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Net Neutrality Supporters Hammered In Elections

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the alignment-shift dept.

Democrats 402

Pickens writes "Gigi Sohn writes in the Huffington Post that one of the results of the mid-term elections was the defeat of Representative Rick Boucher, the current Chair of the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet, widely recognized as one of the most tech-savvy and intelligent members of Congress, and long an advocate for consumers on a wide variety of communications and intellectual property issues. Boucher has been the best friend of fair use on Capitol Hill writes Sohn. In 2002, 2003 and 2007, Boucher introduced legislation to allow consumers to break digital locks for lawful purposes, a fair use exception to the anti-circumvention provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and while the odds against that legislation passing were always great, Boucher understood the symbolic importance of standing up for consumers' rights to use technology lawfully. 'As important, he served as a moderating force both on the House Energy & Commerce and Judiciary Committees against those many members of Congress willing to give large media companies virtually everything on their copyright wish lists.'"

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first post (-1)

cecilgol (977329) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117958)

sad day for supporters of the open internet.

One step forward (4, Insightful)

shoehornjob (1632387) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117960)

two steps back. You can hear the lobbyists howling at the door.

Re:One step forward (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118266)

There is one and only one way to get rid of lobbyists: make politicians obsolete. [metagovernment.org]

Re:One step forward (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118512)

We need politicians to keep our political parties going strong.

We need politicians to bring home the bacon: giving our hard-spent tax dollars back to us in the form of gigantic projects named after themselves.

We need politicians to take the lead on critical issues like "family values" and gays in the military.

We need politicians to look after us and protect us from hurting ourselves.

We need politicians to do whatever the richest corporations want them to do.

Where would we be without politicians?

Huffington Post (-1, Flamebait)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118354)

Are we really linking to stories at the left-wing Huffington Post? I can't imagine people being okay with Brietbart editorials being linked here.

It seems as if pro net neutrality just the assumed position at Slashdot or something. Not everyone here thinks alike or agrees such legislation was ever necessary.

Re:Huffington Post (1)

paiute (550198) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118392)

Are we really linking to stories at the left-wing Huffington Post? I can't imagine people being okay with Brietbart editorials being linked here.

It seems as if pro net neutrality just the assumed position at Slashdot or something. Not everyone here thinks alike or agrees such legislation was ever necessary.

It's just that I don't want to have to get the Comcast - sorry - Xfinity Premium Super Latinum package to read Slashdot at more than dial-up speed.

Re:Huffington Post (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118546)

All "Republican" political/legislative efforts can be summed up as devoted toward one or more of just 3 goals: Rape the world; Rob the people pseudo-legally; and Enslave the people to debt. That's all they did for 8 years under Bush, and that's what they will be trying to do now that they control the House. Mark my words, and just wait and see how right I am!

Re:Huffington Post (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118800)

All political/legislative efforts can be summed up as devoted toward one or more of just 3 goals: Rape the world; Rob the people pseudo-legally; and Enslave the people to debt. That's all they did for 8000+ years, and that's what they will continue trying to do. Mark my words, and just wait and see how right I am!

FTFY

Re:Huffington Post (1)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118772)

Curious about where you live... You have only cable as an option, no DSL, no 3G, no satellite, no WiMAX? Just - cable?

Re:left-wing Huffington Post (5, Insightful)

macraig (621737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118480)

Are we really linking to stories at the left-wing Huffington Post?

Right... rather than simply treat the article on its factual merits, go after the source of the article. Brilliant! Did you invent that strategy yourself?

Not: it's called ad hominem. It's also a debate tactic used to implement tribalism/partisanism/racism/sexism/prejudice: self-hypnotic words to delude yourself into believing your opponent is less-than-human; once you've managed that stunt, why bother to listen to any of his arguments, even the otherwise cogent ones? Even better if you can also delude and convince others at the same time, because there's great strength in delusional numbers.

Congratulations to you for learning another trick to maintain your bias and mislead others.

Re:One step forward (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118478)

The Lobbyists aren't howling at the door, they're inside, having tea and biscuits.

That's the PEOPLE howling at the door, like a dog begging to be let back in, but stuck out in the rain to starve.

Re:One step forward (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118760)

it should be no surprise to anyone. he who has the gold makes the rules ... and the people with all the money can afford to make laws to "protect" their "intellectual property" ... always has been and always will be that way.

