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John Oliver takes on net neutrality with devastating humor

It’s Monday morning, and we’re still clearing the cobwebs from our weekend brains, so it seems odd to delve into the soporific topic of net neutrality. If you’re reading this, I’m going to say there’s a 99.9% chance you’re on the internet, which means this current hot topic is relevant to your interests. However, the finer grained details of the subject can be difficult to follow. Luckily, former Daily Show star John Oliver is willing to break it down for you in this humorous 13 minute summary.

Remember, while humor is for entertainment, you can learn from it as well. So why not get two things done at once by watching the above video, then head into comments and share your thoughts on the debate.

What’s your answer? Mine is similar to the one at the end of Fight Club (1999).

Daniel Rubino
Executive Editor

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

  • first comment on wpcentral article for first time......My tine to shine....
  • This will be fun when I delete it then!
  • Lol Daniel
  • LOL! You nailed it
  • lol.. You go Dan, show him who is the boss here. :)
  • Bang on!! :P
  • Here's a lollipop for your achievement !
  • And you could have nailed it by spelling it right. Nice try though.
  • Thanks for adding to the conversation, here is a stale cookie
  • thats my first insult thread.....thanks a lot guys...
  • Also.....on an totally unrelated subject....i hope you all fall on your penises and your future generations may be vanquished into thin air....
  • Already watched 5 minutes ago. You're too slow. Gizmodo got to it first. Lol. Gotta be faster if you want that ad revenue. :P
  • I just feel so sorry that you read Gizmodo! I didn't know things were that bad!
  • Lol. Touché
  • Perfect answer. 10 internet points go to Rubino. :)
  • LMFAO Posted via Windows Phone Central App for Android!
  • Agreed about Gizmodo. Their SP3 review is the worst. So much biased.
  • You must have super hyper speed and Daniel has hyper speed! Lol.
  • BURN!!  
  • Gizmodo has become a steaming pile. They are a mere shadow if their former selves when they started years ago.
  • I definitely agree. But,I still just check out the first page of new articles every morning. Never more than that per day.
  • Gizmodo is one of the most aweful sites on the internet.
  • for the win
  • If you're reading these comments without watching the video, stop. Watch the video. It's totally worth it.
  • I actually finally leaned what this whole needy neutrality issue is from that. That guy should be a college professor.
  • I see what you did there...
  • What is net neutrality? Been hearing and seeing them all over but never kinda read to understand. Someone explain it and why the controversies'
  • Here's a very good video that uses a shower analogy to explain it.
  • Why are you linking it to another video? The video on this article explains it perfectly and is entertaining at the same time, unlike the video you are linking to.
  • How about watching the video?!
  • When will bbm come its,end,of,summer
  • Off topic much?
  • Depending where you are it isn't even summer yet...
  • That was hilarious and disturbing at the same time, lol.
  • John Oliver is awesome. I don't watch Daily Show, but I know him from Community. I'll check this out.
  • He will always be Professor Ian Duncan to me!  :'-)
  • Cool! Never thought I would find a fellow "Human Being" in this thread :D
  • Well put, well said! Dam FCC.
  • Quite possibly one of the best internet vid ive seen. Even though I'm not American, I got some of the references he made.
  • That video was masterful. Thanks Daniel.
  • Of course if you want to actually send the FCC a comment, it's near impossible.    
  • Isn't it sad when you have to watch a comedy show to get the REAL unbiased news, while the news networks keep covering complete BS. John Oliver is brilliant, the funiest and most informative thing to come to TV in a long time.  
  • Is there anything that´s NOT for sale to the highest bidder in the US?
  • My wife, wait I might rethink that with a good offer. J\K
  • Crud, she saw that and I got slapped, rofl!
  • :-)
  • Absolutley hilarious and scary all at the same time.
  • "Do something useful my lovely trolls, turn on caps lock and fly my pretties! FLY!" Lol best line ever
  • Haha that was actually pretty good.    The United States is the jurisdiction of the FCC.  As a Canadian, would this affect me too?  Without net neutrality, would Netflix stream slower for me up here too?    I guess I'm just wondering if the FCC can control the speed of data LEAVING the country too, affecting customers on the global scale who aren't in the FCC's jurisdiction. 
  • I've heard people say it's possible, but I don't think so.  The Cancadian ISPs would probably be held to different standards.  Controlling speeds is something the ISPs want to do.  But the ISPs are not the "Internet".  The Internet is controlled by other data servers and ISPs do just as their name conveys: provide Internet.  But they don't "host" the Internet.  ISPs look at DNS systems for where things are located.  From there, you are routed to what you need.  Even if something is hosued in the US, it has its own IP address that is outside the jurisdiction of the ISPs in controlling the data flow.  Only if your stream of data was somehow routed through a US ISP taht has implemented restrictions, would that possibly happen.
