Barbara Stripling, president of the American Library Association, has written an article clarifying the repercussions of the recent net neutrality decision:
Protecting net neutrality and considering its effect on libraries isn’t just a feel-good sentiment about education and innovation, however. Network neutrality is actually an issue of economic access, because those who can’t afford to pay more for internet services will be relegated to the “slow lane” of the information highway.
Public libraries — which serve roughly 30 million patrons each week — could face higher service charges for newly premium online information and services. In a time of already-constrained budgets, paying more for more internet access would require tradeoffs such as fewer books, staff, and open hours.
Want to do something about it? There is an online petition here, asking the FCC to reconsider the decision.