Net neutrality is not capitalism (0, Troll)

Relayman (1068986) | more than 3 years ago | (#34117976)

Under capitalism, the providers get to provide whatever traffic shaping they want. If you don't like it, get a another provider. If you only have one choice, well, that's part of the system, too. The people have spoken: Capitalism rules, this touchy-feely stuff like "net neutrality" is out the window.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Insightful)

orphiuchus (1146483) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118054)

If we only have 1 provider then that is an example of a market failure, and in that case it is not a violation of good market economics for the government to intervene. There are externalities imposed by the nature of the business that do require limited government regulation, I don't think that's to extreme a stance.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

adwarf (1002867) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118174)

I think he was being facetious. That said the reason you only have 1 provider is probably because one company was granted a local monopoly by the government. Although I suppose you could just live in the middle of no where.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Funny)

orphiuchus (1146483) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118262)

Look, I don't get a lot of chances to validate the economics classes they made me take in college, so when I get a chance to use words like "Market Failure" and "Externality", I take it damnit.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118264)

Actually, if you live anywhere besides the city, its pretty common (out of the five towns I've lived in the past two years, all except one) to have only two providers - and one is often dial-up. So without net neutrality your choices are "slow for non-corporate websites" and "slow for all websites"

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (2, Insightful)

miserere nobis (1332335) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118294)

Or because providing a service that requires laying wires to your house or beaming things to your house over a limited, licensed part of the radio frequency spectrum is a naturally monopolistic market. You can't really have a true free market with Internet access providers much more than you can have a true free market with electricity providers, natural gas providers, water providers, or road providers. Some states have played with pretend free markets in those areas, but there is no getting around the fact that there are not going to be multiple parallel sets of natural gas pipes running through the entire grid.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118278)

Yeah how's that mobile phone market working for you? Must be nice having paying out the ass for more restricted mobile service / phones.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (0, Troll)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118302)

How is having one government provider somehow different from having one private provider, other than that it's much harder to change governments? I've never really understood how people logically justify telling sysadmins at a company how they're supposed to regulate traffic on their network. If people are paying to use their network, they can regulate it however they want. Since internet access isn't a right but a convenient privilege, I'm not sure why the government is involved in the first place.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (3, Interesting)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118448)

no one(well almost no one) is discussing having a govt ISP. just having the govt own the wires, like they do the roads, and letting anyone provide services(cars) for them. Anyone that wants to use the wires(roads) can as long as the services(cars) meet certain requirements(safety belts, and a license plate, and tires with tread).

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Insightful)

zach_the_lizard (1317619) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118092)

It's funny you say that, because our ISPs in this country operate in a manner that is hardly conducive to a free market. They get money from the state, they get laws from the state that allow them to lay their cables on your property (even if don't want them), in some cases they get (or have gotten) state sanctioned monopolies (sometimes called franchise agreements), and I'm sure the mucking about in the FCC and Congressional telephony regulation probably insulates them from competitors. I think those are where the battles should really be fought, especially the outright monopolies that have been granted in the past.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118234)

It's funny you say that, because our ISPs in this country operate in a manner that is hardly conducive to a free market. They get money from the state

Stop, there's your problem: the state taking money from people and giving it to companies.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118454)

to build out a network that they were supposed to maintain and let anyone use, or provide services on.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118624)

They get money from the state ... to build out a network that they were supposed to maintain and let anyone use, or provide services on.

And you believed them? See the common thread: everyone's a selfish bastard, so you don't give anyone the keys to the kingdom, because they will be misused. Let a company acquire its own property via voluntary exchange (not money from the government), and then it can do whatever it wants with that property. Stop there. Don't give anyone property without having to make voluntary exchanges for it. Don't make it legal for anyone to take property, period.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (4, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118640)

Libertarians think everything is the government's fault, even blaming them for monopolies. But the fact is, this is a natural monopoly. You are not going to have half a dozen companies laying competing fiber networks do your door. (And without the government imposing eminent domain, you won't even have ONE). The choice isn't between a government-regulated monopoly vs a thriving marketplace, it's between a government-regulated monopoly vs. an unregulated monopoly. Free markets are great for most things, but the government must be involved with infrastructure at some level. Maybe better wireless technology will help the situation, one day.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Informative)

funkylovemonkey (1866246) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118136)

Actually Capitalism is any economic system where the means of production are owned and profited by private individuals and organizations rather then the state. What you're talking about is a strict free market where the government doesn't do anything but enforce contracts. Also it is sometimes called Laissez-faire economics. Which is why you can be a firm capitalist and still believe that the Government has the right to stop the selling of lead laced toys.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (0)

flyingkillerrobots (1865630) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118342)

It's a question of extent, and all the lines in between are fuzzy. Laissez-faire is a somewhat derogatory term. It is just a less nice way of saying "completely free market". Not all necessarily believe this is a bad thing.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118150)

Under capitalism, the providers get to provide whatever traffic shaping they want. If you don't like it, get a another provider.

This is not a provider issue, this is about who owns the Internet backbone. The company with the biggest portion of the backbone wins. I recommend reading up on the subject: http://advice.cio.com/who_owns_the_internet_we_have_a_map_that_shows_you

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Insightful)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118156)

The actual main idea behind capitalism being a 'good thing' was that there would be a constant influx of competitors - and companies would die out, start over et cetera.

