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Musicians Demand the Internet Stay Neutral

kdawson posted about 7 years ago | from the bits-is-bits-man dept.

Music 203

eldavojohn writes "124 bands — including R.E.M., Sarah McLachlan, and Pearl Jam — and 24 music labels are sending a clear message to keep Net traffic neutral. The Rock the Net campaign wants all traffic to be equal instead of allowing providers to charge a fee for certain pages to load faster than others. These musicians are the latest to join the Save the Internet campaign, which has the chair of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet in its camp. Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., spoke at the campaign's kickoff. I think it's obvious that musicians (especially independents and small labels) will find themselves with the short end of the stick if they are asked to pay a fee to have their music streamed as fast as larger bands or even corporations."

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203 comments

Well, if REM (5, Funny)

moseman (190361) | about 7 years ago | (#18527549)

Well, if REM says so, then it must be a good thing. That really helped me solidify my stance.

Re:Well, if REM (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about 7 years ago | (#18527581)

Considering that R.E.M. essentially is a corporation, I think it's funny that here they are being portrayed as fighters for the independent musician against the corporate machine.

Re:Well, if REM (1, Insightful)

Hijacked Public (999535) | about 7 years ago | (#18527687)

That is just slick marketing, like when Marilyn Manson's lyrics decry capitalism. It helps get a bigger share of the disaffected youth dollar.

Re:Well, if REM (2, Informative)

shotgunsaint (968677) | about 7 years ago | (#18528155)

I'm a HUGE Manson fan and I can't think of one song that decries capitalism. He definitely goes after the disaffected youth market though, it's what we call his bread-and-butter.

Re:Well, if REM (2, Informative)

k_187 (61692) | about 7 years ago | (#18528561)

Just off the top of my head, from 'The Beautiful People': Capitalism has made it this way, Old-fashioned fascism will take it away It presumably taking about the eponymous beautiful people and society's desire to be like them.

Re:Well, if REM (4, Informative)

Zontar_Thing_From_Ve (949321) | about 7 years ago | (#18527799)

Considering that R.E.M. essentially is a corporation, I think it's funny that here they are being portrayed as fighters for the independent musician against the corporate machine.

You obviously don't know their history or it would make perfect sense to you. R.E.M. got their start on I.R.S. Records, which was an independent label. It was a large and successful independent label, but this was largely through good management that signed a lot of really good bands at the time. R.E.M. was the kind of band that the majors wouldn't have touched in their early days, but they toured and built up a following on the college circuit and eventually signed a major label contract and became big stars. However, without I.R.S. Records, probably nobody outside of Athens would have ever heard of them.

Re:Well, if REM (1, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | about 7 years ago | (#18527907)

The independence of IRS has been debunked by nearly every biography of R.E.M. written. IRS cultivated an independent image, but had partnerships with major distributors the whole time. Furthermore, R.E.M. came to fame through Rolling Stone, hardly a bastion of independent thought but rather a place that knew just the right "big new thing" to pitch.

Re:Well, if REM (1)

faloi (738831) | about 7 years ago | (#18527927)

However, without I.R.S. Records, probably nobody outside of Athens would have ever heard of them.

So without the backing of a large and successful label, which was being distributed by major corporate distributors (which include a few of the "big four" in the RIAA) and that had a show on MTV, they'd still be known mostly in Athens?

Well, if Slashdot (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527879)

Considering that Slashdot is owned by the VA Software Corporation, do you think it's funny that it is portrayed as being a fighter for the independent etc. etc. Or is it possible for a corporation to not be evil all the time?

Re:Well, if REM (4, Insightful)

jocknerd (29758) | about 7 years ago | (#18528503)

Let me guess. You probably are one of those who thinks a band is cool until they start to sell. After that, you consider them sell-outs. Am I accurate on this?

I remember the 80's radio scene. My local rock station was pretty much like this from 1981-85:

Van Halen, AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, Def Leppard, Motley Crue, Pink Floyd, The Who, The Rolling Stones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Aerosmith. There was no R.E.M. or U2 or INXS or Husker Du or The Cure any alternative band being played on mainstream radio.

While you may consider these guys corporate now, they were not corporate bands in the early to mid 80's. 1987 seemed to be the breakout year for U2, R.E.M., The Cure, and INXS and alternative music in general to get actual air play. Then Nirvana came along in 1991 and alternative became mainstream.

Re:Well, if REM (2, Informative)

skorbutrage (983250) | about 7 years ago | (#18528203)

Since I am a member of the R.E.M fan club, I get the fan letters, in these Michael Stipe has repeatedly stated his preference for net nutrality, the band as a whole took interest long before many others did, so I'm not quite sure why that is news, although publicity is always good, especially on a place like slashdot.

