Web host gives FCC a 28.8Kbps slow lane in net neutrality protest

Lots of people are angry about FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler's Internet "fast lane" proposal that would let Internet service providers charge Web services for priority access to consumers. But one Web hosting service called NeoCities isn't just writing letters to the FCC. Instead, the company found the FCC's internal IP address range and throttled all connections to 28.8Kbps speeds.

"Since the FCC seems to have no problem with this idea, I've (through correspondence) gotten access to the FCC's internal IP block, and throttled all connections from the FCC to 28.8kbps modem speeds on the Neocities.org front site, and I'm not removing it until the FCC pays us for the bandwidth they've been wasting instead of doing their jobs protecting us from the 'keep America's internet slow and expensive forever' lobby," NeoCities creator Kyle Drake wrote yesterday.

NeoCities offers free and paid Web hosting. As Drake noted, FCC access to NeoCities is being throttled on the home page only, and not on websites created by NeoCities users.

Drake called Wheeler a "cable industry hand-picked lobbyist" and wrote that the FCC may not be protecting US consumers because "they got a dump truck full of money from the cable corporation lobby."

"If it bothers you that I'm doing this, I want to point out that everyone is going to be doing crap like this after the FCC rips apart Net Neutrality," he wrote. "It's time for the Web to organize and stand up against these thugs before they ruin everything that the Web stands for."

Drake put his FCC-throttling Nginx code on GitHub for anyone who wants to use it on their own site.

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Jon Brodkin / Jon is Ars Technica's senior IT reporter, covering business technology and the impact of consumer tech on IT. He also writes about tech policy, the FCC and broadband, open source, virtualization, supercomputing, data centers, and wireless technology.

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