Open Internet

What Does Open Internet Mean?

The Open Internet (OI) is a fundamental network (net) neutrality concept in which information across the World Wide Web (WWW) is equally free and available without variables that depend on the financial motives of Internet Service Providers (ISP).


Techopedia Explains Open Internet

The OI is a dominant form of modern communication that has been in place throughout Web history. It is championed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as an emergent technology principle.

In recent years, net neutrality and the OI have become increasingly controversial as some ISPs have moved toward new ways of controlling data transmission. The FCC is continuously involved in court actions surrounding net neutrality, some of which predict that ISPs may be able to manipulate Web traffic to violate the OI. As this issue works its way through the courts, it may have vast ramifications on the future of the Internet.

Net neutrality and other principles, like Web censorship and privacy, have been analyzed from many angles as the Internet has emerged as a single global platform. Over the last two decades, the advent of new technologies has been mostly unregulated and dependent on private sector innovation. Thus, national governments often have different ways of controlling Internet usage within their domains.

The future of net neutrality will be a deciding factor in the continued transparent and free flow of information to Internet users worldwide.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.