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FCC Votes To Consider Next Round of 'Net Neutrality' Rules 182

Posted by timothy
from the double-secret-prohibited dept.
As you may have watched live earlier today, the FCC in a protester-heavy hearing has voted to formally consider a net neutrality proposal. The linked L.A. Times story says the 3-2 vote of the commissioners represents a victory for FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler: 'A Democrat who took over in November, Wheeler triggered outrage among public interest groups, online activists and many liberals with a plan that would for the first time allow the possibility of so-called pay-for-priority deals. Wheeler said his plan has been misconstrued and that it would not allow broadband providers to block any legal content or slow down connections in a way that is commercially unreasonable.' As the Washington Post points out, the phrase "commercially unreasonable" is a loaded one. More good coverage at Ars Technica, too.
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FCC Votes To Consider Next Round of 'Net Neutrality' Rules

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  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:12PM (#47010223)
    To me, the real question is: why is this self-described (and, to be sure, described by others as) Democrat acting so much like a fascist?
    • Re:Democrat? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Dega704 (1454673) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:17PM (#47010255)
      Republicans, Democrats, the only difference I can see between them is who they sell out to; and sometimes there is no difference there either.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Please don't confuse yourself, it's not fascism.

      It's pluotcracy.

    • Jane do not divide. As it stands it doesn't matter who said what or my party is better than you party (like 4 years old saying my daddy can beat up yours).

      Write your politicians no matter who they are. My other post [slashdot.org] has the links right there including the FCC.

      Be polite and email the president, fcc, your senator, and congressman and inform them. Mention different things if they have a D or an R next to his or her name. This is still open for a few more weeks. If we get enough roar both will delay the vote.

      • Jane do not divide.

        Who's "dividing"? I asked a legitimate question. Your assumption that I was trying to "divide" is actually dividing.

        Would you have said the same thing if I had said it was a Republican rather than a Democrat? I am curious.

        My point was simply that a Democrat was blatantly pandering to corporate money. That might not be "fascism" in a genuine technical sense, but it is pretty close to the popular sense and the modern version of what is often called fascism.

        And "be polite", my ass. I have already emai

        • My thought processes are if we fight among ourselves they win as people feel if they straight republican or democrat a utopia will appear if we follow ideology. Meanwhile lobbyists use tactics like this to rattle us out to the polls. They lobbyist is the mega telecom industry. I am sure they lobby Republicans as well.

          yes it is true I am a democrat even if I am really pissed off right now over this.

          We do have an advantage as geeks right now? It is an election year :-)

          If we write to our politicians regardless

          • My thought processes are if we fight among ourselves they win as people feel if they straight republican or democrat a utopia will appear if we follow ideology.

            That's all great. But you are assuming things I didn't actually say.

            If we say LIBERALS ARE THE CAUSE then we debate with each other and meanwhile politicians do not hear what we have to say.

            In that case, I'm awfully glad I didn't say that.

    • To me, the real question is: why is this self-described (and, to be sure, described by others as) Democrat acting so much like a fascist?

      you seem to be making a distinction between a democrats and republicans. Answer: there is none.

      • you seem to be making a distinction between a democrats and republicans. Answer: there is none.

        I stated no such thing. You are reading more into my comment than what I actually wrote. It is quite rude to make such assumptions.

  • by gurps_npc (621217) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:13PM (#47010231) Homepage
    and be done with it. That's how consumers view ISPs', so that's what we should make them. Stop catering to their silly cries that they want to be something more. They aren't and will never be.
    • by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:19PM (#47010273)
      I loved how the ISPs were quoted as saying common carrier status would 'force them to spend less on infrastructure and be less innovative'. Uh, no, that's what a 'monopoly' does...and what most ISP are. Yes there are also generally franchise agreements but those have far less teeth than actual competition for their customers...
      • ...and upgrades they are currently planning that would be put on the chopping block with common carrier status. Be specific. Tell us EXACTLY what new innovations and upgrades you will be forced to cancel because of this.

        I can only imagine the math is something like:

        "We have Z mbits of bandwidth per customer with current infrastructure. We want to use 80% of that for our value-add services like our own streaming and on-demand services. The remaining 20% is for end-user internet access and we've already o

        • I find it hilarious that they can manage to say they are innovating now on broadband. My service has gotten a faster quoted speed maximum download bandwidth over the years, but isn't even half of what you can do with DOSCIS 1 and far less than what other areas can get with DOSCIS 3 (which is actually the level supported by their provided modem). DSL is even weaker with 1 MB/512k DSL being the only competing service offered by verizon for $10 less a month than my cable internet (20x slower for $10 less a motnh, hmm that's some crazy numbers). DSL in my area doesn't even count as broadband with the FCC!