Re:Well, if REM (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18528821)

Given the amount REM invested in building the backbone, maintaining it, hey, why shouldn't they have the right to insist on whatever they want. Not to mention their expertise in technology and economic policy.

Well then it's settled (1, Insightful)

andy314159pi (787550) | about 7 years ago | (#18527561)

I'm all for net neutrality, but did they really believe that their opinions matter?

Re:Well then it's settled (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527619)

Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.

-Mohandas Gandhi

Re:Well then it's settled (1, Insightful)

GundamFan (848341) | about 7 years ago | (#18527825)

Gandhi was probably not referring to this particularly transparent form of astroturfing.

Re:Well then it's settled (4, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 7 years ago | (#18527629)

Probably not, but they might think other people believe their opinions matter and thus gather more support from the population. At the very least it will help bring the matter to a broader public so people actually know there's something to form an opinion on.
Remember; just because you're not stupid, doesn't mean the rest of the world isn't.

Re:Well then it's settled (2, Funny)

wasted (94866) | about 7 years ago | (#18527725)

...Remember; just because you're not stupid, doesn't mean the rest of the world isn't.

You should make that your sig. Or put it on CafePress as a bumper sticker.

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | about 7 years ago | (#18527771)

Most of the world can't parse that.
Which I guess proves his point.

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

siriuskase (679431) | about 7 years ago | (#18528539)

Remember; just because you're not stupid, doesn't mean the rest of the world isn't.
Not a bumper sticker, think what it would do to traffic. But, it would make a nice sig.

Re:Well then it's settled (4, Insightful)

essence (812715) | about 7 years ago | (#18527657)

I'm all for net neutrality, but did they really believe that their opinions matter?

Of course their opinions matter. They are well known people with large followings, they can help get the message out there. What matters more is that more and more people speak up.

Informed vs. Uninformed Opinions (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527773)

"You don't know the history of psychiatry. I do. I studied psychiatric history, which somehow proves something about drugs." -Tom Cruise

"They are well known people with large followings"

But large followings for doing _what_, exactly?
Why should I take medical advice from, say, the local mechanic or car repair advice from the local doctor? Or, for that matter, any advice from Paris Hilton?

Re:Well then it's settled (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527793)

So what are you saying, that people should speak up about stuff they know nothing about???

Ah of course you are this is /. mymistake....

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

essence (812715) | about 7 years ago | (#18527887)

So what are you saying, that people should speak up about stuff they know nothing about???

I'm not saying anybody should do anything. People often like to hear what their favourite artist has to say about things. Also, how do you know that they know nothing about the subject?

Yeah, because gov't regs will "save the internet" (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527925)

"Net neutrality" requires government regulation to implement.

What makes you think that will make the internet a better place?

Re:Yeah, because gov't regs will "save the interne (4, Interesting)

lilomar (1072448) | about 7 years ago | (#18528149)

Um, because it will? Just because the government is regulating something doesn't make it inherently worse off. Like how they regulate the roadways so you have to drive on a particular side (depending on which government is doing the regulating). Don't let your distrust of government regulation make you write off the matter. It isn't the regulation that is inherently bad, it is the misuse of the regulation.

Re:Yeah, because gov't regs will "save the interne (2, Interesting)

compro01 (777531) | about 7 years ago | (#18528431)

What makes you think that will make the internet a better place?


it won't make it better, it will keep it the same as it was, which i personally feel is a good idea, as it just works.

Re:Well then it's settled (4, Insightful)

Don_dumb (927108) | about 7 years ago | (#18527683)

I'm all for net neutrality, but did they really believe that their opinions matter?
What, more than your opinion matters?

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | about 7 years ago | (#18527709)

I'm afraid there's millions of brainless prats who hang on every word of these vapid, blithering corporate constructs. The prats then vote vapid, brainless political constructs into office, and we get government with the math, science and logic skills of a dead vole.

But I'm not cynical.

Re:Well then it's settled (2, Funny)

spikedvodka (188722) | about 7 years ago | (#18528025)

I'm afraid there's millions of brainless prats who hang on every word of these vapid, blithering corporate constructs. The prats then vote vapid, brainless political constructs into office, and we get government with the math, science and logic skills of a dead vole.


Please don't insult dead voles, at least they know how to decompose gracefully

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

Hijacked Public (999535) | about 7 years ago | (#18527735)

They do matter because people will follow them. If there is money raising to be done (and there always is) there are few better ways to do it than get a celebrity on board, look at Parkinsons or spinal injuries or ball cancer.

Re:Well then it's settled (2, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | about 7 years ago | (#18528101)

The bands are acting as the mouthpiece for the RIAA/Music companies.
The RIAA counts... which is really way too bad.
Good grief the RIAA is for Net neutrality... I feel like I need to take a long shower and scrub really hard now..

