John Oliver's Cheeky Net Neutrality Plea Crashes FCC Website
John Oliver's Cheeky Net Neutrality Plea Crashes FCC Website
By Amanda Holpuch / theguardian.com

The US Federal Communications Commission website reported technical difficulties because of heavy traffic this week hours after comedian John Oliver called on viewers to share their thoughts with the agency about what he called “cable company fuckery”.

We’ve been experiencing technical difficulties with our comment system due to heavy traffic. We’re working to resolve these issues quickly.

— The FCC (@FCC) June 2, 2014

We’re still experiencing technical difficulties with our comment system. Thanks for your patience as we work to resolve the issues.

— The FCC (@FCC) June 2, 2014


On Sunday’s episode of the HBO show Last Week Tonight, Oliver encouraged viewers to take advantage of the 120-day open commenting period on the FCC’s Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet proposal and tell the government what they thought of the plan.

“Good evening, monsters,” Oliver said, before urging online commenters to submit their comments to the agency's site.

Critics say the FCC's plan would destroy net neutrality because it creates a “tiered internet” where companies could pay for higher speed access. To maintain net neutrality, they argue, internet should be classified and regulated like a utility.

Oliver's 13-minute description of the net neutrality debate was decidedly negative toward the FCC's plan, comparing TV and internet provider Comcast to a defence contractor for the amount of money it has spent lobbying for a tiered internet.

“We need you to get out and, for once in your lives, focus your indiscriminate rage in a useful direction,” Oliver said. “Seize your moment my lovely trolls, turn on caps lock, and fly my pretties, fly, fly!”

And, it would appear, they did.

Just after the segment aired on HBO, Last Week Tonight, and its fans, said the FCC comment feature was not working. The FCC confirmed that its system was experiencing technical difficulties because of heavy traffic on Monday, after Oliver's video was posted and widely shared online. By Tuesday, it had been viewed nearly 800,000 times.

We may or may not have crashed http://t.co/st6DgFYdhH. Whoops!

— Last Week Tonight (@LastWeekTonight) June 2, 2014

“We’re still experiencing technical difficulties with our comment system,” the FCC said on Twitter. “Thanks for your patience as we work to resolve the issues.”

The FCC told Variety that it was “unclear if the high volume was directly related to the John Oliver segment.”

More than 47,000 public comments have been filed on the proposal in the past thirty days. One comment published on Tuesday blasted "cable company fuckery," using Oliver's line. Another user cited a claim made by Oliver on the show: "It is embarrassing that Estonia has higher download speeds at lower prices than the USA."

One profanity-ridden post concluded with: "John Oliver told me to do this."

4.0 ·
2
What's Next
Trending Today
The Myth of Positivity: Why Your Pain Holds a Mighty Purpose
umair haque · 10,913 views today · Of all the great myths of contemporary life, one of the most toxic is positivity. It says: there are negative and positive emotions, and only the positive ones are worth...
Stunning Summary of US Imperialism and Native Resistance... on MSNBC!
4 min · 10,373 views today · On The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC, Lawrence explains why a protest by Native Americans in North Dakota reminds us of the history American always tries to forget.
Veterans at Standing Rock Ask Forgiveness for War Crimes Against Tribal Nations
Jen Hayden · 9,131 views today · Jon Eagle Sr., Tribal Historic Preservation Officer at Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has reported something wholly unexpected happened at the Standing Rock Reservation today. The...
Standing Rock Wisdom: How Sacred, Nonviolent Activism Has the Power to Succeed
Charles Eisenstein · 8,335 views today · I am told by Native American friends active at Standing Rock that the elders are counseling the Water Protectors to undertake each action prayerfully and to stay off the...
Why People Cling to Old Beliefs
1 min · 7,711 views today · Cognitive psychologist and neuroscientist at McGill University, Daniel Levitin, explains why people can be so stubborn when it comes to false beliefs. This behavior is...
Solar is Already Producing More Energy Than Oil, Says Major Scientific Review
Nafeez Ahmed · 5,328 views today · And is twice as powerful than previously thought
13 Crises That We All Must Face
George Monbiot · 4,190 views today · We face (at least) 13 major crises, some of which are immediate. It’s time for some hard thinking about how we confront them.
The Other Way of Knowing
Lilian Na’ia Alessa · 2,741 views today · Western science and Indigenous worldviews are often seen as incompatible, with the Indigenous view usually being far less valued by society at large. But an inside look at...
Seven Must-Have Skills for the 21st Century
Tommy Lehe · 2,409 views today · We live in a world that moves faster than we do. Trying to keep up can be an overwhelming task that at times feels hopeless, like we are falling further and further behind—but...
Sky Roosevelt-Morris: The Secret of Indigenous Resiliency
2 min · 2,214 views today · Activist Sky Roosevelt-Morris is of the Shawnee and White Mountain Apache Nations. She is a member of the Leadership Council of the American Indian Movement of Colorado. In...
DREAM: A Spoken Word Meditation For When Life Is Kicking Your Ass
4 min · 2,176 views today · If life is kicking your ass and the general un-coolness of everybody on planet erf is making you want to off yourself, TALK to someone: 800-273-8255 (national suicide...
Andy Goes In - Working Undercover in a Factory Farm
10 min · 1,831 views today · He's a $10/hr farmhand, and his name isn't Andy. Andy Goes In is a compelling 10-minute documentary short about a Mercy For Animals undercover investigator. The vast majority...
Dear Activists, Maybe It's Time to Admit That We've Got It All Wrong
Mickey Z. · 1,801 views today · “The first step in the revolution is eye contact.” - Alicen Grey
15 Films Inspiring and Illuminating the 'New Story' Revolution
Tim Hjersted · 1,767 views today · Charles Eisenstein is one of the first people I heard talk about the "new story," synthesizing a diverse movement that has been emerging for the last several decades. When I go...
How a White Supremacist Became a Civil Rights Activist
Araz Hachadourian · 1,517 views today · The story of a KKK leader’s transformation shows us that we need not live forever with the kind of violence we saw in Charleston this month.
Australian Government Promotes Crap with Adani Carmichael Coal Mine
2 min · 1,375 views today · The Australian Government just released this advert about the proposed Carmichael Coal Mine and it's surprisingly honest and informative. 6 WAYS YOU CAN HELP STOP CCRAP: 1...
Incredible Stories From 5 Inspirational Farms
12 min · 1,353 views today · In this series of 5 short films we visit five farms where incredible things sprout. From growing massive, 100-pound vegetables to giving injured animals another chance, these...
How Mindfulness Empowers Us
2 min · 1,275 views today · Many traditions speak of the opposing forces within us, vying for our attention. Native American stories speak of two wolves, the angry wolf and the loving wolf, who both live...
Mary Lyons Describes 'The We'
29 min · 1,116 views today · Beautiful. Listen to this. 
The Invention of Capitalism: How a Self-Sufficient Peasantry was Whipped Into Industrial Wage Slaves
Yasha Levine · 1,086 views today · “…everyone but an idiot knows that the lower classes must be kept poor, or they will never be industrious.” —Arthur Young; 1771 Our popular economic wisdom says that...
Load More
Like us on Facebook?
John Oliver's Cheeky Net Neutrality Plea Crashes FCC Website