The Internet will never satisfy its lust for Net Neutrality and Bandwidth

GasBandit

Staff member
And any places that try it will most likely get sued by ISPs, as they have every single time it's been done in the past. Why do we have to put up with this bullshit over and over and over?
Because people haven't gotten mad enough about it yet to actually force action against it. We'll see if that changes.
 
And that fact doesn't scream to you that internet service needs to be treated as essential as phone lines?
Do you know what Obama's "broadband" initiatives did for me and those in most rural areas?

Absolutely nothing. They enriched the coffers of the ISPs and "broadband" providers.

Pretending that net neutrality solves this is, and here I'm being unkind, sorry, but it's, idiocy.

The rules and regulations on the phone lines has actually held them back anyway. We would have crystal clear voice over copper right now if the phone companies had been allowed to compete, but the growth of the bell monopoly, and then the successful lobbying to regulate phone companies allowing mini monopolies has, arguably, stifled the industry because they didn't have to compete on features. They didn't have to compete at all. It wasn't until cell phones came along that companies had to start thinking about free long distance and other normally expensive options.

So if you really want to discuss "essential as phone lines" i think there are a few very hard lessons we have to take away from that industry and be gun shy about.

More providers to each household, and more freedom for those providers to compete on features MIGHT not be a bad thing.

It might be, and certainly a lot of the industry will be shaken up and changed due to the altered landscape, but there's no proof it'll be bad for consumers, just a lot of speculation.

When it's provably bad for consumers, we lobby the FTC, then the FCC, then congress. And if nothing is done, we fix it ourselves by voting with our wallets.

90% of consumers will have a choice, and they'll have hundreds of billions of dollars to vote with.

Let's see what happens.

(though I'd still have preferred if net neutrality stayed. But it didn't, and so like watching trump get elected I'm sitting here eating my popcorn and watching with rapt attention to see how things actually shake out)
 

figmentPez

Staff member
And all of those problems were resolved before the net neutrality ruling was made. None of them persisted until or were dismantled by the ruling, they were dismantled by the customers.
 

GasBandit

Staff member
And all of those problems were resolved before the net neutrality ruling was made. None of them persisted until or were dismantled by the ruling, they were dismantled by the customers.
The thing is, were I in their shoes, I'd interpret the repeal to be a tacit wink-and-nod to proceed with other things of that nature, plus the ones that only Neutrality regulation determined to be illegal - such as "fast lanes."

They now have carte blanche to reduce speed of any "non-premium" traffic they desire, extorting more money from both end user and content provider, enforced by geographic monopoly.
 
The most egregious example I can think of is this one, and I wish I could find the article so you can read about it yourself.

-City residents complain that service is too slow.
-City residents convince city to lay its own network.
-City agrees, starts laying its own network.
-ISP notices, sues city due to technicality or some junk.
-Case goes to court for 6 months or something.
-City is prohibited from proceeding while case is pending.
-MEANWHILE: ISP "suddenly" decides area is ripe for an upgrade, finally gets off its butt and lays infrastructure for improved network to city. They're not prohibited from doing so while the court case is pending.
-Court case drags on.
-City's hands are tied, has to watch ISP build out improved network.
-Court case finally ends, city is finally given go-ahead to proceed...but lo! ISP has completed its upgrade and is offering low-priced promotional upgrades to their brand new, faster service!
-City residents, taking path of least resistance, upgrade their plans, leaving city's effort to lay network high and dry and with insufficient funding to continue.
-City abandons network plans, or severely curtails them as a result.
-ISP wins!

The single biggest thing I see this ruling doing is to change requirements such that an ISP can enact whatever restrictions it wants provided that they fully disclose these restrictions, ostensibly so you can go to a different ISP if you don't like their terms, wink wink, nudge nudge, good luck.

EDIT: Oh hey, looks like it was Chattanooga, which is practically the poster child for "what could be." They offer 1GB symmetric for $70/mo, BUT only if you live in the area actually served by the utility that delivers it. If you don't, too bad.
EDIT2: No, it was not Chattanooga, but I don't remember exactly what city it was. I know that it was several years ago (2010-2012 maybe?) and that I am pretty sure I mentioned it on the board, but don't remember much else beyond what I said above.

--Patrick
 
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figmentPez

Staff member
And all of those problems were resolved before the net neutrality ruling was made. None of them persisted until or were dismantled by the ruling, they were dismantled by the customers.
And how many cases aren't on that list because ISPs got away with it?

Like, for instance, how ISPs repeatedly blocked Revision3's attempts to distribute their shows via Bittorrent, to the point that Rev3 eventually had to drop that distribution method.
 
And how many cases aren't on that list because ISPs got away with it?
None of those were dismantled by customers. They were all dismantled because customers made enough noise that a regulatory agency of some sort heard about it and started to take an interest. None of those were resolved by people "voting with their wallets," they all required the intervention of some higher authority. So basically, the only demonstrable power the customer has to effect change is to make enough noise that the ISP has to finally make some concessions in order to shut them up before mom and dad wake up and hear them arguing and decide to come downstairs and Do Something About It.

