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EFF Reviews the Verizon-Google Net Neutrality Deal 162

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the yeah-that's-still-happening dept.
I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "The EFF has written an analysis of the Net Neutrality deal brokered between Verizon and Google. While the EFF agrees with substantial portions of it, such as giving the FCC only enough authority to investigate complaints, rather than giving them a blank check to create regulations, there are a number of troubling issues with the agreement. In particular, they're concerned that what constitutes 'reasonable' network management is in the eye of the beholder and they don't like giving a free pass to anyone who claims they're attempting to block unlawful content, even when doing so in such a way that they interfere with lawful activities. On balance, while there are some good ideas about how to get Net Neutrality with minimal government involvement, there are serious flaws in the agreement that would allow ISPs to interfere with any service they wanted to because there is no algorithm that can correctly determine which numbers are currently illegal."
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EFF Reviews the Verizon-Google Net Neutrality Deal

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  • by Pojut (1027544) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @09:50AM (#33227518) Homepage

    ...how's that "let companies police themselves" stance on net neutrality working out for you?

    • by HangingChad (677530) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @09:56AM (#33227590) Homepage

      "let companies police themselves"

      Almost as well as letting banks and investment companies police themselves.

      Or oil companies policing themselves.

      Or government contractors with automatic weapons police themselves.

      And the deregulated airline industry has done wonders for air travel.

      Government bad, corporate self-regulation good. Just stick to that line and ignore any evidence to the contrary.

      • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

        by Brootal (571331)

        "let companies police themselves"

        Almost as well as letting banks and investment companies police themselves.

        Or oil companies policing themselves.

        Or government contractors with automatic weapons police themselves.

        And the deregulated airline industry has done wonders for air travel.

        Government bad, corporate self-regulation good. Just stick to that line and ignore any evidence to the contrary.

        Or letting Internet users police themselves. This just part of the process of finding an UNhappy balance between freedom and control. Myriad, mutually exclusive motives guarantee that any reasonable solution must leave the fringes deeply unsatisfied.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by NevarMore (248971)

        Or government contractors with automatic weapons police themselves.

        So it'd be OK with you if they only had semi-automatic or bolt action weapons?

      • Government bad, corporate self-regulation good. Just stick to that line and ignore any evidence to the contrary.

        I'm going to go with:

        Government bad.
        Market self-regulation good.
        Corporations having the legal protections of a person without any of the legal obligations / responsibilities terrible.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Up until now it has actually worked fairly well. Think about that for a min... There is no regulation right now. In fact I would say some regulation has hindered us such as build out rules and line sharing rules. Which let single providers monopolize huge areas.

      The reason regulation idea has started popping up is because a few have decided the gentleman agreements that have held in the past are no longer helping them. There be gold in dem der hills, they yell. What they do not realize is that the very

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Rockoon (1252108)
        The regulation supports will just blame capitalist interventions into the legislative process when the regulation ends up screwing us all over.

        Meanwhile those of us against net neutrality regulation at this time are shaking our heads wondering why so many people want to forever trade their freedom of choice to a bunch of politicians that are sure to meddle with the trust they have placed in them a thousand times over.
      • by Kaboom13 (235759) <kaboom108@bellsouth.nTIGERet minus cat> on Thursday August 12, 2010 @10:39AM (#33228006)

        Deep packet inspection of large amounts of traffic was not possible until fairly recently. The technology did not exist to allow ISP's to treat traffic differently. The peering agreements between providers were born out of the difficulty of accurately accounting and billing for traffic. It was cheaper for everyone with roughly similar amounts of traffic to agree to pass each others traffic for free then to spend millions on systems to try to figure out who was owed what. The only reason this hasn't been an issue until now is purely technical in nature. Because of the huge investment to enter the market, plus the network effect and economies of scale inherent, plus the corruption of politicians, make the telecom industry a natural oligopoly, if not a natural monopoly. WIthout regulation, they will abuse their customers to the maximum extent possible, because their customers have little if any choice. Choosing an ISP is like choosing between getting in a cage with a hungry lion or a hungry bear, either way the outcome is unpleasant, just in slightly different ways. There is no avoiding it in the current environment, every business in this situation is going to act this way. The only solution is to either artificially break them up into small pieces, or to artificially regulate their behavior. I'm willing to bet the companies involved would prefer the latter to the former.

        • by Shakrai (717556) *

          The technology did not exist to allow ISP's to treat traffic differently

          Yes it did. We were running QoS at my Mom-and-pop ISP back in 2000. It was the only way to provide decent service to our business customers when Napster and Kazaa first appeared on the scene.

