When Netflix debuted the second season of Stranger Things on October 27, more than 15 million people watched the first episode in the following three days. But the strangest thing about Stranger Things? Its early audience was bigger than some of this year’s World Series games.



Jessica Rosenworcel( @JRosenworcel) is a Democratic commissioner on the Federal Communications Commission.

Today, we have an explosion of online video and countless other services because the internet is open to all. Anyone can use digital tools to create and distribute their work online. Despite the wild benefits of this openness, Washington is ready to unravel it.

On December 14, the leadership of the Federal Communications Commission is forcing a referendum that they are able to repeal net neutrality rules that require equal access to all content on the Internet. These regulations prevent broadband providers from blocking access to websites. They avoid broadband providers from censoring content or from accusing new fees to retrieve the full cosmo of video and other services available online. These rules are working.

But if net neutrality regulations are rolled back, as proposed by the FCC, broadband providers will have the power to dictate the kind of content consumers are able to access online. They’ll be allowed to listing the websites you can opinion for free and those for which you’ll be charged a premium.

This is apparent–to a whole lot of people. In reality, at this degree, more than 23 million remarks ought to have filed at the FCC in response to its proposal to eliminate net neutrality. But there are serious problems with the unity of this record. Roughly a million commentaries were fraudulently filed applying their lists of real people. New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman has called this identity steal, and has launched an investigation.

What’s more, as many as half thousands and thousands of additional comments were filed from Russian email addresses. And 50,000 FCC consumer complaints are missing from the record, even though this is just the kind of data the FCC should be using to inform its efforts. Researchers say that bots are chiming in to diminish the power of real voices. And the FCC’s comment system is now the subject of a Government Accountability Office investigation over the agency’s claim that the system was the subject of an alleged DDoS attack.

Public statements matter because they’re the method by which the FCC hears not just from the high-paid lobbyists in Washington, but small businesses and individuals across the country.