Is Your Congressman a Jackass?


This is the jackass in favor of destroying the web to prop up earnings for telecom monopolies.

Just listen to his incoherant arguments ("the Internet started with concept of tubes" WTF?) and ask yourself if you really want to let that man's opinion count more than your own. I sure as hell don't.

If you make a living online (or even if you just like it and would not like seeing the web chopped up into a ghettofied proprietary network), please go to Save the, sign the petition, make sure your friends and neighbors sign it, and if you got a few extra bucks make a tax deductible donation.

They want to deliver vast amounts of information over the internet. And again, the internet is not something you just dump something on. It’s not a truck.

It’s a series of tubes.

Ted Stevens <-- what an ignorant jerk. Be active and make sure your representitives vote against that garbage.


From a Telco Perspective

I can understand what's going on from years working in telephony and it's the total grade of service issue. The problem is the Telcos always made a killing by charging everyone a flat fee and then providing a bare minimum of bandwidth to cover all those customers because nobody ever used the phone at the same time.

Problem is, modem usage started to become popular in the 80s and these damn modem things were starting to stay connected all the time and the telcos took a stab at a 'modem tax' or some such crap back in the day trying to penalize those of us that had phone lines that basically stayed connected all day long. Heck, some of the earlier discount LD providers even started scanning their lines for modem signals and disconnecting them as they were costing them too much although there was denial.

Anyway, the problem is that now EVERYONE is online 24/7 - the connections barely ever break - and the telcos don't quite have the infrastructure to handle this grade of service with all the phones AND computers AND faxes, so on and so forth, that they need to actually supply a live line for hours at a time to all these customers that used to just be on the phone a few minutes and disconnect.

Well, that causes lots of pain buying a lot of new circuits to carry all these calls otherwise customers start getting "all circuits busy" messages when dialing, or a fast busy if that gear is overloaded, or worse case, no dial-tone at all.

So here we have a situation where all the excess bandwidth has been sold to LD discounters to fill the previously unused circtuits and suddenly TA-DA! everyone needs that bandwidth, oh the horror of it all, profits will go to hell spending money to upgrade the networks and provide 1:1 connectivity instead of a percentage of connectivity like in the olden days.

Now we have a new problem, with all of the streaming audio, video, iTunes downloads, etc., that just upgrading the ability to connect is only part of the problem as now a significant amount of people are downloading MEGABYTES instead of little 10K webpages and the "pipes" [tubes? what a moron] are choking as well but I'm not really seeing the problem but it must exist or people wouldn't be having kittens.

It's messy, it's expensive, and they're in a panic.

Someone comes along with this bright idea that instead of raising rates for the masses and causing a public shitstorm, like the proposed modem tax, and they would create a dual-tier network and bleed the big boys instead to pay for all these upgrades.

Problem is, the masses now all run websites, blogs and use all sorts of online services, everyone is in the loop, they underestimated the shitstorm.

Oh boo hoo.

The only thing I don't know is exactly how much of the backbone is under telco control vs. cable companies, etc. You don't hear the cable companies bitching so I'm wondering out loud that if the telcos do this dual-tier crap if they won't just hand over the business to the other players and become irrelevant.

Bottom line is without a bit more research into the actual impact of this proposed pricing scam, would it really be a good or bad thing and/or would it just help the dinosaurs of this industry become extinct?

If it turns out they would only hurt people using telco gear and not the rest of us on cable or whatever, then maybe these misguided congressmen should be allowed to seal their fate by handing over the business to the competition.

Seems like Google wouldn't be fighting this so hard if the telcos didn't have a lock on the backbone so the cable companies better get their asses busy and offer a solid alternative.

>> It's messy, it's

>> It's messy, it's expensive, and they're in a panic.

Yup. Turns out the US should have patterned its' telecoms infrastructure more like the UK - doing the upgrades now is going to be a very long and expensive process.

The US telcos are also going to have to get out of the habit of imposing their vision on the network, or some bright spark is going to build an alternative network, and just bypass them totally. That might turn out to be the cheapest option, overall

The more things change..

At some point it will morph into those who are being paid for their content will bundle delivery into the cost. Puts the scraper model into the toilet and I'm sure more than a few industries would love to see G$$G get fried in this pan.


