Net Neutrality Going down in Flames

percydaman

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So, because you want your streaming service to be faster, you would allow the federal government to take control of it?
That is crazy!...
I realize there are issues with companies doing sketchy things, but turning over control of a market to the federal government is not the way to fix it.

Jesus, you just keep throwing out huge broad generalities. Nothing in Net Neutrality says the federal government is taking control. It just limits how much a corporation can control. Some common sense regulations keeps corporations honest. How many examples do you need of how runaway corporate greed do you need to wake the fuck up?
 

westrock2000

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And without Net Neutrality, I can buy Comcast and remove access to Drudge Report, Breitbart, censor anything I want.

Of course you can.......but why would you? I can buy Comcast and block ALLLLLL THE INTERNETS! Muhuahahahahahaha

Think that can't happen? It has already happened in the TV market where one vendor is trying to get control over 70%+ of the local broadcasters(already controls over 30%) and has already censored programming.

Your example is using something already under the guidance and regulation of the FCC. I'm not compelled by this argument.
 

Lith1um

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Net neutrality is about more than just entertainment, it's also about controlling the flow and dissemination of information and ideas.

You say the establishment doesn't like the conservative political discourse in the HardForum? No problem, we'll just slow their traffic to a crawl and thereby limit the number of people exposed to those threatening ideas.

Still too much of a threat? No problem, we'll just put them behind a tiered paywall in the same manner that TV networks currently are. Then only people who can afford to pay a fee will have access to those threatening ideas.

Even on the entertainment side it's about controlling ideas. YouTube is just as much of a threat to the status quo as something like WikiLeaks.

Edit: Ever notice how literally all of the firearms related channels on Comcast's cable network are only accessible on the most expensive cable tier? It's a perfect example of a segment or class of information which a substantial segment of the population will never be exposed to, due to the content being placed behind a paywall. There is a substantial amount of Americans who will literally never be able to afford to purchase that tier in their entire life. For example, they will never be exposed to the positive aspects of the firearms community and the sport and yet they will be continually exposed to the negative aspects of firearms misuse such as news reports of murders. I'm just using firearms as an example, but you can see where it leads and how political discourse or public opinion can be subtlety influenced.
 
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{NG}Fidel

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Verizon has already stopped expanding FiOS once and isn't exactly growing quickly now. Google Fiber is expanding slower than a snails pace. For my in-laws in Bethany only a company like Verizon or Google could possibly expand there. However, the cost and barriers to entry (permits, city by-laws, lobbying by Mediacom the current monopolist) make even them think twice. Without Net Neutrality there is absolutely NOTHING from stopping Mediacom from saying...OK if you want Netflix in HD you pay $10 more a month and since there is no other provider everybody would be screwed and have to pony up.

The only reason we haven't seen anything like this yet is because they knew the laws were coming. Why would they do it before the laws actually go into effect? That would only give people ammunition to prevent the laws from being reversed.
Its happened before.
 

aaronspink

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Of course you can.......but why would you? I can buy Comcast and block ALLLLLL THE INTERNETS! Muhuahahahahahaha



Your example is using something already under the guidance and regulation of the FCC. I'm not compelled by this argument.

Broadcast TV is not under Title II and is not effected by net neutrality, which is why things like this can happen. You laugh off Comcast blocking content on a political basis, but it is well within their rights without net neutrality. After all, they don't have to answer to you, what are you going to do, stop using the internet where they have service?
 

westrock2000

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Well I have no doubt that your side will eventually prevail. All I can do is voice a concern.


This is actual factual BS, fyi. The net neutrality provisions are already in effect. Some additional provisions were KO'd which were consumer visibility provisions and additional consumer protections.

Is this a truthful statement? "The net neutrality provisions are already in effect." There isn't some additional info you'd like to add to that? Like that those laws were overturned?


You realize that Netflix and others offer caching devices free of charge right? Literally FREE OF CHARGE, they even monitor them and replace them FREE OF CHARGE. After all, the caching devices save Netflix and others money, provide better service, use less bandwidth and are super cheap to make. This information isn't even hard to come by, just google "netflix caching server". And if you think peering is worked out.....