          Broadband has been stagnant already for years in large swaths of the US with only big cities in areas with lots of money getting good internet service. I live just outside a city of 150k people and they couldn't give a rats ass about us. Their are no 'upgrade plans' now. And becoming a common carrier will not effect any rate of upgrades that don't exist.

          • by swb (14022)

            As far as I can tell this is just a rear guard action to defend their current capacities and preserve as much capacity for high-margin value-add services.

            Anything that doesn't involve caps and forced slowdowns of Internet services will result in complaints from consumers who say they aren't getting their advertised speeds. My guess is that the pace of consumption is trending towards not just 20 Mbit service dropping to 15 Mbit at peak times but 20 Mbit dropping to sub-5 Mbit which would force them to give

      • by ArhcAngel (247594)
        Well according to Level 3 [level3.com] they refuse to upgrade their circuits now anyway so it wouldn't make a whole lot of difference to the end user.
    • by dunkindave (1801608) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:47PM (#47010545)
      There is a major problem with this idea, namely "levels of service". Comments a day or two ago tried to build an analogy between the Net and the phone system, and how having common carrier status prevented the phone company from discriminating against specific traffic in order to benefit themselves. The trouble with this analogy is that in the telephone world either there is a connection or there isn't (give or take quality), while in the network world there are levels of how well it works.

      Consider this: what if new net neutrality rules says all traffic has to be treated equality, but there are bottlenecks in the network that cause certain streams to suffer. Would labeling ISPs as common carriers legally force them to upgrade such chokepoints, or would they be able to leave these chokepoints as is and allow the result to cause the effect they desire? Now move the clock forward, and consider that networks are always growing in capacity, so even if the chokepoint doesn't exist today, it probably will naturally develop in the nearer future, so ISPs wouldn't need to deliberately create chokepoints, which would flag them as being (more) malicious, but rather just wait until the ones they want to naturally occur. Then when they upgrade equipment and/or lines, they choose the upgrades that help their interests, while leaving the ones they would like to throttle but "legally can't", to languish. It would be like discriminating against people in a ghetto by choosing to never get around to fix the potholes in their streets. You don't need to go out and make potholes, just wait and they make themselves.

      So explain to me again how labeling them as common carriers will solve all the net neutrality problems? Without laws forcing ISPs to BUILD AND MAINTAIN infrastructure that treats all customers, traffic type, and peers the same, then just labeling them as common carrier only fixes a smaller part of the problem.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        The trouble with this analogy is that in the telephone world either there is a connection or there isn't (give or take quality), while in the network world there are levels of how well it works.

        Except that, for a lot of people, regarding the internet internet: "either there is a connection or there isn't".

        The US has a lot of people living in extremely remote places. They've all got phones. They don't have broadband.

      • by MozeeToby (1163751) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @02:57PM (#47011333)

        Consider this: what if new net neutrality rules says all traffic has to be treated equality, but there are bottlenecks in the network that cause certain streams to suffer.

        This is not what sensible net neutrality proponents want. Bit torrent, FTP, and other mass transfers can be given a high bandwidth, high latency, high jitter connection. Streaming protocols can be given high bandwidth, high latency, low jitter. VOIP can be given low bandwidth, low latency, low jitter. No one (sensible) is saying you can't discriminate based on data type. What matters is not discriminating on source/destination. Comcast can't choke Netflix's connection to drive customers to the Comcast owned (or patnered, or sponsored, etc) VOD provider. They can't mess with VOIP packets to ruin Skype quality to force people to buy landlines. That is what net neutrality is about.

    • by neoform (551705)

      I'm confused as to how they aren't already considered as such.

      If an ISP isn't a common carrier, doesn't that mean they're liable for the illegal activities taking place over their networks?

      Wouldn't that mean any piracy or other criminals using their services, make the ISP's an accomplice? Can we start putting them in prison now?

      • by sumdumass (711423)

        While common carrier status does insulate them from this, not having it doesn't mean they are not still insulated.

        The piracy or copyright violation protections are included in the DMCA which was born out the the WIPO WPPT [wipo.int] and WTC [wipo.int] treaties.

