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Net Neutrality and Carrier Incentives To Invest

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the why-buy-one-when-you-can-buy-zero-for-free dept.

Businesses 170

An anonymous reader writes "In policy debates before Congress and the FCC, the big ISPs and wireless carriers (Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, Cox, Sprint) argued that net neutrality rules would give them less incentive to upgrade their networks. The reality is just the opposite, says Infoworld's Bill Snyder, citing a game-theoretic work done by two researchers at the U. of Florida's business school. If carriers can charge premium prices for expedited service, they have an incentive not to invest. Hmm, this reminds me of the agriculture business, where prices are sometimes propped up by paying farmers not to grow crops."

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170 comments

Open source internet? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086506)

With wireless technology developing as it is, is there any chance that some day we can create our own ad hoc internet without relying on expensive cables and thus expensive carriers?

I suppose we would still need some kickass routers, but it's not like open source projects are completely devoid of money. Wikipedia has tons of hardware, no?

Re:Open source internet? (5, Insightful)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086646)

With wireless technology developing as it is, is there any chance that some day we can create our own ad hoc internet without relying on expensive cables and thus expensive carriers?

Not without a decent spectrum allocated for it. The 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz band at our current power restrictions don't allow for very good distances, unless you have a very clunky antenna that you wouldn't find on a mobile device.

Developing an ad-hoc mesh network has many issues to take into consideration, including dealing with the fact that there will be people who are using an unfair amount of resources and no single transmitter can be trusted to keep any information secure or even 'truthful' about who it is.

Re:Open source internet? (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086712)

I don't think he meant wireless

Re:Open source internet? (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087068)

I don't think he meant wireless

He started his sentence with:

With wireless technology developing as it is

Re:Open source internet? (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087156)

ah, so he did, oops.

Re:Open source internet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086716)

Certainly correct me if I'm wrong, but I'd think trust is something you'd deal with at the presentation layer. We've dealt with spoofing at lower levels in our existing setup after all.

Re:Open source internet? (3, Interesting)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087034)

Certainly correct me if I'm wrong, but I'd think trust is something you'd deal with at the presentation layer. We've dealt with spoofing at lower levels in our existing setup after all.

The problem with talking about the OSI model is that our current networking technology doesn't even respect that model. I will note that I didn't say it wasn't impossible to deal with untrusted nodes, but it's something that we should take into consideration when developing a new networking environment such as this.

Back to your original comment, I think dealing with it in the presentation layer is a bit too high in my opinion, as it would require reworking essentially every application to offer some form of encryption. There wouldn't be a clear way to ensure that every application developer even ensures there is encryption. I would suggest producing something similar to IPsec which sits in the 'network' layer of the OSI model, where by user applications would need little knowledge of what network they're operating over to function and ensure some form of security by default.

The issue however is having some sort of global authority system that hands out registered assignments to devices to ensure no spoofing. An authority system like this would likely cause a new slew of problems however, mainly the faults of having to deal with a centralized system.

Dealing with this sort of system with issues such as a netsplit (where the authority is on the otherside of the split and new devices are added to the side you're on, unable to get assignments ends up being rather a complicated matter.

Re:Open source internet? (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087218)

802.22, and limit the hogs. And someday the interference problem will be licked and we will have multiple users on the same frequency; it's a software problem we haven't solved yet, not a physical one.

Re:Open source internet? (3, Interesting)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087500)

802.22

802.22 requires dedicated 'towers' to be setup, which can really only be done by big money, this does not work with the idea of "creating our own ad hoc internet without relying on expensive cables".

and limit the hogs.

What if the hogs are providing a very useful service? How do you distinguish between a torrent and a game server?

And someday the interference problem will be licked and we will have multiple users on the same frequency;

To be honest, a mesh network could be done far better using frequency-hopping spread spectrum radios, you could build the addressing scheme into the frequency hopping, this would allow software defined radios to listen in on specific broadcast messages, as well as provide a new form of security measures for dealing with secure communications between any single node or to a select many without much of an issue with interception.

802.22 doesn't really seem that developed for a technology for constantly changing mesh network, especially since it seems to expect some kind of dedicated infrastructure setup.

it's a software problem we haven't solved yet, not a physical one.

If it's 802.22, it's both for this specific circumstance of "creating our own ad hoc internet without relying on expensive cables".

Re:Open source internet? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086770)

How would you solve the transatlantic problem?

Re:Open source internet? (2)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087270)

Fuck that, how about routing millions of nodes in general? Ad hoc would result in either massive routing tables or long routes...

Re:Open source internet? (2)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087922)

How would you solve the transatlantic problem?

I've networked (and I don't mean computer network) across the transatlantic before with only a few watts over short wave. I've done it with both a huge ugly antenna and using a well hidden ground antenna.

Networking over vast distances is possible (hell, Guglielmo Marconi did it in 1900s), but in my uses, bandwidth was extremely limited, I'm sure someone smarter than me can come up with something far better.

I feel that due to how fragile shortwave is, that we need to have very responsible people using those frequencies and not just average Joe consumer device.

An idea to investigate, the submarine monitoring networks are capable of hearing ships leaving port across the globe, potentially that technology could be further developed for relaying messages over the sea - I wouldn't know how viable that is.

Sadly, I don't have a concrete answer on this, I didn't do much research on long distance communications.

What about latency? (3)

jopsen (885607) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086910)

Today most homes is either hooked directly up on fiber or hook up on cobber with translation to fiber not very far away... I'm guessing here, but I think ad hoc wireless networks, would be crazy unreliable, slow, insecure and have an extreme latency...