Think that Senator consulted the inventor of the internet, Al Gore, about the technology and that's where he learned about the tubes?

bleeding the big boys... hardly.

It's never really about bleeding the big boys. It always leads to bleeding the little boys. Follow the link. Sign the petition.

Often these politicos think they are tossing their statements into the wind with no audience to hold them accountable. if nothing comes back, it must be ok. Sometimes, if *anything* comes back, they retreat like cowards.

What have you go to lose by signing the petition and testing his mettle? It just might send a message that such nonsense will always be met by some popular resistance, and that can keep alot of other cowards from even trying.

Just sign the petition.

sign the petition

Somehow when Sergey showed up in DC attempting to play "web democracy for all", I saw he was about google, not me or you, why should I back the billionaires in Mountain View?

It sounds all nice; "net neutrality" and all but when push comes to shove and someone WILL pay it won't be the Sergeys it will be the peons. He can stick the petition where the sun don't shine.

yeah...cause the telecom

yeah...cause the telecom companies have attempted to be honorable and honest.

I think most anyone reading this right now will still do well even if the web goes to a paid inclusion ghettofied model, but many others will suffer.

and as far as who will pay, the scumbag telecom corporations got a few hundred billion dollars of tax breaks and price persk to upgrade the network. and with that money they did next to nothing.

had their chance and they blew it. screw them.

I'm no telecom fan

but this ain't about granny keeping her always-on connection.

Lesser of Two Evils

Somehow when Sergey showed up in DC attempting to play "web democracy for all", I saw he was about google, not me or you, why should I back the billionaires in Mountain View?

Well it's back the billionaires in Mountain View who are essentially fighting for the democratization of the web, or fight for the rich, old Telcoms who feel that you and your websites have been making money on "their dime". Seriously, read what some of these telcoms have written. They feel that companies like Google have been profiting at their expense and that they should be reaping the profits of Google because they provide the Internet to people. These are the same Telcoms that have pushed for tougher federal laws for the horrible crime of sharing your wi-fi connection with someone.

The fact is that any control is bad. It opens the floodgates to abuse and over regulation. It gives the government a loophole into blocking sites without having to pass legislation to do so. If the Bell companies have trouble profiting from selling Internet services, they should stop. Simple as that.

The telcoms want more money

so whats new?

Only issue is when they'll get it and from WHO. Again, its gonna be the peon with the connection that get hosed, not G$$G. Its just another sneaky redirect, parading a petition like "we are for the PEOPLE" when its all about G$$G.

Not to stray off subject, but . . . .

It's even funnier (and scarier) when you read it.

Here this whole time I thought these guys were supposed to be keeping government meddling out our lives. Appears as long as it helps their buen amigos then it's okay to meddle.

And though it sucks to align oneself with a company, let alone G, at least what's in the best interest of their business is what's in the best interest for all of us.

I think it's a good law.

I think it's a good law. From what I've heard it's only bad for the big guys. And it allows ISPs to offer consumers cheaper services because they can bill some of the big guys. Like Google, etc.

I should add that "save the internet" and similar -- even the use of the word "neutrality" -- is nothing but FUD being spread by the big guys. Don't believe their hype, they just want to make an extra few billions.


I think to appreciate this issue (and how the network operators like Verizon already provide consumers shitty services) you would need to do like I have for the last month and called Verizon tech support about every single day.

Not being just a complainer I also am going to give another network operator a shot (as my cable access will start next week). Lucky for me there are 2 networks that service this area. It isn't that way in many places.

It might be a good law if there was more incentive to put more reliability in at the consumer end (ie: stiffer competition), but as I see it now this just allows bad services to get worse.

I don't know if my congress

I don't know if my congress critters are jackasses, but I do question how much they understand about the internet in general.

It'd be easy for a big telecom giant to talk them into this scheme and they wouldn't know any better but to do what they are told.

supply & demand

... of course such a law will only be really efficient if there's a lot of supply. I sometimes forget that it's not everywhere you can choose a new ISP every weekday.

