The aim of net neutrality is to preserve the Internet as the crucial open sidewalk for communication that it has become. The reason that the Chinese, Russian and Cuban governments fear an open Internet more than anything else is that it allows users to gather and speak to one another. But users of a walled-garden “zero-rated” Internet can’t even click links that go outside the garden. And they certainly won’t be launching their own apps. Linking and building are the fundamental attributes of the Internet — innovation and speech without permission — that must not be compromised away.

Among the countries who have banned zero rating while the US sits on its thumbs (listening to the carrier lobbyists): Chile, Norway, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, and Japan. Seems like we should be leaders here, not followers.