BTW the record companies want to sell you music with DRM and music videos with DRM. They don't want to pay Verizon and or AT&T the extra fees they want to charge the content providers for using their tubes.
It is all about the money.

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

lilomar (1072448) | about 7 years ago | (#18528337)

Good grief the RIAA is for Net neutrality... I feel like I need to take a long shower and scrub really hard now..
Now, if we could only get Verizon and Comcast to lobby for eliminating DRM, we could just set back and watch.

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

amazon10x (737466) | about 7 years ago | (#18528119)

Of course their opinions per se do not matter. However, it is still excellent that they spoke up about it.

Everyone here has read the comments/AskSlashdots about how to explain technical issues to people who do not understand and, more importantly, who do not care.

This provides a way to get those indifferent people to care. Now they will think, "What is this issue of Net Neutrality? Why does $MYFAVORITEBAND care so much to join a coalition supporting it?"

Re:Well then it's settled (3, Funny)

sootman (158191) | about 7 years ago | (#18528143)

Dude, shut up, we need them! Musicians have already ended voter apathy, [wikipedia.org] and I seem to remember a very successful "rock (or rockers) against drugs" campaign, and now they're turning their attention to our cause. Sweet! We're bound to win!

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

siriuskase (679431) | about 7 years ago | (#18528349)

In general, I don't think being a rock star makes one an expert on anythiing else. But, this is one area where their opinions might matter. Just because you've made it doesn't make it impossible to empathize with musicians who haven't. REM and some of the others were not created by the record labels. They already existed, were "discovered" bye the recording industry and promoted. But, they already existed. If the little guys had to do their own lobbying without help from the bands who have made it, they might not be heard. The general public can't be expected to be unbiased or for the little artists either. Politicians can sum us up wth just a few words, "we want value for free". That isn't right either, but anything the general public says will be see in that light.

Re:Well then it's settled (1)

adickerson0 (884626) | about 7 years ago | (#18528491)

I'm all for net neutrality, but did they really believe that their opinions matter?
Who are you to say that their opinion doesn't matter? We are talking about a professional group that has interests in keeping big media from exerting anticompetitive practices against them. More so, we are talking about people who want to protect access to public culture from corporate interest groups. These big stars that don't need more exposure so that leads me to believe that they are doing it to protect smaller bands.

Its not like we have musicians talking about health care or the war in Iraq, we have MUSICIANS talking about the distribution of MUSIC. You want to ridicule them for being famous but what you say is nothing more then a personal attack.

Britney (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527573)

Britney is leading this celebrity crusade.

She raises her fists in the air and says, "No! we will not stand for this!" .. from rehab.

CNN.com... (5, Insightful)

lilomar (1072448) | about 7 years ago | (#18527583)

I think one of the best things I noticed about this article is the news site it is taken from. Not Wired online, not the Register, not any of the usual, tech-oriented news sites. CNN is read by the technoelite and the public in general. The entire Net Neutrality issue needs to be in the public view-space.

Re:CNN.com... (5, Insightful)

Spudtrooper (1073512) | about 7 years ago | (#18527723)

Agreed - the cable companies have been running anti-neutrality ads trying to convince the public that the average consumer will be the one footing the bill for net neutrality. It's good to see the pro-neutrality camp finally showing up to the public discourse in the mainstream (i.e., non-geek-oriented) media.

Re:CNN.com... (2, Informative)

Spudtrooper (1073512) | about 7 years ago | (#18527823)

P.S. - Here's the cable company's mumbo jumbo. [youtube.com]

Re:CNN.com... (1)

amazon10x (737466) | about 7 years ago | (#18528411)

Has someone created something like this, except in support of NN? Something along the lines of this [lafkon.net] would be great. If enough money (think big-name musicians) was banded together, something like that could possibly make it on mainstream T.V. as a commercial.

Re:CNN.com... (1)

phoenixwade (997892) | about 7 years ago | (#18528787)

Agreed - the cable companies have been running anti-neutrality ads trying to convince the public that the average consumer will be the one footing the bill for net neutrality. It's good to see the pro-neutrality camp finally showing up to the public discourse in the mainstream (i.e., non-geek-oriented) media.
But the consumer WILL be footing the bill for net-neutrality. The mis-direction is the implication that the consumer WON'T be footing the bill without net neutrality. Without consumer dollars, the ISP's fold up and go away, as does the infrastructure.

