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 Message Boards » » *** Official Net Neutrality Thread *** Page [1]  
Prospero
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It's here, and watered down. The big question = how will it be enforced?

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/12/its-here-fcc-adopts-net-neutrality-lite.ars
Quote :
""Today for the first time the FCC is adopting rules to preserve basic Internet values," declared FCC Chair Julius Genachowski, who called the Order "a strong sensible non-ideological framework that protects Internet freedom."

The regulations ban content blocking and require transparency from ISPs. They also require network management and packet discrimination to be "reasonable," but they exempt wireless broadband from all but the transparency and blocking rules.

"Managed services" delivered over a last-mile broadband pipe will be allowed, as we expected, though the FCC does say it will monitor them for anti-competitive behavior.

...

So is this move a setback or progress?

"Yes, it's a step forward," declared Harold Feld of Public Knowledge, "but hardly more than an incremental step beyond the Internet Policy Statement adopted by the previous Republican FCC. After such an enormous build up and tumultuous process, it is unsurprising that supporters of an open Internet are bitterly disappointed — particularly given the uncertainty over how the rules will be enforced."


Another good descriptive article:
http://www.dailytech.com/FCC+Holds+Meeting+on+New+Internet+Regulations+Plans+to+Block+Throttling/article20450.htm

[Edited on December 21, 2010 at 2:08 PM. Reason : .]

12/21/2010 1:59:07 PM

wdprice3
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But what does this mmmeeeeaaaaaannnn?

12/21/2010 4:57:19 PM

Prospero
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Quote :
"The regulations ban content blocking and require transparency from ISPs. They also require network management and packet discrimination to be "reasonable," but they exempt wireless broadband from all but the transparency and blocking rules."


It means they tried to prevent ISPs from managing our packets, but failed, only succeeded at preventing them from totally blocking our packets. Particularly failed when it came to wireless providers.

[Edited on December 21, 2010 at 5:05 PM. Reason : /]

12/21/2010 5:04:37 PM

mellocj
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I don't think it means anything yet, except to confirm that the government will attempt to do 'something' when an issue like net neutrality gets enough media attention.

It hasn't been proven in court that the FCC has authority to regulate and enforce this.

12/21/2010 5:19:06 PM

Kurtis636
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I can't wait until they start doing things like setting prices and further overstepping their authority.

12/21/2010 5:54:47 PM

moron
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It seems reasonable the FCC can regulate this considering current and past rulings.

But i can't see anything that this would really fix/enhance right now. I'm sure it will change the long-term landscape to make it less likely that there is a "tiered" Internet experience, but it might not have come to that anyway.

[Edited on December 21, 2010 at 5:55 PM. Reason : ]

12/21/2010 5:55:05 PM

Kurtis636
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Competition does a lot to prevent that kind of thing. Services like Uverse, Fios, etc. make it unlikely that cable companies would go that route without some serious collusion.

What I fear is that now that the FCC is involved, they will inevitably become more involved. The internet, which has been a bastion of informational freedom will get regulated, sites shut down, etc.

12/21/2010 5:57:57 PM

Prospero
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Official FCC Press Release
http://www.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2010/db1221/DOC-303745A1.pdf

*ahem* Corporate Bias *ahem*
http://www.engadget.com/2010/12/21/fcc-we-didnt-impose-stricter-net-neutrality-regulations-on-wir/

12/21/2010 9:04:28 PM

Prospero
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http://www.theopeninter.net/

12/23/2010 5:41:49 PM

LoneSnark
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So, is this going to stop ESPN360 from blocking ISPs that don't pay a premium?

12/23/2010 6:26:02 PM

1337 b4k4
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"The big question = how will it be enforced?"


The same way any regulation or government action is enforced, to ensure maximum benefit for the incumbents, both private and public.

And didn't ISP's already try the whole "pay us for access to your favorite sites" thing? I think they called it AOL, and as I recall, it was wildly successful until people realized they could get "more internet" by going with a regular ISP. If AT&T decided to start blocking Facebook, or Netflix or whoever, they'd lose just like AOL did.