This was not the subject of the argument. What does "free of charge" have to do with it? I don't know what super cheap means, but I would guess these in the order of $5K-$10K just for hardware alone (plus operating costs, licensing costs, etc). And there is more then 1. My argument was what about smaller companies that can't afford these, when their data has to travel across great distances and is impacted. Can the ISP not say "hey, if you pay us $5K per localized area of customers we will make sure they enjoy the same level of quality and service that Netflix customers receive". Is that different then Netflix paying for an appliance and gifting it to an ISP?
 

aaronspink

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Its not about a side, its about what is best for consumers in a monopoly market. Reasonable regulations on operation of monopoly and duopoly provides is perfectly reason and healthy for the market. Net Neutrality is pretty much just preventing ISPs from screwing over their customers.

Is this a truthful statement? "The net neutrality provisions are already in effect." There isn't some additional info you'd like to add to that? Like that those laws were overturned?

The regulations that were overturned were additional consumer protections orthogonal to NN dealing with consumer privacy. Instead now, your ISP can collect whatever data they want from you and use it for whatever they want. This won't benefit consumers in any way, just result in more monopoly profits.

This was not the subject of the argument. What does "free of charge" have to do with it? I don't know what super cheap means, but I would guess these in the order of $5K-$10K just for hardware alone (plus operating costs, licensing costs, etc). And there is more then 1. My argument was what about smaller companies that can't afford these, when their data has to travel across great distances and is impacted. Can the ISP not say "hey, if you pay us $5K per localized area of customers we will make sure they enjoy the same level of quality and service that Netflix customers receive". Is that different then Netflix paying for an appliance and gifting it to an ISP?

You can easily put together a caching box for ~5k all inclusive. There are a variety of open source solutions and toolkits available if you want to customize a caching server. They all pretty much run one form or another of linux as their OS. Smaller companies that can't afford their own infrastructure are generally using one of the numerous CDNs that are available which also have their own caching appliances and networks. If an ISP wants to get into the CDN business, that's fine too as long as they don't discriminate against other CDNs or other businesses, though they tend to have an issue with that as they've routinely in the past throttled external CDNs resulting in a worse experience for their customers. After all, ISPs are primarily monopolies (and in the few cases were they aren't they are duopolies) and don't have to care about things like customers or customer service. There is a reason why ISPs in the US are at the top of the most hated company lists.
 

Iceshot

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Just fucking great... now Comcast, Verizon, AT&T, etc get to reap obscene profits by largely in effect creating artificial tool booths on the information superhighway. These new incoming fee's for users and businesses alike are virtually pure profit as the retooled "service" models will charge premium's for "most" things we have always had and cost ISP's little to nothing additional then what they already spend. The implications of the removal of Title II are FAR reaching and everyone (except the ISP's) will be negatively impacted. A RAW deal for America for the benefit of a tiny few (business as usual!).

The loss of Titlle II is the opening volley in a slow but steady Corporate Takeover and shameless exploitation of the ONE and only truly open medium NOT completely DOMINATED by profit driven Corporate interests. We cannot allow the Internet to be retooled into Corporate dominated, increasingly censored, profit extortion machine.
 

InorganicMatter

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Good.

Net neutrality is a band-aid solution for another government created problem: regional monopolies. The solution is to bust those up and end regulatory capture, not add more band-aids.
 

heatlesssun

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Good.

Net neutrality is a band-aid solution for another government created problem: regional monopolies. The solution is to bust those up and end regulatory capture, not add more band-aids.

So allowing ISPs to have even more power is somehow going to make the situation you're describing better?
 

Ultima99

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The FCC has been getting in the way of communication invoation for years, giving them more control would just quantify the problem.
One of the biggest issues with Tittle II... traffic could be metered just like your electricity.

Umm, it already is???

Speed caps, bandwidth caps, throttling? Someone clearly think he is paying attention but is missing a hell of a lot of relevant info.
 