          DPI was around back then too. There was a program called Etherpeek (which is still around I believe) that could even give us a real time running list of the URLs that our customers were visiting. It cost serious money and there are free tools today that will do a better job but it was still effective enough for our

          • I take it you couldn't simply charge by the kilo/mega/gigabit? You know, kinda like a gas/electric meter? That way you wouldn't have to snoop in on where they were going. Something which sounds very offensive. An ISP should be prohibited from doing anything beyond simple routing of traffic. Just count the bits, and go from there.

            • by Shakrai (717556) *

              We could have (charged by the bit) if we wanted, though it would have required some upgrades to our billing system. We were mainly interested in ensuring that business customers weren't buried by teenagers down/uploading tons of music that they'll never listen to. We didn't care how much bandwidth they used, only that they didn't disrupt the experience for everybody else on the network.

              • We were mainly interested in ensuring that business customers weren't buried by teenagers down/uploading tons of music that they'll never listen to.

                And that's precisely the tiering we want to prohibit. You could just as easily limit total bandwidth that penalizes no particular user based on what they do with their connection. And spying on them for that purpose is even worse.

                • by Shakrai (717556) *

                  Climb off your high horse. It's not "spying" on your customers when an automated system puts network traffic into different QoS tiers. The notion that all traffic should be treated equally is absurd. VoIP needs real time routing. Interactive terminal applications (remote desktop/X/VNC/SSH sessions/etc) need real time routing or something very close to it. FTP/Bittorrent/NNTP could care less if the packets spend a few seconds in the queue before going out. HTTP is somewhere in the middle -- the protoco

          • by butlerm (3112)

            The key phrase is "large amounts of traffic", as in hundreds of megabits per second. Examining the URLs customers visit for other than network management purposes is probably illegal, by the way.

            • by Shakrai (717556) *

              We ran our operation on two T-3s. That's nearly 90mbit/s. If my small business employer was able to do it back in 2000 I have a hard time believing that a Fortune 500 company like Verizon or AT&T couldn't scale it up to their operation.

              BTW, I didn't say that we monitored everyone's web traffic, only that we had access to software that was capable of doing it. We mainly used it for troubleshooting and the occasional law enforcement subpoena.

        • Verizon used to be Bell Atlantic. Bell Atlantic used to be one big company but it got broken up. If Google grows too influential they'll have to be broken up too.

      • by HeckRuler (1369601) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @11:09AM (#33228442)
        We've always had network neutrality. At least to a certain extent. There was peering and a "gentleman's agreement", back when there was more then a handful of gentlemen. Now single providers HAVE ALREADY monopolized huge areas. What you fear has already happened. And guess what? Now that they have power over regions, they're starting to break down the time-honored rules of a neutral internet. And they're doing so to make a buck. Fuck 'em. Regulate them. Or bust them up.

        But seriously people, stop modding up cowards who are probably verizon astroturfers.
    • by roman_mir (125474)

      How is the government created monopoly in telcos working out for you?

      Government providing subsidies to phone companies, exempting them from land taxes, doing all sorts of things to give a specific company a monopoly status and let it own the landlines.

      So if government creates monopolies in ISPs that way, then sure, fighting evil with evil will be necessary.

      However if you open your own Telco tomorrow and buy 100 pieces of land and put 100 cell towers on that land and start selling wireless access including I

      • by makomk (752139)

        How is the government created monopoly in telcos working out for you?

        It was government created only in the sense that the US government declined to enforce monopoly laws strongly against AT&T a century ago, instead restricting itself to fairly toothless regulations. Everything else followed from that. There's no point trying to set up a competitor providing local lines if the local incumbent won't allow their existing telephone customers to call your customers or vice-versa. Why would you buy a line that won't let you call most people with phones in the area over one tha

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by roman_mir (125474)

          That's not even remotely the case, what actually was and still is happening is that government provides telcos with various tax breaks, rights to lay cable through all properties, public and private without paying property taxes without incurring any costs associated with using public and even private property. The entire network of cables was subsidized, there were various ways the government did it after the government decided that it's going to nationalize the telco industry.