[Edited on December 23, 2010 at 8:15 PM. Reason : fdgs]

12/23/2010 8:09:43 PM

Stein
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"And didn't ISP's already try the whole "pay us for access to your favorite sites" thing? I think they called it AOL, and as I recall, it was wildly successful until people realized they could get "more internet" by going with a regular ISP."


You never actually used AOL, did you?

12/23/2010 8:59:06 PM

mellocj
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"If AT&T decided to start blocking Facebook, or Netflix or whoever, they'd lose just like AOL did.
"


The problem with a competitive market-based solution like that, is that broadband for consumers is NOT a competitive marketplace. For high-speed broadband, everyone has 2 or less choices. The phone company and the cable company. Thats it. Apart from a few exceptions like muni broadband which are available to less than 1% of the country, consumers dont have choices.

12/24/2010 12:43:44 PM

1337 b4k4
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"You never actually used AOL, did you?
"


I did actually, and before they finally opened themselves up to most of the "World Wide Web". Perhaps you don't remember all the web sites that used to have "AOL users click here" links that took to to a version that more or less worked with AOL. Or Perhaps you don't remember when AOL didn't even have an address bar, because online with AOL meant AOL content pretty much exclusively? Or the number of sites that you used to have to open IE or netscape after you signed in with AOL to even get them to work at all?

Quote :
"The problem with a competitive market-based solution like that, is that broadband for consumers is NOT a competitive marketplace. For high-speed broadband, everyone has 2 or less choices. The phone company and the cable company. "


Not to turn this into a soap box thread, but a good part of that is because the government decided they knew best how to make things work and granted the various telco's legislative monopolies. Even now we have the telco's fighting to make it illegal to compete (see TWs lawsuits over muni networks). More government interference will not help things.

12/24/2010 1:37:24 PM

Stein
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"I did actually, and before they finally opened themselves up to most of the "World Wide Web". Perhaps you don't remember all the web sites that used to have "AOL users click here" links that took to to a version that more or less worked with AOL. Or Perhaps you don't remember when AOL didn't even have an address bar, because online with AOL meant AOL content pretty much exclusively? Or the number of sites that you used to have to open IE or netscape after you signed in with AOL to even get them to work at all?"


AOL was a content provider in addition to an ISP at that time and membership provided you certain benefits. It wasn't anything like you were attempting to describe.

12/24/2010 1:45:33 PM

TGD
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"wdprice3: But what does this mmmeeeeaaaaaannnn?"

FCC gets a hook into a whole new arena of regulation that they'll undoubtedly expand repeatedly over the next several years.

Google gets the government to cement its competitive advantage over other tech and content companies.

Joe Consumer gets to be at the mercy of the 1-3% of users who suck up 97% of the bandwidth.

Lawyers get to rack up millions in fees litigating the meaning of "reasonable" network management.

Etc.

12/24/2010 3:09:45 PM

cdubya
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^ At first glance, I don't agree with your last three points.

Can you go into some more detail?

12/25/2010 5:24:46 PM

TGD
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On the Google side, they get two benefits -- (i) they're high-bandwidth products (YouTube, Picasa, etc) receive government protection since providers can't throttle bandwidth consumption based on content type/usage, and (ii) net "neutrality" institutionalizes pre-existing disparities in content speed, since if you want faster content you'll have to buy more+faster servers that you can locate in warehouses closer to the backbones (like Google has done already) instead of innovating to come up with more desirable content for the end user.

That's why Google was such a big and early supporter of net neutrality: they get to use government power against potential competitors

Re the "being at the mercy of everyone else", it's basically the same issue as with Google's high-bandwidth services -- since providers are now banned from throttling bandwidth for disproportionately high users and can't discriminate against "legal" traffic (even if it's swamping the network), the casual users and low-bandwidth users are at the mercy of people who want to fire up a torrent to share their latest mixtape and then walk away from the computer while it seeds. If you've ever tried playing a game on Resnet and had to give up because lag was so bad while everyone was sharing music or other sh*t, basically imagine that applied everywhere and protected by the government.