But I still think the law is great for areas where there's real competition in the ISP space. Where there's none, this law isn't the problem anyway (barriers to entry is). But it might encourage more competition as covering costs may be easier than if consumers only should pay.

So explain how it would

So explain how it would lower barrier to entry if I had to pay my competitor a set rate of their choice to join the marketplace?

It's a local issue only affecting 300 million Americans

I have lived in 3 places in 10 years and *never* had a choice except for a small window of time when DSL was new and the telcos had to get along in order to play. That didn't last, the DSL providers went backrupt, and we were left with Verizon or Cable.

Cable is a private network. It is not the Internet. Many don't realize that. That leaves *one choice* to access the Internet via broadband. Verizon.

This is not a case of helping a market to be efficient. This is definitely a case of monopolies securing their futures as monopolies.

And it allows ISPs to offer

And it allows ISPs to offer consumers cheaper services because they can bill some of the big guys. Like Google, etc.

You really think the local service provider who has a monopoly in my area will jump at the chance to lower my costs?

You really think the local

You really think the local service provider who has a monopoly in my area will jump at the chance to lower my costs?

Business 101 right there. I mean, isn't that the exact reason they lobbied congress to (proportionally) overtax cheaper VoIP providers?

@ claus

I think it's a good law. From what I've heard it's only bad for the big guys.

Claus, think about it, the "big guys" never pay a penny.

You tax a corporation and they pass that along to the consumer, corporations don't pay taxes, consumers do. When you contemplate how much tax you REALLY pay, you pay all the corporate taxes as well as your personal taxes as the corporate taxes are figured into the costs of EVERYTHING you purchase. The money you spend buying crap also trickles down to employees of those corporations which is taxed as income yet again, then the employees spend what's left and the whole cycle of taxes starts over again.

With that in mind, that's exactly what will happen if net neutrality ceases to exist as the big boys are Google, Yahoo, and maybe Level3 or Peer1 networks where I host, and Peer1 will pass that cost down to my hosting company they purchased, and I'll pay more for bandwidth if I want to continue to have a top notch fast site.

Perhaps Google will bump the cost of AdWords, Yahoo might increase the rates on Yahoo stores, yada yada.

The BIG BOYS never, ever, ever pay, it's WE THE PEOPLE that pay.

gotta love this

(First, excuse me for having a different opinion than the rest of you and Google. I see this from an economic perspective, and I'm 100% confident that this is in the best interest of the little guy)


The term:

Uhm... "net neutrality" is such a scarecrow word. This has nothing to do with freedom of speech or anything like it. It's typical of a word invented for some cause, as nobody can be against "neutrality" ... spin, spin, spin... sheesh..

The so-called "neutrality" is not neutral. It's "non-neutrality". It is very much in favour of the big guys, the bandwith hogs, against the small guys, the mom 'n pops.

About the law:

It's a law that allows some firms (ISPs) to charge other firms (high-bandwith users) for transport of certain types of content. In real life it would amount to 18-wheelers paying more for road usage than bicyclists.

So should we have "road neutrality" ? Hell no.. if you carry heavy load you should carry heavy costs. Otherwise, I (the bicyclist) will be paying a disproportunately high share of your (the 18-wheeler) bill.

The economy:

As for passing on costs, that's a second order thing. I think that's perfectly allright, as that's how economy works. It's all about making the real costs visible here; to the right people and in the right proportions.

The barriers to entry:

Becoming an ISP requires lots of cash. At the time being. You don't just start digging down cables. The reason there are monopolies is because at some time somebody took that large business risk and said.. "Well, I'll be spending a lot of money here. I hope somebody will use my services, but I just don't know"

But that's history, and now they 0wn that market. And why do they do so? For one reason only: It is too expensive to launch a competing service. The expenses required are the barrier.

So, anything that will make it cheaper to launch a competing service will lower the barrier to entry. Making it possible to bill a larger share of costs from firms (who can actually foot the bill) will change a lot of cost-benefit calculations.

Especially if you plan on setting up a dedicated broadband service. And if you've got that up and running, the extra costs of serving some HTML pages are close to zero.

Who pays:

If I eat 4/5 of the cake and you eat 1/5 and we both pay 1/2 because of "non-neutrality", then who's fooling who?

