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The Danger In Exempting Wireless From Net Neutrality

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the share-the-air dept.

Networking 161

nmpost writes "Nearly two years ago, the FCC outlined its rules for net neutrality. Notably absent were rules for wireless networks. There are several legitimate reasons that the same rules applied to wired networks can not apply to wireless networks. However, the same danger lies in leaving wireless networks unguarded against the whims of its administrators. As we move more and more towards a wireless dominated internet, those dangers will become more pronounced. We are going to need a massive investment in infrastructure in this country regardless of net neutrality rules. Demand for wireless is going to continue to grow for many years to come, and providers are not going to be able to let up. Data caps and throttling are understandable now as demand is far outpacing infrastructure growth. Eventually, demand will slow, and these practices will have to be addressed. This is where allowing internet providers to regulate themselves becomes an issue. Self regulation usually does not end well for the consumer. Imagine allowing power plants and oil refineries to determine what chemicals they could pour into the air. Would they have the population's best interest at heart when making that determination? In the future when the infrastructure can match the demand, what will stop internet providers from picking winners and losers over their wireless networks? As conglomerates like Comcast gobble up content providers like NBC, a conflict of interest begins to emerge. There would be nothing from stopping one of the big wireless providers like AT&T or Verizon from scooping up a content provider and prioritizing its data speed over the network."

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Wireless has congestion (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208247)

Wireless networks suffer from congestion a lot more than wired networks. I don't think it's unreasonable for carriers to want to throttle traffic on wireless mediums to ensure mr tethered torrenter isnt destroying everyone else's connection.

Re:Wireless has congestion (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208301)

It is unreasonable for them to throttle anything due to lack of infrastructure while simultaneously sporting enormous profit margins.

You can have one, but not both. If they need more infrastructure they should build it.

Re:Wireless has congestion (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208331)

It is unreasonable for them to throttle anything due to lack of infrastructure while simultaneously sporting enormous profit margins.

You can have one, but not both. If they need more infrastructure they should build it.

Build your own damn network.

No one is FORCING you to enter into a contract with any network provider.

It's called "freedom".

Re:Wireless has congestion (-1, Redundant)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 years ago | (#41208487)

Sez the anonymous coward.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208529)

Sez the anonymous coward.

Says the witless fool [wikipedia.org]

An ad hominem (Latin for "to the man"), short for argumentum ad hominem, is an attempt to negate the truth of a claim by pointing out a negative characteristic or unrelated belief of the person supporting it. Ad hominem reasoning is normally described as a logical fallacy, more precisely an informal fallacy and an irrelevance.

Re:Wireless has congestion (4, Insightful)

Riddler Sensei (979333) | about 2 years ago | (#41208559)

Build your own damn network.

No one is FORCING you to enter into a contract with any network provider.

It's called "freedom".

This line of thinking never quite works.

A doctor doesn't NEED wireless internet, but they certainly would like it since it makes a great number of things easier and more convenient. If the providers can update their infrastructure to accommodate traffic but choose not to the doctor is NOT going to go out and build their own network. It would require a complete change in their life and learnings to do so. It's not a reasonable thing to ask.

Much like if a software engineer gets a headache. They don't NEED it but some medicine would definitely be nice to alleviate the pain. However, pharmaceuticals are artificially pumping up the price. The software engineer is not a doctor nor a chemical engineer. Vindicate the pharmaceuticals by saying that the doctor is free to drop their life and go a completely direction to fulfill this one need is just silly.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1, Troll)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 2 years ago | (#41208733)

Here's the great thing about (unregulated) capitalism. It forces businesses to create products and services for people to use or else they lose money or eventually go bankrupt.

The problem with the 2 things you mentioned is that we have regulation, we have a distorted market based on coercion (by the government) rather than freedom. In the case of telecoms, the government gave lots of money to "modernize" America or "modernize" a town meaning that the large telecoms got ahead without concern to their customers. In the case of pharmaceuticals the free market is distorted by both patents and the FDA.

Your line of thinking ignores the key point of the previous poster which was freedom. A more accurate view would be to look at food. If you don't like McDonalds, you don't have to go, you don't have to support them. If you want a burger you can go to the local grocery store (of which there are several) and buy the hamburger yourself and grill it yourself. Or, you can go to Burger King, Wendy's or a multitude of fast food restaurants. If you don't want a fast food burger go to a multitude of sit-down restaurants, diners etc. and get a burger.

What is the difference between the market for burgers and the market for pharmaceuticals and internet? The key difference is freedom. While there might be some patents involved in cooking a burger, most things are simply trade secrets and every restaurant is allowed to try to copy and improve their competitor's recipes. There is comparatively little bureaucracy involved in food service, sure, there are health departments and the FDA to make sure that the food service is sanitary and that the food won't kill you unlike the regulations involved in pharmaceuticals which take potential cures from dying patients because they might not be "effective".

Re:Wireless has congestion (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208867)

The problem with the 2 things you mentioned is that we have regulation, we have a distorted market based on coercion

If it only wasn't for regulation, we would have a perfect world. Right? Haven't learned anything yet?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robber_baron_(industrialist) [wikipedia.org]

The purpose of a government is to maintain a free market via regulation and police and the justice system. Free Market does not exist without regulation. As soon as there are any major players in the market, they would just muscle out any competition, even if they have to do that literally.

Natural end of any purely capitalistic society is total monopoly, at which point it basically becomes a totalitarian government.

Re:Wireless has congestion (5, Insightful)

tragedy (27079) | about 2 years ago | (#41209147)

You don't quite seem to understand why the free market doesn't work very well with markets like telecommunications, roads, etc. Sometimes the regulation is problematic, but often the market wouldn't even be viable without the regulation. The problem is that some markets are what are referred to as natural monopolies. Consider roads. How many sets of roads from different providers can any given location support? How many roads does the typical home have frontage on? Multiple sets of roads would also _have_ to cross. How would the property rights work? How expensive would all the tunnels and/or overpasses be? How would interconnects between the different providers work? Roads are natural monopolies, which means that, to be practical, they either need to be managed by government or by heavily regulated industries. The same holds for telecommunications. With wireless telecommunications there's only so much spectrum to go around. In a pure free market, there would be so much noise on the airwaves that cell phones probably wouldn't even be possible.