Blakestr

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When did we become such a binary society? If something has ANY problems at all, it must suck and be terrible and we'd better just get rid of it? When we regulated something, we often fuck it up too, but the idea behind the regulation is worth trying for. I can't believe on a Hardware forum, people don't see beyond it. "Build my own PC? Screw that, I tried that and it ran bad and I had some problems." No, just because the execution is flawed doesn't mean you give up on a good idea.

The problem I have is, yes, you invested billions to build the physical infrastructure and transatlantic cables that form a large basis of the "internet." So that means that, forever, you can control it however you see fit? That's wayyyy too much power for any corporation, period. Someone gave me the analogy that is a utility like the highway, which is state/federally owned, and there's some credence to that thought, I just don't know if I want all that power in the hands of a single entity. All I know is, net neutrality has been around since 2015 (and longer depending on how you look at it)...I didn't realize these huge corporations were going under and hemorrhaging money...are they?

By the way, stop saying, "the government." That's us. We're the government. Just because the collective majority of us is to lazy?ignorant/busy to hold our elected representatives accountable, doesn't mean the government is some innocuous entity on an island somewhere. It's US. We are the problem.
 

mope54

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For those under the age of 30...maybe even under 35, we had sandbox Internet already. We had metered Internet that charged by the megabyte. They were called AOL, CompuServe & Prodigy. Remember AOL "keywords"? And then, around the mid to late 90's people decided they didn't want this and there was an ENTIRE section in the phonebook of local mom&pop ran ISP's. These companies offered "just" the Internet and an email account. The success of these companies was the direct result of the free market causing access to the Internet and Internet content to shift. Eventually the big ISP's realized what was happening and they gave consumers the service they wanted and the mom & pop places all folded up. But the long term result is the AOL and CompuServe model went away and now ISP's offer "just" Internet and email. Of course it wasn't their choice, but if they wanted to remain relevant they had to change. The same profit you are all so afraid of making the world horrible is the same profit that keeps things in check.
I'm old enough to have been there and remember then, but for whatever reasons you and I do not have the same memories.

First of all, we're referring to a completely different medium. Back *then* we were dialing into rooms full of modems over telephone lines. The entire infrastructure has changed and with that change altered the legal context within which the businesses operate. It's almost as if you're talking about modern speed limits but referencing a point in time where accidents were infrequent--but leaving out the part of the story you're referring to is in regards to horse and buggy travel!

All of those golden era times you seem to be recalling (and it wasn't a panacea, regardless) that existed pre-2000 were primarily communications over telephone wires and, as such, fell into a grey area that the FCC was trying to figure out.
https://transition.fcc.gov/Bureaus/Cable/News_Releases/2002/nrcb0201.html

This shift from communications medium, that has historically been within government regulation, to service medium (watch the bouncing ball here: the transition was from moving information over telephone lines to moving entertainment over cable lines) meant that either new regulatory schemes became necessary, revamping old schemes, or just letting the information flow however it may do.

You seem to be favoring that last option. The historical evidence, however, seems to contradict your position that the free market opened up and customers got what they wanted. Broadband is still woefully behind in other countries and our costs rise without service improvements. The mom and pops weren't outperformed by corporate conglomerates. I can't imagine where you lived or how you accessed the internet to believe that's what happened. But don't take my word for it; here are two different places where those local ISPs were discussed (at the time they were relevant) and they don't sound anything like what you are describing and they certainly don't sound anything remotely close to the service one can expect from an ISP today:

http://www.nytimes.com/2000/08/17/technology/in-praise-of-the-mom-and-pop-isp.html
https://ask.slashdot.org/story/01/02/05/2334251/the-extinction-of-the-mom-pop-isp-service

What could possibly be argued is that large ISPs ushered in broadband because they owned the cable lines that already existed and had customers already so when they were able to offer "cable internet" in addition to "cable TV" they were able to outperform the dial-up mom and pop ISPs. But to go into that discussion would require us to examine the historical stranglehold the communication companies have maintained over their infrastructure as to how they became the sole information providers over those physical lines into people's homes.
 