Re:Open source internet? (4, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086988)

The internet is Open. The specs to communicate over TCP/IP are quite clear. The problem is who owns the infrastructure. Cables, Satellites, and the ability to bring them to peoples location costs money. Then they have the cost of maintaining their routing to other providers.
An Add Hock network can only go so far, once you scale larger then you get into more issues.
100 people all maintaining their own routers is fine.
1000 people you may need to find a good techie and pony up to give him a good router.
10000 More techies that you need to maintain the router. And you are start having complains on who's cable go where. Or crazy nuts afraid that their house is getting too much wi-fi radation.

The bigger it gets the most it costs and the more issues that happen. You will start to need Full time people working on this stuff, and they can't starve for the glory of keeping your internet up, they will need to be paid for their work...
Then when you are done you either have a set of big ISP that you probably need to pay $20-60 a month too or a government controlled internet, where you will get think of the children people yelling at the government to block whatever seems bad information to them at the time.

Re:Open source internet? (1)

ArhcAngel (247594) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087030)

Well if everybody just signed up for FON [fon.com] we'd be pretty close. We'd still be using the carriers but we'd have WiFi access anywhere a FON subscriber is nearby.

Re:Open source internet? (2)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38088032)

Well if everybody just signed up for FON we'd be pretty close. We'd still be using the carriers but we'd have WiFi access anywhere a FON subscriber is nearby.

My Internet is usually saturated, I doubt being a FON user would be that helpful. The idea of "Imagine enjoying videos, movies and games at WiFi speeds while you're away from home - for free! " on my already over saturated connection seems a bit unlikely.

Re:Open source internet? (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087182)

Interesting idea, but if you want it to be even remotely feasable you'd have to first work on a transition to a more content-addressable web. That way you could vastly decrease network usage at the expense of vastly increasing storage required by nodes. Sticking a 2TB hard drive in every node is a small price to pay for the network savings.

Farmer subsidies need to STOP (2)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086508)

Hmm, this reminds me of the agriculture business, where prices are sometimes propped up by paying farmers not to grow crops."

I wish as much as anything, we could get the Feds to stop all farm subsidies, especially corn.

WTF should we be doing this? It isn't like we have food shortages in the US. Let's grow all we can...sell it to other countries, but there is no need for taxpayers to pay someone to NOT grown something.

Especially since so many of the farms are large corporations now....

But, sadly, it'll never happen...there's always an election around the corner, and they won't want to piss off states like Iowa, etc.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086592)

The problem is that those countries need to be growing their own food. It would probably work if countries where starvation was common they'd be producing other things, but those countries are usually lacking in all around production capability.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (3, Insightful)

stephencrane (771345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086760)

The main problem is that the US -does- sell much of our food overseas, but that price point is based on the subsidized price. The price gap isn't recaptured in the form of tariffs. Many countries don't invest in agricultural and associated legal infrastructure at home because there's no way for anyone to grow crops cheaper than the US can sell them.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (3, Interesting)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087090)

Wrong.
Many starving areas don't invest because they have no stability to invest. Food is't a problem, delivery to the people who need to east it is.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (1)

gsgriffin (1195771) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087652)

Perhaps better stated "...anyone to grow massive crops cheaper than the US..." In the various countries I've been to in Africa and Asia, most of the produce is cheaper because it is coming from a nearby farm where the grower is planting and selling by hand and working for only a couple dollars a day.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087414)

If we gave them food, could they spare the labor to benefit when we gave them capital for industry?

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086706)

Hmm, this reminds me of the agriculture business, where prices are sometimes propped up by paying farmers not to grow crops."

WTF should we be doing this? It isn't like we have food shortages in the US. Let's grow all we can...sell it to other countries, but there is no need for taxpayers to pay someone to NOT grown something.

It's done in case there is a war and the US needs to up the food production suddenly. It makes sense to keep it at a consistently high level in case some major problems occur on the Grand Chessboard.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (3, Interesting)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086738)

The crazy thing about the subsidies is that they encourage the growing of things like maize over vegtables and healthy alternatives.

Maize- yes that wonderful grain that contains almost no healthy nutrition compare to other grains that is often served instead of vegetables.

From which at subsidized prices we get artificially low sweetners such as corn syrup, and because it is used as animal feed (cattle, pigs)- meat prices drop.

Not that there is anything wrong with protein- but it is the high fat that goes along with it that would be missing from more veggies instead of a 99cent ham burger- or a steak.

The subsidies, especially the ones tilted towards encouraging farmers to grow maize of all things does nothign but encourage the obesity epidemic.

Cut the maize- grow healthier grains, healthier fruits and veggies- why are my tax dollars going towards making my neighbours into fat pigs?

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (4, Insightful)

Aqualung812 (959532) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086788)

Cut the maize- grow healthier grains, healthier fruits and veggies- why are my tax dollars going towards making my neighbours into fat pigs?

It gets better. Wait until the USA has national healthcare. They they'll use tax money to make people fat (maize), then use tax money to deal with the health issues from being fat! PROFIT!

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (5, Informative)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086946)

Ahh-well the government will love then that not only do corn fed cattle have higher fat contents then grass fed cattle- they also require higher levels of antibiotics.

These antibiotics in farming is what leads to super bugs and antibiotic resistance in bacteria... which leads to... ... higher health costs and prescription costs.

Government should double subsidies on maize immediately to help make the loop complete.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087236)

Because you're an idiot. Corn doesn't make people fat, meat doesn't make people fat.
Corn is the backbone to regular food delivery. It ahs many properties for that.

Putting too many calories in ones mouth is why there is an obesity problem.

ITs impact of beef costs isn't that great. without corn subsidies, the 99 cent burger would cost 99 cents.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (2)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087534)

First off, I don't have a problem with "corn" I have a problem with Maize. "Sweet Corn" if you must.