The idea wasn't a corporocracy.

Also, 'another provider' won't work if:

1. Its the only provider in your area
2. The large companies agree with each other on what they're blocking

I'm pretty sure the RIAA/MPAA have enough resources to turn the larger ISPs over to their side, then certain sites and technologies magically start disappearing.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118464)

3. Which areas they are going to serve.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (3, Insightful)

Berkyjay (1225604) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118178)

What you are speaking of is absolute Free Market Capitalism, which doesn't exit in this country and for good reason. The government, on behalf of the people, set up rules which regulate business that protect the people from irresponsible business practice and promotes a fair trading environment. Certain sectors of our economy require more regulations than others due to their importance to daily life. The internet falls into this category and it should be protected from greedy corporations so that we can all have equal access to it. I for one don't want the rich to have special access to the internet that can't get due to my small pay check.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Insightful)

Tsiangkun (746511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118380)

Somebody should explain that the companies willingly let free market capitalism die. It was damn expensive having to maintain a navy to protect their trade. Once the companies let the government use their military to protect trade, there was no free market. The military, the government, and the companies were all now working together in a NOT free market. Some people want to believe the free market exists, but it does not. It has not for a long time. Belief in such a free market is a sign that no thought has been put into understanding the world. Like all religions, it requires faith, not intelligence to believe.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Funny)

fusiongyro (55524) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118260)

American democracy explained: the people want stuff for free. One side says "you get to have stuff but you have to pay for it." The other side says, "if you don't want to pay for anything, you shouldn't have to get anything." So every couple years, the voters alternate between "Waahh! I want more stuff!" or "Waahh! I don't like spending money!" It doesn't have any more to do with theoretical ideals of capitalism this time around than it did with theoretical ideals about socialism or progress last time around.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (2, Insightful)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118296)

"If you don't like it, get a another provider"

Like the one that doesn't exist? Access to a stable internet connection has become important to the lives of many (some even having jobs that revolve around it). Competition has failed (no surprise there). I mean, sure, the government having complete control over it isn't good either, but something must be done.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118494)

no govt provider, just govt lines, that they lease at a small amount above cost(tax) to anyone that wants it, at publicly announced rates.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (5, Interesting)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118538)

There is a third option. I refer to it as the "single payer public option" just to get up the ire of the Tea Party folks. It's remarkably simple:

  • The government builds and owns the infrastructure and pays for it with public funds.
  • The government leases access to the infrastructure and allows ISPs to tunnel traffic over it in a non-preferential fashion.
  • The government transitions this to a government-owned nonprofit infrastructure corporation after ten years of operation (or after it is solvent if that takes a little more than ten years).

This takes the infrastructure costs out of the equation, making it possible to have substantial competition even in smaller markets. More importantly, however, it means that the government is not in control over the content because the government is not the ISP, and after ten years, the government is not even involved except in hiring somebody to run it. The key part of this is nonprofit. By taking the profit motive out of the equation, this ensures maximum areal coverage for minimum cost, yet does so in a way that minimizes the government's control over the infrastructure.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

genner (694963) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118308)

Under capitalism, the providers get to provide whatever traffic shaping they want. If you don't like it, get a another provider. If you only have one choice, well, that's part of the system, too. The people have spoken: Capitalism rules, this touchy-feely stuff like "net neutrality" is out the window.

State sanctioned monopolies are not part of laze fare capitalism. If real competition were allowed I would agree with you.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118534)

And with that competition i would have 10 different trenches in my yard with 7 different "standards" none of which work together.

Re:Net neutrality is not capitalism (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118522)

Fine, let them shape and block, and let them loose their common carrier status. One without the other is not OK, which is what they are wanting to do.

"net neutrality" is control play (3, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118000)

long an advocate for consumers on a wide variety of communications and intellectual property issues.

The loss of a friend for fair use was sad, but I think a few others may have come in so perhaps that will balance out. On the whole the Democrats were always befriended by Hollywood in ways Republicans were not, so I would hope a lot of new Republicans would be cool to the MPAA and other organizations...

That said, "Net Neutrality" is not about what people think. It's about bringing the internet, and specifically ISP's, under more regulation to solve a problem that doesn't exist. How you you carefully craft regulation to solve a problem that doesn't exist?

The biggest ISP no-no we have seen was Comcast and torrent tomfoolery. But no net neutrality ideas under discussions would have stopped that, because in that case Comcast forged traffic, they didn't limit anything. It was your network's stack response to forged packets that caused a slowdown.

So even if you support regulation of the internet and the foot in the door for greater control over allowable traffic that brings with it, even if you support that - shouldn't we at least wait and see IF issues arise so we can construct regulation that actually solves a problem instead of just being there to make us all feel warm and fuzzy?

