Everyone wants a free and neutral Internet, but “net neutrality” has nothing to do with this. Net neutrality refers to Title II of the Communications Act of 1934, which regulates what are referred to as “common carriers,” utilities that hold de facto monopolies and thus are required to adhere to standards of open access and use. Title II originally governed such things as phone service and electricity, but two years ago, the FCC’s 2015 Open Internet Order decreed that they applied to Internet service providers as well.
For that matter, the nightmare scenario in which ISPs charge consumers extra fees to use certain services has never occurred in the U.S. or any other Western country. Despite net neutrality having only been law for two years, American ISPs have never sold Internet service like it was cable TV, forcing consumers to purchase individual packages. Indeed, the only two countries I could find where this model is used are Turkey and China, two non-Western countries whose governments strictly regulate online speech and censor websites on their own.
To put it simply, net neutrality is corporate welfare. Google, Twitter, Facebook, Netflix and other edge providers support it because it gives them a discount on their operating costs at the expense of ISPs, who must pay to maintain and upgrade the infrastructure that makes the Internet possible to begin with. Net neutrality has as much relevance to consumers as Coke vs. Pepsi, and net neutrality defenders are nothing more than useful idiots for Silicon Valley.