        As for criminal actions, a lot of that liability has been traded off with allowing law enforcement access. I don't remember the exact laws but I think CALEA or something like that did away with some. Another problem is that a lot of the crimes commited on the internet requ

  • Up to... (Score:4, Informative)

    by pellik (193063) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:13PM (#47010233)
    Now the ISP can't throttle content below a speed which is up to what I pay for (since the contracts always specifies this). Thanks a lot FCC zero is in the list of number up to what I pay for.
  • by Qzukk (229616) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:14PM (#47010237) Journal

    Imagine, if you will, a crowded freeway with two lanes in each direction.

    The people cry out: "Make the road wider, so traffic will flow better!"

    The roadbuilder says: "Not unless we can make some lanes into toll lanes!"

    The people cry out: "Anything, anything you want, just make it faster!"

    The next month there are two toll lanes and a muddy ditch in each direction.

    • by AioKits (1235070) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:22PM (#47010323)

      The next month there are two toll lanes and a muddy ditch in each direction.

      I wish people would stop bringing Oklahoma into these things...

    • by bigpat (158134)

      Good parable and succinctly describes what the issue is. As more and more of the big Internet content providers are forced to pay into this extortion racket there is going to be less and less room for anything else including actual communications. And worse... because there will be all sorts of secret content deals people won't even know why the service they are paying for sucks so bad. Bandwidth caps would be far more preferable so that customers that are actually using the service more will pay more i

    • A better analogy would be:
      5% of people are driving RVs that take up both lanes and they drive like old ladies.
      The road builder doesn't want to tick anyone off so they went to the RV manufacturer and asked "Could you keep the size of your RVs to a single lane so people can pass them and not get stuck behind them?" to which the RV manufacture said "Yea, no"

      So then other road builders built parallel roads, that only had one lane and were cheaper. All the people that didn't have RVs (average facebook user) move

    • by Ichijo (607641)

      The people cry out: "Make the road wider, so traffic will flow better!"

      Here's another parable: the hamburger analogy [greatergre...ington.org]:

      Let's give everyone free McDonald's hamburgers. Let's put 10,000 hamburgers a day on a table in front of the Capitol (or wherever).

      What would happen? People would take and eat the hamburgers, and once word got out, all 10,000 hamburgers would be taken very quickly every day. We may thus infer that because people need food and they really seemed to like those burgers, McDonald's hamburgers

      • by Qzukk (229616)

        So making the road wider won't make traffic on the freeway flow better in the long run

        That sounds like an excuse the ISP would use for not building any new lanes and turning the existing lanes into the "fast" lanes. Are you arguing against me or for me?

        My question is, will Internet subscribers who don't need Netflix get the opportunity to lower their costs by refusing to pay for the "fast lane"?

        Of course! After Netflix paid off Comcast, Comcast lowered their prices for everyone and Netflix raised theirs, s

        • by Ichijo (607641)

          That sounds like an excuse the ISP would use for not building any new lanes and turning the existing lanes into the "fast" lanes.

          The optimal solution short of declaring broadband ISPs as common carriers is to make it less expensive to use the Internet during quiet periods than during peak usage periods. This would create the proper incentive for people to shift their heavy usage to those times when fewer people in the neighborhood need to get online, and the profit motive would encourage ISPs to increase t

          • by Qzukk (229616)

            make it less expensive to use the Internet during quiet periods than during peak usage periods ... the profit motive would encourage ISPs to increase their bandwidth

            If you've looked at the graphs Netflix released, at least one ISP is almost always at peak usage. That's a lot of profit if they don't bother to spend money upgrading the bandwidth.

            What I fully expect to happen is that Comcast, who has made plenty of profit vastly overselling the consumer end of the pipe, will now make plenty more profit overse

  • Weasel words ... (Score:5, Informative)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:19PM (#47010275) Homepage

    Wheeler said his plan has been misconstrued and that it would not allow broadband providers to block any legal content or slow down connections in a way that is commercially unreasonable.

    I don't need to follow any of the links in that submission to know that "commercially unreasonable" can be construed to be "to maximize profits".

    In other words, he's laying the groundwork for them to do as they please, with the standard that seeking to gouge your customers is "commercially reasonable", and asking for extortion fees to make sure what you're already selling works continues to isn't "unreasonable".

    Same shit. Different asshole.

    • by thule (9041)

      Ummmm... peering is how the Internet works. If the traffic is not equal both directions, then someone pays. This is the way it has always been. Why is everyone so worked up about it? NOTHING NEW HERE!