As for the lawyers, any time you've got a reference to "reasonableness" in a new area, no one knows what "reasonable" actually means until someone's been sued and the court makes a decision -- and even then, there's always a new attorney to argue that what used to be "reasonable" is no longer "reasonable" for some reason or another. Net "neutrality" is going to be a field day for IP lawyers

The federal government created the "mess" of monopolist-acting ISPs by promoting telecom monopolies years ago... and yet now they think more federal government action will fix the problems the federal government created...  

12/26/2010 12:06:48 AM

cdubya
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^ Thanks for the follow-up!

Regarding (i), I don't see this as more of a benefit to google than any of their major (or minor, really) competitors for the respective products. How does this give them a heads-up relative to competing products? That is unless you're assuming that ISPs launching a la carte access plans will only have a 'youtube' plan, and not a 'video' plan that greylists all of the online video providers of any consequence? If ISPs can get away with this, I see no reason to believe they will simply target the top one or two services in each market. That would most certainly draw the ire of lobbyists and law-makers alike.

Regarding (ii), I'm pretty familiar with edge caching deployment (google's included), and I still don't see this as a competitive advantage for them relative to any of their major competitors, assuming you buy into a greylist and not a you-tube package. An edge cache (whether supported directly by google as15169) or being operated indirectly by google while existing inside of a major ISP will still need its bits to disseminate between the cache location and the end user. Google, of all the major video (or content in general) providers, is one of the strongest proponents of edge caching as close to the users as possible both for client experience reasons as well as easing the amount of traffic they exchange between their network to ISPs, thereby passing along the obligation of bit delivery.

Regarding "being at the mercy of everyone else", it was my understanding that under the new regulations carriers were banned from differentiating traffic between 'legal' services, but that doesn't at all read the same as what you wrote. I would argue (and while I don't have statistics on-hand, I'd wager that they agree) that the majority of the sustained outliers that you're referencing are driven predominantly by illegal traffic, not legal traffic. There will absolutely be high bandwidth consumers using predominantly legal traffic (hi-def youtube, netflix, hulu, etc), but those aren't exactly outlier services or users, then. Getting back to your original point, why is the recent regulation going to perpetuate joe-schmoe and the 99th percentile user situation in a negative way?

Regarding the lawyer point, I do agree that 'reasonable' is an unfortunate term. That said, I have to assume their word choice was intentionally vague. I don't think it's fair for anyone on this board or in any courtroom in america to assume that they're savvy enough to understand all of the fiscal and technical nuances of such a complicated and modern dilemma. I'm certainly not an expert on law, but is this an IP issue? Unless you meant 'internet protocol' instead of 'intellectual property', in which case- punny. How about the opposite case? If no ruling is passed, and this tiered system is allowed to be put into place, would you expect more class action and monopoly lawsuits to follow? I certainly would, and I'd wager there would be far more lawyers and associated fees involved.

That's a lot of words, but in general my point is that while this (and the hopeful prevention of any type of commercially driven service differentiation between multiple content providers) is good for Google, I think it's just as important to all of their competitors and the internet as a whole.

I think the real issue here is driving up the level of quantity and quality of competition in the broadband subscriber market, which as you probably already know both google and the fcc have taken stabs at with varied real and potential success.

I've been saying this for a while, and admittedly I may be wrong. I'm starting to feel like a lonely voice

12/26/2010 2:04:36 AM

LoneSnark
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"If no ruling is passed, and this tiered system is allowed to be put into place, would you expect more class action and monopoly lawsuits to follow? I certainly would, and I'd wager there would be far more lawyers and associated fees involved."

Monopoly lawsuits can only be brought by the justice department. As for class action, it requires some law, any law, to sustain a lawsuit. Absent the FCC's current attempt at law making, there is none, so all such cases would be thrown out, so no point filling them.

That said, no one has yet figured out how the FCC is going to sustain its current attempt at law making without the right from Congress to do so. It's previous attempt was thrown out, it's current attempt has no more foundation. As such, the first actual lawsuit will, once again, result in the FCC being thrown out of the internet business.

