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'We Are Disappointed': Tech Companies Speak Up Against the FCC's Plan To Kill Net Neutrality (businessinsider.com) 183

An anonymous reader shares a report from Business Insider: The FCC is planning to kill net neutrality -- and some tech companies are starting to speak out. Pro-net neutrality activists, who argue the principle creates a level playing-field online, are up in arms about the plan. And some tech companies are now speaking out in support of net neutrality as well, from Facebook to Netflix. Business Insider reached out to some of the biggest tech firms in America today to ask for their reaction to the FCC's plan. Their initial responses are below, and we will continue to update this post as more come in.
Facebook's vice-president of U.S. public policy, Erin Egan, said: "We are disappointed that the proposal announced today by the FCC fails to maintain the strong net neutrality protections that will ensure the internet remains open for everyone. We will work with all stakeholders committed to this principle."

Google spokesperson: "The FCC's net neutrality rules are working well for consumers and we're disappointed in the proposal announced today."

Netflix via a tweet: "Netflix supports strong #NetNeutrality. We oppose the FCC's proposal to roll back these core protections." [...] "We've been supporting for years thru IA and Day to Save Net Neutrality with a banner on Netflix homepage for all users. More info in Q4 2016 earnings letter, as well. This current draft order hasn't been officially voted, so we're lodging our opposition publicly and loudly now."

Reddit spokesperson: "Reddit is actively monitoring the FCC's proposed rule changes that could dismantle net neutrality as we know it. From farmers in South Dakota to musicians in Kentucky to small business owners in Utah, net neutrality is just as important to redditors as it is to Reddit and we will continue to advocate for and work constructively to maintain a free and open Internet. It is crucial to innovation and the health of our economy that small businesses have equal access to the internet, with winners and losers chosen by consumers, not ISPs."

The Internet Association, an industry body whose members include Amazon, Dropbox, Ebay, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Spotify, Uber, and others: "Chairman Pai's proposal, if implemented, represents the end of net neutrality as we know it and defies the will of millions of Americans who support the 2015 Open Internet Order. This proposal undoes nearly two decades of bipartisan agreement on baseline net neutrality principles that protect Americans' ability to access the entire internet. The 2015 Order created bright-line, enforceable net neutrality protections that guarantee consumers access to the entire internet and preserve competition online. This proposal fails to achieve any of these objectives. Consumers have little choice in their ISP, and service providers should not be allowed to use this gatekeeper position at the point of connection to discriminate against websites and apps. Internet Association and our members will continue our work to ensure net neutrality protections remain the law of the land."
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'We Are Disappointed': Tech Companies Speak Up Against the FCC's Plan To Kill Net Neutrality

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 23, 2017 @08:08AM (#55609923)

    Pro-net neutrality activists, who argue the principle creates a level playing-field online, are up in arms about the plan. And some tech companies are now speaking out in support of net neutrality

    Donald Trump -- the guy who gets to appoint the FCC commissioners -- said he was opposed to Net Neutrality when he first started running for president. The third-world goat-herder who is now the head of the FCC openly opposed Net Neutrality when the rules were instituted two years ago.

    And you're just now "disappointed"? Where the fuck have you been for the last two years?

    • by RedK ( 112790 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:25AM (#55610193)

      The third-world goat-herder who is now the head of the FCC

      Wow, brazen racism and elitism. Of course, it's ok because it's targetted at someone who disagrees with your "right-think" ? This is part of the reason Trump got elected in the first place.

      • I don't think the choice of words is appropriate, BUT this kind of talk is EXACTLY what Trump uses on a daily basis. You think Trump is fair and balanced when it comes to opinions that do not match his 1:1? Sheesh, how delusional can one be?
        • I don't think the choice of words is appropriate, BUT this kind of talk is EXACTLY what Trump uses on a daily basis. You think Trump is fair and balanced when it comes to opinions that do not match his 1:1? Sheesh, how delusional can one be?

          You should have stopped at "BUT." You're defending racism for political reasons, just like all the people who upvoted the OP.