The word "corn" usually refers to the most commonly grown grain in a region- it is a generic word- so means different things in different countries- and amongst older generations of Americans means different things depending what region you are from. Younger generations are more removed from agriculture so it means maize to them more.

Absolutely Maize is a problem- your 99cent hamburger would not cost 99 cents if it were not for subsized Maize. Over half the cost of maize production is subsidized- it would cost over double if it were not government subsidized. Cheap beef and pork comes from corn-fed animals.

Your 99cent hamburger (now $2+ hamburger) would also contain less fat if it were from a grass-fed cow... and have a superior taste.

Maize makes sweeteners cheaper and much more attractive to use in bulk quantities by food producers.

Look at bread ingredients- in the US which unproportionately subsidizes maize- you will see a lot more maize based sweetners than that of bread from overseas.

This is not as apparant in more quality breads... but your average pre-wrapped mass produced bread will have corn syrup in it. Do you think pre-subsidies bread would get corn syrup added?

You can bet that 99cent hamburger bun contains corn syrup too!

A simple study of economics would show that people prefer to pay less for things rather than more.

If truffles (not the chocolate) cost 99cents- people would eat them too.

Maize is a calorie rich- nutrient poor food. By making it cheaper and thereby adding to the appeal to the masses- you are prodding people to consume crap.

Yes, people have the choice what they eat (that's why I don't eat much sweet corn or hamburgers and have a decent body)- however for the goverment to promote the biggest item that has contributed to America's obesity is absurd.

Maize- and corn syrup useage has gone through the roof because it is so cheap.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (2)

bws111 (1216812) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086904)

Look up 'dust bowl'

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087268)

Dust bowl? the market will fix that~

The guy is one of many who doesn't understand why something is done, and why it was started, but spouts off it should stop because he doesn't understand what it is he is talking about.

AND he gets to vote.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087044)

"It isn't like we have food shortages in the US. "
You answered you're own question.
we do it s we don't have food shortages.and it works. Since you have bothered to find out why we started doing it, please shut the fuck up, you ignorant Son of a Bitch.

"Especially since so many of the farms are large corporations now...."
So?
The reason we do it remains the same regardless of who is farming.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087056)

All subsidies need to stop. The government needs to get back to doing what is needed to defend the country and manage the interaction of the states. Get out of subsidies, get out of welfare, get out of a lot of fucking things they are in.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087134)

If you want your country's foreign trade policies to encourage trade where one partner is not necessarily beholden to the other, sure, get rid of farm subsidies. But I'm not sure if you would like it.

But if you want to folks to grow crops that you don't want to or can't grow, there must be some change in costs for procuring crops from us rather than procuring those same products from themselves. Otherwise if everyone make enough for themselves and only sold off the excess, there would be no reason for solid trade agreements that lead to interdependence of countries via co-joined food supplies. Subsidies make things cheaper for the farming corporations out of pocket. Since a large chunk of the cost of production goes to the American Public, the farming corporations remain turning a profit. On the open world market, this is devastating to other countries who also sell those same crops. They can't make their crops that cheap so foreign companies will adjust to sell something else because everyone will prefer buying cheap American crops.

We as a country, with our weak dollar and our diminishing industrial infrastructure, want other people to buy our crops. We want to make our crops so cheap to grow (cheap to the American farming corporation that is) that there is no way any other country on the planet can match the costs. Those whom do not have the economy to support their own solidarity will opt for maximizing their output that yields the most profit, and then their internal markets will buy whatever products they need from other countries. This forces other countries to also purchase dollars to purchase our crops, which of course keeps the price of the US dollar up.

If one dominates the market in a product such as crops, price elasticity diminishes drastically. Since things like corn, wheat have a growing season that is 4-6 months long and need a great deal of infrastructure to get sizable production, are prohibitive to manufacture cheaply unless there is a great deal of capital and a bit of time to get the facilities ready. This bodes well for us. Once the co-dependence relationship has been established, no matter how abusive it is, there is still this vile local minima that an economy has to traverse in order to move out of it. No one wants to do it, so we can then continue to sell inelastic products that everyone really needs (I mean who doesn't need food).

So yes, we're basically being unfair trade partners by holding many countries somewhat to our whim via crop prices. By controlling wheat and soy prices we also control poultry, bovine and hog production as that's what the bulk of their feed is made from. Much of this has to do with farming subsidies. Unfortunately our country needs to continue to stand on other folks' throats to prop up its standard of living. If subsidies were taken away, the entire country would hurt substantially.

There are countries like Japan who will go far far out of their way to make sure they have enough domestic production of essential crops. They pay a huge cost for this in terms of labor and land but they can afford it. Other countries are not so lucky.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087166)

The reason is simple.

Any one farmer is willing to grow and sell as much as they can to make as much money as they can.
When you get all of them doing this the supply of food rises and the price drops.
So the farmers need to sell more food to make a living.
Which ends up the farmers working to death to make ends meat.
They will also use up their land creating an environmental mess (Farming isn't green, even Organic Farming), they will plant themselves out of business.

Subsidies keeps the balance.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087366)

Or it results in farmers not making ends meet and hence going out of business. Reducing the supply of food and enabling those who were a little more efficient than them to make a living at the then higher prices.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087766)

Eventually, the farmers can't make a living selling at market price. Rational farmers switch crops, or stop trying to farm. Supply drops again and prices go up until farming is sustainable.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (2)

gumbi west (610122) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087330)

The government doesn't pay to not produce any more but does buy land and turn it into prairies or parks. Basically land is so productive now that we don't need it all.

Re:Farmer subsidies need to STOP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087386)

Corn should not receive the level of subsidies that it does, however farm subsidies are a very good idea; they ensure a consistent food supply by guaranteeing that a farmer isn't going to lose his shirt in the event of a bad harvest.