12/26/2010 4:03:08 AM

TGD
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It was a lot of words, but not nearly as many as the 194-page FCC opinion -- if I can gag my way through that (most of it anyway), I can make it through this

---

Quote :
"cdubya: Regarding (i), I don't see this as more of a benefit to google than any of their major (or minor, really) competitors for the respective products. How does this give them a heads-up relative to competing products? That is unless you're assuming that ISPs launching a la carte access plans will only have a 'youtube' plan, and not a 'video' plan that greylists all of the online video providers of any consequence? If ISPs can get away with this, I see no reason to believe they will simply target the top one or two services in each market. That would most certainly draw the ire of lobbyists and law-makers alike."

The advantage to Google is that it discourages new entrants to the market who are producing/providing new content/applications/services that haven't been invented yet. It basically enshrines a 2010 business model favoring 2010 content/applications/services into regulatory law -- letting Google milk its current offerings while erecting government barriers to any challenges.

You're right that it benefits Google's current competitors as well, but in my mind that highlights the inherent problem with the rules: all the 2010 providers get a built-in advantage against the 2011+ providers courtesy of the federal government.

---

Quote :
"cdubya: Regarding (ii), I'm pretty familiar with edge caching deployment (google's included), and I still don't see this as a competitive advantage for them relative to any of their major competitors, assuming you buy into a greylist and not a you-tube package. An edge cache (whether supported directly by google as15169) or being operated indirectly by google while existing inside of a major ISP will still need its bits to disseminate between the cache location and the end user. Google, of all the major video (or content in general) providers, is one of the strongest proponents of edge caching as close to the users as possible both for client experience reasons as well as easing the amount of traffic they exchange between their network to ISPs, thereby passing along the obligation of bit delivery."

Unless I'm misunderstanding what you're saying here, our respective points aren't mutually exclusive. Even with edge caching, Google (and other major operators) will be providing faster traffic over any given ISP's lines than, say, a bunch of kids in the NC State CSC Department who invent the Next Big Thing simply because Google has more+faster server farms.

---

Quote :
"cdubya: Regarding "being at the mercy of everyone else", it was my understanding that under the new regulations carriers were banned from differentiating traffic between 'legal' services, but that doesn't at all read the same as what you wrote. I would argue (and while I don't have statistics on-hand, I'd wager that they agree) that the majority of the sustained outliers that you're referencing are driven predominantly by illegal traffic, not legal traffic. There will absolutely be high bandwidth consumers using predominantly legal traffic (hi-def youtube, netflix, hulu, etc), but those aren't exactly outlier services or users, then. Getting back to your original point, why is the recent regulation going to perpetuate joe-schmoe and the 99th percentile user situation in a negative way?"

This is one of those situations where the principle and the practice don't/can't match up. Yeah it's true that the FCC allows ISP discrimination against illegal content, but in the same order it also discourages things like DPI and other privacy-invasive techniques to determine what is actually illegal -- precisely because net neutrality advocates feared that DPI could be used to prevent competition.

So unless an ISP invests $$$ (translation: increasing prices) to beef up personnel for the cat-and-mouse game of monitoring specific servers for illegal content, in practice what you're going to have is proliferation of illegal content (and its corresponding swamping of bandwidth) getting worse even though ISPs technically have the legal right to prevent it.

---

Quote :
"cdubya: Regarding the lawyer point, I do agree that 'reasonable' is an unfortunate term. That said, I have to assume their word choice was intentionally vague. I don't think it's fair for anyone on this board or in any courtroom in america to assume that they're savvy enough to understand all of the fiscal and technical nuances of such a complicated and modern dilemma. I'm certainly not an expert on law, but is this an IP issue? Unless you meant 'internet protocol' instead of 'intellectual property', in which case- punny."

They did leave it intentionally vague, which is true for the vast majority of federal and state statutes that use the "reasonable" standard -- they do it intentionally, with the expectation that specific disputes will be hashed out by courts capable of considering individualized circumstances.

The problem is that broadband -- both wired and wireless -- is still a nascent marketplace with rapidly evolving technology. Courts can surely decide what's "reasonable" today (they'll have no choice now that these rules are in place), but the high rate of innovation means today's case law defining "reasonableness" will be stale pretty quick and invite more litigation than if these rules had been adopted at some point in the future.

---

Quote :
"cdubya: How about the opposite case? If no ruling is passed, and this tiered system is allowed to be put into place, would you expect more class action and monopoly lawsuits to follow? I certainly would, and I'd wager there would be far more lawyers and associated fees involved."