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (5, Insightful)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118084)

because in that case Comcast forged traffic, they didn't limit anything. It was your network's stack response to forged packets that caused a slowdown.

To a reasonable person, that's like saying "My plastic bag over your head isn't keeping you from breathing. It's your body's response to increasing levels of carbon dioxide that's causing you to black out."

It's a cryin' shame our country is run by lawyers, rather than reasonable people.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (3, Informative)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118088)

On the whole the Democrats were always befriended by Hollywood in ways Republicans were not, so I would hope a lot of new Republicans would be cool to the MPAA and other organizations...

Democrats may have greater support among the Hollywood celebrities that are visible to the public, but I don't think there is much evidence that they have closer ties to the megacorps that actually own the studios, who are who the MPAA represents.

The biggest ISP no-no we have seen was Comcast and torrent tomfoolery. But no net neutrality ideas under discussions would have stopped that, because in that case Comcast forged traffic, they didn't limit anything.

Forging packets as a mechanism to foil the use of any lawful software or device would violate every net neutrality proposal I've seen, all of which prohibit ISPs from preventing the customer from using any lawful device or software without regard to the mechanism by which that is done.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (5, Informative)

thestudio_bob (894258) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118258)

Democrats may have greater support among the Hollywood celebrities that are visible to the public, but I don't think there is much evidence that they have closer ties to the megacorps that actually own the studios, who are who the MPAA represents.

Let me enlighten you...

  • Gershengorn, a partner with RIAA-firm Jenner & Block, represented the labels against Grokster (.pdf) and will be in charge of the DOJ Federal Programs Branch. That’s the unit that just told a federal judge the Obama administration supports monetary damages as high as $150,000 per purloined music track on a peer-to-peer file sharing program.
  • Donald Verrilli, associate deputy attorney general — the No. 3 in the DOJ, who unsuccessfully urged a federal judge to uphold the $222,000 file sharing verdict against Jammie Thomas.
  • Tom Perrilli, as Verrilli’s former boss, the Justice Department’s No. 2 argued in 2002 that internet service providers should release customer information to the RIAA even without a court subpoena.
  • Brian Hauck, counsel to associate attorney general, worked on the Grokster case on behalf of the record labels.
  • Ginger Anders, assistant to the solicitor general, litigated on the Cablevision case.

Source Obama Taps 5th RIAA Lawyer to Justice Dept [wired.com]

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118400)

Let me enlighten you...

That isn't remotely relevant to the issue I raised about questions about whether Democrats are really closer than Republicans to the megacorporations that run the studios, who are the people that the MPAA/RIAA/etc. represent. You've pointed to the Obama administration hiring people who previously the RIAA hired to represent them, which isn't relevant to any comparative question, and isn't relevant to proximity to corporations the *AAs represent.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118622)

Let me enlighten you...

That isn't remotely relevant to the issue I raised about questions about whether Democrats are really closer than Republicans to the megacorporations that run the studios, who are the people that the MPAA/RIAA/etc. represent. You've pointed to the Obama administration hiring people who previously the RIAA hired to represent them, which isn't relevant to any comparative question, and isn't relevant to proximity to corporations the *AAs represent.

This Democratic prick [wikipedia.org] is all the media companies need.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118602)

Barbara Boxer, who has consistently pushed for more restrictive copyright. Even as someone who usually votes Democrat, the only reason I voted for her is that Carly Fiorina nearly brought a major Fortune 500 company to its knees, and we really don't need someone that bad at managing a business helping run our federal government. I was all set to vote against her until she ended up as the G.O.P. candidate.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118796)

Sooooooooo... you voted for her purely because she ended up as a Republican candidate... even though you already know she isn't best suited to represent you? o_O

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118854)

If the enlightenment is that democrats suck, and yes, I knew that all along, then what comes after enlightenment? Depression?

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118110)

"The biggest ISP no-no we have seen was Comcast and torrent tomfoolery. But no net neutrality ideas under discussions would have stopped that, because in that case Comcast forged traffic, they didn't limit anything. It was your network's stack response to forged packets that caused a slowdown."
 
But Comcast did add that traffic onto the network with the intention of limiting the torrent traffic. The mechanism by which they limited the traffic was forged packets sent to your network stack. I believe it should be the intention that makes the deciding factor and not the process by which that intention is done.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118220)

Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. Oh, wait you're serious.

Politicians befriend those with money. If you think Republicans will not do Hollywood's bidding when sacks of cash start getting delivered you are deluded. Just like the Democrats ended subsidies to oil companies (they didn't) and made them actually pay a penny in tax (they don't). But that could only happen when the Republicans were kicked out in '08 because they were befriended by the oil industry in ways Democrats were not.

Yeah, you let me know when special interest money becomes less important than doing the right thing. Not being friendly with an big interest like Hollywood just means when you come into power you can expect a big fat check soon.