What I don't get are the anti-neutrality personalities on /. - some are obviously plastic people for the Verizons and the Comcasts.But some are /.'rs who've been around much, much longer than that. I wonder how any IDIOT would prefer to have their ISP make choices about who or what you should be viewing at the best possible speed instead of making your own choices. I purchase connection services for a connection, I choose to have equal connectivity to whatever I do, or where ever I browse. If I choose to use the Walmart Music center over iTunes, if I decide that I want to read 4chan over CNN or MSN over Foxnews. Doesn't matter. If I reverse those preferences next week, I want my new choices to be as fast as the old. (at least from my connection to the servers I direct myself to...)

And just one more thing, isn't it Ironic that you read, via those same connections, anti-neutrality rhetoric online?

Absolutely. (2, Interesting)

raehl (609729) | about 7 years ago | (#18527913)

And somebody needs to come up with a better name for it than Net Neutrality.

Something like...

'Uncrippled Internet'

As in...

'Don't support a crippled internet!'

'Stop a crippled internet!'

'Verizon wants to cripple your internet!'

Re:CNN.com... (1)

imrec (461877) | about 7 years ago | (#18528245)

The entire Net Neutrality issue needs to be in the public view-space.

Which is *exactly* why it won't be seen there.

What would really help ... (1, Offtopic)

Baron Eekman (713784) | about 7 years ago | (#18527647)

... is when bands, especially those who have made it already and don't need more money (I'm talking to you R.E.M.), just dump their records labels and publish their music freely. They can ask you for a contribution if you like, or for you to come to their shows. Here's an example [vankatoen.nl] from the Netherlands, all their music for download as long as you "promise to let all your friends listen to it".

In general, I think if you want to be an artist, then you want to have as many people as possible to have access to your material, and if can also make a buck, it's an extra. Otherwise you're just an "entrepeneur" (I quote Rock the Net) and part of the system that aims only for consumers' money, and you should not complain.

Re:What would really help ... (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | about 7 years ago | (#18527713)

That's because bands make more money touring than they do from CD sales. They get the bulk of the concert ticket sale price, but just a small fraction of the CD price. So, if you really want to support a band, boycott the MAFIAA by not buying CDs, and go to a concert instead.

Re:What would really help ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527779)

'Otherwise you're just an "entrepeneur" (I quote Rock the Net) and part of the system that aims only for consumers' money, and you should not complain.
'

Or a musician that wants to perfectionate in its art, thus not have to struggle with a part time job to have a living and barely sustain his family.
(yeah some struggle can lead to sublimation, but that should be a CHOICE, not be forced by mass parasiting leechers)
Or just wanting to have his music known , I mean really known by the world, not just by the people having nothing better to do than searching the net for free stuff because they are too cheap to buy a CD)

Re:What would really help ... (1)

solevita (967690) | about 7 years ago | (#18527963)

I don't think R.E.M. would need to work part time to support themselves. The OP was talking of bands that could afford to ditch their labels and the RIAA. Every time R.E.M release a single or album (and they've released a few so far) they make more money than most people will in their entire lifetimes; I think they can afford to stop earning and still live comfortably.

re: time to stop earning? (2, Interesting)

King_TJ (85913) | about 7 years ago | (#18528219)

That's one opinion, but you don't have a way of knowing exactly what these bands are doing with their money either. Who says R.E.M. isn't spending a good bit of money on other charitable causes and interests? Maybe they are, and maybe they're not. But it's certainly possible.

Quite a few bands were hugely successful for years, only to become completely irrelevant if they stopped putting out material and decided to live off their past success. Maybe R.E.M. and others like them feel that they need to keep putting out new singles and albums, because they can do more good with a constant revenue stream coming in than if they call it quits?

I agree that it might be a nice gesture for successful major-label bands to all dump their labels and go independent. But in the grand scheme of things, that might not really mean a lot anyway. The really *critical* change happens when the new, up-and-coming bands succeed despite never signing with those big labels!

Re:What would really help ... (1, Insightful)

Hijacked Public (999535) | about 7 years ago | (#18527805)

In general, I think if you want to be an artist, then you want to have as many people as possible to have access to your material, and if can also make a buck, it's an extra.


I have an idea: Why don't you go ahead and do that with your art and stop trying to tell everyone else what to do with theirs. Lead us by example.

Re:What would really help ... (1)

Baron Eekman (713784) | about 7 years ago | (#18527955)

I guess I'd better not respond, but can't resist.

  1. I'm just saying that if your in music for the money, then shut up and let your record company make that money for you, because their good at it. If not, then show it to us by sharing your music.
  2. Free music is not crazy, just google "copyleft mp3 [google.com]" or whatever, lots of things to find and hear.
  3. I gave you an example.
  4. I'm not in music but in science, I make enough to eat and drink the occassional beer, and when I have found something interesting, I put it on arXiv [arxiv.org], so others can read and use it when they want, thank you very much.