Re:Wireless has congestion (3, Insightful)

Braino420 (896819) | about 2 years ago | (#41209897)

You don't quite seem to understand why the free market doesn't work very well with markets like telecommunications, roads, etc. Sometimes the regulation is problematic, but often the market wouldn't even be viable without the regulation. The problem is that some markets are what are referred to as natural monopolies.

Agreed that natural monopolies are hard for free markets. But then the question is will the regulation be effective. Regulation can be expensive and sometimes ends up benefiting initial players and limiting choice. The biggest issue, for me, is if the regulatory body will stay effective and not be corrupted by market players. When a regulatory body is captured, it will be very hard for a politician to work to defeat it due to the interest/power of the market players vs the interest/power of the people. You mention that often the market wouldn't even be viable without regulation, do you have some examples to discuss? Things such as wireless frequencies could simply be considered property and handled similarly. Ownership of such property could be handled in the same way, ie homesteading.

Consider roads. How many sets of roads from different providers can any given location support? How many roads does the typical home have frontage on? Multiple sets of roads would also _have_ to cross. How would the property rights work? How expensive would all the tunnels and/or overpasses be? How would interconnects between the different providers work?

I think the point you are getting at here is that the owners of routes to destinations, of which there are few, will take advantage of their position and it will cost you more to use those routes. Markets are actually more complicated than that as they also have to deal with indirect and potential competition. How much would it cost me to walk to a parking garage that gives me access to different routes? What if I took a different means of travel altogether?

How would the property rights work? How expensive would all the tunnels and/or overpasses be? How would interconnects between the different providers work?

Private property rights would work as they do today. Tunnels and overpasses would be expensive, I assure you government does not make them cheaper. That is also a problem with government roads; they will be built even when they do not make financial sense in a market. Interconnects between different providers would bring more usage (ie. more money) so they would be beneficial to road owners to that extent.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

tragedy (27079) | about 2 years ago | (#41210503)

I will agree with you entirely that regulation, even when necessary, can be bungled up beyond belief.

You mention that often the market wouldn't even be viable without regulation, do you have some examples to discuss? Things such as wireless frequencies could simply be considered property and handled similarly. Ownership of such property could be handled in the same way, ie homesteading.

I contend that any system that assigns wireless frequencies as property is a form of regulation. I just can't see how it could be seen any other way. The process by which anyone could become the natural owner of wireless spectrum is otherwise incomprehensible to me. So, a free market for wireless spectrum with various entities competing for it would end up a war zone. There would be scraggly bearded hams and hackers insisting on proper practices and cooperation, etc., but the big business types would deride them as dirty hippies and flood them out.

I also thought I'd already provided a pretty good example of a market that wouldn't be viable without regulation when discussing roads. When you're not living in an area with areas of unclaimed land between every property, acquiring the property to actually build a network of roads connecting everyone can be insanely difficult without government interference. There have been in various places, and at various times in history, road networks made up of lots of little private roads with toll booths every few hundred meters. They pretty much always ended with the sitting government or conquerors coming along and taking them over in some way with or without compensation because they were always a mess. Going anywhere would be ridiculously expensive and slow. When the roads aren't directly controlled by some sort of government, they always need regulation.

Consider roads. How many sets of roads from different providers can any given location support? How many roads does the typical home have frontage on? Multiple sets of roads would also _have_ to cross. How would the property rights work? How expensive would all the tunnels and/or overpasses be? How would interconnects between the different providers work?

I think the point you are getting at here is that the owners of routes to destinations, of which there are few, will take advantage of their position and it will cost you more to use those routes. Markets are actually more complicated than that as they also have to deal with indirect and potential competition. How much would it cost me to walk to a parking garage that gives me access to different routes? What if I took a different means of travel altogether?

The point I was getting at was more than just that the owners of routes to destinations would exploit their ownership by charging a lot. Traditional property rights are essentially two dimensional. You can't tunnel under or build a bridge over a road belonging to someone else without their consent. Laws allowing you to do so would be a form of government regulation on roads. A network of roads of anything other than trivial complexity, connecting a group of locations, simply can't realistically exist alongside a separate network of roads connecting those same locations without the networks crossing. It might be possible with some crazy fractal-like design, but that would be insanely inefficient as well as requiring cooperation among the builders of both networks (not to mention the fact that it would lead to way too much useful land being uselessly paved). Road networks simply can't co-exist in the same location without cooperation which is very unlikely unless it's enforced by government. Government is also very unlikely to want two sets of roads in the same area with two operators, so they would instead grant local monopolies to particular operators. Such monopolies can't just be handed out without regulation.

The point about the tunnels and overpasses wasn't how expensive they would be to the consumer (although they would be astronomical) it was how expensive they would be to a second operator who wants to cross the road of the first operator. In the unlikely case that they would even allow it, the charges would surely be astronomical.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

evilviper (135110) | about 2 years ago | (#41210257)

With wireless telecommunications there's only so much spectrum to go around.

Not true. Frequency reuse for teleco frequencies can be very, very, very high. Want twice as much bandwidth in an area... install twice as many towers, and transmit at half the power. No addition spectrum required. This is oversimplified, but the concept is entirely correct. There's no reason cell companies can't have picocells on every telephone pole, wired up to some cheap backhaul, and start selling wireless bandwidth cheaper than wired Cable / DSL / Fiber providers.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

tragedy (27079) | about 2 years ago | (#41210537)

Want twice as much bandwidth in an area... install twice as many towers, and transmit at half the power.

Not actually doable when you don't have regulations protecting that bandwidth. How well does that method work when your competition wants to drown you out?

There's no reason cell companies can't have picocells on every telephone pole, wired up to some cheap backhaul, and start selling wireless bandwidth cheaper than wired Cable / DSL / Fiber providers.

With regulation protecting them and providing the kind of environment where they can actually do that, you're right, there's no reason they can't. Without all the regulation and without public assistance (use of all kinds of public property and grants of what would otherwise be public property, for example) which can't be ethically given without regulating the results, there would be all kinds of reasons why they can't.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209985)

Wow, you think that the key difference between the market for burgers and the markets for pharmaceuticals and the internet is the regulation?

Try again, look at the actual realities of the different things you're trying to conflate together. And since pharmaceuticals are nothing like the internet, combining them together as if they were the same market is not a good idea either.