Corn is also being used as an industrial feedstock, as well as indirectly subsidizing beef production. There's nothing quite like the tenderness of a corn-fed beefsteak, but on the other hand free range beef is much more flavorful.

Happens at work too. (0)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086512)

Don't know the cable companies! They are completely right- you as the hoi polloi are wrong.

Happens at work too- people are more motivated to work if they're paid for not working.

At a restaurant- I'm more likely to order food if it tastes disgusting and I don't like it.

When I'm in Soviet Russia, Jokes are more likely to tell me if they are not funny.

Premium service.. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086522)

...is what you used to call 'regular service' yesterday.
Case in point: Data caps. there were no data caps before, services wee running just fine...and somehow, a couple of years later, you need to pay more for the same data transfer.
It's artificial shortage is what it is.

Re:Premium service.. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086644)

Not entirely, when the iPhone came out for AT&T and became quite popular the data use dramatically increased in a short period of time. Combined with AT&T's network engineering incompetence and bad things happened. Around here despite being more or less smack dab between antennae I still have to climb a hill if I want a decent signal because AT&T didn't really cope with the hills when planning cell tower sites.

Re:Premium service.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086786)

Depending on where you live, they may have not the option to "cope with hills". There is a lot of NIMBY in places, where AT&T has a lot of demand yet can't build new towers or it takes years to build one.

Not to apologize for them, or data caps, or anything in general... but you can't just piss and moan about bad towers without saying where you live.

Re:Premium service.. (2)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087172)

The big problems with network capacity happened in San Francisco and New York City, both places loaded with tech journalists who had the ability to broadcast their complaints. Other cities are mostly fine.

SF dwellers complain, but don't seem to realize that it takes two years to get a new cell installed in their city due to NIMBY laws. AT&T simply could not roll out new capacity after the iPhone took off in 2007 for over two years because they were not permitted to do so. The problem started to diminish when the extra cells started going up... in 2009. Sometimes, when you have a problem, look in the mirror and the answer is staring back at you.

NYC? Dunno.

Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (5, Insightful)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086530)

I am glad that someone did some academic research to prove this, but it seems unnecessary. Isn't the entire point of eliminating network neutrality just so that carriers can charge more for their existing bandwidth? They slow down a site, then charge you to restore the speed back to what it originally was. Or they charge you a fee to make your packets a higher priority than your neighbor's. Either way, no infrastructure changes were required. The highway analogy the article uses is spot-on.

Can someone explain to me why Republicans keep spewing this illogic about Net Neutrality? Why all the hate and rhetoric? It's really a very simple, and should be a non-partisan issue.

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (4, Insightful)

0racle (667029) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086722)

They slow down a site, then charge you to restore the speed back to what it originally was.

Actually, it's worse than that. In addition to the above, they could introduce internet tiering packages where they went to the content providers and charge them for getting preferential treatment or at least slightly less throttling. They charge you for access, charge you again for faster access and charge the content providers for letting them get your traffic in the first place.

Can someone explain to me why Republicans keep spewing this illogic about Net Neutrality?

You seriously have to ask this? It's about money. Also, I don't believe anti-net neutrality is a partisan issue, R and D are both for it.

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (4, Informative)

Bloopie (991306) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087022)

Also, I don't believe anti-net neutrality is a partisan issue, R and D are both for it.

If both parties are against net neutrality, how do you explain the Senate vote last week where the Democrats voted against repealing it and the Republicans voted for repealing it? And Obama threatened to veto a repeal? Link [washingtonpost.com]

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087590)

Because it is in vogue (on slashdot) to be libertarian and believe that the government's actions are always bad, regardless of controlling interest

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087242)

Ideology. The republicans, or at least the base that they need to keep happy, oppose all government regulation by default as a matter of princible. They strongly believe in the power of the free market to self-optimise for the good of the people, if the government would just stop trying to fix it. Any times the market fails they'll just blame it on the government anyway.

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (1)

desdinova 216 (2000908) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087294)

Follow the money. The people who don't want Net neutrality are Comcast/Verizon/AT&T

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (2)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087550)

Following the money doesn't seem to work here. The telecom industries are giving equally to both parties.

http://www.opensecrets.org/industries/indus.php?ind=B08 [opensecrets.org]
AT&T and Verizon are the biggest lobbyists in the telephone industry by 10:1 and 5:1 respectively. Most of the money went to Obama, naturally, but he supports Network Neutrality. The next 4 on the list are Republicans. Looking at the "Party Split" graph, 2010 the Democrats got 4.3 million and the Republicans got 4.2 million. The "Telephone Utilities to House" graph does show the Republicans receiving somewhat more money, but it is fairly even in the house.

I don't see any definitive conclusion from this.

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (1, Insightful)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086832)

Because the Republicans have been hijacked by a cabal of narcissistic, egomaniacal corporate toadies. They don't want free-market capitalism, they want a guaranteed ROI of infinity+1. They don't want to invest anything, but they demand profit regardless. They want money for nothing, yet they bitch about people who do that. They're liars, cheaters, and hypocrites, you know, the best we have to offer.

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086968)

Someone's been drinking the Democratic Kool-Aid if you think the other side of the aisle is much better.

The Senate just voted last week (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087138)

You are an idiot. The Senate voted last week along party lines whether or not to repeal Net Neutrality. Guess which side voted which way?

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087244)

No no, I know they're no better. In fact, they might be worse, since they don't even have the balls of their convictions. The question was about Republicans.

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (1)

jmac_the_man (1612215) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087170)

They slow down a site, then charge you to restore the speed back to what it originally was. Or they charge you a fee to make your packets a higher priority than your neighbor's. Either way, no infrastructure changes were required. The highway analogy the article uses is spot-on.