--Patrick
 

figmentPez

Staff member
In case that anyone was in doubt that Net Neutrality is a 1st Amendment issue, from the ACLU:

"AT&T's jamming of a rock star's political protest. During an August 2007 performance by the rock group Pearl Jam in Chicago, AT&T censored words from lead singer Eddie Vedder's performance. The ISP, which was responsible for streaming the concert, shut off the sound as Vedder sang, "George Bush, leave this world alone" and "George Bush, find yourself another home." By doing so, AT&T, the self-advertised presenting sponsor of the concert series, denied viewers the complete exclusive coverage they were promised. Although Vedder's words contained no profanity, an AT&T spokesperson claimed that the words were censored to prevent youth visiting the website from being exposed to "excessive profanity." AT&T then blamed the censorship on an external Website contractor hired to screen the performance, calling it a mistake and pledging to restore the unedited version of Vedder's appearance online.

"Verizon Wireless's censorship of NARAL Pro-Choice America. In late 2007, Verizon Wireless cut off access to a text-messaging program by the pro-abortion-rights group NARAL that the group used to send messages to its supporters. Verizon stated it would not service programs from any group "that seeks to promote an agenda or distribute content that, in its discretion, may be seen as controversial or unsavory to any of our users." Verizon Wireless reversed its censorship of NARAL only after widespread public outrage.

"Telus' blocking of striking workers' web site. In 2005, the Canadian telecom, involved in a bitter labor dispute, blocked its internet subscribers from accessing a website run by the union that was on strike against Telus."
 
Motherboard & VICE Are Building a Community Internet Network

I wish them well. They have a lot of challenges to overcome, but I hope they are able to do so, even if just to promote GOOD behavior from the "big guys". Other than technical challenges (which I don't mean to minimize) their biggest is going to be some kind of pro-monopoly legislation, both on local/state, and national levels.
 
Guys, I'll say this honestly, I'd probably fist fight Ajit Pai if given the opportunity. I just saw that smarmy fuck faced video he was in. He needs an old fashioned dust up.

I think I'd win too.

How the fuck can he be in charge of something so important?

I say this without irony in a world that has Donald Trump as president of the United States.
 

GasBandit

Staff member
Guys, I'll say this honestly, I'd probably fist fight Ajit Pai if given the opportunity. I just saw that smarmy fuck faced video he was in. He needs an old fashioned dust up.

I think I'd win too.

How the fuck can he be in charge of something so important?

I say this without irony in a world that has Donald Trump as president of the United States.
He is the metaphorical wolf in charge of the hen house. A Verzion lawyer, in charge of the FCC. I often wondered why Obama made him a commissioner, but I don't wonder why Trump made him chairman.
 

figmentPez

Staff member


I don't think this person understands how things work, but I'm open to the possibility that I'm the one who is confused.

I thought it was state/city/county laws that kept anyone and everyone from running cable to whomever and wherever. That and just the cost of running wires because of distance. Poland is more densely populated than all but 8 of the United States. It has nearly the population of California in half the area.

Also, Poland most definitely does have several different regulatory groups involved in telecommunications, and has all sorts of control over pricing, negotiation disputes and all sorts of stuff. I'm not sure why this person thinks that they don't have the equivalent of an FCC.
 


I don't think this person understands how things work, but I'm open to the possibility that I'm the one who is confused.

I thought it was state/city/county laws that kept anyone and everyone from running cable to whomever and wherever. That and just the cost of running wires because of distance. Poland is more densely populated than all but 8 of the United States. It has nearly the population of California in half the area.

Also, Poland most definitely does have several different regulatory groups involved in telecommunications, and has all sorts of control over pricing, negotiation disputes and all sorts of stuff. I'm not sure why this person thinks that they don't have the equivalent of an FCC.
Maybe their regulator is actually enforcing competition instead of trying to regulate monopolies. There's a concept.
 

GasBandit

Staff member


I don't think this person understands how things work, but I'm open to the possibility that I'm the one who is confused.

I thought it was state/city/county laws that kept anyone and everyone from running cable to whomever and wherever. That and just the cost of running wires because of distance. Poland is more densely populated than all but 8 of the United States. It has nearly the population of California in half the area.

Also, Poland most definitely does have several different regulatory groups involved in telecommunications, and has all sorts of control over pricing, negotiation disputes and all sorts of stuff. I'm not sure why this person thinks that they don't have the equivalent of an FCC.
Maybe Poland is small enough, with a dense enough population, that redundant physical networks are no longer a financial impossibility (or at least not when the networks were being built). I mean, Poland is slightly smaller than New Mexico, but as you said, has the population of California. That's a lot smaller a capital outlay to get into the game, so more might have been willing to dig the ditches and run the fiber. That would eliminate the geographic monopoly problem we're having.