But go ahead and scream for your precious freedom.

Me? I'm not going to complain that Regulations caused problems as if they were the issue, when the real problem is the regulations might not be ideal. But who is surprised by that? You think that the government must be uncorrupted for it to be viable?

That's a high standard.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

lightknight (213164) | about 2 years ago | (#41208637)

Normally, yes, but you are forgetting some of the nasty rules that these types have cooked up. So, yes, complain away.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208779)

Build your own damn network.

Throw a cell tower in your back yard - see how quickly the FCC knocks on your door.

Re:Wireless has congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209341)

The network providers are getting access to rights of way and EM spectrum licences from the people, so we as a society as just as free to determine the conditions on which we will allow them to use that access. If they don't like that, they can negotiate their own rights of way across people's land, and come to their own agreements with anyone who might feel like transmitting on the frequencies they want to use. Hey, isn't freedom good!

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

shentino (1139071) | about 2 years ago | (#41209347)

Save that retort for when someone can enter the market without being a member of the good ole boys network.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

silas_moeckel (234313) | about 2 years ago | (#41210447)

And nobody is forcing them to lease spectrum. They are using the public resource to provide a commercial product.

Re:Wireless has congestion (0, Flamebait)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 years ago | (#41208475)

It is unreasonable for them to throttle anything due to lack of infrastructure while simultaneously sporting enormous profit margins.

You can have one, but not both. If they need more infrastructure they should build it.

So it's OK for you if your daughter can't call the police to come help her when she has an accident on the highway because 5 or 100 other users in the same cell are downloading porn right now? Wireless providers *have* to throttle to protect the voice network for public-safety purposes.

Re:Wireless has congestion (4, Insightful)

BradleyUffner (103496) | about 2 years ago | (#41208615)

So it's OK for you if your daughter can't call the police to come help her when she has an accident on the highway because 5 or 100 other users in the same cell are downloading porn right now?

Wireless providers *have* to throttle to protect the voice network for public-safety purposes.

It's not ok, but that wouldn't be the "porn downloaders" fault. It would be the fault of the network operators who oversold services they couldn't adequately provide. If they have too many customers in an area they need to build more towers. If you sell someone a service you need to provide what you sold them.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208881)

>>>If they have too many customers in an area they need to build more towers.

Exactly right! I propose one fiber optic-connected tower for every home. Just locate it on the chimney so everybody in that home has a dedicated cellular.......... Hey wait a minute. If they do that, why can't they could just run the fiber directly into the home & forget about the towers. (ponder)

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 years ago | (#41209987)

So it's OK for you if your daughter can't call the police to come help her when she has an accident on the highway because 5 or 100 other users in the same cell are downloading porn right now?

Wireless providers *have* to throttle to protect the voice network for public-safety purposes.

It's not ok, but that wouldn't be the "porn downloaders" fault. It would be the fault of the network operators who oversold services they couldn't adequately provide. If they have too many customers in an area they need to build more towers. If you sell someone a service you need to provide what you sold them.

I'm sorry. Were you promised a certain data rate under all conditions regardless of what other users on the network are doing or did you just not understand what multi-user system is?

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

grantspassalan (2531078) | about 2 years ago | (#41210285)

Data is a commodity that can be measured, just like electricity gas and water. Why not meter the data and charge users accordingly, rather than a flat rate for everybody? Have a certain number of data units available at various levels of monthly cost. Any user that exceeds that amount gets charged more. Why should a grandma or grandpa who only use the Internet to get their e-mail and occasionally use a browser to surf for some information pay the same as someone who downloads gigabytes of video or other data, such as operating systems and huge software files. Any given type of data should have the same priorities of service. Why should someone who only wants to get their e-mail or surf the net be waiting in line for someone who downloads massive files or watches data intensive high definition videos? Users of large amounts of data should pay more. On my electric bill, if I use more than a certain number of kilowatt hours, I pay a higher rate for the excess electricity. Data, even if it doesn't cost more per unit can be priced the same way, to discourage data hogs. Grandma users don't need enormous bandwidth, like video and games require, so why are we asking such users to subsidize the high, expensive bandwidth requirements for users, who use the Internet in ways that it was never designed for in the first place.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

smellotron (1039250) | about 2 years ago | (#41210359)

Grandma users don't need enormous bandwidth, like video and games require...

I am not trying to disagree with your main point here, but many networked games are low-bandwidth. Why? High bandwidth requirements inevitably leads to increased likelihood of packet loss, which leads to latency spikes, which leads to perceived lag and inconsistent performance in the game. This is death for a FPS or similar "twitch" game.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

oakgrove (845019) | about 2 years ago | (#41208829)

So it's OK for you if your daughter can't call the police to come help her when she has an accident on the highway because 5 or 100 other users in the same cell are downloading porn right now? Wireless providers *have* to throttle to protect the voice network for public-safety purposes.

Don't voice calls get a much higher QoS priority than data already? That seems like the solution just like in someone's house that does a lot of downloading, just lower the priority of that traffic in the router and everything else should work just fine. If something needs first priority no matter what like VOIP then you just set it that way no "throttling" necessary.

Re:Wireless has congestion (0)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 2 years ago | (#41209997)

Don't voice calls get a much higher QoS priority than data already? That seems like the solution just like in someone's house that does a lot of downloading, just lower the priority of that traffic in the router and everything else should work just fine.

Prioritize one thing, De-prioritize another...that is exactly what these net neutrality zealots are trying to prevent from being legal.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

edb (87448) | about 2 years ago | (#41210951)

No. This is not what Net Neutrality means. Net Neutrality means giving the same priority to the same type of traffic (voice, data, SMS, etc.) categorized by data type, and most especially NOT categorized by source provider. Net Neutrality means that a carrier should treat all voice calls equally, even if the call originates/terminates/transits a provider other than the carrier.
For example, Sprint should not give higher priority to digital voice packets from a Sprint source than they would to digital voice packets from a Verizon source. AT&T should not allow full bandwidth to streamed video from AT&T movie archives but throttle video from UTube.
Emergency voice traffic would warrant higher priority categorization than normal voice traffic. But the important point is the *type* of traffic, not the source of the funding that pays for it.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 years ago | (#41210061)

Yes they do, and this is part of what throttling is about. If there are multiple users on a network, there has to be some rule that determines who gets how much access. Building a network with unlimited capacity is not possible. Building a network with enough capacity for all of your customers to use their maximum theoretical bandwidth at the same time is not practical, not efficient and would drastically drive up the cost of service and in the case where there is a really high density of users it's not physically possible.. There needs to be some kind of arbitration that determines who gets what bandwidth at what time.