Re:What would really help ... (2, Insightful)

clang_jangle (975789) | about 7 years ago | (#18527983)

Do you do to your job just for the love of it figuring that if your employer pays you it's just "an extra"? Why is it that when people with day jobs go to work it's a given they will be paid but when an artist works and tries to get paid for it s/he is "crass", "commercial", "a sellout", etc.
Kinda stupid if you stop to think about it...

It's about concerts. (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | about 7 years ago | (#18528077)

They make most of their money from concerts.

What you're saying is a bit like me expecting to not only go to work and get a paycheck, but also to videotape myself working (typing at my computer all day, not very interesting) and sell that to millions of people. I'm already getting paid.

I realize this isn't the case for everyone, just pointing out that some bands on that list (Pearl Jam?) could give their CDs away and still make obscene amounts of profit.

Re:What would really help ... (1)

cyphercell (843398) | about 7 years ago | (#18528461)

You could also go over to archive.org and check out the "Grateful Dead" section and you know give credit where it's due. Still I don't know why you were modded offtopic, net neutrality and the current IP situation (see mafiaa) are closely related.

Musicians sub-thread (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527669)

I'm a musician here, and I demand that the net stays equal, too.

If there are any musicians that read this, post here, too.

The definite article (4, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | about 7 years ago | (#18527671)

and the Pearl Jam
I'm glad the Pearl Jam is in on this. I love the Pearl Jam, I listen to the Pearl Jam all the time on the CD and the MP3.

Re:The definite article (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527777)

Maybe the The Who, the The Beatles and the The The will get involved too!

Re:The definite article (1)

ChristW (18232) | about 7 years ago | (#18528075)

I'm glad the Pearl Jam is in on this. I love the Pearl Jam, I listen to the Pearl Jam all the time on the CD and the MP3
And I watch them on the MTV...

Re:The definite article (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18528113)

That's the way you do it! You play the guitar on the MTV!

Re:The definite article (1)

UncleRage (515550) | about 7 years ago | (#18528521)

The irony here is that The Sting didn't get credit for providing background vocals on Money for Nothing due to contractual issues.

Ah well... thanks for this post flow; now I'm going to spend the day in the Straits. =D

Shut Up And Sing (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527675)

Seriously, who cares what a bunch of musicians say about net neutrality? I'm sure their opinions are just as valid as anybody elses, but why should theirs matter more? It's not like they are any authority on the issue.

Plus, these musicians suck anyway. REM & Pearl Jam are long past their prime. Maybe they should concentrate more on music than political issues.

Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527693)

Not more Net Neutrality crap. I have to love /.'s double-stance on this. First they decry ISPs for not disconnecting clients that have been botted - then they demand that laws get passed to prevent that.

Why shouldn't ISPs be allowed to implement QOS? Do I have to give up decent ping times on VOIP calls solely because the idiots next to me absolutely have to BitTorrent the latest episode of American Idol? Should someone sending spam be given equal priority to the 'net as someone trying to send emails to colleagues?

Net Neutrality means throwing up our hands in the air and allowing the Internet to become a useless mess of spam and viruses since the power to handle them would be stripped from ISPs. It means giving up on streaming video and audio. It means giving up on VOIP.

I don't think it's worth it. Why the hell shouldn't I be allowed to pay more to get a better connection?

Re:Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (5, Insightful)

Volante3192 (953645) | about 7 years ago | (#18527905)

Apples and oranges. Botted systems represent a security risk to the ISP and to other customers and are not providing a commercial service. (Incidentally, it's also probably against their Terms of Serivce to run a botted system, but TOS is only pulled out when it benefits them...) Net neutrality is ISPs charging companies to use the faster lanes which ends up getting passed to the consumer and is nothing more than a money grab.

Should someone sending spam be given equal priority to the 'net as someone trying to send emails to colleagues?

Oddly, if you QOS port 25 the spam goes through just as fast as the legit email. Incidentally, this is an argument for quarantining systems, not net neutrality.

Net Neutrality means throwing up our hands in the air and allowing the Internet to become a useless mess of spam and viruses since the power to handle them would be stripped from ISPs. It means giving up on streaming video and audio. It means giving up on VOIP. ...like ISPs do anything about spam and viruses now to begin with. They'd claim common carrier and do nothing like usual.

Plus it's not giving up on video/audio and VOIP...it's giving up on third party streaming video and audio and VOIP. Why should Verizon allow Vonage's VOIP (yea, i know the patent issues, bear with me) to travel as fast as Verizon's VOIP solution? Without competition, Verizon has no reason to improve their service either.

Net neutrality = competition allowed to exist = better for consumers.