          • by pots ( 5047349 )
            You mistook what the parent was saying. That wasn't a defense of anything, that was calling out the grandparent for obvious deceit. The grandparent was attempting to preemptively deflect away from Trump and Co's elitism and racism by calling his opposition elitist and racist first.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        That's right! Brazen racism and elitism is only OK if it is targeted at someone who disagrees with alt-right think! If you think Trump got elected because he is a big fan of foreigners and hates racists you have to be the most stupid motherfucker on the planet ... besides Trump I mean. As stupid as you are, I don't believe you could possibly be as stupid as you seem.
        • by xvan ( 2935999 )
          Trump may hate foreigners and hate racists, and yeah, some people on the more racist spectrum voted for trump for perceiving him as racist. What you fail to realize is that for the vast majority racism is not a relevant issue, don't care about it and even might be fed up of it want it out of the daily agenda.

          By polarizing everybody as racist / not racist, a lot of people was pushed to the Trump wagon.
          • So, you do know that Trump didn't win the election and that well over half the country is praying that he chokes to death on a chicken bone this evening, right ivan?
            • by xvan ( 2935999 )
              Swing states voter turnout was around 70%, the total turnout was 60%. Trump won the presidential election.
              You want to change the electoral college for direct election. That's ok, but it's a completely different game and you can't know who'd have won it. it.

              And even if you equate Trump's current disapproval rates with wanting him choking on a chicken bone, a good chunk of them couldn't care less when it really did matter. BTW, the main reason for that disapproval is personality and not policy based. h [gallup.com]
              • You put his shit to bed.

              • Literally all that would have been necessary for Trump to lose is for the intelligent people in the country to be aware of how many unbelievably stupid people there are in the country. We underestimated that number and assumed there was no way such a moron would actually win. And again, you aren't getting this. He didn't win the votes, he got installed by the electoral college. Yes, that makes him President. No, it doesn't mean he won the election. He lost the election. The people did NOT vote him in to
            • by Mashiki ( 184564 )

              right ivan?

              Jesus. You're the very example of unhinged and sucking at a conspiracy theory. Anyone who disagrees with you is *obviously* a ruskie. Keep digging that hole buddy.

              • Look at his user name Mr. Miagi
                • by Mashiki ( 184564 )

                  Look at his user name Mr. Miagi

                  Not really doing anything but showing that you are unhinged. You do realize that more 'educated people' voted for Trump don't you? No you probably don't. Trump isn't what's wrong here, the people who voted for him aren't what's wrong here. What's wrong here are people like yourself that live in social bubbles and really don't understand why large swaths of the public are pissed off. And when someone points this out to you, your only response is to claim they're a russian.

    • The third-world goat-herder who is now the head of the FCC

      I bet the people here who say tell you not to listen to Weev [youtube.com] because he's a racist won't have a problem with this. Even though Ajit Pai was actually born in the USA and neither he nor his parents were 'goat herders'.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

      The son of Konkani immigrants from India, Pai was born on January 10, 1973, in Buffalo, New York. He grew up in rural Parsons, Kansas. Both of his parents were doctors at the county hospital.

      Pai attended Harvard University where he participated in the Harvard Speech & Parliamentary Debate Society. He earned a B.A. with honors in Social Studies from Harvard in 1994 and a J.D. from the University of Chicago in 1997, where he was an editor of the University of Chicago Law Review and won the Thomas J. Mulroy Prize.

      Which shows that racism is not actually a bad thing to them, they just use accusations of it as an ad hominem argument [wikipedia.org] to attack people they disagree with rather than addressing the arguments those people make.

    • by gtall ( 79522 )

      For a moment there, I thought you were accusing Trump of being a third-world goat herder. Please, think of the goats!

    • Donald Trump

      Who?

  • Sure...sure guys. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Mashiki ( 184564 ) <mashiki&gmail,com> on Thursday November 23, 2017 @08:12AM (#55609939) Homepage

    The regulations are only 400 pages long at this point, pretty sure that firing the entire thing into the sun and restarting from scratch is the best thing that can happen for US internet users at this point.

    Might I suggest that you beat the corporations with tungsten bars, then bind them with silver to keep them away and fucking this all up again? Then take a page out of the playbook from the CRTC and create plain simple rules.

    • by gtall ( 79522 )

      Why? What's wrong with net neutrality? 400 pages of regulations wouldn't have been necessary if companies weren't run by lawyers using any trick they can to game the system.

      • by Mashiki ( 184564 )

        400 pages of regulations wouldn't have been necessary if companies weren't run by lawyers using any trick they can to game the system.