Some posters seem to think that service providers can put up unlimited numbers of transceivers and they will somehow share unlimited bandwidth. This tells me they don't have to foggiest clue how these systems physically work, nor the legal restrictions on use of spectrum. I do understand both those issues and I'm telling you it's not feasible. Not at the price you're willing to pay, anyway.

So we're back to throttling. You are being throttled on wireless networks. Have you noticed your ISP charges you more for 50 MBPS than they do for 10 or 20 MBSP? You're paying a premium for a wider throttle (or not paying it and accepting a narrower throttle.)

The most you can ask is that you get a fair service for a reasonable price. If you want a 40GBPS fiber channel all to yourself, you can get it for a price. But if you want 1 GBPS over the air in a fashion that moves around according to your location, you can't have it at any price.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

digitalchinky (650880) | about 2 years ago | (#41210973)

No, voice calls don't get higher priority, they don't need to because they have their own dedicated timeslots in the trunk. They are entirely separate from CCITT7 and data slots. While data channels are often at capacity, you routinely see idling voice slots.

If Asia can get this stuff right with far higher population densities, I don't understand why the US can not - aside from greed and 100 years of fine tuning the monopoly :-)

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

JackieBrown (987087) | about 2 years ago | (#41208521)

So if they made less of a profit, it would be ok? I am trying to follow your logic here.

At what point is the profit to much? I am assuming that you know that the profit is just sitting still somewhere and not being used in R&D, wages, infrastructure, rainy day fund, etc

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208945)

At what point is the profit to much?

That's easy. When credible companies would like to enter the market and have a legitimate business plan for making money yet can't due to regulations then the incumbents are making too much money. If the market is highly regulated then the companies that are sidling up to the trough need to earn the right to have that position by doing everything they can to improve the experience just like what would happen if the market had been free the whole time.

Re:Wireless has congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41211157)

At what point is the profit to much?

That's easy. When credible companies would like to enter the market and have a legitimate business plan for making money yet can't due to regulations then the incumbents are making too much money. If the market is highly regulated then the companies that are sidling up to the trough need to earn the right to have that position by doing everything they can to improve the experience just like what would happen if the market had been free the whole time.

We're still waiting for you to actually state what point that occurs at. So far all you've done is puke up some rhetoric.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

shentino (1139071) | about 2 years ago | (#41209385)

It's going to bonuses for management.

Re:Wireless has congestion (5, Insightful)

mk1004 (2488060) | about 2 years ago | (#41208395)

Wireless networks suffer from congestion a lot more than wired networks. I don't think it's unreasonable for carriers to want to throttle traffic on wireless mediums to ensure mr tethered torrenter isnt destroying everyone else's connection.

Keep in mind that on wired or wireless networks, Net Neutrality is NOT treating all packets the same. VoIP and Video are among those applications that are time sensitive. You need to apply QoS to prioritize that type of traffic. Where NN comes in would be something like this: Say your ISP charges $50/month for internet, and limits you to 250Gb per month. Instead of subscribing to their TV service, you want to use Netflix or Hulu. Under this scenario, their data limit may keep you from using Netflix as much as you'd like. OTOH, they don't charge against you cap to use their TV service. Oh, but you can buy additional data for, say, $10/10Gb more. What they're doing is making sure that the additional data charges are so expensive that it's cheaper to buy their TV service, keeping out competition.

It's OK to throttle traffic on congested networks to make sure that everyone has access, but it's another to use data limits to keep out competition for other services.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

Vaphell (1489021) | about 2 years ago | (#41208675)

outbound traffic costs them money while in-house traffic is virtually free. You will never equalize the costs of internal and external services.
On a smaller scale the same thing happens in home LANs. People shuffle shitloads of stuff back and forth between computers, NAS boxes and what not and pay ISPs big round zero bucks for that traffic. Outbound packets are counted against non-free quota while LAN traffic is limitless.
Do you want net neutrality here? How would that work?

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

fa2k (881632) | about 2 years ago | (#41209265)

outbound traffic costs them money while in-house traffic is virtually free. You will never equalize the costs of internal and external services.

Not true for wireless. The bottleneck is towers and uplink bandwidth back to the central office. Why else would wireless service be so much more limited than wired ?

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208767)

>>>you want to use Netflix or Hulu. Under this scenario, their 250Gb cap may keep you from using Netflix as much as you'd like. OTOH, they don't charge against you cap to use their TV service

I'm guessing you mean 250GB? 250 gigabits would be a damn small cap (250/8== just 31 gigabytes). Anyway if Verizon wants to give me free and uncapped videos from their local computers, where's the harm in that? It doesn't cost me anything extra. I don't care where I go to see the latest episode of Warehouse13..... Hulu or Verizon. (shrug)

Re:Wireless has congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208999)

you're absolutely right. I don't see any problem with this

how about a third party that happens to have some kind of external billing arrangement?

how about a third party that has some kind of cross-marketing arrangement

what about if the service level for hulu was so bad it was essentially unusable?

Re:Wireless has congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209247)

Those videos aren't free. You're paying for them through your subscription. The "harm in that" is that they are excluding competitors from access to you. The end result is less competition leading to lousier service and higher prices.

NN isn't the solution though. The solution is "common carrier". Get Verizon TF out of the content business. They shouldn't be giving you "free" videos. They should be selling space on their local network to Netflix and Hulu to reduce their outbound costs and improve service for you. ("But it's there network!" It surely is, but they are using it to gain an unfair advantage in the market of selling you stuff.)