The problem with Net Neutrality is that it won't work. Instead, I support "Internet Justice." After all, it has two good things in its name. How can it be bad?

Hint: Everything you said about what Net Neutrality is was wrong. Net Neutrality regulations IN THEORY SHOULD prevent ISPs from charging website operators (note: not end users) more for faster access to that ISPs end users. Under Net Neutrality, you (as an end user) can still buy higher priority/more bandwidth lines on either end if you pay for them.

Now, those are the STATED goals of the Net Neutrality regulations the FCC is trying to enact. The current rules the FCC has on the table won't do that, but they do help the liberals and their buddies at the expense of everyone else. (Also, the FCC shouldn't be allowed to enact Net Neutrality rules anyway, that's Congress's job.)

Re:Glad to hear it, but a big "duh!!!" (1)

shadowrat (1069614) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087890)

The sentiment outlined in TFA, "broadband service providers charge consumers only once for Internet access, do not favor one content provider over another, and do not charge content providers for sending information over broadband lines to users" Is laudable. The proposed solutions are rarely so succinct, and the fear is that people want public supported government run "free" internet everywhere, and it's going to mandate that you can only use cisco model bg103 routers and google is in charge of xy and z, etc.

I totally support legislation that just says traffic can't be discriminated against. I just don't want it to mandate what price access must be provided at or how much cable must be laid, or what technology needs to be used, etc.

Incentive, incentive, this is capitalism? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086532)

Industry is a bunch of spoiled children these days. They cry and scream and throw a tantrum, threatening to take their ball and go home unless they get bribed with candy to behave. Remember a time when all it took to get a business to make a wise move was prove it would make them more money? Neither do I.

Re:Incentive, incentive, this is capitalism? (3, Insightful)

shentino (1139071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086566)

Being rich enough to buy laws that keep everyone else poor is a profitable move indeed.

Re:Incentive, incentive, this is capitalism? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086660)

It still works that way if by "them" you mean "the CEO" and by "more money" you mean "a buttload of tax free money."

Re:Incentive, incentive, this is capitalism? (1)

Talderas (1212466) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086696)

Have you thoroughly assessed whether providers would get more money with or without net neutrality? Either way I don't see it as a necessity for them to upgrade the networks with it either. With net neutrality, they don't upgrade and start charging a higher price for the same access you had yesterday. Most people won't care unless provider in the area provides a better deal and one we're not talking pennies about. Something that actually justifies the hassle of switching.

Without net neutrality then they segment the market and have you pay a premium to get on an uncongested pipe. Then once enough people move to the "new" pipe and it starts to get congested they segment off the excess bandwidth from the lower tier to create 3rd tier of pricing better, grandfather everyone at the bottom tier and make the premium tier the new basic tier.

You're fucked either way.

Remember to keep our priorities in focus (1)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086538)

America is about Freedom. Everybody knows that, which is why Italy hates America. So on our internet, we need to be free from Italian and mathemaatical absorbities that can Concgrees the wto iu9843iuewk in dicsmidge. Overall 798ur3kj the sun polyp of Italian ass bag the the the the the the the international Italian conspiracy to drink all of America's water that is almost all funny pig stuff that is the the thing with molasses is buttpoop. Are these?????? NO!!!! NO NO NO NO NO NO STOP ITALIY CONGRESS PLEASE or I will vote for SOMEBODY else!!!!!!!!!!!

Re:Remember to keep our priorities in focus (1)

AdamJS (2466928) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086654)

Is...is this a bot of some kind?

Re:Remember to keep our priorities in focus (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086746)

I guess it must have ran out of theme parks, blackjack and hookers.

Re:Remember to keep our priorities in focus (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086866)

He's just suffering brain damage from his encounter with the Italian water drinking conspirators.

Re:Remember to keep our priorities in focus (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086876)

Be careful, there was almost an intelligible thought in there.

Gov't regulation encourages risk taking?!?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086540)

Yeah, sure it does.

Re:Gov't regulation encourages risk taking?!?!? (1)

Nemo137 (1207298) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086994)

That's the idea behind anti-monopoly legislation.

4G roll out (1)

Silver Surfer 1 (193024) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086568)

When you look at how fast Veizon has been rolling out the 4G coverage the arguement that carries will not upgrade their networks losses some steam. The incentive right now is to push as many customers onto the 4G network as fast as possible. Double data deals if you upgrade your device to 4G are going on right now at Verizon.
I suspect that 3G users will be pinched as service "degrades" over time just like carriers did when digital towers were replacing analog.

Re:4G roll out (1)

Riceballsan (816702) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086928)

Unfortunately that is mainly because they love screwing over the long-term for the short term, verison's 4G allows a more or less instant ability to be self paid for. "Oh you want to use the new 4G in your town, just sign a new 2-3 year contract so we can upgrade your phone. The problem is ISP's need to actually start upgrading their infrastructure to allow themselves to continue to go their current speed (well actually at this point to get closer to their own advertised speeds), and well investing money to actually deliver what you advertise, just isn't as fun as an upgrade that lets you make even more claims.

Why cannibalize your revenue ? (2)

Crashmarik (635988) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086616)

If you upgrade your base quality of service, you are going to eat into your revenue from selling quality for particular services A la carte. If a carrier is charging you and or netflix to provide a quality connection why would they invest in making the network "better".

Re:Why cannibalize your revenue ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087594)

If that's the case, why aren't we all still running 300-baud modems?

You mean the ISPs lied to congress? (4, Funny)

JustAnotherIdiot (1980292) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086664)

I, for one, am totally shocked.
Shocked I tell you.