Or the guy could just be mistaken.
 
I saw the alleged tweet about it, but can’t find it to post right now.

—Patrick
 

figmentPez

Staff member
Had a talk with my dad over lunch about Net Neutrality. He's a pipeline measurement engineer, so his major experience with government regulating utilities are how they've regulated the oil and gas industry to prevent monopolies, and how that's quite often done with ulterior motives, so he assumes that the same was true about the Net Neutrality laws that were just done away with. He thinks it will be better to have the FTC stopping things after the fact than trying to regulate things beforehand, because of the vague reasons of electricity and phone being more expensive since those industries had government intervention.

I honestly don't know enough about how electricity works in Texas, but I thought deregulation was more of a problem than the regulation was? And I'm pretty sure that the Bell monopoly was really a bad situation that was blatantly bad for consumers, and there was very little hope of change without government intervention.

Also, he also shot down the idea that internet is more important to free speech than electricity or gas, and on the surface that's true, you need electricity and gas to do a lot of things, but I could not convince him that it's a lot harder for companies to decide what you can do with electricity and gas once they sell it to you. I think he's coming at it from a business angle, that if you can't get sold enough electricity and gas to run your business, then you can't compete. While I'm coming at it from a more individual level, where if you've got enough to heat your house, you can also run a radio and listen to political ideas. With internet, they can give you enough bandwidth to stream movies, while at the same time blocking your communications with a political group.
 
And now they are planning to classify cell based internet as broadband...
 
So how does this bill preserve the open Internet, exactly?
...to limit the authority of the Federal Communications Commission and to preempt State law with respect to internet openness obligations, to provide that broadband internet access service shall be considered to be an information service, and for other purposes.
Wait, how does that...
BROADBAND TO BE CONSIDERED INFORMATION SERVICE.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the provision of broadband internet access service or any other mass-market retail service providing advanced telecommunications capability (as defined in section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 1302)) shall be considered to be an information service.
But that means it can never be reclassified as a "common carrier," and that the FCC will no longer have authority over it since it's "information" and not "communication." But that's not...
The term ‘broadband internet access service’ means a mass-market retail service by wire or radio that provides the capability to transmit data to and receive data from all or substantially all internet endpoints, including any capabilities that are incidental to and enable the operation of the communications service, but excluding dial-up internet access service.
Oh, I see how you include Internet delivered by cell phone data, but specifically exclude data delivered by dialup landline (that nobody really uses) since that would bring the FCC back into this...
PREEMPTION OF STATE LAW.—No State or political subdivision of a State shall adopt, maintain, enforce, or impose or continue in effect any law, rule, regulation, duty, requirement, standard, or other provision having the force and effect of law relating to or with respect to internet openness obligations for provision of broadband internet access service.
Ok, now you're explicitly preventing any state from taking any action that could...wait, didn't you try to do this back in 2015? And again before that in 2011? Don't you have any other issues you care about?
doessheever.png

What, no FDA? No USDA? No laws on banking...again? I don't think we really need that.

alwayshaveparis.png


...well, at least we know where we stand, I guess?

--Patrick
 
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Got to love how they're not even trying to address it from the PoV of internet access, but they go witht he ol' "we could spend it on something else":

 
Got to love how they're not even trying to address it from the PoV of internet access, but they go witht he ol' "we could spend it on something else":

I mean, that bill already passed, so at least the commercials Comcast paid for didn't work. :p
 
"Don't you want roads more than you want Internet access?"
Dude, Internet access is roads. The fact you keep trying to gloss over that is disturbing.

--Patrick
 

figmentPez

Staff member
So, wait. While we had Net Neutrality, investment in internet grew, but as soon as it's repealed, internet companies start cutting back?

Hmm, it's almost like they know they have to work to keep competitive when the internet is neutral, and realize they can fuck people over with impunity if they can control what's going over their network.
 
So, wait. While we had Net Neutrality, investment in internet grew, but as soon as it's repealed, internet companies start cutting back?
Some companies have even been trumpeting the amount they're going to invest post-repeal, never mind that it's the same as what they were spending pre-repeal, or that their spending actually increased while Title II was in effect..
Of course, these figures don't include the amount they were spending on lobbyists, but whatever...

--Patrick

PS: The repeal order has finally been finalized (they continued to revise and edit it after passage, which doesn't sound suspicious at all), you can read about that here, including a copy of the order itself. You can also read a strongly-worded dissent here.
 
I haven't had stable internet access at home since just before Christmas. I keep calling, they keep saying they know there's a problem and then claim it's fixed, and then it goes right back out again.

I of course don't know that this is related to net neutrality, it's just a standard "telecoms are shit and they know they can get away with it because they have a monopoly in my area" type post.
 
Dear City of Mesa, Arizona:

PLEASE consider city-wide community-owned Broadband and Wi-Fi.

Sincerely,
Me
 
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