        Really? Can you explain how Canada was able to put into place and enforce net neutrality without having to resort to 400 pages of regulations that were written by those corporations under the previous administration. This is how it happened in Canada. [crtc.gc.ca] And ever since it happened Bell Canada, Rogers, Telus, and so on have been trying to fight tooth and nail to get the rules changed back into their favor.

        The entire groundwork of that happened under the Harper government FYI, before someone tries to claim

  • Love him, hate him or don't give a damn about him, Weev made some great points [youtube.com] against the policy, the best one of which is: Many of the companies screaming the loudest are the biggest advocates of censorship. (Then there is the fact that as he rightly points out no one is stopping state and local monopolistic practices)

    Of course they don't call it that. They pretend that it's some balance to protect civility, feelings and ensure that cowards are not driven to silence by hearing disagreement, but that is pr

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 23, 2017 @08:21AM (#55609973)

      Think back to a couple of years ago, before the current net neutrality rules were created.

      Remember how you had to pay extra to access Slashdot, Google, Facebook, Twitter and Netflix? Remember how some websites were faster than others?

      Nope. Me neither.

      • by Z00L00K ( 682162 )

        Doesn't mean that it won't happen now that it's clear where FCC stands with the Trump-appointed leadership.

        On a smaller scale you have Portugal where you have to pay extra for access to a lot of services.

      • by religionofpeas ( 4511805 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @08:59AM (#55610091)

        If you think that nothing is going to change by killing net neutrality, then there's no reason to kill it.

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          This ten million times. I'm not sure if I am more baffled by the fact that someone would spew the ridiculous line of reasoning that says repealing NN will not have an effect that favors the corporations, or if I'm more baffled that so many morons seem / claim to believe it.
        • If you think that nothing is going to change by killing net neutrality, then there's no reason to kill it.

          If a law serves no purpose, that seems like a perfectly good reason to remove it.

          But the real argument in favor of the change is that the current arrangement gives the FCC much more power over ISPs, like the power to regulate rates. That would be the surest way to prevent more broadband options. Net Neutrality is a good idea, one that should be legislated so that the industry is not forever at the whim of the current administration.

      • by 0100010001010011 ( 652467 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:08AM (#55610109)

        You mean like back when ISPs were throttling Netflix unless they paid?

        • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

          You mean like back when ISPs were throttling Netflix unless they paid?

          Or deliberately added jitter to their cable service latency to cause problems for VoIP providers (but conveniently did QoS routing for their own, in-house VoIP services).

      • by Mordaximus ( 566304 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:21AM (#55610171)

        Remember how you had to pay extra to access Slashdot, Google, Facebook, Twitter and Netflix? Remember how some websites were faster than others?

        Nope. Me neither.

        I remember Netflix (and others) being throttled, while the ISPs preferred (read owned) streaming service was not. I remember mobile carriers giving unlimited streaming access to one music streaming service but not others.

        NN isn't necessarily about paying extra. It's absence can mean that the service to other sources is degraded to such a point you end up using the one your ISP preferred. Which one that is depends entirely on if they own it, or which other company is greasing their palms the most (and passing the expense on to the subscribers.)

      • Series of Tubes? (Score:4, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:29AM (#55610209)

        https://www.huffingtonpost.com/timothy-karr/net-blocking-a-problem-in_b_5695997.html

        MADISON RIVER: In 2005, North Carolina ISP Madison River Communications blocked the voice-over-Internet protocol (VOIP) service Vonage.
        COMCAST: In 2005, the nation’s largest Internet provider, Comcast, began secretly blocking peer-to-peer technologies
        TELUS: In 2005, Canada’s second largest telecommunications company, Telus, began blocking access to a server that hosted a website supporting a labor strike against the company
        AT&T: From 2007-2009, AT&T forced Apple to block Skype and other competing VOIP phone services
        T&T, SPRINT & VERIZON: From 2011-2013, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon blocked Google Wallet, a mobile payment system that competed with a similar service called Isis,
        VERIZON: In 2012, the FCC caught Verizon Wireless blocking people from using tethering

        These are just the things they did WHEN FCC regulated net neutrality in one way or another. Now its a free for all.

      • Remember how you had to pay extra to access Slashdot, Google, Facebook, Twitter and Netflix? Remember how some websites were faster than others?

        I think back several years ago and...

        1. Google still paid lip service to "don't be evil" (including manipulating search results for political reasons).
        2. Twitter was much more diverse in opinion.
        3. No one except truly dangerous people were getting banned from Facebook nor were posts known to disappear if they disagreed with Facebook's corporate culture.

