LOS GATOS, Calif., March 21 (UPI) —

Reed Hastings, chief executive officer of Netflix, one of the biggest consumers of bandwidth in the country, has called for strong net neutrality protection.

In a statement on a company blog, Hastings said Thursday that net neutrality is a protection for the public, not for Netflix and other commercial enterprises using the Internet. He cited a statement by a Verizon executive that Netflix is "dumping" as much material as it wants through Internet service providers.

"Netflix isn’t ‘dumping’ data; it’s satisfying requests made by ISP customers who pay a lot of money for high speed Internet. Netflix doesn’t send data unless members request a movie or TV show," he said.

Net neutrality has become a hot issue because the rise of video streaming services like Netflix is straining the capacity of some Internet service providers. Some ISPs have been calling for additional payments.

"To ensure the Internet remains humanity’s most important platform for progress, net neutrality must be defended and strengthened," Hastings said.