On the Subject of: The Open Internet

Today, We like many other websites out there are taking a moment to explain to you the open internet and why we need it as a society.

So an open internet simply means that data can’t be slowed because it comes from a different place. So data from netflix, underflow studios, facebook, steam, etc can’t be slowed simply because your ISP determines it.

By removing the open internet you kill an unimaginable amount of current and future jobs. Including mine, my wife’s and most my friends jobs could not exist without an open internet. The open internet is the concept that any moron including me and my company can have a stupid website you can visit. This entire site wouldn’t exist with an open internet.

So obviously you know the above before you got here. In fact by visiting underflowstudios.com I can safely assume you’re some what tech savvy. At least enough to care in a game developer’s blog post to the this point. So you probably, like I, have voiced their opinion as much as possible to the FCC. So what more can we do? The only thing we can really do is simply keep explaining. Make sure we are heard in a calm collective voice explaining the issue at hand. Every political party alignment should want an open internet. The best way to do that is to have a fancy website. So make sure all your friends (specially ones who aren’t the same political party as you) at least visit https://www.battleforthenet.com/ and read a bit. It will explain everything much better than I can and will help to find someone they can relate to explain it.

So let me explain to you how the open internet has effected my life.

I first remember when my father first got AT&T business class broadband internet to the house in 1999 because I was using the phone line too much on dial up. Warcraft 2 was just too fun and I couldn’t stop playing a competitive match just because someone wanted to make a 5 minute phone call. This is my experience growing up with the open internet.

I ran a half-life game server from my business class internet line for an entire summer I would host this server on my computer and play on it with random strangers at the same time. I’d jump from half-life mod to half-life mod. Rocket crowbar was always my favorite. I remember one night around 1 am I finished downloading another free mod. Ricochet. I don’t know why but to this day it’s the funniest thing in the world to watch someones head get cut off in that game as their body keeps going and then just lands and dies. It was the best balance of stupid funny multiplayer and action. Of course this was also the first time I heard my dad wake up in the morning, immediately jump into bed to pretend I was sleeping, listen for him to leave for work then jump right back on the computer so he didn’t know I stayed up all night. (He knew.)

Without the open internet my childhood that summer probably wouldn’t have sparked my interest in games as it did. But late into my teens I didn’t really care about making games. Never really wanted to do it back then. Instead I was in college while I ran a free shell server. Basically I would let people run complex processes a few of my computers. I’d give them an account and they would upload and run their programs in order to do something like compute folds or such. It was mainly used by my friends who wanted an environment to write and test linux specific code and I would then learn about and teach others on system administration, linux usage and even taught a guy English. Although I still don’t know Italian.

I now have been apart of several “cloud” studios. Which means I work from home along with others to make a video game. So the open internet has literally given my a childhood and a paying job. I didn’t get into the crime where I grew up (next to highway 99 in Washington.) because I was able to learn and explore through the internet. While I will agree there are health issues with sitting, typing and looking a screen without blinking for long periods of time. All of that is a different discussion, one not solved by removing net neutrality.

Because of the open internet I was able to host my own servers from home and play with people without anyone needing anything extra on their bill.  I am able to have a great job that lets me stay at home and remotely work on games because of the open internet. It has been a strong part of my life and hopefully will continue being a strong part of my life.

Brune, Michael J