InorganicMatter

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Umm, it already is???

Speed caps, bandwidth caps, throttling? Someone clearly think he is paying attention but is missing a hell of a lot of relevant info.

Metered by a business who has a vested interest in retaining its customers.

versus

Metered by government bureaucrats who have to keep "doing something" to justify their existence.

Tough choice...
 

heatlesssun

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How do you go from "breaking up monopolies and ending regulatory capture" to giving ISPs more power...

How does dropping net neutrality get you there? Those who oppose net neutrality, at least those in power, are trying to lock up monopoly power. They certainly aren't arguing against net neutrality because it's a Band-Aid and looking for the government to bust up monopolies.
 

Ultima99

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Metered by a business who has a vested interest in retaining its customers.

versus

Metered by government bureaucrats who have to keep "doing something" to justify their existence.

Tough choice...

You must be joking.

Of course in reality you aren't because your post just outed you as part of the diehard "all regulations are the worst thing ever" nut-job crowd.

You people should all be forced to drink the water in Flint, Michigan until you puke, then tell me that we don't need any rules and regulations. Sure our government is a very flawed institution that does a lot of bad things and could use a lot of reform and improvement, but they do serve a vital purpose that results in a lot of public good.

Even more amazing is your near bible thumping zeal for the righteousness of big business who has a "vested interest in retaining its customers". You do realize TV and Internet providers are some of the most hated companies in America with terrible records regarding customer service, right? No it seems you don't. Well, do you at least understand these companies are regional oligopolies and customers in most areas have little to no choice in who they get service from right? No, apparently not. Your ignorance astounds me sir.

Here is some reference material:

http://southpark.cc.com/clips/yueh39/bummed-out-by-the-cable-company#

 

Goride

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Messages
276
I honestly cannot tell if many of the posters in this thread just completely misunderstand the concepts of net neutrality, capitalist/free market economics, corporations and the laws governing them in America, etc., or if the posters are simply trolling.

There are so many posts here that make definitive and conclusory statements on these concepts and how they work, yet the statement is just utterly incorrect. It isn't even a difference of opinion. For instance, a liberal person might see things one way, a conservative another, and a more libertarian minded person yet another. I am not referring to that sort of thing. I mean statements like net neutrality is X, when that is not what it is about; or saying net neutrality is good (or bad) and justifying it with some statement about how corporations/marketplace/economics works, when they are just simply wrong about how those things actually function.

I know there will always be some trolls, but either this thread is packed full of troll posts, or a lot of people are just severely mistaken.


[For what it is worth, I am a computer nerd turned attorney who specializes in intellectual property. I am not claiming to be an expert on all these topics. However, a solid basic understanding of these topics is needed to be competent in my area. This thread is just severely lacking in understanding of the basic concepts and functionality of these things (which you actually need to have BEFORE you can even intelligibly discuss/disagree on what to do next). I typically like to think that the average poster at hardforums is above average in intelligence, but this thread does not seem to reflect that. It is possible that maybe a lot of people here just are really knowledgeable about computers and technology, but have difficulty understanding economics, the functionality of the marketplace in our society, legal/law issues, corporations role in society, etc., which admittedly take a different mindset. Or maybe I am just getting old and can no longer pick out the trolls with the accuracy I once had, lol.]
 

aaronspink

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Metered by a business who has a vested interest in retaining its customers.

versus

Metered by government bureaucrats who have to keep "doing something" to justify their existence.

Tough choice...

Metered by a monopoly or duopoly that has historically lower consumer ratings and are among the most hated companies in history with literally no reason to believe you have any other choice but to use their service.

Metered by a government who you have a say in and can actually influence to ban metering?
 

jegbus

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Maybe Net Neutrality was pursued in the wrong fashion. To implement it, the FCC made broadband companies subject to Title II regulation from 1934. At the time Wheeler said he'd give a light touch on the rules, but in reality everything in Title II could/can be used to govern providers. It turns them into utilities with all of the regulatory public utility mandates it contains. Not only large providers are affected, but also small providers, which could supposedly drive them out of business. There were some exemptions to certain regulations for small providers which could expire upon review.

