net neutrality dead? The idea of protecting against the
creation of internet "speed lanes" and discrimination
against specific types of traffic -- such as P2P connections --
certainly still has powerful supporters, like
Google. However, the movement has been dealt several recent
legal defeats which may in effect make it possible for the government
to enforce net neutrality, leaving ISPs free to steam-roll the
movement.A D.C. federal Court of Appeals
has overturned Federal
Communications Commission sanctions against Comcast stemming
throttling of P2P traffic. The court was highly
critical of the FCC, grilling its lawyer. It said the sanctions
were "aspirational, not operational" and pointed out that
the FCC couldn't identify a "specific statute" Comcast
violated. The judge commented that the FCC "can't get an
unbridled, roving commission to go about doing good."The
FCC is likely to appeal the ruling. They also are looking to
give net neutrality a legal backbone. FCC chairman Julius
Genachowski has been one of the movement's most outspoken advocates
and is currently working with Congress to craft legislation that
would make protections against data discrimination the law of the
land in the United States. President
Barack Obama included net neutrality in his 2008 campaign
platform and he's pushing Congress to complete legislation on the
issue. Obama's 2008 presidential race rival Sen. John McCain is
one of the biggest
opponents of net neutrality.Such legislation, though, may
still neglect to protect certain kinds of traffic such as P2P
connections. ISPs complain that these connections are
frequently used to commit copyright infringement. More
importantly to them, they take up a lot of bandwidth. The
public opposes metered connections, so many ISPs want to throttle P2P
traffic as a more subtle means of keeping bandwidth on "unlimited"
connections to a minimum. This could increase their profits
greatly, if rolled out across their entire network.ISPs may
be pressed harder by new competition, though. The FCC has
announced a plan to offer speedy
100 Mbps national broadband, to 100 million American homes.
The plan, basically a jumbo version of municipal
internet efforts, would increase competition in theory.
Currently ISPs enjoy a monopoly or duopoly on services across much of
the country, and consumers have been forced to endure higher prices.
quote: Remove that barrier of entry with government subsidation (like every other infrastructure in the country has) to private entities and you'd see more competition. I'm not saying the government should pay for 100% of it, and I am saying that making private companies pay for 100% of it is stupid. It should be split in some fashion with the private companies paying a portion and the government subsidizing the other portion.
quote: You are making a big assumption that there would be increased censorship. Personally, I don't see that happening in the slightest. Every single time people have complained about 'increased negative anything' with nationalized services, when you look at the PRIVATELY RUN services, they have just as many problems.
quote: if you're hitting 250 GB/month, you're either doing something illegal or your needs exceed what a residential service offers
quote: I'm not saying I agree with a bandwidth cap, particularly if advertised as unlimited. But I do think it would be difficult for a user to legally exceed 250GB/month in most scenarios.
quote: This is what Comcast is doing. There are people using Comcast's service to illegally share files and I think it's safe to say that if you're hitting 250 GB/month, you're either doing something illegal or your needs exceed what a residential service offers.
quote: I think it's safe to say that if you're hitting 250 GB/month, you're either doing something illegal or your needs exceed what a residential service offers.