          Additionally, without govern

    • by Yvanhoe (564877)
      For building infrastructure, anarchic capitalism is good. For maintaining them, you need a good ol' government.
    • by jim_v2000 (818799)
      It's working pretty good so far, really. Are you having some kind of problem with your internet provider?
    • If you think the broadband market is anything like a free market, then you don't know the broadband market.
  • Not to surprising (Score:2, Interesting)

    by FrozenTousen (1874546)
    From TFA :

    Limited FCC Jurisdiction — Good
    Standard-Setting Bodies — Interesting
    Reasonable Network management, Additional Online Services — Troubling
    “Lawful” Content and Wireless Exclusions — Fail

    One thing that seems good (mostly for content providers, but also consumers) and a few things that could be good for consumers, but still favor ISPs. Sounds like Verizon agreed, "We will let the FCC regulate on a case by case basis, as long as we get broad powers manipulate our other services, and block content we fear is unlawful." The standard setting body is iffy, since as the article points out, these groups tend not to be on the consumers side.

    It will be interesting to see where this goes,

    • by Tacvek (948259)

      Well there is more to say. The transparency requirements are a very good thing. This may indicate that they need to provide information about the bandwidth of the limiting router, and the number of people using it, which gives useful information. They would need to indicate any ports that they filter, whether they drop any packets by type. (There are some that block ICMP traceroute packets for no good reason, despite permitting ping packets. (They can differentiate by the much lower TTL values on the tracer

    • Without the "network management" and "lawful content" clauses they would not be allowed to cut off spammers.

  • by cjonslashdot (904508) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @10:15AM (#33227782)

    And the agreement states that "lawful" content will not be interfered with.

    But who decides what is "lawful"?

    Is this an invitation for the ISPs to take on a police role?

    Is it a way for big telco and the media companies they have merged with to decide that someone's content might be unlawful, because it is politically subversive - only because it questions government policies that the telco and media companies support?

    ISPs should not be in the business of deciding what is lawful content and what is not. I hope the agreement does not presume that they will be in that business. That is a job for the police and the courts. ISPs should only act on legitimate police requests (i.e., those with warrants or some other transparent or traceable due process) and court orders.

    • by crosbie (446285)

      Lawful means:
      1) Unencrypted (or encrypted with TSA backdoor)
      2) Not infringing copyright, or involved in facilitating/inducing infringement
      3) Not unauthorised communication of military/industrial secrets
      4) Not relating to terrorism, extremism, drugs, porn, anarchy/sedition, blasphemy, etc.
      5) Not unauthorised communication of personal data
      6) Not transmitted to/received from banned sites, organisations, persons, IP addresses, networks, etc.

      Other than that, and except for network optimisation purposes, all pack

      • But who decides this? A court? A police officer? A judge? Or Verizon and Google?

        Under these rules, the Pentagon Papers could not have been published on the Internet.

        And under these rules, the ISP is free to decide is something violates copyright; yet, it is widely documented how publishers (including media companies) falsely claim copyright. For example, works that are in the public domain are routinely published in books with a copyright claim in the front. Media companies (or their telco partners) cannot

        • by crosbie (446285)

          'Network neutrality' IS regulatory capture.

          Anyone who thinks government can regulate communication to ensure everyone can say what they like and that no speech suffers discrimination is living in cloud cuckoo land.

          All that happens is that government says "Ok, if you really, really want us to regulate your speech, we will - reluctantly".

          And then you end up with a system of censorship at the infrastructure level that China would wet its knickers over.

          Network neutrality is everything everyone is asking for EXC

          • Network Neutrality says NOTHING about "regulating speech". All it says is that ISPs are common carriers like telephone, electricity, water and can't discriminate traffic based on its content.
            • by crosbie (446285)

              "can't discriminate LEGAL traffic" -- watch out for that critical qualifier won't you?

              • And that still says nothing about regulating speech. It's vague enough that it could be a loophole for ISP's to discriminate traffic based on perceived illegality(like bittorrent) which would then have to be complained about to the FCC by users who use bittorrent for legal reasons. And then the FCC would have to file suit against the ISP for discrimination of lawful traffic and it would be up to the ISP to prove illegality in a court of law. So to answer your question it would be up to ISPs to prove traffic
      • by Shakrai (717556) *

        Not unauthorised communication of military

        That's not illegal in the United States. We have no Official Secrets Act. It's illegal for someone with a security clearance to leak information but it's not illegal for the person that receives said information to publish it.

        Not relating to terrorism, extremism, drugs, porn, anarchy/sedition, blasphemy, etc.