Rate regulation is part of Title II. Arguments could be made that this would stifle (or has) investment and innovation since set prices might not allow for it, basically pushing providers into doing whatever is commercially good enough to get the job done. Supposedly those regulations would have been stripped out of Title II for net neutrality. Those might have been some of the rules exempted for small ISP's that serviced small towns/rural areas, but even if they were, adoption of Title II had already panicked those guys, and at least a few had already stopped infrastructure investing.

Also, some cases where net neutrality might be a bad thing might exist. At some time wireless plans were proposed by Sprint and T-Mobile for a reduced price that allowed access only to limited sites. Some plans were also proposed that left data caps untouched when using certain (music?) sites. I don't know if those plans ever became reality, but they actually don't sound bad to me for reduced prices. If net neutrality under Title II prohibits consumer choices like this, how is that any good?

Ajit Pai probably has some pretty good reasons for trying to get rid of Title II regulations. Not to mention, they were sort of pushed through, as Wheeler did a complete reversal on his approval of it when Obama put the pressure on. Ajit Pai at the time thought it was bad because it would allow for government micromanagement of every aspect of the internet.

It might be good to get rid of Title II for net neutrality and define something entirely new for this issue.
 

Lith1um

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"Ajit Pai probably has some pretty good reasons for trying to get rid of Title II regulations."

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
 

Lith1um

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It's comical thinking about all of the people defending the destruction of net neutrality when you know damn well they'd be flaming like a mofo if it was done by Obama or one of his appointees (or any other dem for that matter).

And it's also comical watching people champion the same week mantras that are championed by ISPs, almost word for word. Really makes me wonder how many paid shills are on the internet, because in this day and age social engineering is in full effect. Everyone with an agenda and a pile of cash is trying to "Correct the Record".
 

Killahurtz

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turning over control of the www to the FCC as a "utility" was never a good idea...guess the gubment won't be able to implement the new "user tax" that was bound to show up on your internet bill
 

Killahurtz

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"because in this day and age social engineering is in full effect"

...hahaha , and liberal leftists have been engineering it since the 60's...so any of it that is pimp slapped down is a great thing
 

Shogon

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"because in this day and age social engineering is in full effect"

...hahaha , and liberal leftists have been engineering it since the 60's...so any of it that is pimp slapped down is a great thing
You just proved his point, and another poster by showing the extreme binary nature of us Americans with our two party system.

You can move over here if you want. Plenty of people with the same train of thought as you that seem to enjoy being ass raped by corporations on a regular basis. Best of all you don't have to choose an ISP (perfect for those who can't count above the # 2, or passed high school), because there is no choice besides Comcast!
 

Jagger100

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Broadcast TV is not under Title II and is not effected by net neutrality, which is why things like this can happen. You laugh off Comcast blocking content on a political basis, but it is well within their rights without net neutrality. After all, they don't have to answer to you, what are you going to do, stop using the internet where they have service?
Putting the Internet under the FCC was the first mistake. Because they shouldn't have had the authority to control the rules on their own to begin with. The only question was when.
 

aaronspink

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Putting the Internet under the FCC was the first mistake. Because they shouldn't have had the authority to control the rules on their own to begin with. The only question was when.

The internet wasn't put under the FCC. It has ALWAYS been under the FCC. Literally, that the whole point of the FCC is to regulate communications so that congress doesn't have to micro manage shit they have no clue about.

The FCC doesn't control the rules, they follow them. There are thick volumes of congressional mandate that they follow in order to do their job. What classification a given medium takes is explicitly under the purview of the FCC with explicit guidelines defined by congress.
 

Lith1um

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The last time that FCC de-regulation was sold as a "good thing" for the American people, our democracy was fundamentally affected.


The Telecommunications Act of 1996 removed restrictions on media cross-ownership in America.