Re:Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (1)

UncleTogie (1004853) | about 7 years ago | (#18528649)

Why should Verizon allow Vonage's VOIP (yea, i know the patent issues, bear with me) to travel as fast as Verizon's VOIP solution?

Ask the FCC and any VoIP subscriber dialing 911...

Re:Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (1)

Lisandro (799651) | about 7 years ago | (#18528015)

I don't think it's worth it. Why the hell shouldn't I be allowed to pay more to get a better connection?

Because, by doing this, you're automatically enabling providers to charge you for a better connection. How much and for what, exactly, is up to them. Not you. This creates a lot of possible abuse scenarios.

Re:Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (3, Interesting)

peragrin (659227) | about 7 years ago | (#18528205)

net neutrality isn't about an ISP blocking a spam bot, it's about ISP double billing their customers, and then taxing certian traffic at higher rates.

Google has to pay an ISP for service. now that ISP wants to not only charge google for data coming out of there services but also for giving that data premium bandwidth at the cost of something else.

Net neutrality is to prevent the AOL'ing of the Internet. the ISP's want to nickel and dime you to death to increase their revenue. Just like how when AOL, Prodigy and compuserv first came online you couldn't send email between them, unless you were a premium suscriber if at all. Now ISP's want to do that to IM's emails, videos, file transfers. If you want music from itunes but your ISP only supports Zune-live then your screwed and have to pay more per megabyte for a slower transfer.

That way only the rich companies could afford the bandwidth and premium charges to make them popular. Companies like Youtube wouldn't be able to even get started under such a situation.

The solution (4, Insightful)

jonwil (467024) | about 7 years ago | (#18528269)

Most of the people who want "net neutrality" probably don't want to ban QOS outright.

This is what I think ISPs should be prohibited from doing:
1.Discriminating or throttling or blocking based on source/destination addresses (and that includes forcing companies like google to pay more if they want full speed over the ISPs network)

2.Applying any kind of throttling based on port number. QOS is fine (that is, giving VoIP packets priority over BitTorrent packets) but throttling is NOT. If a network link is 1.5MBps and no-one wants to send traffic other than BitTorrent traffic over that link, the BitTorrent traffic should be able to use the entire 1.5MBps link (obviously if someone starts sending VoIP packets, then the network link wont accept as many BitTorrent packets and the BitTorrent download will slow down). This would specifically prevent the (increasingly common) practice where ISPs give you 1.5MBps or whatever speed but no matter how perfect the network conditions, BitTorrent or Emule or whatever else is limited so it can never go over 128KBps or 256KBps or whatever. Write in an exemption for cases where there is a direct threat to the network or to another network (e.g. someone spewing out packets as part of a DDOS attack)

These measures would still allow ISPs to completely block ports used by malware as well as measures like blocking port 25 to cut off spam zombies. And it would allow ISPs to apply QOS so that your VoIP packets have higher priority than the BitTorrent packets. But it would prevent ISPs from deciding that if you access CNN.com you can have the full 1.5MBps speed (assuming the rest of the network can handle that) but if you access YouTube.com or download something over BitTorrent, you cannot ever get more than 256KBps unless you pay extra for it (or google pays extra for it in the case of YouTube)

Re:Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18528315)

Um, net neutrality isn't about QoS. It is about preventing your ISP from blocking or charging extra for you to use, say Vonage VoIP instead of their VoIP. Anyone who thinks this wouldn't/couldn't happen is kidding themselves. Telecomms have been trying to find a way to kill VoIP since it got started.

Re:Because spam and viruses must be allowed... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18528453)

Do I have to give up decent ping times on VOIP calls solely because the idiots next to me absolutely have to BitTorrent the latest episode of American Idol? Should someone sending spam be given equal priority to the 'net as someone trying to send emails to colleagues?
Do I have to give up decent commute to work solely because the school bus in front of me absolutely has to stop at each bus stop? Should someone driving a truck full of merchandise be given equal priority to the road as someone driving to visit their family?

Technology will save my ass. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527745)

Different styles of fascism (like loss of net neutrality) are popular around the world where elections, demonstrations and petitions are becoming more and more worthless because you can easily silenced by not having time on TV.

I believe in technology like guns and P2P to save this world.

Why the big fuss? (2, Interesting)

dkf (304284) | about 7 years ago | (#18527837)

OK, there's a good argument that everyone's email or web traffic ought to be the same, but for some applications you really do want the net itself to not be totally neutral. For example telesurgery, where a surgeon conducts operations remotely through the use of a robot, and where you really don't want packets getting delayed and are willing to pay for the elevated service. Do we really want such applications blocked (or made unreasonably hazardous) just because of poorly written regulations that are attempting to prevent possible future abuse? Would it not be better to break up the big telco monopolies instead and so allow competition to work in customers' favour?