Firms will always try to pass on costs. That is what firms do. The only way that consumers will derive benefit is if we arrange the society so that firms can more easily compete.

Because competition will determine who is lucky on passing on costs and who is not. And as consumers aren't stupid, the firm that screws us the least will usually win.

as long as there is a

as long as there is a monoply in control of a network the shifts in the overall percent of income and profit for the monopoly owner do nothing to save the average consumers money.

what businesses do you know that operate virtually without competition that have "must cut income" at the top of the CEOs to do whiteboard?

>> So explain how it would

>> So explain how it would lower barrier to entry if I
>> had to pay my competitor a set rate of their choice
>> to join the marketplace?

In this question, who are "I" , and "my competitor", respectively?

Barriers to entry refers to the cost of establishing competing ISP firms. Anything that makes these costs lower or easier to get covered means lower barriers.

Principally speaking (*) with this bill you can make a broadband service that offer free services to consumers and gets costs covered by billing the firms serving the content. You could not do that if your only possible source of income was consumers. Now you can bill producers in stead, or as well.

(*) all else equal, and I haven't studied the finer details.

>> as long as there is a

>> as long as there is a monoply in control

I think this is where you mistake what I'm saying. Monopolies act very differently depending on the possibilities for competition. Even an increased possibility of competition will mean different priorities, and even if that competition does not come.

So, I'm talking about replacing monopolies with (increased likelihood of) competition and you're talking about continued business-as-usual monolopy. No wonder we talk past each other *LOL*


I understand what you are saying and in a utopian society, that would work out well.

You state that the lower barrier for entry will improve competition. In the US, there is no competition, and any competition created will simply be bought out. Comcast has already gone and bought out many of the smaller cable companies and continue to force out others in areas that have competition. Even if the cost is lower to enter a market, many are already entrenched in communities and everyday that passes makes it harder for new companies to step up. In the end, it would remain the same major ISPs. They will have their territories and they will collude with one another to ensure pricing is at a max (like our power and oil companies).

You also seem to think that all these major companies like Google will be pitching in and covering all these costs. Why would Google pay a dime? No ISP in the world is going to offer service that doesn't have Google. So the ISPs will target the mid-level sites, and will gouge them for every penny they can.

Finally, the most important issue that you haven't mentioned once. ABUSE. This opens the door to abuse on so many levels. Besides opening the door to price gouging sites, what happens when these ISPs have competition on the web from other services? SBC could simply block Vongage and Skype as to kill competition. Couldn't Comcast simply sign a deal with iTunes and not allow any other site to sell music?

Then what happens to the consumers. Will we be told it's another $5/month to access adult content? Or maybe $3/month to run IM services? Want to be able to FTP? Well that'll cost you another $3/month. Do we really want that to happen?

The question is, do you trust the ISP that much to have that much power? Simply study the history of the Telcos in the US to see that they have taken every opportunity in the world to screw customers.

Finally, it shifts the internet. It makes the distributors of the net the money makers and not those that create reasons to be online. You take the money out of the hands of those who innovate, create, and have turned the web into what it was. You hand it to distributors who want to profit on other's great ideas. When you hurt those who innovate and create, you ultimately stunt the growth of the net.

google going back door?

Play the same google tune, garner grass roots support under the "good for the user" guise and then yank the carpet?

She is particularly critical of Google's efforts to promote Net neutrality at a time when the company is widely believed to be assembling its own Internet backbone, and is toying with different access strategies such as Wi-Fi.

Fortune Article

Quality of service

Clearwire already has limitations. They block voIP EXCEPT from their canada provider. They restrict bandwidth as they deem necessary. They can legally because they are offering a service and fall outside of the regulations.
Its already happening. The cable companies already throttle bandwidth on big users. The satellite networks trickle a user down. The more bandwidth consumed the slower the connection becomes.
What will happen on the cable, private network is they'll start tagging more low priority tags and high priority on the items they want delivered. Better start partnering soon.

I agree that g00gle doesn't care about the individuals only themselves so expect their lobbying money and telco's lobbying money to make the decision for congress.

The US is a republic for the wealthy, by the wealthy.

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