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118322)

So even if you support regulation of the internet and the foot in the door for greater control over allowable traffic that brings with it, even if you support that - shouldn't we at least wait and see IF issues arise so we can construct regulation that actually solves a problem instead of just being there to make us all feel warm and fuzzy?.

No! We want to feel warm and fuzzy!

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (4, Funny)

TheWoozle (984500) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118414)

That said, "Net Neutrality" is not about what people think. It's about bringing the internet, and specifically ISP's, under more regulation to solve a problem that doesn't exist. How you you carefully craft regulation to solve a problem that doesn't exist?

So by your logic, I shouldn't get the flu vaccine this year?

Re:"net neutrality" is control play (2, Insightful)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118592)

That said, "Net Neutrality" is not about what people think. It's about bringing the internet, and specifically ISP's, under more regulation to solve a problem that doesn't exist. How you you carefully craft regulation to solve a problem that doesn't exist?

This.

If I was to set up a hundred different machines all over the internet to hammer a single IP address with packets, usually that would be considered a Denial of Service (DoS) attack (even if it doesnt succeed in denying service.) Well thats exactly what Bittorrent does, right?

Even if ISP's gave each of their users 10 times as bunch bandwidth as they do now, the problem would remain. Bittorrent's goal would still be to fully saturate the receiving pipe, and the only barrier to that happening in a lack of popularity for the specific torrent.

It is no surprise at all that some ISP's tried to do something about it, even if they were morally wrong to do so. No surprise at all.

Throttling torrents has to do with peak usage, not neutrality. Your ISP can't deliver the maximum rated bandwidth to all of its subscribers simultaneously. Thats the fact of the matter. How much would an ISP have to charge to REALLY support a fully saturated 10Mbit/1Mbit for everyone at the same time? My guess is a lot more that double the current rates.

You know what they say... (1)

hsjserver (1826682) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118004)

Elections have consequences. But what do I know? Both parties are exactly the same, right?

Duh, it was a conservative voterbase (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118012)

The Dems were already in power. Midterm elections tend to be overwhelmingly biased to the party principles of the second-largest party. Now add all the FUD spread by the Tea Party et al. Nobody should be surprised that the resulting observations are all leaning Right.

"Liberal" stances like Net Neutrality and CA's Prop 19 (though neither of those are completely economically liberal, they are associated that way) suffer in elections like this. This is not a trend that you should expect to see continue in 2012.

Re:Duh, it was a conservative voterbase (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118492)

Don't blame the Tea Party. Blame the idiots who listen and obey. And they'll (or some other offshoot of the moral majority) be around in 2012 to muck things up then also.

Re:Duh, it was a conservative voterbase (0, Troll)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118606)

Sure is pretty liberal hurt feeling out there today. So tell me, how much do you listen to media matters and their ilk while soros pushes his agenda on you?

It will be okay. (3, Funny)

pspahn (1175617) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118022)

I plan on running for Congress in 2012. I'll fill a void.

Re:It will be okay. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118290)

Yeah, the void in the "defeated" column.

Re:It will be okay. (5, Funny)

jd (1658) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118518)

You can't fill a void, but you can fill a *void, provided it points to a valid address.

nothing neutral on either side (0, Troll)

MichaelKristopeit129 (1934224) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118042)

"net neutrality" is a term that only an ignorant marketeer or sheepish fool would use.

there is nothing neutral about "net neutrality"... it is ignorant hyperbole.

Re:nothing neutral on either side (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118144)

You know what I like best about having sex with your wife? All the teeth in her vagina. What can I say, a kink is a kink.

Re:nothing neutral on either side (-1, Troll)

MichaelKristopeit128 (1934222) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118320)

a coward is a coward. i don't like anything about cowards. they are completely pathetic.

to the individual responsible, present yourself to me and i will bring upon you the ultimate penalty for your transgressions.

Re:nothing neutral on either side (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118714)

Are you going to friend him on facebook?

Re:nothing neutral on either side (0, Troll)

MichaelKristopeit129 (1934224) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118360)

once again, the truth = troll.

what is neutral about forcing anyone to do anything? only someone trying to confuse through ignorant hyperbole would use the term "net neutrality". for or against, there is no neutrality and the concept of the boundaries of the referenced "net" are blurred.

slashdot = stagnated

enjoy your dose of marketeering.

Re:nothing neutral on either side (4, Insightful)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118650)

It's not about forcing anyone to do anything, it's about forcing corps(which aren't a person) to do nothing based on some rules.

Want to see slashdot*, google, youtube, hulu, farmville, and facebook, those are available on the super ++good platinum package that is an extra $300 a month and requires a special "router" that will require you to lease it at $45 a month, and to use that router you will need the professional internet package, only $70/month but you can watch all the "ondemand" you want from ondemand.comcast.net for the low price of $30 a month with a free modem. XBox live and PSN are only $100 a month if you want those services.

