulations ensure equal access at the point of delivery, and promote what I believe to be the fairest competition for content and service providers.

If the FCC rolls back net neutrality protections, ISPs would be free to charge site owners for priority service. This goes directly against the idea of an open web, which guarantees a unfettered and decentralized platform to share and access information. There are many challenges in maintaining an open web, including "walled gardens" like Facebook and Google. We call them "walled gardens" because they control the applications, content and media on their platform. While these closed web providers have accelerated access and adoption of the web, they also raise concerns around content control and privacy. Issues of net neutrality contribute a similar challenge.

When certain websites have degraded performance because they can't afford the premiums asked by ISPs, it affects how we explore and express ideas online. Not only does it drive up the cost of maintaining a website, but it undermines the internet as an open space where people can explore and express their ideas. It creates a class system that puts smaller sites or less funded organizations at a disadvantage. Dismantling net neutrality regulations raises the barrier for entry when sharing information on the web as ISPs would control what we see and do online. Congruent with the challenge of "walled gardens", when too few organizations control the media and flow of information, we must be concerned.

In the end, net neutrality affects how people, including you and me, experience the web. The internet's vast growth is largely a result of its openness. Contrary to Pai's reasoning, the open web has cultivated creativity, spawned new industries, and protects the free expression of ideas. At Acquia, we believe in supporting choice, competition and free speech on the internet. The "light touch" regulations now proposed by the FCC may threaten that very foundation.

What you can do today

If you're also concerned about the future of net neutrality, you can share your comments with the FCC and the U.S. Congress (it will only take you a minute!). You can do so through Fight for the Future, who organized today's day of action. The 2015 ruling that classified broadband service under Title II came after the FCC received more than 4 million comments on the topic, so let your voice be heard.

Categories: Drupal

The reason why Acquia supports Net Neutrality

12 July 2017 - 3:44am

If you visit Acquia's homepage today, you will be greeted by this banner:

We've published this banner in solidarity with the hundreds of companies who are voicing their support of net neutrality.

Net neutrality regulations ensure that web users are free to enjoy whatever sites they choose without interference from Internet Service Providers (ISPs). These protections establish an open web where people can explore and express their ideas. Under the current administration, the U.S. Federal Communications Commision favors less-strict regulation of net neutrality, which could drastically alter the way that people experience and access the web. Today, Acquia is joining the ranks of companies like Amazon, Atlassian, Netflix and Vimeo to advocate for strong net neutrality regulations.

Why the FCC wants to soften net neutrality regulations

In 2015, the United States implemented strong protections favoring net neutrality after ISPs were classified as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. This classification catalogs broadband as an "essential communication service", which means that services are to be delivered equitably and costs kept reasonable. Title II was the same classification granted to telcos decades ago to ensure consumers had fair access to phone service. Today, the Title II classification of ISPs protects the open internet by making paid prioritization, blocking or throttling of traffic unlawful.

The issue of net neutrality is coming under scrutiny since to the appointment of Ajit Pai as the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Pai favors less regulation and has suggested that the net neutrality laws of 2015 impede the ISP market. He argues that while people may support net neutrality, the market requires more competition to establish faster and cheaper access to the Internet. Pai believes that net neutrality regulations have the potential to curb investment in innovation and could heighten the digital divide. As FCC Chairman, Pai wants to reclassify broadband services under less-restrictive regulations and to eliminate definitive protections for the open internet.

In May 2017, the three members of the Federal Communications Commission voted 2-1 to advance a plan to remove Title II classification from broadband services. That vote launched a public comment period, which is open until mid August. After this period the commission will take a final vote.

Why net neutrality protections are good

I strongly disagree with Pai's proposed reclassification of net neutrality. Without net neutrality, ISPs can determine how users access websites, applications and other digital content. Today, both the free flow of information, and exchange of ideas benefit from 'open highways'. Net neutrality regulations ensure equal access at the point of delivery, and promote what I believe to be the fairest competition for content and service providers.

If the FCC rolls back net neutrality protections, ISPs would be free to charge site owners for priority service. This goes directly against the idea of an open web, which guarantees a unfettered and decentralized platform to share and access information. There are many challenges in maintaining an open web, including "walled gardens" like Facebook and Google. We call them "walled gardens" because they control the applications, content and media on their platform. While these closed web providers have accelerated access and adoption of the web, they also raise concerns around content control and privacy. Issues of net neutrality contribute a similar challenge.

When certain websites have degraded performance because they can't afford the premiums asked by ISPs, it affects how we explore and express ideas online. Not only does it drive up the cost of maintaining a website, but it undermines the internet as an open space where people can explore and express their ideas. It creates a class system that puts smaller sites or less funded organizations at a disadvantage. Dismantling net neutrality regulations raises the barrier for entry when sharing information on the web as ISPs would control what we see and do online. Congruent with the challenge of "walled gardens", when too few organizations control the media and flow of information, we must be concerned.

In the end, net neutrality affects how people, including you and me, experience the web. The internet's vast growth is largely a result of its openness. Contrary to Pai's reasoning, the open web has cultivated creativity, spawned new industries, and protects the free expression of ideas. At Acquia, we believe in supporting choice, competition and free speech on the internet. The "light touch" regulations now proposed by the FCC may threaten that very foundation.

What you can do today

If you're also concerned about the future of net neutrality, you can share your comments with the FCC and the U.S. Congress (it will only take you a minute!). You can do so through Fight for the Future, who organized today's day of action. The 2015 ruling that classified broadband service under Title II came after the FCC received more than 4 million comments on the topic, so let your voice be heard.

Categories: Drupal

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