Re:Why the big fuss? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18527897)

It's done by satellite you brain surgeologist, you.

Re:Why the big fuss? (1)

prelelat (201821) | about 7 years ago | (#18528001)

I don't know how I would feel about someone doing surgery on me with a robot over the internet anyways. Besides wouldn't internet2 be a better play field for something like this?

Re:Why the big fuss? (1)

lilomar (1072448) | about 7 years ago | (#18527919)

Would it not be better to break up the big telco monopolies instead and so allow competition to work in customers' favour?
Yes, but it is a lot less likely. We work with what we have.

Re:Why the big fuss? (4, Insightful)

R2.0 (532027) | about 7 years ago | (#18528105)

The problem with that reasoning is that EVERYONE thinks their application is critical. And the arbiters of who gets the priority access are not neutral - they want to give it to whoever pays the most. So...

Situation #1: providers oversell "priority access", leaving the "critical" applications fighting it out for bandwidth just like they do now (and the "non-critical" apps wishing they had their 56k back)

Situation #2: Providers ration "priority access", which keeps speeds high for "critical" applications but drives up the price of that access via the laws of supply and demand. Providers realize that therey have no incentive to use those higher profit margins to invest in better infrastructure, as the poorer the infrastructure, the more they can charge for "priority access". (Think Enron pulling plants offline to make electricity rates spike and California brownouts)

Situation #3: Government, quasi-gov't (ICAAN), or NGO control of access. Does ANYONE think this is a good idea?

Here's another thought - maybe telesurgery isn't that good an idea.

Cat and Mice (2, Funny)

boyfaceddog (788041) | about 7 years ago | (#18527857)

And in other news, Mice demand Cats stop chasing them.

Yawn.

Re:Cat and Mice (4, Funny)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | about 7 years ago | (#18528121)

And in other news, Mice demand Cats stop chasing them.

This is the most ridiculous thing I've ever read. Mice couldn't have made this statement as they don't have opposable thumbs to grip a pen with.

Re:Cat and Mice (1)

karnal (22275) | about 7 years ago | (#18528359)

You don't need a pen to demand something be done. You may need a soapbox, though....

Bad car analogy (-1, Troll)

Sutaren (1076051) | about 7 years ago | (#18527889)

Meanwhile, Ford-owners sent a clear message to Ferrari providers. They want all traffic to be equal instead of allowing providers to charge a fee for certain cars to go faster. Grow up. Money buys shit.

Re:Bad car analogy (1)

cyphercell (843398) | about 7 years ago | (#18528547)

I think the point is that I don't have to pay extra taxes just so I have the privilege of seeing ferraris driving down the streets of my small town. Which makes sense because a ferrari doesn't wear down the roads anymore than some beat up pinto.

Miss Toomey's at it again (0)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | about 7 years ago | (#18527973)

Good to see that Jenny Toomey [wikipedia.org] continues to fight the good fight. For those who don't know, she ran an independent record label during the 90s (Simple Machines) and has always been an advocate of independent labels and musicians. Several years ago she started the Future of Music Coalition, which is one of the groups spearheading this campaign. Keep up the good work, Jenny!

So cute, they think that they are relevant (0, Flamebait)

Gothmolly (148874) | about 7 years ago | (#18527981)

This is like the Onion story, where upon hearing that 100 students marched against the war in Iraq at some liberal arts college, George Bush suddenly called the troops home.

Newsflash to you entertainers: You don't matter. You sold your souls to the recording industry, and in return you got your jets, and your hookers and blow, now STFU and GBTW making them money. You dont HAVE TO sign with a big label, but you won't get anywhere if you don't.

Re:So cute, they think that they are relevant (1)

Aladrin (926209) | about 7 years ago | (#18528169)

Unfortunately, when you've got drooling hoards of zombies (or fans, same thing) willing to do anything you even hint at, your opinion DOES make a difference.

But in our capitalist society, it doesn't matter enough to change anything. If companies (the RIAA included, despite their inability to cope with technology) can make more money by destroying the net they'll do so in a heartbeat. The only thing that has stopped them is the uncertainty of whether they really WILL make more money or not. It's entirely possible that charging even more for net access will piss people off so badly that they invent another internet and drop this one. It might be satellite, or wifi-linkup, or something we've not dreamt of yet. But it would happen eventually.

Re:So cute, they think that they are relevant (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18528185)

sounds like somebodies just pissed because they're not a rockstar

Re:So cute, they think that they are relevant (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | about 7 years ago | (#18528311)

It's interesting that you draw a parallel to political protests, because the two situations have something in common I think you might have missed.