*Includes goatse.cx for the full slashdot experiance

Don't think it will happen? I'm sure it will if we let them.

Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (4, Informative)

orphiuchus (1146483) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118048)

Very few people that I know who don't work directly with computers have a decent understanding of net neutrality. I actually know several people who believed that moron Glen Beck when he said it was an "Marxist takeover of the internet", which is about as far from the truth as you can get. I don't believe that these candidates were voted out because of their net neutrality stances, I think it was more an issue of health care and the economy, but if they ever want this issue to be understood and voted on by the public then they need to run campaign adds explaining it in very basic, honest, terms.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (4, Insightful)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118184)

The way politics in America works - from what I understood of it - is that as soon as you mention:

Socialism, Communism, Marxism, Government Control, Government Sponsored, Government, or whatever, then the general consensus is to hate it.

We don't want no government controlling MY internet. I'd rather trust big-company-x-with-no-ulterior-motives-whatsoever. God Bless America.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (1, Troll)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118212)

We don't want no government controlling MY internet. I'd rather trust big-company-x-with-no-ulterior-motives-whatsoever. God Bless America.

Yes, it's much better to have the big-governemtn-with-no-ulterior-motives-whatsoever control all the companies' data lines.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (2, Insightful)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118256)

Ideally, the government represents the people - the best government is one which takes care of its people.

Ideally, the company gets maximum profits possible in the market - the best companies are the ones which reap the most money.

There is no reason for a company to do anything which will hurt its bottom line permanently. Always keep that in mind. If a company decides that it is supporting self-regulated net neutrality, its doing it to 1-up the competitors and get more money.

Now I realise that the government representing the 'people' has long gone - but at least you are allowed to fight back if you want to. Try complaining against large-company-X-which-supplies-the-only-internet-in-the-area and see where that gets you.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118426)

Now I realise that the government representing the 'people' has long gone - but at least you are allowed to fight back if you want to. Try complaining against large-company-X-which-supplies-the-only-internet-in-the-area and see where that gets you.

If the company has used its own reasources to build that service, how are they hurting anyone by charging whatever they want, on whatever terms they want? If they are in business, obviously their customers consider them worth it. What if the company decided to close and stop providing service? It sounds like you'd consider that a good thing, yet if that were the case, the people could simply stop buying the company's services and make that happen.

Now I know that other people who don't bother reading the parent post will reply about the company getting government money etc. Note the first line of the previous paragraph. If you still whine, "but the government gave them monopoly etc." then your problem is with the government, not the company. Haedrian's comment was about the company itself, in some hypothetical situation where it received nothing from the government, and that's what I'm responding to.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (3, Insightful)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118580)

Well - the internet has become an integral and vital part of many things indeed - so I personally do not believe it should be in the hands of companies at all - rather beside the point - but its the incentive for the rest of it.

The internet works in a rather different manner to many services - not only because we're basing a lot of technology, comminication et cet upon it - but also because its more of a gateway thing - its a means to an end.

The fact that its such a vital area - similar to electricity, the road network, plumbing et cetera makes me think that it shouldn't be handed over on a silver platter to just anyone's whims.

What if the electrical company (assume the only one present in that region) randomly decided that people with more than 2 people in the family should pay more? That's the sort of thing. How do you protest against that? Except for lighting candles , there is no way.

In conclusion - its a very important connection, which you are handing over as a monopoly in certain regions - which are a 'gateway' of means to the end - they're not really supplying any content themselves. Therefore it shouldn't be treated in the same way as any other service.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118728)

Well - the internet has become an integral and vital part of many things indeed - so I personally do not believe it should be in the hands of companies at all - rather beside the point - but its the incentive for the rest of it.

My home PC is an integral part of me accessing the Internet, just as the backbone is. If a company wants to be a dick about it, let them; we can just use another company, or let one form in the void left by the dickish one. This applies regardless of the component: my PC, electricity, hard drives, networking gear, last-mile providers, backbone providers, whatever.

The fact that its such a vital area - similar to electricity, the road network, plumbing et cetera makes me think that it shouldn't be handed over on a silver platter to just anyone's whims.

I don't see anything magical about any part of it. If a company wants to build backbone access and sell it, fine. If they want to stop, fine. If the market is open, other companies will fill the void, because there's untapped profit if some other company just closed shop. Putting restrictions on the market can only make it less efficient, less-able to deliver the best solution.

What if the electrical company (assume the only one present in that region) randomly decided that people with more than 2 people in the family should pay more? That's the sort of thing. How do you protest against that?

If it did that, it would be leaving an opening for another power company to deliver power more cheaply. If not, then the overcharge is small, or there aren't very many families with more than 2 people. Why should the power company not be able to charge whatever it wants? (again, assuming it acquired all its property via voluntary exchange). After all, nobody else is providing power to these people. Why should the company that decided to do so have dictated how it will run its business? Surely it's not illegal for it to just close up shop and go out of business, yet that would leave everyone without power. Maybe I'm missing something here, I just don't get the logic.