        As Weev point

      • Remember how some websites were faster than others?

        YES, actually. Netflix error message blames ISP for slow streaming service [cbsnews.com]

        Netflix was effectively extorted by Comcast [qz.com]:

        Despite purchasing transit on all available routes into Comcast’s network that did not require direct or indirect payment of an access fee to Comcast, the viewing quality of Netflix’s service reached near-VHS quality levels. Faced with such severe degradation of its streaming video service, Netflix began to negotiate for paid ac

      • Think back to how your loved one was murdered the other day. They weren't? We should absolutely do away with laws against murdering then! Think back to earlier in the day. Remember how you had to put gasoline in your car? You didn't!!!????? That's fucking awesome! This guy has a car that never needs gasoline!

        I actually do remember paying a lot more to access those services. If you didn't know, those services are all on the internet. The cost of internet access has dropped dramatically from the cost
      • I guess you weren't on Verizon in 2014. Verizon was still throttling Netflix even after Netflix paid their ransom fee. Many people in the US only have 1 option for Internet. Actually Verizon is still throttling Netflix and YouTube on mobile.
        Net Nutrality didn't come about because of fear of what could happen, but because of what Verizon, AT&T and Bell were doing.
        You may not have been affected, but many were. Don't worry, you most likely will be affected without even realizing it. Netflix might start
      • Claiming your ignorance of history is some sort of unseen knowledge is absurd.

        here let me help you with a simple internet search https://www.freepress.net/blog... [freepress.net]

        There are many more examples but in all these cases the FCC did their best to step in. Now imagine a world where the FCC just lets telcoms do what they want. Look at the list again, expand it and imaging the new world we are looking at

    • Love him, hate him or don't give a damn about him, Weev made some great points [youtube.com] against the policy, the best one of which is: Many of the companies screaming the loudest are the biggest advocates of censorship. (Then there is the fact that as he rightly points out no one is stopping state and local monopolistic practices)

      Of course they don't call it that. They pretend that it's some balance to protect civility, feelings and ensure that cowards are not driven to silence by hearing disagreement, but that is precisely what it is. Censorship.

      And one of the greatest ironies of the whole issue is that the sort of people who love to throw this XKCD comic [xkcd.com] out there are the ones shitting themselves the hardest at the idea that ISPs might take their platform away, but when it is GoogleFacebookTwitterYouTube doing it we are invited to a lecture on how we are not entitled to a soapbox.

      You need more upvotes. I cannot give it to you but I can reinforce the message:

      The largest censors are fighting for this rule. On general principle alone they should be denied.

      You are free to speak, no one is forced to give you a platform. You are free to build your own platform.

      • LOL idiot, you think that if there's no net neutrality, it'll be easier to post hate speech on the web? No, it will be harder, because the tech megacorps (Google, Facebook, Twitter) will get their services zero-rated, while Gab, 8chan, and Stormfront won't be able to afford such things. This issue is not directly tied to censorship. But a lack of net neutrality will make censorship on private platforms far, far more powerful.

        If the deplorables care about "free speech" (by which they mean the right to have t

        • LOL idiot,

          Nice - starting off with a racist insult.

          you think that if there's no net neutrality, it'll be easier to post hate speech on the web?

          So, lemme get this straight - I point out that "no one is obliged to give you a platform" and you take that to mean I want to post hate speech?

          • I'm tempted to ignore anyone who thinks any remotely modern use of "idiot" is a racist insult (thus helping justify my use of it) and who didn't address the central premise of my post, but I'll play ball anyway.

            Generally the people who complain about private censorship want to post hate speech. This is what gets removed from services like Facebook and Twitter. But let's call it something else if you want. I've seen some conservative media euphemize it as "certain other positions."

            Run s/hate speech/"certain

            • I'm tempted to ignore anyone who thinks any remotely modern use of "idiot" is a racist insult (thus helping justify my use of it)

              It's derogatory when you (white person) start your response to me (black person) like that. You think all black people are stupid? WTF is wrong with you, you racist piece of white trash? When you address black people maybe you shouldn't start off by implying all black people are less intelligent.

              Generally the people who complain about private censorship want to post hate speech.