      Yahoo! did this YEARS ago. They had their own national network for their own traffic. They would directly peer with large ISPs so their content did not have to travel over transit connections. It was stated that Yahoo! only payed for half of their total bandwidth because the peering reduced the cost of their tr

      • by Shadow99_1 (86250)

        Except that the consumer ISPs are the ones who should be paying and certainly Netflix was already paying their ISP (Level 3 primarily) for the bandwidth they needed. The problem here is that the consumer ISP customers want what is on the other end of Level 3's links and Consumer ISPs don't offer anything except end users that anyone else wants.

        The problem is large consumer ISPs can through the weight of having all the consumers in the face of other entities like netflix and force them to pay even though the

      • by devman (1163205)
        Just because it has always been done that way, doesn't mean it still works in the current industry environment. Netflix only sends data to a host that requests it. if netflix is sending your network data it is because someone paying to use your network has asked them to that bandwidth is paid for already. I guess netflix could code the client to send back equal amounts of data as a workaround, then it would be even.
      • by suutar (1860506)

        Peering is between _peers_, approximate equals. A consumer-heavy network is not the equal of a content-heavy network. Peering is also generally between _transit_ networks, not endpoint networks. The fact that the traffic's destination is _inside_ the consumer network makes it a very different case than if the traffic were simply passing over the consumer network to reach some other network, because the traffic exists only because of the consumer's request. Should I get to charge Amazon for the privilege of

        • by thule (9041)

          Peering is between _peers_, approximate equals.

          That is settlement-free peering. Peering is just two networks trading traffic. It does not have to be equal. Being equal just means that it makes it a no-brainer business decision.

  • by GameboyRMH (1153867) <gameboyrmhNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:22PM (#47010307) Journal

    That term means anything goes. There are things which are physically impossible and/or morally reprehensible that are far from commercially unreasonable.

    • what means 'anything goes' is the effective Monopoly these ISPs have on their customers. Until we provide actual competition in the local ISP market, nothing is going to change.
      • maybe the "last mile" is a utility, and internet companies like comcast and att and charter step in at the main hub and compete for business

        actually, my last building signed up with WiLine, a bay area provider that I think used a microwave dish on top of the building for communication. It got around teh comcast etc. I paid $20/mo for 20 up / 20 down. that was the set price, not promotional, and there wasn't a contract. super satisfied.
        • For every other major household service the last mile is a 'utility'. Specifically because you don't want 14 sets of gas lines, water lines, electric lines running all over your city.

          Providing service to homes is a natural monopoly and why it needs to be a government provided, or heavily regulated, utility.

          The tricky part is electric, gas and water delivery doesn't really change much over decades, and internet does. Not sure we've figured out exactly how to do that yet, but what we are doing was goo
          • in my city we have a municipal water and power agency that's part of city govt. at first I was against it because they're not as customer focused (their customer service is open 9-5, for example). but I think this would work really well for internet. they don't provide internet per se. you still have to sign up with att or comcast, and there is an add-on for last mile. but then you can choose which internet and cable provider you want, so there would be lots of options. perhaps the city could provide basic
  • by fightinfilipino (1449273) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:23PM (#47010329) Homepage

    Sign and share this petition. [wh.gov]

    let the White House and politicians of any party know that this is not acceptable. we need ACTUAL Net Neutrality. the ISPs and Cable/Telcos have had their free ride and now they want to take advantage of everyone. this cannot continue!

    • Eliminate the FCC (Score:3, Interesting)

      by bigpat (158134)
      At this point I think we need to just go ahead and eliminate the FCC and Congress needs to legislate these regulations directly. We are beyond the point of just needing to play some BS game of musical chairmen to appoint another industry lobbyist to regulate their own industry. From no longer licensing new radio stations to this idiotic spin the wheels and do whatever you want as long as you hire the right lawyers as lobbyists kind of bullshit regulation the FCC is a farce
      • Ah, the joys of regulatory capture...

        • by bigpat (158134)

          Ah, the joys of regulatory capture...

          My point is to stop trying to change the system by playing by the same old rules. We know that time and time again whenever Congress gives over policy making authority to unelected commissions that we get regulatory capture by industry and we get all sorts of regulations that reduce real competition in industry while making jobs for lawyers and lobbyists in Washington. We have to stop letting them do that. Congress are the elected representatives of the people in the United States. Congress should be ma

          • by Jaysyn (203771)

            Congress created the FCC in 1934 to "regulate interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable". If they had the political will, they could disband it just as easily. They could also revisit the FCCs charter periodically to make sure that it's keeping up with technological progress. Instead, they'd rather hold 50+ votes on repealing the Affordable Care Act.