        With the exception of terrorism, none of those are illegal. There are websites that will tell you how to set up a grow-op and keep it hidden from the police. There are websites advocating the overthrow of the Federal Government. All perfectly legal and protected by the 1st amendm

        • by crosbie (446285)

          Believe it or not, but copyright infringement isn't illegal either (the holder of the privilege can sue to exclude, but unless they do, the infringement isn't illegal per se).

          Frankly, 'packets not yet determined to be legal' is quite sufficient to route them via a network node with indefinite latency.

          Copyright is already making illegal speech that should be free, so I don't know where you get your confidence that 'legal' isn't a major communications discriminator.

          The best mechanism for achieving neutrality

    • by butlerm (3112) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @12:06PM (#33229116)

      You are making a mountain out of a mole hill. "Lawful" means "not illegal". ISPs have no desire to police what is lawful or not, it just creates more work for them. ISPs do have an obligation not to aid and abet illegal activity if they have actual knowledge of the same.

      This obligation applies primarily to hosting providers. ISPs are not held legally accountable if traffic pertaining to illegal activity traverses their networks, for the same reason that common carriers like telephone companies are not held accountable if two people discuss a bank robbery over the phone.

      "Lawful" arises in the context of net neutrality merely by stating that _end users_ should have the right to engage in lawful communications with anyone they want, without ISPs blocking or purposely degrading communication with some sites in a discriminatory manner (i.e. for economic advantage).

      ISPs (and common carriers in general) are not _required_ to pass traffic generated by illegal activity. They just have no incentive to even attempt to make that determination, especially since if treated like common carriers the may find themselves at the end of a lawsuit if they make that determination incorrectly.

      • We need to figure out exactly what this phrase means before we just agree that it's fair. Unlawful communication could be obscenity, and since everybody on the internet breaks the law now all communication is unlawful and what does that mean?

  • "So long as your ISP claimed that it was trying to prevent copyright infringement or helping law enforcement, it could be exempted from the net neutrality principles."

    So all they have to do is claim? "Preventing copyright infringement" seems to be high up on the list of motivators for anything the ISP's do anymore (and the Feds for that matter). This is so vague it seems like it could be stretched to essentially allow the them to do anything they wanted under the guise that it is "effectively reducing pi

  • If we want to avoid letting a strong regulatory body decide, I suggest using civil law to fix the problem of net neutrality:

    Allow plaintiffs to claim damages based on the inequality of their traffic.

    This way, if Joe Small Site finds out that Crazy Big Network is dropping or delaying his packets, he can sue them.

    Fear of lawsuits seems to trump even fear of the death penalty in this country, so it might work...

  • Anyone else? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by HeckRuler (1369601) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @10:39AM (#33228004)
    Anyone else think it's odd that we're reading an article about a group of lawyers commenting about two companies coming together to broker a deal about what the government should be allowed to do?
    Isn't that a little backwards? I mean, I like the EFF. But the idea that we need lawyers to tell us what's good and what's bad seems odd.
    And having two giants acting like they can simply write legislature is balls to the walls wrong. The FCC can do whatever the laws says they can do, Google and Verizon be damned. Who writes those laws? Those that We The People (tm) put in power.
    • Re:Anyone else? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by rajafarian (49150) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @10:56AM (#33228234)

      I'm not sure how old you are, young man, but, corporations (through lawyers, of course) have been writing some of our laws for quite some time. For a current example, see the DMCA; for an old example, we can see that Du Pont appears to be responsible for making marijuana illegal in this country [ozarkia.net].

      But I do find it odd that they are now doing it so blatantly, right in front of our eyes!

    • I don't really see what's odd about it. Lobbyist involvement in lawmaking aside, two companies submitting an open letter to the FCC is how it should work. Not only is it covered under free speech, it just makes sense the the stakeholders have input into the process(FTR I don't think campaign donations by non-human entities should be considered anonymous free speech, but that's not what this is about). I would be just as worried about lawmakers trying to make decisions without involvement by technology exper
      • Yeah, lawyers commenting on law. I guess that makes sense. Lawyers commenting on an open letter is a little weird, but it's not an open letter, it's a a brokered compromise between two giants. I get the free speech thing, I do, and damn to hell anyone who says that me, Google, or Verison can't send letters to the FCC.

        But it's that they're acting like they're sitting down at a table and negotiating power sharing rather then asking the FCC "please mother may I".

