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The Truth About Net Neutrality Job Loss 187

snydeq writes "Robert X. Cringely investigates recent claims that passing net neutrality regulations will result in nearly 1.5 million lost jobs by 2020, finding the report at the center of these claims suspect. The report, put forward by The Brattle Group, conjectures that net neutrality adoption would curtail broadband growth by 16 percent, costing 342,065 jobs in that sector alone. The 'total economy-wide impact,' however, of such a policy would result in five times as many job losses by 2020, they say. The study is the latest of several weighing the economic impact of net neutrality, including those by law schools (PDF) and free-market think tanks alike. The Brattle Group report (PDF), however, should be met with skepticism, Cringely argues, in large part because the lobbying firm who paid for the report, Mobile Future, is anchored most notably by AT&T. Moreover, the report is 'based entirely on a single assumption: Regulating US telecoms in the late 1990s and early 2000s hurt them to the tune of about 15 percent per quarter, relative to the cable companies.' Yet, as he points out, regulation was not alone in causing this sector shrinkage. In fact, the Baby Bells' own bureaucratic intransigence was much to blame."
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The Truth About Net Neutrality Job Loss

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  • How strange (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ProdigyPuNk ( 614140 ) on Monday April 26, 2010 @06:33PM (#31990560) Journal
    How strange that the study paid for by AT&T et al. is a complete 180 from the study mentioned in the article that is NOT paid for my any carrier: [] Of course there's something "suspect" about the study claiming that net neutrality will cost the carriers billions - especially when it's PAID FOR by the groups it claims are going to be hurt.
  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) * on Monday April 26, 2010 @07:11PM (#31991212) Journal

    They're merely speculating that growth will be 15% less than without regulation - and somehow, that translates into 300000 jobs that will not be created.

    It's called a "talking point", Neutron, and in the new post-media-consolidation world, they don't have to be anything like true.

    All net neutrality does is keep a small handful of companies from turning the Internet into TV. But TV was a big moneymaker for years and years, and it's now the most effective way to get out pro-corporatist agenda messages, so big business and corporatists politicians want to turn the Internet into TV. It's the answer to their prayers.

    And anti-government dopes are doing the work of the corporatists for them. "Keep the government out of my Internet". Can you imagine anything so stupid? Without the US federal government, there would never have been an Internet. But that's something you won't read about in any Texas history textbook.

  • by AmigaHeretic ( 991368 ) on Monday April 26, 2010 @07:14PM (#31991278) Journal
    I haven't done a study but this seems backwards to me.

    I mean don't they shape traffic to save money? You can appear to have more bandwidth than you do if you shape it, but you don't have to pay keep growing you network ie. jobs.

    If they are not able to shape traffic then they need to spend money expanding their network, which would mean MORE jobs not less.
  • by javalizard ( 781952 ) on Monday April 26, 2010 @08:48PM (#31992666) Journal

    Small business would have to start paying to play on the internet. This would cost small businesses a lot of money to pay for internet tolls. That's money that could be creating jobs if there were net neutrality. Forcing telecoms to build out their infrastructure would actually create jobs. It wasn't until the net neutrality contractual obligation of a large telecom merger ran out that they stopped building infrastructure and fired the masses of people working on the build out.

    Also crazy is the cost of anti-competitive behavior, the cost of innovative ideas being squashed because they didn't fit the business model of the telecoms, and enabling corporations to be the enforcers of freedom of speech is just plain unconstitutional and is just an abrogation of the responsibility of Congress and Whitehouse.

    I'd rather pay slightly higher prices to enable innovation, freedom of speech, equality of information, and decrease the power of the oligopolies.

    Call me crazy but the intangibles tip that balance for me. There is more to life than money like freedom and liberty.

    Of course this report isn't going to discuss these things... it was funded by large corporations. They don't value anything but money.

  • by gangien ( 151940 ) on Monday April 26, 2010 @09:14PM (#31992948) Homepage

    You never worked for fast food. Entry level shit job managers care about nothing but the bottom line knowing if, you don't like what they make you do for how much they want to pay you there are 100s of applications waiting in there office with the numbers of desperate unemployed people willing to do your shit job for less (at least for awhile before the cycle starts again)

    So you're not willing to do a job for a certain amount of money, so you leave. There's something wrong with this? The people working these jobs are making a trade. I've never personally worked fast food, But many people have, the majority of people i've met, don't speak so negatively about it. Some who had shitty managers do.

  • by yuberries ( 1766190 ) on Monday April 26, 2010 @09:57PM (#31993400)

    I should also add that government can never produce anything to raise the standards of living. It can only shuffle resources around trying to look good, but even on a collectivist standpoint, its just a zero-sum intervention.
    Only people freely being able to transact and produce can increase a society's "value", if such a thing were to exist externally at all (does not).
    Only individuals can decide what's best for themselves. An involuntary collective certainly cannot.

Nondeterminism means never having to say you are wrong.