Re:You mean the ISPs lied to congress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087802)

Well, I was shocked when I read "incentives to incest"...

Actually it doesn't matter either way (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086728)

If there is no competition, then the ISP can just charge more for the basic service with net neutrality or create a premium service otherwise. The key to fair pricing is competition. An ISP which charges extra for a premium service will lose customers if there are competitors with better service or lower prices, and an ISP which charges high prices for basic services will also lose customers if there are competitors with better service or lower prices. Get it? COMPETITION. Make the rules such that there will be competition and the rest will sort itself out. Step 1: Make existing monopolies rent out their infrastructure.

Re:Actually it doesn't matter either way (1)

JoeNathan (150012) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087004)

glad at least one person on this post understands how business works. I don't think anyone here actually realizes that choice is what drives business. People choosing to use a service, and in order to have that you need competition, and in order to have that you need local government contracts that go out to more then one company for things like laying wire, using public roads etc etc. If you want net neutrality you want your city to have as many different providers as possible, then watch them scramble to create a better service.

Re:Actually it doesn't matter either way (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087326)

joen? is that you? aicn?

Re:Actually it doesn't matter either way (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087996)

Except it didn't happen that way, did it? ALL the providers adopted data caps within months of each other. ALL the providers charged for overages, about equally. ALL the providers won't upgrade their infrastructure. Competition did happen, and they competitively decided to copy each other so they could all profit; if one carrier decided to instead increase capacity and maintain unlimited data plans, that carrier, competitively, would not be making as much profit as possible and the shareholders would have risen up to replace the CEO. They are not in business to increase their base number of users - they are in business to increase their profits quarterly. And, once more, real world experiment is over, and objectively your argument has failed the test of reality. They did not compete, they acted as a meta-corporation and raised prices and lowered service simultaneously. Competition does not work at this level of capitalism, as Adam Smith warned us. They collude to maintain prices.

Manufacturing scarcity (5, Insightful)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086798)

They aren't providing a service; they are manufacturing a scarcity of service. Any producer or provider will ultimately do this if they are not regulated in some fashion. They will build out a minimum of infrastructure for a maximum of profit. And they will never stop raising fees. Our great-grandparents understood this, so electrical utilities and such are government-regulated monopolies. Some things can't be covered by free market economics. Wiring all homes is one of those things.

Re:Manufacturing scarcity (3, Insightful)

cobrausn (1915176) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087000)

Any producer or provider will not 'ultimately do this' as long as the market barrier-to-entry is not too high. This can occur for a few reasons, one of which is actually the existence of regulations that favor the existing businesses (e.g., Regulatory Capture). Another reason is that the infrastructure required to support the service is incredibly expensive, which serves as a 'natural' limitation to the number of players. It seems in this case we have a bit of both. The only viable solution I see (solution being something that benefits both the market and the consumer) is to not allow the person who owns the lines to also provide service, only rent out the lines in a neutral fashion.

Re:Manufacturing scarcity (3, Insightful)

slimjim8094 (941042) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087852)

I'm almost a socialist, but you're right on. The classic example is the electrical market - when the utility owned the plants, transmission, and distribution, they made their money by convincing the regulators they had to raise rates. Plant inefficiency actually helped them do this.

And in that form, they were a natural monopoly. But simply splitting up the three parts made everything vastly better, as long as the split was handled properly. But now that production is competitive and the transmission companies are common carriers, a company can pay for power to be created and transmitted to them - and there's competition for that business, so reliability has gone up and prices have fallen.

For anyone who hasn't read up on it, basically there's a graph of quantity vs marginal $/MW, sorted by $/MW so it's monotonically increasing (though not linearly). Things like solar and wind are at the very bottom (since they cost nothing to run), hydro, then nukes, coal, gas, oil, peakers (jet turbines), etc. Every day, they predict how much they'll need for the next day (plus a margin) and tell all the plants below it to be ready. The key is that everybody gets the market rate. The last plant to turn on makes no profit, and the solar plants make (near) 100% profit at any load. So there's an enormous incentive to move down that graph.

It works. It really does, for the past 10-15 years. Prices fall, reliability rises, plants get cleaner. It's because they're not making money by convincing regulators, they're making money by moving down that graph.

I should note that the company with the wires is still regulated, but even they've been split into physical maintenance and procurement divisions - you can swap out the procurement side and the small line fee is still present, but you're not buying your electricity from the local utility any more. You're buying it from someone else. The reason it's cheaper is because the local utility has to be the "provider of last resort"; they pick you up if you don't pay your bill to the other one, so they need to buy a little bit extra. And yes it's all the same power, but the dollars match everything up and if you go through it, it does actually make sense to think about paying for those exact megawatts to get to you (since they're all the same) and it simplifies things.

Water (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38086808)

Where I'm from, farmers are paid not to grow crops because L.A. doesn't have enough water rights.

Re:Water (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087436)

Surely that's not paying them not to grow crops. It's paying them them for their water. Obviously if you can make a but less money selling your water and not have to do the work involved in farming you'll take that and make up the money doing something that is less hard work.

Let's try logic (5, Insightful)

brxndxn (461473) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086828)

Here's simple logic on 'carriers' or ISPs:

ISPs either have a monopoly or pseudo monopoly (in practicality) or they have competition. Therefore, there are two types of situations:

1. Monopolistic - Upgrading networks not necessary
2. Market-based - Carriers must upgrade networks to compete or lose customers

In either situation, there are two types of sub-situations:

1. Net-neutral - Carriers must upgrade networks to satisfy bandwidth demand, content decided by individuals
2. Prioritized - Upgrading networks not necessary, low-priority traffic dropped, content decided by corporations

What we have now in most of America is Monopolistic, Net-neutral. Carriers are arguing for Monopolistic, Prioritized. Consumers demand Market-based, Net-neutral. What should we get? Market-based, Either. What will we get most likely? Monopolistic, Prioritized.