Before implementation of the act our nation's media was owned by more than 50 companies. (consider from a moment that we are a nation which has 50 states).Today 90% of our nation's media outlets are owned and fully controlled by 6 media conglomerates. GE, News-Corp, Disney, Viacom, Time Warner, and CBS, now control 90%. One of the 6 media conglomerates, GE, is a defense contractor AND a bank.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telecommunications_Act_of_1996


The Telecommunications Act of 1996 was the first significant overhaul of telecommunications law in more than sixty years, amending the Communications Act of 1934. The Act, signed by President Bill Clinton, represented a major change in American telecommunication law, since it was the first time that the Internet was included in broadcasting and spectrum allotment.[1] One of the most controversial titles was Title 3 ("Cable Services"), which allowed for media cross-ownership.[1] According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the goal of the law was to "let anyone enter any communications business -- to let any communications business compete in any market against any other."[2] The legislation's primary goal was deregulation of the converging broadcasting and telecommunications markets.[3] However, the law's regulatory policies have been questioned, including the effects of dualistic re-regulation of the communications market [4] [5]
 

Iceshot

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For anyone in support of the rollback of Title II, if you think for one moment that ISP's in collaboration with Major Media are NOT going to exploit & reshape the internet in THEIR image your a fool. The telecom industry outspent EVERY other major business who lobbies Washington DC last year. Mainstream Media giants were notably big spenders as well. The rolling back of Title II is "paid dividends" of their 85 million dollar bribes to Federal politicians from Telecom giants alone.

The fact is, viewership (and ultimately relevancy) of TV, newspapers, and radio is in massive decline as the masses flock to the internet. This is grossly unacceptable to giant Telecoms and Major Media who want to OWN (profit) and DOMINATE (control and censor) the flow of information as they have for decades without any real competition.

The internet is for the most part free and open to all without ANY "special" preference's given to anyone. This will soon change and it wont be the only big one that for the most part only benefits a tiny elite few. The reshaping, control, and censorship of the internet by Multinational Corporate giants will be a SLOW but steady one. Bit by bit through legislative fuckery, the exploitative potentials that can be ramrodded forward without Title II protection getting in the way combined with a complicit FCC / lawmakers, new policy / laws that screwover the masses for the benefit of a tiny few elites will happen. I'm old enough to have lived when Television had over 40 unique television broadcast networks. Thank's to the "bit by bit" loosening (aka "Light Touch" regulation) of FCC rules & oversight, today four Corporate Titans dominate over 90% airwaves (Disney, NBC, CBS, and Time Warner).

Without strong regulatory rules and enforcement from the FCC to "smack the overreaching tirelessly scheming hands of greedy Telecom & Media Corporations" the Internet is on track to face a similar fate that has befallen Television and Radio.
 

Koween

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Just looking at the shitty internet speeds you guys get in the states and the price it costs where one of these isp giants is involvesd shoud be a wake up call and a good reason for the government to regulate it. You have bandwidth caps? Wth is this, dial-up?
There is no competition between ISPs left - it seems that there's basically a single big-boy ISP per region.
I'm sitting here with a 300/300 fiber (can go up to 1000/1000) in the middle of nowhere between mountains in Norway (which is quite regulated by the government) the reason it is like that because there is some competition here - in a small village we have a choice of five different ISPs. Used to live in eastern europe too - the competition was really high between ISPs and 100/100 was pretty much basic.
Watching content made by youtubers living around the LA area I'm shocked something like 50/10 being top of the line...
I'm not trying to brag or anything like that, but maybe it's something you guys could learn from some other countries. Sometimes government regulation is needed to keep the corporations in check a little.
Ofc, maybe I'm wrong and don't have the full picture - it's not easy keeping up with it :)
 

kac77

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The FCC has been getting in the way of communication invoation for years, giving them more control would just quantify the problem.
One of the biggest issues with Tittle II... traffic could be metered just like your electricity.
Wow just wow. So you believe that government has been "getting in the way" when it comes to the innovation of the Internet? Good god we are doomed.
 

InorganicMatter

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Metered by a monopoly or duopoly that has historically lower consumer ratings and are among the most hated companies in history with literally no reason to believe you have any other choice but to use their service.

Wait, which were we talking about here?
 
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