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

Artifakt (700173) | about 2 years ago | (#41210413)

To put it another way: having a monopoly is not illegal. Abusing one is. Antitrust and similar laws usually require any prosecutor to first show that a monopoly exists, so they can then go on to prove that the laws were broken, so many people have the mistaken idea that the monopoly itself is being prosecuted. Telecomunications is an area where proving the monopoly exists is usually trivial. One corporation gets a special government grant of a frequency range or similar limited domain - that's a granted monopoly, so obvious that a judge out to be able to quickly compel a defense lawyer to move on to the issues that are actually needing arbitrated. Since just about all telecoms have a monopoly on something (in fact, I can't think of one commercial telecom that doesn't qualify), the only point to judge is whether they telecom is using that monopoly to do something illegal - i.e. is it their monopoly that is letting them stifle competition, realize vhigher than average profits, keep new competitors from even entering the areana, or enter 'gentelman's non-compete agreements.
            There's something paradoxical about all these libertarian calls for freedom, when it becomes freedom to use what you and I granted a company to leverage the market. There's certainly no free market right to take something which was granted with certain terms attached and use it in defiance of those terms, any more than me giving a person permission to walk across my land means I can't forbid them hunting deer on it.
   

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

Artifakt (700173) | about 2 years ago | (#41210425)

Ooops! Please make that "ought to", not "out to". Thanks.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

smellotron (1039250) | about 2 years ago | (#41210461)

Net Neutrality is NOT treating all packets the same. VoIP and Video are among those applications that are time sensitive. You need to apply QoS to prioritize that type of traffic.

Thank you! Many people conflate protocol-favoritism with endpoint-favoritism and (wrongly) conclude that routers should be dumb and never prioritize in order to enforce NN. The difficulty that I run into on this topic is that there seems to be a slippery slope due to the privacy implications of effective QoS. For examle:

  • Streaming video over HTTP is more important than a large file download over HTTP, but you may need to peek at HTTP headers or even the file content in order to distinguish between the two.
  • Video games frequently run over nonstandard ports but have characteristic signatures for UDP traffic. Should deep packet inspection be used to keep most/all video games at high priority? What if the DPI has even a minor impact on overall throughput/latency?
  • QoS works best by throttling outbound traffic, rather than discarding inbound traffic. For wired traffic this can be done at a cable modem, DSL mode, or some switch local to the customer. For metro-wide wireless traffic (i.e. a MAN [wikipedia.org] 3G, 4G, what-have-you) is it acceptable for the ISP to require its traffic shaper to be running on connected devices?

I'm uncertain about the answers to these questions, and I have familiarity with the domain. I fear legislation which is enacted by lawyers and written by a legion of Grima Wormtongues.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | about 2 years ago | (#41211103)

Couldn't they make separate data sets: A 250 GB/mo subscription has 25 GB of higher priority data. Which data this is can be set in the router and thus is under your control. Once the higher priority data is used up the remaining data is lower priority again.
Default VOIP and gaming would be higher priority and torrenting would not be of course.
This would give the tinkerers a great measure of control while preventing them from setting downloads to max priority (OMG, this movie is awesome. I needs it NAOW!) and taking out the network.

Re:Wireless has congestion (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 years ago | (#41208447)

The most reasonable way to control that behavior is throttling sufficient to allow other users to continue to have access AND charging per bit.

Re:Wireless has congestion (2)

poetmatt (793785) | about 2 years ago | (#41208525)

back in the 2g days maybe, but not since 3g, and absolutely not since LTE nor real 4g does congestion even become a factor. IT's more an issue of "Carrier doesn't want to improve coverage" vs "users who want actual coverage".

The more complex you make the rules.... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208287)

The more the ones who can afford armies of lawyers will win.

And once the government starts regulating the internet, there will be literally thousands and thousands of pages of regulations.

Tell me, how does that help the consumer?

Or do you REALLY think the government is really setting out to help YOU? YOU don't control enough money to generate millions of dollars in campaign contributions, do you?

Re:The more complex you make the rules.... (1)

c0lo (1497653) | about 2 years ago | (#41208519)

The more the ones who can afford armies of lawyers will win.

And once the government starts regulating the internet, there will be literally thousands and thousands of pages of regulations.

Tell me, how does that help the consumer?

The more complex one makes the rules for the WiFI space, the better the chances for the non-representative minority of customers that chose to stay wired [wikipedia.org] will be...

Data caps and throttling are understandable now as (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208391)

Data caps and throttling are understandable now as demand is far outpacing infrastructure growth.

Understandable.

Still fraud.

Re:Data caps and throttling are understandable now (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208931)

Fraud? In what way? My cellular provider told me upfront that I wold get 2.5 gigabytes uncapped, and unlimited at 2xISDN speeds. It isn't fraud when you are told point-blank what to expect. (Better read your contract more carefully.)

Ham radio (4, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#41208397)

I could solve all the problems associated with these profiteering asshats with a simple solution: Allow people to be licensed to broadcast internet. Right now amateur radio can't offer internet access. If private persons were allowed to do with a larger spectrum space what they can do right now with wifi, I suspect that their entire business model would implode.

Mesh networking is a mature technology -- and it doesn't require the infrastructure these companies offer. Make it legal for people to build wireless communities. But I guess that would be too radical of a concept for the FCC; They seem only interested in appearing to support the common citizen, rather than actually supporting them. There's no profit in handing over spectrum to "the public", the group the FCC claims to represent, and whom the FCC mandate the spectrum is actually owned by, for which the FCC is merely an administrator of.

Re:Ham radio (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208689)

And what about radio and TV broadcast? Would you just run roughshod over those bands & block people's reception?? Fact is you DO have the WiFi bands open, and yet very few people setup mesh networks. Instead they lock-up their Wifi modems so nobody else can access them.

Re:Ham radio (4, Interesting)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about 2 years ago | (#41209273)

Fact is you DO have the WiFi bands open, and yet very few people setup mesh networks.

Another technically true, but misleading statement. The wifi frequencies are "open" they just aren't open enough because transmitter power is still extremely limited. To the point where it is unreasonable to expect a single wifi access point to cover more than an acre of so of open land. Ham radio operators are allowed to transmit at levels of power that are orders of magnitude stronger.

Get back to this argument when anyone can run a wifi base-station that will cover at least 5 square miles.

Re:Ham radio (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208705)

If private persons were allowed to do with a larger spectrum space what they can do right now with wifi, I suspect that their entire business model would implode.

Is the 5GHz band really not enough?

Re:Ham radio (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209033)

Ham Radio aka Amateur Radio is for non commercial purposes. Everyone has to be licensed to transmit. If you ignore this, get the non conflicting frequency and bandwidth, you will eventually run into problems other wireless providers runs into. Primarily there is limited amount of RF Bandwidth. At some point you will have to throttle and limit RF access.

