Net Neutrality

Impact Social was commissioned to analyse the discussion of net neutrality across the US nationally and in a selection of specific states.

In the period May to September 2017, the objective was to provide an understanding of the issue in context with others in the public discourse and to provide analysis on whether the net neutrality discussion was driven by organised activism or a broader, more organic, public debate.

Net neutrality fades away

Key take outs

May was dominated by players pushing net neutrality into the political spotlight by linking it to other issues (such as free speech)


June was a quiet month with little emotion on the keep side of the debate as the focus of discussion began to crystallize around the national day of action on July 12th.  The reaction to the day of action itself was muted. Very little discussions in favour of “keeping” net neutrality regulations were made independently of activists - the “keep” campaign failed to capture the public’s imagination.  The much anticipated internet giants (Google, Twitter, Apple et al) participation was ubiquitously described as “half-hearted”.


August/September saw a significant decrease in the level of discussion (down 46% nationally).  This is in spite of the deadline for submissions to the FCC being extended to 30th August when a spike in activism was expected but didn’t materialise.


What’s clear towards the end of September the other FCC business shown in the neutral discussion (Sinclair in particular) had captured the imagination of activists as net neutrality faded away.


National Online Conversation

Time Frame:  May-September 2017

The key insights were


Health care continues to drive the national conversation

Russia is consistently higher in volume than other issues

Sean Spicer’s departure garnered more attention that the 7/12 net neutrality “Day of Action”

The 8/30 FCC comment deadline for net neutrality drew negligible attention



At Impact Social we have a strong track record in analysing single issues and delivering in-depth analysis projects across a diverse range of industries, including:  


In the US:

Internet regulation, healthcare, climate change, clean energy, gambling, vaping,

drugs pricing, drug importation, gun reform, trade (NAFTA), senior care, nursing homes, tax reform


In the UK:

Housing, crime, cost of living, insurance, socio-economic groups, the nuclear industry, computer games, entertainment industries, education & retail

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