              Yeah, we aren't talking about the people who generally complain. We're talking about a single easy to understand idea: Do you want to force companies to carry messages regardless of whether the company wants to or n

              • Do I want to force companies to carry messages regardless of whether the company wants to or not? I think we have to define that more carefully before I answer it, that's too broad and vague. Should companies be forced to present speech on their platforms they don't want to? To that, I'd plainly answer "No."

                On the other hand, if you asked me if a telecoms company should be forced to carry technically compliant messages regardless of content, source, or destination, to that I'd plainly answer "Yes."

              • BTW, I nearly managed to ignore your silly trolling in the form of what you see as a parody of discussion around Barack Obama (actually a parody of a right-wing strawman idea of discussion around Obama), but you don't know that I'm white any more than I know that you're black, so without this knowledge, how could my inherently non-racist insult ever become racist? Even if I did know that you are black (highly, highly doubtful BTW), I could call an individual black man an idiot without being racist - (unlike

          • >Nice - starting off with a racist insult.

            "LOL, idiot" is not racist.

            >The largest censors are fighting for this rule. On general principle alone they should be denied.

            That is no way to judge the content of an argument.

            >You are free to speak, no one is forced to give you a platform. You are free to build your own platform.

            Yep. I'll just pop out to the hardware store and buy the materials to build a second Internet from the ground up. That sounds feasible. I bet you think every road should be a co

            • You are free to speak, no one is forced to give you a platform. You are free to build your own platform.

              Yep. I'll just pop out to the hardware store and buy the materials to build a second Internet from the ground up. That sounds feasible.

              There is only one issue, and you're dodging it: Should companies be forced to carry content they do not want to? Regardless of your pseudo-intellectual posturing, the answer to that question can never be "Well, it depends on whether I agree with the politics or not".

              • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

                There is only one issue, and you're dodging it: Should companies be forced to carry content they do not want to?

                Regardless of your pseudo-intellectual posturing, the answer to that question can never be "Well, it depends on whether I agree with the politics or not".

                No, of course not. The correct answer to that question is always, "Well, it depends on whether that company is a near monopoly or not."

                ISPs are monopolies, or very nearly so. About 78% of Americans have either zero or one ISP that meets the F

              • That's not the central issue at all. You are an idiot. Or a paid sock-puppet troll, which seems more likely.

                The central issue is: are ISP's a "common carrier" or not? Should they be regulated as such?

                Hint: The answers are "Yes" and "Yes". Which, coincidentally, they have already demonstrated themselves to great effect. It is no mystery what would happen without these regulations, we have recent history to look back on. The demonstrated, repeated bad behavior of these companies is why the rules were

      • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

        You are free to build your own platform.

        No, you aren't. Not anymore.

        You have never been free to dig up people's yards to provide infrastructure to bring your platform to people's homes. That's why most Americans have only a single choice (if any) in broadband ISPs. (As of last year, 78% of U.S. markets had one or fewer ISPs meeting the federal minimum standards for broadband.) So without net neutrality guaranteeing that the public can get unfettered access to the public Internet, you can build the platf

    • by Baron_Yam ( 643147 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @08:51AM (#55610059)

      If you think NN is about censorship, you're looking at the wrong issue.

      It's about charging for preferential treatment on what should be public infrastructure. Net Neutrality is what stands between an even playing field for businesses, and gated information communities built by large vertically integrated conglomerates controlling what people in their service area are allowed to see and hear (in order to extract more money from them).

      Propaganda and censorship will come with that, but they're more like a bonus than the primary goal of abolishing the regulations.

      • If you think NN is about censorship, you're looking at the wrong issue.

        It's about charging for preferential treatment on what should be public infrastructure.

        "Should" and "Is" are two different things. If it's not public infrastructure it doesn't owe your company access.

        • But, it is use of public infrastructure (right of ways to build their cables to your house), and they owe their own customers the advertised service that they purport to be selling (internet access, which includes access to my website).

          But you already knew that.

    • Accuse the accuser? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:02AM (#55610095)

      So ISPs can now demand money from websites to permit those companies to have access to the ISPs customers. i.e. double selling, selling the connection to the customer AND selling the same connection to the website.

      i.e. they can selectively censor websites in order to demand money from those website, aka tortuous interference in business dressed up as innovation in ISP pricing.

      And you are pretending that the websites wanting access are the ones censoring the internet, aka the "accuse the accuser of the same thing" approach. Well at least you accuse Google of being one, but this applies to every website with money.

