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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 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 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.

  • 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.
  • 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...
  • by GameboyRMH (1153867) <gameboyrmh@@@gmail...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.

  • 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!

  • 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.

  • Re:Democrat? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:28PM (#47010375)

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

    It's pluotcracy.

  • by symbolset (646467) * on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:29PM (#47010379) Journal
    Tom Wheeler is the former president of the Cable industry's top lobbyist group. We already knew where he stood on net neutrality before he was appointed or confirmed. That is how he came to be FCC chairman. You don't think they would let someone with the public's interests in mind sit in that chair?
  • by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:33PM (#47010417) Homepage

    As for the Politicians, FUCK YOU !!

    Fixed that for you.

    They're pretty much all lying sacks of shit on the payroll of large corporations. The only difference is the issues they get bat-shit crazy over.

  • by interkin3tic (1469267) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @01:41PM (#47010487)

    Can we safely assume he has been bought...

    No, because you got it backwards: he's a telecom exec and lobbyist who bought his way into a government position to regulate his own industry. [sunlightfoundation.com] And it matters because, no this isn't ignorance and it won't just die off.

  • 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 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 gstoddart (321705) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @02:08PM (#47010791) Homepage

    Note that "technology" is a NOUN, and cannot be used to modify another noun

    Oh, and "literate" isn't even a bloody noun in this context, moron.

  • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Thursday May 15, 2014 @02:41PM (#47011149)

    The (R)s voted no because Wheeler's proposal didn't go as far as they wanted in the dismantling of Net Neutrality.

    I think the Rs voted "no" because they still have some sense of political reality, and what the public wants.

    In contrast, from where I sit it is looking like Obama and his fellow Democrats have been willing to push their ideas off on the public without regard to whether most Americans think they're actually good ideas.

  • 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.

  • Exactly what kind of mental acrobatics does it take to state that the Federal Communications Commission has no authority over a public communications system that was developed by DARPA & paid for via federal tax breaks & subsidies?

    Cruz isn't fit to be a city sanitation worker.

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