Your question requires two independent conditions -- no ruling being passed, and the tiered access being implemented.

But the tiered access still hasn't happened despite it being talked about for years. For example, see this email from TCP inventor David Farber way back in June 2006:

Why assume that the FCC has to act right this very moment, when they haven't had to act for 4+ years now?

In every area of law accessible to those of us who aren't in the government, you can't file a lawsuit until you've actually been injured (or your injury is imminent). Here we have the FCC enacting quasi-legislation to address a problem that doesn't yet exist, and that it could just as easily correct if it ever did.

---

Quote :
"cdubya: That's a lot of words, but in general my point is that while this (and the hopeful prevention of any type of commercially driven service differentiation between multiple content providers) is good for Google, I think it's just as important to all of their competitors and the internet as a whole."

I think it's true that it's just as important to all of Google's 2010 competitors and the 2010 internet as a whole. I just think it screws the rest of us and cripples the American content on the internet going forward.

I guess we'll both see in a few years based on how things are going in Europe and other less-regulated areas (though I never thought I'd hear myself say Europe was regulating something less than the US )

---

Quote :
"cdubya: I think the real issue here is driving up the level of quantity and quality of competition in the broadband subscriber market, which as you probably already know both google and the fcc have taken stabs at with varied real and potential success."

I agree, but it also illustrates my point -- the lack of competition is a direct result of government intervention (providing incentives for state authorization of broadband monopolies years ago, purportedly to build out access quickly).

If the federal government was incompetent before, why assume they're competent now?

---

Quote :
"LoneSnark: It's previous attempt was thrown out, it's current attempt has no more foundation. As such, the first actual lawsuit will, once again, result in the FCC being thrown out of the internet business."

I'm not convinced -- I wouldn't be surprised to find this latest effort reaching the Supreme Court, and it getting upheld this go-round.

But I concede I could be wrong here and going off nothing but gut instinct instead of any real analysis of the case law

---

For anyone who wants to read the whole FCC opinion/ruling, you can download the PDF file at: http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-10-201A1.pdf

[Edited on December 30, 2010 at 10:17 PM. Reason : cdubya: sorry for so many words myself this time ]

12/30/2010 10:11:24 PM

LoneSnark
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"I'm not convinced -- I wouldn't be surprised to find this latest effort reaching the Supreme Court, and it getting upheld this go-round.

But I concede I could be wrong here and going off nothing but gut instinct instead of any real analysis of the case law"

If you read the opinion of the judge that threw the FCC out this last time, you would see he believed he was acting as the supreme court would have acted given a recent turn on the court against administrative law making.

Besides, where are your democratic principles? Why would you be happy for a bunch of unelected bureaucrats to appoint themselves rulers of the internet in clear opposition to the laws passed by the people's representatives in Congress? I may oppose political regulation of the internet, but I wouldn't want some major general parking tanks on the white house lawn to get my way. You want regulation? Pass a law, just like I am going to do when it comes time to repeal your law.

12/31/2010 5:33:45 PM

TGD
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"LoneSnark: Besides, where are your democratic principles?"

oh I've definitely still got mine (and wholly oppose the move by the FCC) -- I just don't trust the judiciary to demonstrate theirs

1/1/2011 2:20:46 AM

cdubya
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^^^ agreed on most of your clarifying points.

Quote :
"Even with edge caching, Google (and other major operators) will be providing faster traffic over any given ISP's lines than, say, a bunch of kids in the NC State CSC Department who invent the Next Big Thing simply because Google has more+faster server farms."


Sure, but that's a benefit of performing edge-caching. My point is that net neutrality has no effect on the effectiveness of edge-caching. Any content providers bits must transit the end-user's ISP network, (and are thereby subject to potential service differentiation). This holds true whether these bits are sourced via traditional origin or via CDN (or some similar edge cache). Also, a very large number of small startups and individual projects are utilizing one of the many of the commercially cdn and/or cloud services very early on, providing them similar (though likely less efficient and more costly) benefits to those provided to google by its edge caching efforts.

Quote :
"net neutrality advocates feared that DPI could be used to prevent competition."