-KD8OST

Re:Ham radio (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41210769)

Allow people to be licensed to broadcast internet.

"Broadcast" You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Not an apt comparison (2)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 years ago | (#41208427)

Self regulation usually does not end well for the consumer. Imagine allowing power plants and oil refineries to determine what chemicals they could pour into the air. Would they have the population's best interest at heart when making that determination?

That's not an apt comparison because power plants are refineries are paid for what they deliver and what you are concerned about regulating is an unwanted byproduct of their operations. With data service, your bits getting to and from your devices is both what you are proposing regulating and what they are selling. Sure, there's an inherent conflict between what they want (to get as much money from you for service under the most favorable to them terms) and what you want (getting your data fast and cheap without restrictions of any kind, or according to restrictions you can dictate). But that's the case in every other commercial transaction as well. There's a need to protect consumers from such unfair practices as abusing monopoly power to drive up prices higher than could be sustained in a competitive market, lock-in, charging you for access to your own data, unreasonable tarriffing of data from outside networks, uneven and deceptive price models and unfair cost shifting. But these are unrelated to problems like pollution.

In the future when the infrastructure can match the demand, what will stop internet providers from picking winners and losers over their wireless networks? As conglomerates like Comcast gobble up content providers like NBC, a conflict of interest begins to emerge. There would be nothing from stopping one of the big wireless providers like AT&T or Verizon from scooping up a content provider and prioritizing its data speed over the network.

I don't foresee a future where the infrastructure can match demand. As capacity grows, people will demand more data services from more mobile devices and saturate the capacity unless pricing prevents them from doing so, and prices in a free market would normally be be set such that they fall a short of saturation.

Re:Not an apt comparison (2)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about 2 years ago | (#41208679)

I don't foresee a future where the infrastructure can match demand. As capacity grows, people will demand more data services from more mobile devices and saturate the capacity unless pricing prevents them from doing so, and prices in a free market would normally be be set such that they fall a short of saturation.

Another, related, reason why infrastructure will not, and cannot, match demand for wireless data is that there is only so much spectrum. Actually, there is a way that wireless infrastructure could match demand. That would be for it to be priced out of the reach of the average person.

Re:Not an apt comparison (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 2 years ago | (#41208709)

I don't foresee a future where the infrastructure can match demand. As capacity grows, people will demand more data services from more mobile devices and saturate the capacity unless pricing prevents them from doing so, and prices in a free market would normally be be set such that they fall a short of saturation.

Obligatory: https://xkcd.com/908/ [xkcd.com]

Net Neutrality on wired internet is already gone (1)

kbdd (823155) | about 2 years ago | (#41208431)

I get my internet hookup through Cox. Don't get me wrong, they are somewhat better than a bunch of other providers I keep hearing about. I am overall satisfied with their internet service (television service is another matter, I have DirectTV).

However, like most others, they have a data cap. Interestingly, the data cap does not apply to some of the services they provide, only to the rest of the world.

So I can watch internet television THEY provide to my heart's content, but for anybody else, there is a cap.

How is that for net neutrality?

Re:Net Neutrality on wired internet is already gon (1)

Vaphell (1489021) | about 2 years ago | (#41208703)

traffic to the rest of the world utilizes pipes belonging to 3rd parties and they don't give away the bandwidth for free. In-house traffic is virtually free, just like sending terabytes of data between computers plugged into your house LAN is.

Re:Net Neutrality on wired internet is already gon (1)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 years ago | (#41209129)

So if I set my torrent client to prefer to download from peers within Cox, it won't count against the cap, right? Or it is only free for their services?

Re:Net Neutrality on wired internet is already gon (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208845)

Same with Comcast (their video content does not count towards your 250GB cap). You see this is what happens when the government regulates..... instead of actual net neutrality (like we had before) it has created some other bastardization which allows Cable companies to treat their data favorably, while blocking outside companies via the cap.

Re:Net Neutrality on wired internet is already gon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208885)

Same with Comcast (their video content does not count towards your 250GB cap). You see this is what happens when the government regulates..... instead of actual net neutrality (like we had before) it has created some other bastardization which allows Cable companies to treat their data favorably, while blocking outside companies via the cap.

OMFG! Government intervention didn't improve things?

That CAN'T be TRUE!

Our government knows BEST!

Thanks Google! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208499)

Google lobbied hard to exempt wireless from the net neutrality rules. While telling everyone how much they supported net neutrality, they quietly pushed to remove restrictions on wireless providers. From http://www.techdirt.com/blog/wireless/articles/20100812/17291310611.shtml

So what changed? Google did. In 2007, Android wasn't a major mobile OS, and Google didn't have multi-billion-dollar wireless advertising relationships with Verizon and AT&T. You'll also recall that Google had hopes of bypassing the carrier retail experience completely -- hopes that flamed out rather spectacularly with the death of the Nexus One and their online phone store. The policy shift is clear and indisputable, as is the motivation: Google doesn't want consumer protections (be they privacy, or network neutrality) to impact wireless ad revenues.

Re:Thanks Google! (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#41208633)

You confuse me. Net neutrality isn't about selling ads over the internet. It's about service providers (You know, Not Google) charging customer more to access premium part of the internet or charging websites more to give their customers better access. I believe Google want relaxed privacy laws but I think they want net neutrality. They run the worlds largest advertising network. If ISP's offer their customers premium access to popular websites, bypassing the ad networks, Google lose all those ad-clickers and the revenue they generate. Without net neutrality, ISP's could intercept google-delivered ads and replace them with their own, completely hijacking Google's main source of income.

Re:Thanks Google! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209443)

You mean Google confuses you... I just stated their stance with regards to wireless net neutrality which is not my opinion.

Their are plenty of motives now that they have Android to help push ads and mine data... They could tell Verizon to slow down traffic from iPhone users to GMail to make the Android phones appear to work better or they could make Hotmail slow on all Verizon phones. Without complete net neutrality, the possibilities for corruption are endless, and users may never even know what is happening.

If an ISP hijacked a web page and replaced ads with other ones, I think they would be in a lot more trouble than just violating net neutrality. Comcast got hit pretty bad by just injecting RST packets into bittorrent traffic. This is about slowing connection speeds to give favorable access to certain services, or slowing down access to competitors.