      When exactly did the Republicans become anti-business, anti-free trade, Putin apparatchiks? Their position seems very fluid.

      • So ISPs can now...

        No, they always could in the past. NN rules were never officially enacted. The few times in the past when they attempted shenanigans (blocking bittorrent, the netflix thing) they got slapped down. Seems to me the system is already working just fine.

        "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"

        Re-classifying ISPs as telecoms also means mandatory CALEA compliance, and that opens up a whole other can of worms for individual privacy and security.

        Better the devil you know...

        Strat

    • If Slashdot, Reddit, et al didn't have hypocrites, they wouldn't have any users at all.

    • A lack of net neutrality will vastly empower private censorship. See this post:

      https://tech.slashdot.org/comm... [slashdot.org]

      Deplorables should be fighting FOR net neutrality. Weev must be an idiot. He's an admitted nazi and wants to push his ideology deeper into the darkest corners of the web.

    • by mattr ( 78516 )

      I have not come across this guy until now, but I watched his whole speech. I will leave a logician to handle deconstructing his rhetoric. But I would like to make a few points here, and reminisce about how I started an ISP when it became legal in this country to do so.

      First of all, Weev is swearing at Google, Facebook and Twitter for banning him. Apparently he has political views that were seen as uncool in the wake of Charlottesville? Personally not interested in researching him more.

      However, he is posting

    • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

      Many of the companies screaming the loudest are the biggest advocates of censorship.

      If by that, you mean that ISPs are in favor of censorship, you're right. If you're arguing that companies like Google, Netflix, Facebook, etc. are advocates of censorship, you're just chasing shadows and distracting people from the real issues.

      Net neutrality isn't about big tech companies getting screwed by the ISPs. Those companies are big enough that any ISP that seriously tried to break them would get customers marching

  • by Anonymous Coward

    by refusing to approve this asswipe's new term on the commission (which passed earlier this year, and denying his new term would have ended is chairmanship as well), and refusing to approve the appointment of a replacement until trump himself is replaced.

  • by rmdingler ( 1955220 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @08:53AM (#55610073) Journal

    This is simply more legislation that helps a few at the expense of the many.

    Party line item issues like net neutrality are, and always have been, planks that political platforms are constructive of. Record voter turnout in 2012 (63.6% of eligible voters) was only slightly down in the 2016 election cycle (61.4%), so we can't blame voter malaise; perhaps the two-party system itself is becoming untenable. I suspect even the most ardent supporters of party line voting have some difficulty agreeing with every tenet proffered by an individual party line.

    Perhaps it's time to cease defending your voting choice as the lesser of the two evils and demand more from our governors. Until there is a legitimate threat to the illusion of choice administered by the Big Two, these freedoms we too often take for granted will continue to find themselves at the whim of a pen stroke of the next administration.

    • by gtall ( 79522 )

      I don't think the two party system has become untenable. Rather, I think the two parties have become untenable. The D's are being overtaking by the left, the R's are being overtaken by the right. Both want the ability to act like authoritarian pricks over the rest of us.

  • by Freischutz ( 4776131 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:12AM (#55610123)
    This is oil, coal, gasoline, cable-tv, landline telephone era money triumphing, yet again the old money won. Respecting the 'democratic process' and then being 'disappointed' when you get walked over by people who just went and bought the right politicians won't get you anywhere. Maybe the new money should learn from the old money, take the gloves off and start fighting back? I'm not saying that they should go the way of citizens united and bribe people left right and centre but how about putting some money into political campaigns to boost reform minded candidates out to clean up congress. Personally I would not even care what the party affiliations of reform candidates are as long as they want to put an end to the corruption.
  • It's not just about ISPs getting too rich, although they are, and for little value added considering their monopolies compared to other countries and what is technically feasible for them to deliver on an honest basis. Pai's plan a horrible thing for democracy, consumers. But it is also likely to cause massive damage to American competitiveness in the future. Why?

    Two reasons: Killing STEM / open education, and 2) Killing open innovation. And I believe this is something that could cost the U.S. the $500 bill

  • by alternative_right ( 4678499 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @09:16AM (#55610139) Homepage Journal

    From /r/askaconservative: [reddit.com]

    "Net neutrality" became impossible when we made a military/educational network into a commercial one; what is needed is more competition, which is always thwarted by government regulation. The proposed "net neutrality" regulation merely helps the big guys, while giving government a means to make an accusation that will shut down a business, which allows them backdoor censorship;

    • This is completely confused. Net neutrality helps make more competition on the other end, the websites and other similar organizations. The idea that a lack of government regulation will necessarily lead to fewer monopolies is also wrong in general; often government intervention is needed to prevent the rise of monopolies. That's the whole point of anti-trust regulations. The canonical example used by economists is the steel mill; making new steel mills takes a massive amount of investment so if there's a s
    • Wow, that's what mainstream conservatives believe?