      • by Shadow99_1 (86250)

        I doubt congress would manage better, in fact I can practically guarantee that any legislature on regulating telecommunications would looks worse after congress is done with it. After all many lobbyists write the bills that their paid congress critters then present as their own. Most never even read what they submit. To many big words and such for them it seems and to many babies to kiss to keep their cushy jobs to do that sort of work themselves.

        • by bigpat (158134)

          Maybe or Maybe not, but quality of regulation aside, at this point Congress has completely abdicated its responsibility as the law making institution as a representative of the people in several areas including telecommunications regulation. I would argue that delegating their regulatory authority to an appointed body invariably comprised of industry lobbyists is worse than periodically bad legislation from Congress. For better or worse Congress is accountable to the electorate every two years, but the FC

      • If we eliminate the FCC and hand their work off to Congress, then Congress would be the ones auctioning spectrum and going after people who violate wireless transmission laws [slashdot.org]. Either you don't understand all of the responsibilities of the FCC or you have a lot of faith that your Congressman can balance legislation and wireless transmission regulation. Most Congressmen can't even handle the legislation part.
        • I just realized that you were referring to legislation specifically, so my comment is irrelevant. I take back my accusation of ignorance and point it towards myself.
    • by Jaysyn (203771)

      Too many action items on that one, needs to be broken down into 3 separate petitions.

  • by some old guy (674482) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:24PM (#47010341)

    The real insult to this injury will be when Comcast et al raise their subscriber rates to pay for the new fast lane resources that Amazon and Netflix will already be paying for. Ka-ching!

  • by Bob9113 (14996) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:26PM (#47010365) Homepage

    Tom Wheeler is a cable lobbyist, so I get it. He's doing his (evil, sociopathic) job. He's a bad person,, and is acting in bad faith, and he should be fired. The Republicans are idiots, they think that lack of regulation means a closer approximation of the ideal free market (even though almost every single one of the biggest commercial successes of the Internet era said the opposite, and the ISPs depend on regulation in rights-of-way, easements, and spectrum). They're ignorant true believers, and should be fired.

    But Obama, Rosenworcel, and Clyburn have some 'splainin' to do. They claim to understand the issue, they claim to support net neutrality. But you can't vote to kick a puppy and then say you oppose puppy-kicking. We can't keep accepting their bullshit theatrics; "It's not so bad, because we're only kicking the puppy a few times." No more death by a thousand cuts. Stop voting to kick the puppy, or we have to stop believing your lies.

    • by Dega704 (1454673) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:42PM (#47010497)
      Obama has proven to be a wolf in sheep's clothing when it comes to telecom policy. He has pushed ACTA and the Trans Pacific Partnership, and kept a low profile on SOPA/PIPA without actually coming out against it. I honestly don't think he cares that much about Net Neutrality. It was just another empty promise that helped get him elected. As for the Republicans, they have turned everything into a witch hunt. A lot of people are afraid of government overreach(not without good reason), but that has created an environment where all a corporation has to do is say "Help, big government is picking on me!" and they will immediately summon bleating hordes of conservative sheep who don't even bother to research the situation.
  • by mfh (56) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:28PM (#47010377) Journal

    The big vile ISPs are notorious for not listening. Rules will exist meant to ensure that everyone has a fair business model for ISPs and then the big guys will keep looking at the model to squeeze more and more money out of it because fair business isn't enough for those guys... they have to squeeze every last nickel out.

    What we need is a global competitor to big ISPs that can deploy anywhere. Google could be that new hope, but so could a DIY off-grid group. Google's baloon experiment [google.com] could be what we need but it doesn't have to stop there and also it is important to note that Google's closeness to NSA is problematic.

    There are other better answers [slashdot.org] to big ISP. Teleporation could destroy the ISP business model and place the power directly in the hands of each individual. No more government spying. No more ISP bullshit.

    • Teleportation would be a huge disruption to just about everything. What it would do to everything else would make what it did to ISPs pretty much trivial.

      • by mfh (56)

        Data teleportation is the first type of teleportation and we're probably 200yrs away from any remote possible physical teleportation... at least the kind that doesn't risk the safety of our multiversal instance the entire universe.