        I guess my problem is that if all of slashdo
    • Re:Anyone else? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by esocid (946821) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @11:09AM (#33228438) Journal

      Anyone else think it's odd that we're reading an article about a group of lawyers commenting about two companies coming together to broker a deal about what the government should be allowed to do? Isn't that a little backwards? I mean, I like the EFF. But the idea that we need lawyers to tell us what's good and what's bad seems odd. And having two giants acting like they can simply write legislature is balls to the walls wrong. The FCC can do whatever the laws says they can do, Google and Verizon be damned. Who writes those laws? Those that We The People (tm) put in power.

      I have to admit, I read the stories about the deal. First the NYT one that got it completely wrong, then the Engadget one, then several others that flowed out, and the EFF put it more succinctly than I could have understood. Previously, all I got out of it was, we want industry rules to remain neutral, but VZW wants some wiggle room on wireless/mobile traffic.

      But surely you don't think our legislative bodies are informed enough to write laws/regulation about stuff like this? Imagine if Ted "the tubes" Stevens had been around to have a hand in NN legislation. These two parties are, but of course you have to single out what they say that will directly benefit them (screw consumers over), and see exactly what will benefit consumers.

    • Re:Anyone else? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jim_v2000 (818799) on Thursday August 12, 2010 @11:09AM (#33228444)
      >And having two giants acting like they can simply write legislature is balls to the walls wron

      They didn't write any legislation. They wrote up some suggestions that the FCC and the Congress are free to use or discard. They have every right to do that.
      • They didn't write any legislation. They wrote up some suggestions that the FCC and the Congress are free to use or discard. They have every right to do that.

        I'm sure that's written on the post-it note stuck to VerGoozon's massive campaign donation checks; 'just a suggestion'.

  • After reading the discussion on "additional services" from the EFF position paper, I came away convinced that we really do need two parallel networks: one funded by the public, like our interstate highway system, and one funded by private organizations:

    There may be some services that need traffic prioritization, such as urgent medical services, but the approach in the proposal creates no real limits on what could be allowed as an “additional online service.” It would be much better if space for

    • There may be some services that need traffic prioritization, such as urgent medical services, but the approach in the proposal creates no real limits on what could be allowed as an “additional online service.” It would be much better if space for these services was addressed through waivers or other processes that put the burden on the company suggesting such services to prove that they are needed. And such processes must be fully transparent — not just consumers but the FCC must be in a position to know how these services work and what impact they are having. They must also be open to real debate and opposition. (Emphasis added)

      The key point is, to whom would companies have to prove their service was worthy of a waiver? If it's the government, then basically that means the government would become the approver of all new internet businesses. Who in their right mind would want that? So, what if it was some other body, such as a standards body? Same problem. Is there any organization that we should trust to be the gatekeeper?

      No. This whole notion eviscerates the very meaning of "free" in "free market".

      Hmm, not quite. You've forgotten the context. It's not that they would be gatekeepers of all traffic, it's that they would be gate keepers of traffic getting a higher priority. IE company A starts prioritizing certain news sources traffic over other traffic. They would have to show that this is neccessary(for an emergency evacuation signal or something) or stop giving that traffic high priority. Not that they would have to drop that traffic entirely.

      • Yes, I see your point; technically, the control would be only over priority.

        However, I was persuaded by the EFF's argument the FCC is especially susceptible to "regulative captivity" -- that is, to becoming dominated by the industries they are supposed to regulate, and winding up regulating out the newcomers to the market, instead.

        Ultimately, he who controls the priority decision can control the end-user experience to a very large degree. If I can make my data arrive first, wouldn't that be as effec
  • With the arguable exception of child porn, there is (or should be) no such thing as "unlawful content," in the United States; only "unlawful use of content." Unless a provider is either a party to, or a mediator of such contracts, their involvement is neither desirable nor justifiable.

    If service providers want to be responsible for the traffic they carry, then I propose making them liable for allowing any port scans, malicious payloads, SPAM, fraudulent advertisements, or unsolicited phone calls (VoIP) to

    • by stdarg (456557)

      With the arguable exception of child porn

      Out of curiosity, what's your argument for excluding it in a way that doesn't exclude other types of "unlawful content"?

      • by StikyPad (445176)

        Tell me what other content is unlawful and I'll answer your question.

        • by stdarg (456557)

          1. The usual things -- bestiality, snuff films
          2. In general, pictures of illegal activities
          3. Pictures of illegal activities involving children (murder, torture, abuse)
          4. Things illegal in some other countries like blasphemous material
          5. Content that isn't necessarily obscene, but harmful, like slander
          6. Generally private information like credit card and social security numbers

          Just examples, not implying that each requires a different argument.

          • by StikyPad (445176)

            None of that is illegal to possess, with the exception of child porn. That's why it's an exception.

