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Monday, April 11, 2016

The Internet Is A Basic Right

Internet Is a Basic Utility

Toledo Blade Editorial | April 11, 2016

In a 3-2 vote last week, the Federal Communications Commission voted to allow an estimated 40 million Americans on food stamps, Medicaid, and other federal assistance to register for subsidies to put toward Internet service. For the first time, low-income Americans can qualify for a credit worth $9.25 a month. That money can be applied to broadband service as part of a voice bundle on cellular, fixed networks, or a standalone phone with no voice plan.
This is good news for the estimated 13 million people eligible for Lifeline who currently have no Internet service. With more educational courses and jobs requiring applicants to apply online, poor people are at an added disadvantage if they don’t have access to the Internet. As much as it may seem to some to be a useless extravagance, Internet service today is a basic utility — as necessary as water and electricity. This is a historic expansion of benefits that is long overdue.

FCC to offer Internet subsidies to poor. Source:

<more at; related articles and links: (FCC Proposes Internet Subsidy for Low-Income Users. Government’s Lifeline program for phone bills would be expanded to provide broadband access. May 28, 2015) and (The Government Just Made It Cheaper For Some People To Use The Internet. It’s still not enough to overcome deep inequalities. April 1, 2016)>

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