I personally haven't heard much concern regarding the usage of DPI as a classification mechanism for traffic differentiation, in the context of net neutrality. All ISPs of any reasonable scale implement their multi-field classification for QoS via src/dst ip/port. I don't know of any that use DPI, for the costs reasons that you've already pointed out as well as for potential performance/bottleneck implications. In my opinion, its a moot point in the discussion of net neutrality.

I haven't read the complete fcc ruling yet. I'll save that for a plane flight or one remarkably boring night

1/2/2011 3:30:27 AM

Prospero
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http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2011/01/verizon-sues-fcc-says-net-neutrality-lite-rules-illegal.ars

VZW sues FCC, no surprise here.

Quote :
"[But] we are deeply concerned by the FCC's assertion of broad authority for sweeping new regulation of broadband networks and the Internet itself. We believe this assertion of authority goes well beyond any authority provided by Congress, and creates uncertainty for the communications industry, innovators, investors and consumers.""


pretty much what mellocj said.

Quote :
"It hasn't been proven in court that the FCC has authority to regulate and enforce this."


[Edited on January 20, 2011 at 6:24 PM. Reason : .]

1/20/2011 6:23:54 PM

lewisje
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New rules were enacted, now cue the GOP spin about how a rule that enhances freedom for ordinary people is somehow anti-freedom: http://tinyurl.com/qyp8w6k

[Edited on February 27, 2015 at 8:05 AM. Reason : let's try this long link again

2/27/2015 8:03:19 AM

colangus
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I'm shocked how many people automatically take a stance just because the President spoke up about NN.

I wish he didn't give his opinion. Now 45% of the population automatically is against NN.

This makes me wonder what other issues are full of shit since most people have no fucking clue about NN.

It actually pisses me off to a point where I can't read comments from the right wingers. My heart rate jumps and I want to strangle these people. THEY HAVE NO FUCKING CLUE!!!!!!

Obama isn't going to take away your internets.

2/27/2015 12:42:55 PM

CaelNCSU
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Quote :
"This makes me wonder what other issues are full of shit since most people have no fucking clue about NN. "


How old are you? Pretty sure I realized this by my 18th birthday.

2/27/2015 5:01:32 PM

lewisje
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I hadn't even heard of Net Neutrality when I turned 18 (no regular Internets until college).

2/27/2015 5:51:43 PM

moron
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When you look at the graveyard of companies that have failed because of the artificially depressed network infrastructure, I can't see how anyone could argue for the status quo, or not want a drastic shakeup in the ISP business.

2/27/2015 11:53:08 PM

moron
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Really good info: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2xdsdw/the_internet_is_safe_we_are_a_group_of_a_few_net/

2/28/2015 3:01:06 AM

Str8BacardiL
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The republicans on facebook want Net Neutrality overturned.


They think Time Warner and Comcast are going to fuck them over less than the FCC.

3/9/2015 7:44:53 PM

quagmire02
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no one with a college education truly things republicans are in touch with reality

3/9/2015 7:46:41 PM

Doss2k
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Welp

1/25/2017 11:09:18 AM

ssclark
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?

1/25/2017 1:39:48 PM

V0LC0M
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Trump is about to completely stomp on NN.

Putting that shitclown Verizon lawyer in the FCC chair is all he needed to do.

1/25/2017 2:34:15 PM

moron
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Either we end up like Canada with really high costs for crappy service because of monopolization.

Or businesses really do have super secret innovative products that have been held back by net neutrality. I guess we'll find out.

1/25/2017 4:54:59 PM

A Tanzarian
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$0.10 / MB domestic browsing (incl Canada and Mexico)
$0.15 / MB international browsing

1/27/2017 10:29:38 AM

LoneSnark
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Thank goodness the Internet will soon be out of the FCC's hands, and safely out of reach of Donald Trump. I'm sure by his 4th year he would have been pressuring the FCC to censor all the "fake news" coming out of the media.

7/19/2017 1:57:06 PM

Grandmaster
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https://np.reddit.com/r/technology/comments/6odans/fcc_now_says_there_is_no_documented_analysis_of/dkgxguo/

7/20/2017 2:50:15 PM

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