Re:Thanks Google! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208983)

Google did not lobby hard for it. They made a deal with a devil (Verizon) that involved a joint statement that exempted wifi. Would Google prefer neutral wifi? Of course, it is aligned with their business, not to mention their hordes of idealistic engineers.

It seems fairly clear to me after the fact that that deal was not worth the (justified) PR backlash that followed, let alone the damage done to net neutrality. But let's not confuse making a joint statement with concessions on both sides with "lobbying hard for X".

Excuse me? (4, Insightful)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#41208545)

Name one time in the history of the internet where demand for bandwidth has slowed? The size of content outpaces the increase in bandwidth that technology provides. Remember when you could install your OS with a floppy? Try a DVD now. The current Debian dist is 8 DVD's, over 300GB.

Re:Excuse me? (1)

danomac (1032160) | about 2 years ago | (#41208953)

300 GB? That's one hell of a download. I think downloading that once would put almost everyone over their monthly cap!

Re:Excuse me? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208991)

The current Debian dist is 8 DVD's, over 300GB.

37.5GB per Disc? Where can i buy those badass DVDs?

Re:Excuse me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209003)

Yeah. I would regularly download a 300GB Debian from my cellphone if it wheren't for those pesky caps...

Re:Excuse me? (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 2 years ago | (#41209105)

Remember when you could install your OS with a floppy? Try a DVD now. The current Debian dist is 8 DVD's, over 300GB.

I get what you're saying about bandwidth and I agree, but OSs aren't really that much bigger, its just all the optional bloat bolted on top that takes up so much space.

Damn Small Linux can squeezes in under 50MB. [damnsmalllinux.org]

Re:Excuse me? (1)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 years ago | (#41209151)

Name one time in the history of the internet where demand for bandwidth has slowed?

About five minutes after I started streaming this video about three ladies whose pizza delivery just showed up.

Are you kidding me? (4, Interesting)

The Master Control P (655590) | about 2 years ago | (#41208641)

Demand for wireless is going to continue to grow for many years to come, and providers are not going to be able to let up. Data caps and throttling are understandable now as demand is far outpacing infrastructure growth. Eventually, demand will slow, and these practices will have to be addressed.

Um, NO?

Demand for bandwidth will always exceed supply. Because it's ridiculously easy (more often than not to the point of the application doing it by default) to use more and lower-latency bandwidth, while it is difficult and time-consuming to install more supply. And this becomes ever more true the farther you move up the tiers. Installing new high-quality GigE cards and 8-port switch in my office? Under an hour from opening the NewEgg box to a job well done. Rolling out 10GigE to the whole floor? All week for a crew of guys. Rolling out 100M or 1G fiber to whole cities? Years of work and the job's barely even begun.

And if anyone thinks demand will saturate, there are always applications waiting in the wings to use more bandwidth.

Re:Are you kidding me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209275)

So, what we need is a more efficient way to roll out bandwidth.

Re:Are you kidding me? (1)

Zaelath (2588189) | about 2 years ago | (#41209909)

Confusing want and need, it's the consumer's god given right and you will respect it!

Also, we clearly need legislation to ensure smooth delivery of orange guidos to television into the future.

Re:Are you kidding me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41210415)

And if anyone thinks demand will saturate, there are always applications waiting in the wings to use more bandwidth.

Yes, it's called working yourself out of a job. Or in this case, an entire nation. The more bandwidth you have available, the more work and other services can be outsourced to lower cost nations. When you lower the barriers to entry including outsourced cloud services, why bother keeping inside your own borders when transoceanic communications are able to provide more bandwidth into the future.

Seriously. The internet is setting the Gold Standard up again. This is absolutely hilarious is the most sick way possibly. The handwriting has been on the wall for the longest time now.

Antitrust (5, Funny)

PPH (736903) | about 2 years ago | (#41208649)

As conglomerates like Comcast gobble up content providers like NBC,

So, stop them [wikipedia.org] .

Corporations shouldn't be allowed to acquire other corporations anyway. After all, they are people. And President Lincoln said people shouldn't own other people.

Re:Antitrust (2)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208717)

Comcast already asked and received permission from the Obama-era FCC to buy NBC. You're not going to get an antitrust lawsuit.

Re:Antitrust (1)

PPH (736903) | about 2 years ago | (#41208909)

So, we need to throw the Obama administration out and vote one in that will look out for the rights of the electorate first.

Like Romney ....... Nah. Mr LBO from Bain Capital isn't going to do any better.

What about bringing an antitrust suit as a civil class action? And name the FCC as a defendant/co-conspirator in the antitrust action?

Re:Antitrust (1)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 years ago | (#41209159)

And President Lincoln said people shouldn't own other people.

Only in the breakaway states. He was perfectly fine with people owning people in the states still in the Union.

Re:Antitrust (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41209937)

Actually, he wasn't perfectly fine with it at all. He was something of a moderate compared to radical abolitionists but he did oppose slavery.

Re:Antitrust (1)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 years ago | (#41210027)

Yes, but I assume the GP was referring to 'The Emancipation Proclamation' that 'freed the slaves'. IOW, Lincoln talked a good game.

Re:Antitrust (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 2 years ago | (#41210067)

Indeed. Most people think that the civil war was about slavery. It wasn't. It was about bolstering the power of the federal government over the States. Slavery was just the excuse for doing so.

..and now we are letting the federal government bolster its power over ISP's, and Net Neutrality is just the excuse for doing so. Oh, you wanted to provide an inexpensive nationwide wireless email-only service? Observe slashdot cheering on the banning of such practices. Barriers to entry are being erected under this neutrality guise.

Re:Antitrust (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41210157)

And President Lincoln said people shouldn't own other people.

Only in the breakaway states. He was perfectly fine with people owning people in the states still in the Union.

Utterly false. Lincoln was not perfectly fine with slavery; he didn't know how to end the institution, but he opposed the practice. [Peoria speech, 1854]

Still think wireless is a deadend (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 2 years ago | (#41208653)

We started with wireless television broadcasting to everyone's home, but not we have wired television reaching most of the country. I see internet moving the same direction, towards more wired lines as time passes by. (Of course people will still have their cellphones & other portable gadgets, but that data will mostly be streaming through WiFi modems that hook-into the wired LAN lines.)

