From Upgrade Cambridge, on April 30, 208: A discussion on “The Public Internet Option: How Local Governments Can Provide Network Neutrality, Privacy and Access for All” is planned for 7 to 8:30 p.m. May 16 in the Kirsch Auditorium at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Building 32, also known as the Ray and Maria Stata Center, at 32 Vassar St. The hosts are Upgrade Cambridge and the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, with the support of the MIT Student Information Processing Board.

The principal speaker will be Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst at the ACLU and principal author of its recent report detailing how public-owned networks can help protect crucial freedoms while ensuring affordable, reliable service. With Federal Communications Commission rollbacks of net neutrality and privacy regulations, growing incumbent telecom monopoly power and a growing digital divide, the public option is more important than ever to ensure a better internet for all. Attendees are asked to RSVP.

Upgrade Cambridge is a newly formed grassroots group that seeks to persuade Cambridge city leadership to invest in a city-owned fiber-to-the home broadband network.