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Camy

Battle for the Net

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Yup. It's a few large corporations thinking this is a good way to pad the profit line. Charge for regular internet, but make is craptacularly slow. Charge excessive and ridiculous amounts extra to get decent speeds, so you can watch your movie without it stalling, so you can download something without waiting all day.

There is no technological reason at all, period, for this to happen, despite the lies they are propagating. I urge everyone to educate themselves on the issue so they are less likely to be convinced by deceptive and erroneous slick marketing.

Imagine if other utilities worked this way. "Oh yes, it's fifty dollars a month for your electricity connection, plus kw/hs used. What's that? You want to run your stove? Your clothes dryer? Do you have any idea how much bandwidth that takes?! That'll put you on the triple extra gold tier if you want that. $200.00 a month plus kw/hs used, please."

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Legislation is already in the process of being past in the EU to enforce net neutrality, for information see:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-26865869

Unfortunately massive pressure is being put on some European Government, especially the British Government by parties, mostly from the USA to block this law.

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There is no technological reason at all, period, for this to happen, despite the lies they are propagating. I urge everyone to educate themselves on the issue so they are less likely to be convinced by deceptive and erroneous slick marketing.

Sorry, but I have to disagree. There is a technological reason: bandwidth capacity.

Unless you have fibre where the limits are high, there isn't the capacity to send the information over the Internet at high speed for everyone. There is a limit on how many meaningful signals can be transmitted down a single pipe (be that wireless or copper). Many places are hitting that limit. To expand the capacity means extra wires, changing to fibre (which has a significantly higher capacity than copper), or using extra wireless channels (of which there is a still a limited number).

This proposal means that if people want a bigger share of the pipe, they pay more.

Now, I can accept that this doesn't make sense for places where fibre optics are used for the communication, but for places that still use copper wire (most of Australia, for example), it makes good business sense.

Having said that, I hate the idea, but I had to point out that the argument that this is purely a money-grabbing exercise is not true.

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Although there is a sound business argument for allowing preferential net usage, I have heard that the cost of maintaining net neutrality would be a reduction of profits of 40% over the next five years, there are also good economic reason for arguing for net neutrality. By allowing preferential transmission you introduce a barrier to entry into a market. Basically only those firms who are big enough to be able to afford the cost of getting preferential treatment are able to operate effectively in the market. This encourages the development of effective monopoly groupings within industry sectors with little or no external competition or innovation.

The argument in the European Parliament against preferential net usage has very much been on the basis that it is a anti-competitive measure.

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I hope people realize how stultifying regulation can be, especially in a technological field. The reversal of regulation in the telephone industry in the U.S. led to extraordinary innovation in communications technology that was otherwise (legally) suppressed; it would be unfair for the regulated companies not to earn their returns on their dated technology.

There is a phenomenon that economists call 'regulatory capture' in which those companies that are regulated quickly gain control of the regulatory agencies in their favor. The ICC was supposed to regulate U.S. railroads, but within a short time, the railroads used the ICC to set prices and exclude competitors. Today, we have the regulators of taxicabs all over the world acting to stop Uber to protect the traditional taxicab industry.

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Sorry, but I have to disagree. There is a technological reason: bandwidth capacity.

Unless you have fibre where the limits are high, there isn't the capacity to send the information over the Internet at high speed for everyone. There is a limit on how many meaningful signals can be transmitted down a single pipe (be that wireless or copper). Many places are hitting that limit. To expand the capacity means extra wires, changing to fibre (which has a significantly higher capacity than copper), or using extra wireless channels (of which there is a still a limited number).

This proposal means that if people want a bigger share of the pipe, they pay more.

Now, I can accept that this doesn't make sense for places where fibre optics are used for the communication, but for places that still use copper wire (most of Australia, for example), it makes good business sense.

Having said that, I hate the idea, but I had to point out that the argument that this is purely a money-grabbing exercise is not true.

You're conflating two issues, I think.

Yes, maximum bandwidth for a given user, for a given area, is dependent on the technology being used there. Others may have better technology. In my electricity analogy, that would be akin to having a higher amperage feed.

But that wasn't what I was getting at.

I'm talking about the false argument that using the available bandwidth of a given technology requires a fictional 'higher teir' of service for unexplained reasons. Again, with my electricity analogy, I shouldn't have to pay more than my neighbour when we both have exactly the same wiring, just because I may, at some point, want to run my arc welder. I should only pay for the electricty used by my arc welder when I run it. If I choose to upgrade my wiring, that's on me. If I already know it can support it, but the electric company is throttling it purely for profit, that's dishonest. Even worse, when the electric company has a deal with Acme Arc Welders but not with Ajax Arc Welders, and charges you less for electricty when using your Acme machine than with your Ajax machine.

That's what net neutrality is all about. They want to charge you more for watching movies with, for example, Netflix than for watching movies with their own pet company. They do this by throttling connections to a particular IP. That's not what the internet should be about. That's just wrong.

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While I agree with what you've said, my objection was to the statement that there's no technological reason, with the implication being that that is for throttling. There is a technological reason for throttling, and that's to ensure that there is sufficient bandwidth for all users. As I said, that argument doesn't really apply if there's fibre optic cables involved, but when using wireless or copper wire (the two main technologies being proposed for the national broadband network here in Australia!) there are known limits that need to be catered for.

As I also said, I disagree with the idea of creating a two (or more) tier Internet, but that wasn't what I was trying to describe. I was trying to describe the technological reason behind why throttling is sometimes necessary.

EDIT TO ADD:

My sons have arrived home from school and have jumped onto their computers (in theory, so they can do their homework). My Internet access is now at a crawl. Both boys need to be throttled....

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I just received this:

Hey!

Thanks to you, the Internet Slowdown was a resounding success. More people took action to defend net neutrality in one day than ever before in history.

The slowdown was so big it was impossible to ignore. Several members of Congress tweeted about how their phones were ringing off the hook, and we dominated the mainstream news headlines. More than 40,000 websites took part, including many of the most popular sites in the world, and at the peak of the day, there were more than 1,000 phone calls to congress every minute!

This changes everything. Victory is more tangible now than ever before. But we still need to bring it home. Now that we’ve shown our strength, the giant Cable companies that are lobbying tooth and nail to destroy net neutrality will redouble their efforts, and work every connection they have to keep the public’s voice from being heard in Washington, DC.

There’s only one solution: we have to fight even harder, and grow our movement even larger, and we have to be ready to battle for the net for the long haul.


Have a look at what happened: https://www.battleforthenet.com/sept10th/#infographic

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