  • And the U.S. . . . (Score:5, Informative)

    by smooth wombat (796938) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:29PM (#47010381) Homepage Journal

    keeps falling further and further behind the rest of the industrialized world.

    Pretty soon we'll be behind countries like Latvia and Romania.

    Oh wait. . .!

  • by swschrad (312009) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:30PM (#47010389) Homepage Journal

    1) no priority tag, data is at priority 0

    2) no lower "trunk cost" to preferred customers. trunk costing used only to route traffic to the cheapest/fastest/lease congested route .

    3) due to latency and jitter issues, VoIP could be set midrange, at priority 3.

    4) one price for all at a specified bandwidth.

    that's all the regulation you need, and you need an iron fist to maintain it, considering the number of fat weasels out there.

  • by Billly Gates (198444) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:33PM (#47010421) Journal

    Ok we did this once 12 years ago and got DRM legal requirements non voted on. We can do this again.

    For American Slashdotters:

    1.) Tell the FCC what you think in polite terms [fcc.gov] and why it is a bad idea for business, consumers, and innovation?

    2) Go to to your house of representatives website and use the zip code finder [house.gov] in the upper right hand corner. If your personal representative has a (R) in his or her name mention how you worry about the government overstepping its boundaries and ruining the largest emerging economic trend in history. Mention this FoxNews article, where Republicans are urging the FCC to bud out [foxnews.com]. If you work in the IT industry mention how you will be impacted and how unregulated internet led to the greatest economic expansion in history in the late 1990s.

    If your representative has a (D) in his or her name, tell them how it will unfairly impact consumers and force unfair monopolies more power and ruin innovations with services like Netflix. Mention economic impacts as well. Use Netflix as an example of something that used to work until a few months ago and cite sources where L3 admitted it was being bottlenecked on purpose.

    Also both parites are under the assumption that the internet worked just fine without net neutrality and we still had the largest explosion of GDP growth in history. So why change (Mega Telecom sales pitch). So inform them that they were regulated beforehand and this time it is different.

    Remember it is not about adding new rules that were never needed. It is about preventing new rules that are not in your emails regardless of parties to counter the
    FUD of the telecom lobbyists

    3. Let the Obama know how you feel? [wwwwhitehouse.gov] Yes, he does read email and hand written letters every night. Perhaps seeing a large push in volume all angry about this may get his attention?
    4. Let your senator know [senate.gov]? Copy and paste the email you sent your congressman if he or she is of the same party. If not emphasize free market if he or she is a (r) and consumers and monopolies if he or she is a (D).

    Be polite and factual as possible. Yes they are corrupt, but many are inept and get all their FUD from lobbyists. Mention we never had anything like this to counter the fud this is socialism to have the same lane and this is a fast enabler not something that slows regular traffice down yada yada. Mention your IT background too to build credibility.

    If enough people whine it may delay or cancel the vote.

  • I don't think the author of this article has a clue:

    But if you buy, say, a 35 Mbps broadband plan, your ISP will be required to deliver all content to you at at least that speed.

    No, if you buy a 35 Mbps plan means that under no circumstances will you receive content faster than 35 Mbps. It's the maximum, not the minimum, and who doesn't know this? Boo "Brian Fung", technology writer for The Washington Post.

    It's not physically possible to guarantee 35 Mbps transfer rates, since the theoretical maximum s

    1. Get the FCC to allow ISPs to make sweetheart deals with content providers, but subject to FCC supervision. (Done)
    2. Starve the FCC of resources so that supervision becomes impossible. One way to do this: refuse to appoint FCC commissioners, so that they can't form a quorum --- just as happened to the FEC in 2008 [washingtonpost.com].
    3. Profit! (Literally!)
  • by marsu_k (701360)

    How's that free market working out for you?

    (written from a "socialist" European nation, where data caps on mobile data, let alone broadband with associated restrictions, would be totally unheard of)

  • by Beeftopia (1846720) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @06:29PM (#47013495)

    You have big players on either side of this, but the big communication companies have probably donated much more to politicians. AT&T is the 4th largest donor to federal politicians over the period 1989-2012, for example [opensecrets.org]. Also, the big communications companies got their man on the inside as the head of the FCC. These rules could go through, and it'll start driving prices up, but by then, the voting public won't make the connection between any politician and rising prices or worse service. Most people don't understand what net neutrality is.

    Net result: Keeps the big donors happy, very little or no voting consequence, especially with responsibility plausibly divided between both parties.

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