The fact we even need a study to prove that the carriers are lying is ridiculous. The best incentive to force ISPs to upgrade their networks is MORE and DIVERSE competition. It is not free-market competition when the only 'normal bandwidth' Internet access at home for a consumer is a choice between either the local cable company or local telco. It is not free-market competition when the only cellular bandwidth is a choice of 1 of 3 major carriers that control hardware and software of the devices and lobby in unison to our government. Carriers are essentially arguing to continue a monopoly and ignore advances in technology that allow unlimited upgrades in bandwidth.

Instead of arguing net neutrality at all, if our lawmakers started making it easier for some competition in the marketplace, ISPs that do not deliver all traffic quickly would die off.

Re:Let's try logic (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087610)

It's called a natural monopoly: The costs to enter the market are so huge (Equipment, laying fiber, buying spectrum, etc) that once one company is established, it's simply pointless for anyone to try to compete - and anyone who has the required billions of dollars isn't stupid enough to try it.

Re:Let's try logic (4, Insightful)

fermion (181285) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087840)

There is one other thing, a thing that most in the US have lot sight of. All mobile operators use the public space to generate a profit and as such should be required to use that space for the public good. If they cannot make a profit using the public space for public good, that public space should be given to someone who can. Nowhere is it written that profit is a fundemental right, although some conservative wackos want profit to be a fundemental right, I am talking about bush and reagan and the bailouts. Profit is merely something we have the right to persue.

We lost this when TV and radio took over our government and decided they were entitled to the bandwidth loaned to them by the people. The people have every right to take that bandwidth back. Even the cable operators, whose cable runs though and limits the use of public space, has a duty to the public though they too believe they can take from the people without giving anything back.

The argument for net neutrality is simply that the airwaves are public property and the public should make the decision on what it is used for, not the firms who are borrowing them. Like I said, if the mobile companies can't make a profit, then take the bandwidth away and attempted to be let to a new firm that can make a profit. This is what is done in real life. When a firm rents a space and does not make enough money to pay for that space, the space is taken back and rented to someone else. In the US we do say that they space is theirs forever just because they squatted on it and no one else wants it. We let the market work, except when a firm is so big they can corrupt the market by creating regulation to favor them. Which is the purpose of many regulations. To keep competition out.

And as far as sig goes with Ron Paul, remember that instead of letting the market work and allowing his constituents to suffer for bad housing and car choices, or to allow the public to decide what food was best for them, he used tax payer money to build a million dollar bus stop and gave untold hundred of thousands of dollars to his fishing buddies so they could be hired as consultants to push shrimp. This is what is wrong with the market. Even those that claim be hands off will not be able to avoid the temptation of free money and helping their friends steal from the poot.

Question: When Did Net Neutrality Pass Congress... (1)

Shuh (13578) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086846)

... & become the law of the land?

Re:Question: When Did Net Neutrality Pass Congress (2)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086984)

1934 [wikipedia.org]

heres how this works. (3, Interesting)

nimbius (983462) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086888)

you start a business, and we impose regulations to prevent you from abusing your tacit monopoly be it global or regional. Comply with them or spend more lobbying dollars.

do not threaten the customers hoping they will back you. verizon and AT&T subscribers enjoy some of the shittiest wireless service in the first world, comcast customer experience is comparative to that of an internet subscriber in rural india. cox service, if it ever gets installed, is just as bad. Sprint does nothing more than bait-and-switch its customers hoping they remember the CEO chortling about some amorphous unlimited everything plan on paid advertising.

Not hard to incentivze them (3, Interesting)

silas_moeckel (234313) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086954)

Require some truth in advertizing from them. Enact legislation where if they do not meet there advertized speeds one average during peek times they are fined and eventually loose there monopolies. There networks are cash cows network upgrades are a simple matter of trending and re engineering for wired networks. They want to suck all the money they can out and avoid capx purchases to make there bonus bigger. Honestly most monopoly services should be bid out where the carrier offering the most for the least gets the contract. I would love to see AT&T loose out on DSL and have to give up that franchise, they have no cost of bandwidth (paying your sister company does not count) but aggressively limiter there subscribers.

The difference with agriculture (4, Insightful)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086958)

is that there's a good reason to prevent over farming. Over farming tobacco turned Virginia into a desert in the 1800s. Plus in agriculture you sometimes have to get people to grow food that's not profitable but that people need to eat, e.g. it might be a bad year for potatoes, but we still need potatoes.

The trouble with net neutrality, indeed with any concepts on the Web, is that we're brushing up against a post-scarcity economy here. There really isn't any analogy that works because we've never done that before.

Steve Jobs, it seems, agreed with me... (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38086970)

If I were Jobs, I'd stomp in, put my bare feet up on your desks, give you the old staring laser eye, and say: "The Internet is shit. We need to make a new one."

Apparently he was of the same mind as I. In 2006-2007 he wanted to build a new data network using 802.22, the old TV spectrum which goes through walls quite well, to build a new nationwide WiFi network.

Image this. A 99 dollar box, an Apple Net box, as it were, that anyone could buy and plug into the wall. It automatically meshes with any other AppleNet boxes it can detect, and starts passing packets, at a really, really high speed - those frequencies are capacious.

Data, voice, all the same.No network carriers, unless perhaps the government could just operate major long-distance backbones through the agency of private companies as a cost of having a civilization. That last might become unnecessary as the number of nodes in the mesh increase geometrically; like Bittorrent, the more people participate, the faster the network becomes.

No carriers. No profit. All we need is bandwidth and a simple box anyone could buy.

