If the "net neutrality" thing is stopped, will it affect Tor users?

What about Onion services?

I am not qualified to add more details on "net neutrality" so feel free to add to this post

1 Answer 1


What Net Neutrality and Title II Is

First of all, it's very important to note that the current Net Neutrality debate (Title II and the FCC) only affects the United States of America. While it could have an effect on American Tor nodes, the Tor network as a whole would be more-or-less just the same.

Net Neutrality means that all Internet traffic should be treated the same. Title II allows the American FCC to enforce these rules on American ISPs. Without Title II, Net Neutrality would still be enforced by the American FTC or Congress. However, these protections will be weaker and slower to action.

How This Affects Tor users and Onion services

Without Title II enforcement of Net Neutrality, American ISPs will be able to legally throttle or block access to any content they wish. There are 3 main ways this could effect Tor users in America:

  1. ISPs do nothing, Tor works as usual.
  2. ISPs throttle Tor, making it slower than it already is.
  3. ISPs completely block Tor. You could still use bridges to connect.

Worst-Case Scenario

The worst-case scenario is that ISPs block everything except the websites and services on their whitelist. In this case, blocking all Tor bridges would be possible.

Without Net Neutrality, it's up to your ISP to decide to allow or block Tor.

  • AFAIK the real problem with removing NN is that the US is considered to be leading the world in many areas (as the largest of the western democracies), and might entice other nations to follow.
    – flindeberg
    Dec 15, 2017 at 0:17

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