            • by stdarg (456557)

              I'm pretty sure bestiality and snuff films are illegal to possess, but that's only part of the point. When you said "the arguable exception of child porn" I thought you meant you had an argument that shows child porn should be illegal whereas other obscene content shouldn't be. Usually an argument for child porn being illegal is naive and would lead to all of the things I mentioned being illegal as well. As you noted they're not. So I was wondering what your argument was.

  • historically, and i mean since the inception of a "corporation" as an entity created to sell things to consumers, freedom hasnt been at the forefront...no more obvious is it than in software and computing where the idea of "patent everything, share nothing" has dominated the industry for decades....

    Im sure for all slashdotters the idea of a "neutrality" act being crafted by two of americas most monolithic corporations sends up red flags and klaxons as it naturally should. consumer "freedom" acts, as a
    • by cdrguru (88047)

      A corporation has nothing to do with "an entity created to sell things to consumers". A corporation is a tool to eliminate the possibility of liability to investors.

      In a partnership the partners all share in liability for debts of the partnership. This also means that any fines or judgements levied against the partnership are distributed among the partners according to their interest in the partnership.

      With a corporation the liability ends with the corporation. Only in very special circumstances and the

  • Today there are two ways content is delivered on the Internet. I has been that way for a number of years, at least since 2000 and maybe longer.

    Way one is the way we are familiar with - User A connects to Server B and content is delivered. Slowly. Through whatever forest of routers and links are needed to get from A to B.

    Way two is evidently a secret to a lot of people. Akami. This company has servers co-located in ISP centers all over the US and other parts of the world. User A no longer connects to S

    • by MobyDisk (75490) * on Thursday August 12, 2010 @05:43PM (#33233420) Homepage

      Isn't this what people are talking about trying to prevent from happening?

      No. That's not network neutrality.

      If someone wants to setup servers near New York and San Francisco to give those areas better service, that's just great. If they want to pay someone else to setup the server and host it for them, they can do that too. Shipping companies place hubs in busy areas. Supermarkets pay more money for real estate on busy roads. Gas stations try to get intersections. This is all fine.

      Akamai is not an ISP. What we are trying to prevent is ISPs from filtering, delaying, or modifying traffic. Using my supermarket analogy: it's fine for Super Fresh to build a supermarket on a busy road. But it isn't fine if roads have special high-speed lanes for Super Fresh customers. ISPs are in the position of being able to create dedicated lanes on the internet, or to add stop signs that only apply to some people. If you make the roads, you must let all traffic pass equally. If you make telephone wires, you must pass all traffic equally.

      • by butlerm (3112)

        But it isn't fine if roads have special high-speed lanes for Super Fresh customers.

        Sure it is, as long as Super Fresh pays the full cost of those lanes and the traffic on those lanes does not degrade the transit time of the customers using the ordinary lanes.

        Telephone companies are common carriers. Have you ever heard of the FCC telling a company, no you cannot establish a private telephone network to interconnect your offices because that way you might get better service than if all your calls were routed

        • by MobyDisk (75490) *

          Sure it is, as long as Super Fresh pays the full cost of those lanes and the traffic on those lanes does not degrade the transit time of the customers using the ordinary lanes.

          Granted.

          I was implying that that they aren't new lanes - they are re-purposing existing lanes. That's closer to what the ISPs want to do. If I make this analogy again, I'll specifically state that. Thanks for improving my argument in the future.

          • by butlerm (3112)

            I was implying that that they aren't new lanes - they are re-purposing existing lanes.

            I agree that is a bad idea. Letting providers of open networks like the Internet allow classes of service that have a hard, unlimited priority over ordinary traffic is a bad idea.

            The big Internet providers are now quasi-monopolies and need to be regulated accordingly, which ultimately probably means minimum standards for what "Internet service" is. If the providers can carry other traffic without impairing the quality of s

  • The #1 problem with "net neutrality" is that EVERY net neutrality proposal to come out in the US that has a snowballs chance in hell of actually being adopted has had loopholes big enough to fly an Airbus A380 through, usually under the guise of "lawful content"

    I have no problems with ISPs who want to block spam on their networks or stop denial-of-service attacks comming from (or aimed at) their networks. But there has to be a better way to word the exemptions for "unlawful content" (or whatever it is) in a

  • Verizon and Google need to spell it out to-the-letter. Vagaries have no place in legal documents other than to implement some kind of imbalanced legal dynamic at some point in the future.

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