The very existence of online civic participation and the free Internet as we know it are under attack by America Online.
AOL recently announced what amounts to an "email tax." Under this pay-to-send system, large emailers willing to pay an "email tax" can bypass spam filters and get guaranteed access to people's inboxes—with their messages having a preferential high-priority designation.
Charities, small businesses, civic organizing groups, and even families with mailing lists will inevitably be left with inferior Internet service unless they are willing to pay the "email tax" to AOL. We need to stop AOL immediately so other email hosts know that following AOL's lead would be a mistake.
For a link to a petition relating to stopping this threat to free exchange of ideas go to MoveOn(dot)org.
Local note: East End Report readers should know that AOL blocks emails to their subscribers containing links to many web sites. This has made it more difficult to distribute the East End Report.