      I can sort of understand how they want more competition to appear out of thin fucking air when the USA is dominated by regional monopolies or duopolies for ISPs who will crush any upstarts with an iron fist. I mean of course it's not realistic or feasible, but it's a nice sentiment.

      How it will help big players just flies in the face of all logic and history. The lack of net neutrality, tiered internet, would help big players. This isn't news. We can see exam

      • It would probably make a Republican's soul shiver in horror... but I think perhaps that (excepting new products and services for the first decade or so) monopolies need to be made illegal in a more effective way.

        Perhaps legislation that exponentially increases the corporate tax rate for every percentage of market share over 50% (or 33% or 25% depending on what you believe the minimum required number of pie slices is for healthy competition). Force them to price themselves upwards until it's economically po

        • Perhaps legislation that exponentially increases the corporate tax rate for every percentage of market share over 50% (or 33% or 25% depending on what you believe the minimum required number of pie slices is for healthy competition). Force them to price themselves upwards until it's economically possible for competition to arise.

          Oooh that is very clever! Only problems I can think of are that it could either unfairly harm niche product monopolies, or allow them through a loophole, depending on how you look at it. There are companies which have a monopoly in small niche markets and aren't doing anything abusive. Just off the top of my head, there's only one company in the US (and the Americas, AFAIK) that re-stitches seatbelts in a way that meets original safety standards, for example.

          • >Only problems I can think of are that it could either unfairly harm niche product monopolies, or allow them through a loophole, depending on how you look at it

            You might have to put in exemptions based on the percentage of GDP or something (I prefer relative measurements because it reduces the need to update the legislation periodically). If some company has a complete monopoly on making a widget but only has ten customers... nobody's going to care. And you'd have to have language that handles regional

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      what is needed is more competition, which is always thwarted by government regulation.

      That obviously incorrect assumption brings your whole house of cards down.

      There are lots of things that are heavily regulated which promote competition. The road network. The phone network. Commerce between states.

      In fact, we can see that a lack of regulation is leading to decreased competition in some areas. For example, many people are served by exactly one ISP, so there is exactly zero competition. Yet they have a choice of TV channels because the airwaves are heavily regulated, even to the point where i

      • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

        More to the point, net neutrality puts regulations on companies that are, by their nature, regulated monopolies (the ISPs) to promote competition among companies that are not monopolies (tech companies, companies that provide services over the Internet). It specifically prevents those monopolies from taking actions that would be detrimental to competition in other areas. How anyone could honestly believe that removing those regulations would do anything other than reduce competition is absolutely beyond

  • by JustAnotherOldGuy ( 4145623 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @10:58AM (#55610637)

    "We Are Disappointed"

    Yes, I'm sure this tepid statement will convince the international mega-conglomerates to cancel their plans for world domination in order to avoid hurting the feelings of these tech companies.

  • I find it interesting that the non-technical proponents of net neutrality, that would be people who have no technical understanding of the issue, are the same people who cheer Senator Elizabeth Warren when she spouts off about companies using the roads that "the rest of us pay for."

  • https://www.bloomberg.com/view... [bloomberg.com]

    Meanwhile, our experience of the internet is increasingly controlled by a handful of firms, most especially Google and Facebook. The argument for regulating these companies as public utilities is arguably at least as strong as the argument for thus regulating ISPs, and very possibly much stronger; while cable monopolies may have local dominance, none of them has the ability that Google and Facebook have to unilaterally shape what Americans see, hear, and read.

    In other word

  • by Jim Sadler ( 3430529 ) on Thursday November 23, 2017 @03:04PM (#55611965)
    In order to turn agencies like the FCC around we need to kill off the monsters in the swamp. Trump and all that supported him must be purged and entirely different leadership applied to all agencies.

"No, no, I don't mind being called the smartest man in the world. I just wish it wasn't this one." -- Adrian Veidt/Ozymandias, WATCHMEN

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