  • Ok, well, that's good, for Canadians.  But now it brings the situation where international customers could enjoy better, faster service.  And then Americans would have to pay a premium for an American service (like Netflix) to enjoy the same level of service the rest of the world does, or live with poor service and speeds.  This will undoubtedly create a shift in the economics of consumer data consumption in the United States.  It might make it less appealing for an American to choose to pay for an American service over a competing overseas service.  It all sounds like BAD NEWS.
  • What?
  • I believe this deals are related to the last mile of service to your house. If comcast isn't providing service in Canada, they can't slow it down.
  • It starts there, at the last mile to your house.  But what's to stop it from spreading closer and closer to the server in the future?  That's why it's got to be stopped NOW.  This is all just a bunch of bullshit to make a very very tiny number of Americans a LOT richer. 
  • This is a lot of "sky is falling" rhetoric considering it hasn't actually happened.
  • Fan of Oliver since he covered indian election on his show... Hilariously true
  • This should be posted across other Mobile Nations sites, as it's a concern for everyone.  
  • It is, except on iMore where they're too wrapped up in the more of the same announcements coming out of WWDC today.
  • I've seen so little comments on their articles today though. You'd think they'd get more with those topics.
  • Love the video. Hate how us people are being treated.
  • For any of you that may want to really get down in the weeds on this topic in a serious way, the 17 May episode of "This Week in Law" had a highly contentious, but educational, debate between two guests in the legal profession. Well worth listening to if you really want to get both well informed sides of the argument.
  • I love things like this. Its very entertaining and teaches you a lot about net neutrality.
  • Never heard of John Oliver before (being in the UK), but that was a good rant and all of you US readers should do as he says at the end of the video.
  • That was brilliant
  • His Lobbying graph needs more data.  He mentioned Google on one side, and Comcast on the other saying it's Comcast that owns the government by the lobbying spending being greater thant Northrop. That is only true if you use outdated data. The reality of that order, currently. (From largest lobbyiest to smallest): Google
    Northrop Grumman
    Southern Co
    Lockheed Martin
    Pfizer   Google is the one outspending defense contractors and telecom provider.
  • Hi, what is your source for the lobby data?  I would like to use it.  Thanks.
  • The source is open secrets. (
  • Whether his data was right or not he got a great point across.
  • He also obfuscates the whole rights of way issue.  That isn't cable companies agreeing not to compete, many of them would love to, that is local governments and municipalities making deals to give certain companies cabling rights of way within their communities and essentially locking out competitors with municipal law. The lack of competition most people see with cable providers is a failure of their local governments.
  • Ars Technica ran an amazing article on how Verizon manipulates the hierarchy of state and federal governments to get all the perks of both systems and none of the regulations If you have 5 minutes, give it a read. Worth it...
  • I've always liked John Oliver but the truth behind his humor is fucking scary. Everyone, share that video on any and all social websites you're a part of and go to to tell them how you feel. Come on Monsters, now is your time to shine.
  • Sheet... I was ready to eviscerate 'em but the site won't load... Even were the site "loading", I presume they'll listen to those major companies more than an indidvidual complaint. Also, why is there that eery feeling that backroom contracts are already being drawn up to allow the big players unfettered access to the country's fiber?  
  • Wow. And the website is kind of a joke. You have to download comments to view them, it seems. They are not making this easy for the users to voice their opinion.
  • OMG, the whole net neutrality aspect of this was meh, but the call to commenters at the end made me have to shut my office door to laugh out loud. epic.
  • John Oliver wins the internet. The Usain Bolt one that is.
    There, all caps comment done. Not on the FCC's webpage - because you know the FCC won't actually read what the people that they're making the laws for have to say. I think if it ain't broken don't fix it.
  • The website is being hammered. lol.
  • nvm
  • Best Video Ever.... at least on Net Neutrality.
  • He's even made another video on the FCC finally adopting sweeping net neutrality rules. Type "net neutrality update" on YouTube and you'll find it.