BTW, I appreciate your civil tone, and hope I haven't been too disrespectful in reply. :)

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (1)

salesgeek (263995) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118762)

We don't want no government controlling MY internet.

This is correct.

The problem is that the people running the pro net-neutrality campaign are incredibly incompetent. Americans don't like big corporations controlling things either. Basically, Americans don't like anyone controlling anything. Unless it's them.

Re:Voter understanding of Net Neutrality is nil. (1)

yariv (1107831) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118768)

People voted against them for other reasons, of course, but you should look for the amount of money in their campaigns and their opponents' (including indirect, after Citizens United). It might be just my impression, but from here (I'm not an american) it seems like the electorate is easily swayed if you have enough money for publicity. And you should ask yourself who pays for it and why, not why people vote.

No they were not (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118112)

Net Neutrality was not on the radar of these voters. Support for net neutrality didn't hurt or save anyone.

Re:No they were not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118358)

just wait until they see their NetFlix on demand service throttled back. What cable company that is an ISP that has a movies on demand service in its right mind would not throttle back NetFlix if it had the chance. why let some other company profit from an on demand service. that is when the people will complain, but by that time it will be too late. i guess it is time to start dumping NetFlix stock, they are on their way to bankruptcy.

Re:No they were not (5, Insightful)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118394)

Wait. You actually believe that voters voted on substantive issues?

These candidates were targeted by the corporations who don't want net neutrality. They heavily funded their opponents, no matter what nonsense the candidate's campaign advisors chose to use as campaign propaganda.

You can bet none of the candidates even mentioned net neutrality. The supporters avoid it because it's complicated and will get them only a few votes. The opponents because it's complicated and if they actually explained it it would actually drive votes to the supporters.

But while net neutrality was never an issue to the voters, you can bet it was the issue to some of the biggest donors.

Elections following the Citizens United decision will absolutely not be about the issues, and will only resemble democracy in form.

Re:No they were not (4, Interesting)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118404)

Nobody said they were hammered "because of" their support for net neutrality. That in itself was obviously not a big issue. But this election was a lurch to the right, which does not believe limiting corporations (e.g. net neutrality as a small example) serves a greater good.

This was not an election where... (1, Interesting)

richardkelleher (1184251) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118138)

intelligence was rewarded. In fact, if anyone has too much education, they are labeled an elitist.

Re:This was not an election where... (1)

Bartles (1198017) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118568)

I think you are confusing education and intelligence with credentials. It is plain stupidity to ignore the will of the people who put you in office and then expecting to retain that office.

NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (3, Insightful)

Ichijo (607641) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118140)

With "unlimited" data plans, the incentive for the ISP is to find ways to keep you from saturating the network connection. Making the network non-neutral is one way to accomplish this.

With pay-as-you-go data plans, the incentive for the ISP is to eliminate anything that prevents you from saturating your network connection. This means not slowing down traffic based on origin or destination (in other words, making the network completely neutral), and upgrading the infrastructure when it makes economic sense for them.

We can't have our cake and eat it, too.

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (4, Informative)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118214)

You kinda missed the point entirely.

If I am paying for an unlimited plan with say 4GB/s - then I want an ultimated plan with 4GB/s. If I am 'saturating the network' in this manner - they should not have offered this plan at those speeds.

Now, if I really am causing a problem - then if they just throttle ALL my speed would be fair. If they decide to throttle (say) most of the internet, but give me great speeds on a sponsored site - that has nothing to do with me using up 'too much' internet.

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118628)

You kinda missed the point entirely.

If I am paying for an unlimited plan with say 4GB/s - then I want an ultimated plan with 4GB/s. If I am 'saturating the network' in this manner - they should not have offered this plan at those speeds.

Now, if I really am causing a problem - then if they just throttle ALL my speed would be fair. If they decide to throttle (say) most of the internet, but give me great speeds on a sponsored site - that has nothing to do with me using up 'too much' internet.

LOL. I'm afraid a dedicated 4 Gigabyte/second circuit (almost FOUR OC-192s!) is slightly more than you can afford. "Unlimited" isn't the same as "dedicated."

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (1)

NoSig (1919688) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118222)

No problem, unlimited data plans exist only in commercials. You cannot buy an actually unlimited data plan for any affordable amount of money in any place that I know of. If you saturate your pipe 24/7 they will find a way to disconnect you.

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118232)

With net neutrality, every ISP has an incentive to deliver the best service for the lowest price without screwing you out of what you paid for or conning you into paying more because you underestimated the bandwidth you use.

And with net neutrality no ISP has an incentive to manipulate opinion in its subscriber base by throttling data from opinionated websites.