Of course I can only speak for myself, but when I participate in a protest, I'm not there to change people's minds who don't agree with me. I'm there to make my voice heard, show solidarity with others who do agree with me, and most of all to educate people who might be curious about whatever issue inspired us all to show up and protest. If someone sees me protesting and asks about the issue, I'll happily explain my side of it. Whether they take that as gospel or tell me I'm an idiot isn't important.. what's important is they have more information on which to base their decision. In my eyes, the main point of a protest is simply to let everyone know what you think and why you think it.

If someone is inspired to learn more about the Net Neutrality issue, whether by a bunch of stereotype hippies holding signs and chanting or their favorite musicians throwing in on something like this, surely it's still a good thing that they went and learned about it? Whichever side you take on this or any other issue, educating the masses enough so they can make their own informed decision and then go forward in their beliefs is really the key.

Musicians? (1)

Kohath (38547) | about 7 years ago | (#18528053)

Please tell us what zookeepers and botanists think about net neutrality next. Thanks in advance.

Re:Musicians? (1)

lilomar (1072448) | about 7 years ago | (#18528235)

And what vested intrest do zookeepers and botanists have in net neutrality? Better yet, how can zookeepers and botanists get the message about the existance of net neutrality?

yeah, but what's their stance on the RIAA? (0, Offtopic)

SABME (524360) | about 7 years ago | (#18528183)

What I would like to know is: how do these artists feel about the extoritionist tacticts of the RIAA? Especially when their work funds the labels who pay the RIAA?

Any musician whose record label funds the RIAA has no standing, in my opinion, to make statements about what is just.

Re:yeah, but what's their stance on the RIAA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18528413)

I understand your feelings but there is no need to bring up that issue in this thread. To be honest, I would tag you as "off-topic"

Re:yeah, but what's their stance on the RIAA? (2, Interesting)

spyrochaete (707033) | about 7 years ago | (#18528457)

I don't know about the others, but 10 years ago Pearl Jam boycotted TicketMaster on the grounds that their service fees were exorbitant. I've never been a huge fan of their music but I support that band 100% for their support of their fans.

You bring up a great point though. If your favourite band works for the RIAA then you are not their top priority, money is.

Re:yeah, but what's their stance on the RIAA? (1)

lilomar (1072448) | about 7 years ago | (#18528551)

Any musician whose record label funds the RIAA has no standing, in my opinion, to make statements about what is just.
And this "If you aren't with us, you are against us!" stance is exactly the kind of thing that has destroyed any sense the American political system ever had. They are taking a stance on an issue. If you support that stance, don't depreciate it just because you disagree with them on another. Convincing them they are wrong about the RIAA isn't going to be accomplished by knocking them every time they make a statement about anything. If anything, it hurts the cause that you agree on. Why not give credit for what they do right and keep the two issues separate?

This "threat" is nonsense. (2, Interesting)

rdmiller3 (29465) | about 7 years ago | (#18528233)

"I think it's obvious that musicians (especially independents and small labels) will find themselves with the short end of the stick if they are asked to pay a fee to have their music streamed as fast as larger bands or even corporations."

I think it's obvious that musicians (and too many other people) don't know how the Internet works.

Nobody "owns" the Internet. If some ISPs or backbone companies decide to limit bandwidth to certain sites, then they will simply lose business to the service providers who don't limit bandwidth.

And what would prevent musicians and their fans from using P2P techniques for distributed streaming?

The whole "threat" is nonsense.

Re:This "threat" is nonsense. (3, Insightful)

Imagix (695350) | about 7 years ago | (#18528827)

> Nobody "owns" the Internet. If some ISPs or backbone companies decide to limit bandwidth to certain sites, then they will simply lose business to the service providers who don't limit bandwidth.

And then you have the people that only have a "choice" of 1, maybe 2 ISPs. If that one ISP, or both ISPs do the throttling, then the user doesn't have the ability to change service providers. That theory might work if one realistically had a choice of a multitude of service providers. It doesn't work in a monopoly or near-monopoly.

> And what would prevent musicians and their fans from using P2P techniques for distributed streaming?

The ISP throttles traffic on anything that isn't going through their web proxies. Default traffic gets capped unless you are going to a "blessed" site that the ISP has obtained $$$ from to make them blessed. So much for your P2P traffic.

Experts weighting in... (1)

mi (197448) | about 7 years ago | (#18528239)

I'm so glad, musicians — the real experts — are finally weighting in on this issue. Why are the FAG [wikipedia.org] still quiet, I wonder?

Good for REM (1)

corecaptain (135407) | about 7 years ago | (#18528445)

You know there was a time that Rock partly meant protest, something your parents
didn't like, something that worried the government and politicians and that is what made
it so appealing. So I guess when a few bands come out against the "man" that makes
news today.
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