Something Absolutely Terrible Just Happened To The Internet. Here's Why.

2014 is shaping up to be a terrible year for the free and open Internet. A federal court struck down the net neutrality rules that prevent charming companies like Comcast and Time Warner Cable from playing favorites with website speeds. For example: Let's say Comcast's cable division gets tired of competing with Netflix. Without net neutrality, Comcast can slow down Netflix and charge consumers to speed it back up.

The ruling was terrible, but it was made possible by a chain of events set in motion years before. In order to really understand why this is happening, we'll need to follow the money.

Video by Josh Silver for Represent.Us. You can also Like Represent.Us on Facebook for more tales of money, politics, and corruption. If you'd like to help push back against the monied interests that make things like the net neutrality decision possible, you can learn more on this action page or support the good people over at FreePress in their effort to petition the FCC.

DISCLOSURE: In addition to my job as a contributing curator for Upworthy, I also work for Represent.Us — a nonprofit anti-corruption organization. This video was originally created for Represent.Us and has been independently fact-checked by Upworthy's editorial staff. References for all of the facts and figures mentioned in this video are listed below. Campaign contribution and lobbying data referenced in this story are courtesy of the Center for Responsive Politics.

Sources: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10]