Allowing your ISP to become the arbiter of your knowledge is not why the government (through DARPA) invented the Internet.

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (1)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118284)

"Allowing your ISP to become the arbiter of your knowledge is not why the government (through DARPA) invented the Internet"

No, It was invented in order to provide redundancy of control in case a surprise attack destroyed a control center.

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118420)

Your ISP is the one directing that attack, and Net Neutrality is the redundancy you need to protect your control center's connection.

Re:NN is incompatible with "unlimited" data plans (1)

jd (1658) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118648)

It may be a way, but it is an inferior way. A better system is to maintain neutrality (ie: no bias towards or away from any specific source or destination) but to impose fairness. The most trivial form of fairness is to round-robin between inputs. One input, one packet. And simply rotate round. This ensures that nobody can flood the network (the excess packets would block the sender but nobody else). More advanced forms of fairness involve things like Hierarchical Fair Service Curve (to give everyone equal access) plus Electronic Congestion Notification (forcing the sender to throttle back if network-flooding). Where an ISP is dealing with many lines of varying rates, then Class-Based Queueing is likely the way to go - simply create one class per line and give it a soft limit equal to the bandwidth paid for. That way, users never go below what they bought, but can exploit any unused bandwidth available if it's a quiet time.

The fact is, ISPs have options that don't infringe on neutrality. ISPs choose to infringe on neutrality because they can then sell you something they have no intention of delivering. They can then massively over-subscribe legally. They're not obligated to deliver a damn thing and there is nothing that you can do about it. It's not as if you can switch.

Technophobic Tea Party Wingnuts (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118224)

I tried to discuss Network Neutrality with my brother in law, but he refused to understand any of it. Instantly kicking out talking points heard by so many lobbysists working for the major telcos. So extreme in his views that he insists Net Neutrality is communism and that the free market will resolve any problem.

This is a guy who doesnt even know how to connect an external USB hard drive to his PC, his wife (IT Manager) has to do it for him. These will be the people lecturing us on what is best for us.

Re:Technophobic Tea Party Wingnuts (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118562)

"This is a guy who doesnt even know how to connect an external USB hard drive to his PC"

Sadly, a great number of people appear to be completely technologically inept. Ignorant to how things work, it is so easy for them to be taken advantage of (such as your brother in law).

Break digital locks for lawful purposes (2, Insightful)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118306)

Boucher introduced legislation to allow consumers to break digital locks for lawful purposes

So they pass laws that outlaw breaking locks on things you physically own, and now they're being oh-so-gracious to "allow" us to break them, without putting us in jail for it?

We're on the short bus to hell (3, Interesting)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118340)

The faster the better. Then we can set about rebuilding..in some far, distant future

yeah (-1, Flamebait)

Ryanrule (1657199) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118346)

The right wing goes after the stupid voters. Part of their platform is anti-intellectualism. Its pretty fucked up.

Re:yeah (5, Funny)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118696)

The right wing goes after the stupid voters. Part of their platform is anti-intellectualism. Its pretty fucked up.

The left wing goes after poor people's votes by promising them goodies we can no longer afford (if we ever really could.)

So yeah, it's pretty fucked up, but it's a bi-partisan process.

Hammered? (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118618)

Boehner seemed pretty hammered when he gave his speech. Three sheets to the wind.

To be fair, on election night for any office, win or lose, I'd have a bottle of Bushmill's down myself.

Thankfully... (1, Flamebait)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118720)

Constitution supporters won.

Worst PR EVER (5, Insightful)

salesgeek (263995) | more than 3 years ago | (#34118726)

The basic problem with the net neutrality battle is that it is called "net neutrality". The average American hears this when you say net neutrality:

net = COMPLICATED COMPUTER THINGY
neutrality = Switzerland

So it's no surprise at all that people don't care, and the Republicans don't get it. Want to change the game? Make this all about Online Freedom and make the story how greedy carriers want to take away freedom / violate my rights. It's about explaining how carriers want to LIMIT WHERE YOU CAN GO, CHARGE YOU FOR ACCESS TO THINGS YOU HAVE NOW, AND TAKE AWAY YOUR OPPORTUNITY TO DO BUSINESS ONLINE.

People aren't that stupid, but they are not that well educated. If you make your case using language that the average Wal*Mart consumer can understand, you can get anything you want out of Washington because those are the people that change their minds in elections and cause congresspeople to lose their jobs as they did yesterday. Nine out of ten times when you see voters support something that is bad for them, it's because one side used language like "net neutrality" to sell their side of the story.

What is being stated here is simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34118794)

Don't laugh at the summary... Article is correct, this election was about net neutrality. The voters were sending a clear message to washington to stop net neutrality. Everyone is rejecting Obama and his neutral agenda. To quote a famous Tea Partier, "The Neutrality is Ending!"

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