You could make outdoor ones that have tiny solar panels, and just plant them anywhere you can get permission. More the infinitely better.

And in the future, some genius will solve the interference problem. Interference in radio is a hardware/software solvable limitation, not a physical one. True; research it, it's fascinating. When we have fast enough processors, we can solve that problem and crowd thousands of channels on the same frequency.

This is all not only feasible, it is absolutely necessary for our economy and our personal freedom - not to mention we won't be robbed forever by two or three corporations. We need to remove the aspect of centralized control from our communications structure.

Why wait? (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087008)

Here's a thought. Why don't we just do it anyway? FCC be damned.

Re:Why wait? (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087620)

Because the FCC can send men with guns around to arrest you and take your stuff.

Re:Steve Jobs, it seems, agreed with me... (1)

Catbeller (118204) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087794)

Oh, I know indeed. And sound cannon and tax investigations and pepper cannon. But at some point, if we don't, we're never leaving a world-wide police state. They will become ensconced into the Panopticon State, and to add insult to that they will make us pay car-loan prices for our incarceration. We need comm they can't control. A century ago, our lives weren't funneled through one network. Now it is, and they have grabbed control and we are now seeing the beginning of what that means. It will become infinitely worse unless we end-run them. By which I mean 802.22 on mesh networks. And it doesn't have to be illegal - if we can get that spectrum declared public access, like 802.11 etc, then we can do it legally. Of course they will demand gov issued digital certificates and all that for the routers, and there we would have to make a stand for all the marbles. Without anon comm, you cannot have a free world. Can. Not.

Incentives (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087528)

In policy debates before Congress and the FCC, the big ISPs and wireless carriers (Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, Cox, Sprint) argued that net neutrality rules would give them less incentive to upgrade their networks.

When industry reps for government policy based on whether or not that policy would give them an "incentive to do X", they almost invariably really mean "profit without doing X".

(They are more likely to be honest if they talk about a policy that would give someone else an incentive to do something, especially if that something would create more opportunities for profit in the industry doing the advocacy.)

Obviously with tiered pricing (1)

Deliveranc3 (629997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087616)

They will be less enticed to provide more bandwidth.

What part of: More product = More Customers. Better Value / Price = Happier customers willing to pay more.

That's like, the system. Don't bypass that system, unless we can strip you of management and turn you into a crown corporation (a Canadian/Brit/Aussie concept, but something the U.S. should consider).

Can we see some statistics on how much it's costing in support calls due to poorer than advertised speed/latency/availability? I'm pretty sure these companies are spending millions (billions?) on support personnel they wouldn't need if their services WORKED and their pricing system wasn't INSANE.

These companies want to report increased revenues to their shareholders. From the statistics they are spreading on how many users will be affected by tiered (capped) service and the probable level of support and billing required to implement it there won't be any more profits for these companies (though I suspect we'll find their implementation would be surprisingly aggressive/unfair/hostile/targeted/unfair/illegal [in some areas, particularly people with no legal recourse, as always] and will produce incredible profits [some of which might come from law enforcement inducements for disrupting subversive information users]). Which is really how we should support good ISPs:
A: go with them.
b:do illegal things
c: bring them court order reinbursement money
d: give subsequent generations internet freedom
e: Profit, culturally?

Bandwidth isn't like crops (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#38087720)

That analogy falls down. Bandwidth is a high fixed cost, nearly zero marginal cost resource. Once some level of capacity has been installed, the cost to carry one additional megabyte is zero (assuming the capacity limit isn't reached). So its a question of how best to distribute the fixed charges among the users. That is, the capital costs incurred by burying all that fiber in the first place.

The whole Net neutrality thing is an argument about price discrimination [wikipedia.org] and its use to manage classes of users rather than directly addressing network load. In a free market, this is rightly left up to the private parties. But seeing as how the telecoms involved are using public property (air waves or utility corridors) to provide their service, we (the public) should have some say in how various user classes (among other things) are to be treated.

The paper and the highway analogy are both wrong! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38087806)

The paper assumes a monopoly, as in there is only one ISP, just as the highway analogy does. A monopoly can only exist by keeping pricing low enough to prevent competition or by force (governmental or physical). In the former case, it shouldn't really matter a great deal to consumers whether you have a free market or not as profit margins are likely similar to those that would exist under competition. For example, if you have the one road that exists in the highway analogy, you need to keep prices for your "skip ahead" service low enough for it to be unattractive for a competitor to build another road. In the latter case, you get government to do your bidding through lobbying, blackmail, whatever to prevent other roads from being built and charge whatever you please. With Net Neutrality, the question is should we allow those who own a road to charge what they want and compete or should we say there shall be no discrimination on price and no skip ahead service? If you answered the latter, what do you think about airlines having first class sections or bars offering ladies' nights? If you believe those two things are evil, then Net Neutrality must be passed. If you believe they're perfectly acceptable and you are a Net Neutrality supporter, you may want to rethink your position...

Ugh (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38088052)

Net neutrality is a solution searching for a problem. How many providers are actually providing tiered services right now? And what if there were a sudden scarcity of bandwidth, wouldn't we want our ISPs to have some tool to prioritize traffic, say, I don't know, a pricing system?

Personally I've never lived anywhere where my ISP was operating in a monopolistic environment. I can think of many choices locally for purchasing network access including wireless providers, DSL, satellite, cable - the list goes on.

Also most posters here assume that without NN laws the ISPs will just hold supply steady and raise prices indefinitely. Total BS for two reasons. One is competition and the other is that people have a limit on what they are willing to pay for internet access. If there are 2 ISPs who are charging $100/month for internet access, they will inevitably compete on price and quality of service by expanding network capacity to poach customers from one another.

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