Big Assumption Here (2)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 2 years ago | (#41208759)

"In the future when the infrastructure can match the demand..."

Why do you assume the infrastructure can't match the demand? The fact that it doesn't does not mean that it can't.

Let's look at some facts:

(1) Bandwidth has continued to get cheaper for the providers, every year, while price / MB for consumers has actually been going up.

(2) Provider profits have never been better.

(3) Other countries (Canada, much of Europe, many others) manage to deliver superior bandwidth at much lower rates.

And these up, and the logical conclusion is: the providers are deliberately creating an artificial shortage to keep prices high.

They could easily take some of their record profits and turn them into bandwidth. The fact that they haven't been doing enough of that to meet demand pretty much gives them away. Others haven't had that problem.

Re:Big Assumption Here (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 2 years ago | (#41208769)

s / And these up / Add these up ...

Re:Big Assumption Here (2)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 years ago | (#41209223)

(3) Other countries (Canada, much of Europe, many others) manage to deliver superior bandwidth at much lower rates.

You must be thinking of parts of Canada that aren't serviced by Bell, Rogers, or Telus.

Re:Big Assumption Here (2)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 2 years ago | (#41209941)

"You must be thinking of parts of Canada that aren't serviced by Bell, Rogers, or Telus."

Well, I could be wrong about Canada. But that's what I seemed to recall reading in an Ars Technica article. But Europe, definitely.

Certainly, the U.S. does have infrastructure issues that much of Europe does not (particularly "last mile" costs in sparsely populated areas), but I don't think it's enough to make the difference, and it doesn't explain the high costs in areas that are not sparsely populated.

Trouble is when they tell you how you can use it. (5, Insightful)

ZorinLynx (31751) | about 2 years ago | (#41208877)

The biggest problem here is not controlling usage so there's less congestion. Providers already do that plenty with data caps.

The problem is providers telling you what application you can use that 2GB or 4GB you purchased for.

AT&T for instance, says that if you have a 2GB smart phone data plan, you can't tether your laptop. But if you have a 4GB plan, you can. What business do they have telling you if you can tether your laptop? If you want to sit there and use 30GB tethered, that should be okay; you'll just have to pay for the additional usage. This is understandable and makes sense.

They're doing it again with iOS 6, saying you can't do Facetime over cellular unless you upgrade to one of their sharing plans. They shouldn't CARE if you use facetime over cellular, because if you use too much data, you'll have to pay for it anyway.

Charge me $xx for $yy GB. That's fine. Just don't tell me what I can do with those GB. They're MINE, I paid for them!

Fairness of competition (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41208927)

Net neutrality is not the same thing as bandwidth neutrality. Even landlines can't tolerate infinite bandwidth. The point is to allow carriers to distinguish between traffiic only for matters that directly affect the network. The carrier should *not* be able to meddle with the traffic to suit the carrier's business goals. So long as the traffic doesn't adversely affect the network, the carrier shouldn't be able to interfere with it. If the traffic does adversely affect the network, the carrier shouldn't be able to interfere with it any more than with other similar traffic.

FUD! (1)

VTI9600 (1143169) | about 2 years ago | (#41208935)

This article reeks of FUD. The technical challenge alone is pretty unbelievable when you think about it. It's one thing to set up layer 3 policy-based QoS on a handful of service provider core switches, but to coordinate that policy across hundreds of access level devices is quite difficult to say the least...assuming those devices even support it. Never mind that the relationship of consumer to service provider has been less the focus of net neutrality policy than the issue of fairness to content providers.

I was with it up until he said (1)

multicoregeneral (2618207) | about 2 years ago | (#41209065)

Data caps and throttling are understandable now as demand is far outpacing infrastructure growth.

What color is the sky on your planet? Data caps and throttling are not acceptable, because the whole notion of them is a complete fraud, and anyone with half a brain knows it. The fact that they're running their networks at or over capacity should be a good thing. This should mean that they have the money to upgrade and rebuild their networks. After all, they have been fleecing their users and the government in the form of broadband subsidies for years. There's no excuse for not building a new network where "caps" are not necessary, or expanding the capacity of the existing ones. I hope Google wipes them all off the face of the earth.

The US FCC does not have the authority (1)

gavron (1300111) | about 2 years ago | (#41209101)

The US FCC has no authority to do anything with regards to the Internet.

Discussing "how" and "how much" and "when" begs that question. Stop it.
The FCC is an irrelevant dinosaur that regulates television and radio. It is
specifically prohibited from interfering in useful networks -- including the Internet.

http://tinyurl.com/9p4z35p [tinyurl.com]

E

The Horror (1)

Beardydog (716221) | about 2 years ago | (#41209345)

I deal, on a daily basis, with people who are using hotspots and cellphone connections as their primary connections. Netflix, Hulu, torrents, all cramming their way through some poor little Android; the laptop, the console, the iPads and iPods all feasting on its misery. I think the speeds currently being offered just shouldn't be available. I don't think "4G" is a product whose time has actually come, and telling people it exists results in them using it as if it were a real connection. Don't ban FaceTime, just sell people the awful connection you can actually afford to sell them... The one that sucks too much to use FaceTime.

Why? (1)

hemo_jr (1122113) | about 2 years ago | (#41209679)

As long as there is not a monopoly, why can't the marketplace take care of issue? Simply take your business to an ISP that practices net neutrality.

Re:Why? (1)

Mystiq (101361) | about 2 years ago | (#41211373)

I think it's easy to see that most internet providers are not gravitating towards net neutrality. ISPs in certain areas of the US marketplace are becoming monopolies. AT&T and Comcast seem to be going the complete opposite direction of net neutrality and are just vultures on their customers as far as I'm concerned, making new policies that are more and more ridiculous. AT&T's shared data plans and Facetime, anyone?

Net neutrality is a negative affect on a provider's bottom line. They won't practice it unless it helps them.

Does it have to be one or the other? (1)

iamacat (583406) | about 2 years ago | (#41210393)

Why not allocate half of available wireless network capacity to strictly nondiscriminatory use and half to unrestricted commercial trading? Pretty soon, we will have the answer as to which approach is more beneficial. My guess is both, and that the largest users of commercial spectrum wouldn't be able to initially grow and succeed without nondiscriminatory spectrum.

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