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Piracy Businesses The Almighty Buck The Internet

Net Neutrality is Not a Pirates' Fight Anymore ( 89

Today millions of people are standing up for net neutrality and an open internet. The "Battle for the Net," backed by companies including Amazon, Google, and Netflix, hopes to stop a looming repeal of current net neutrality rules. While the whole debate was kickstarted ten years ago when torrent users couldn't download their favorite TV-shows, it's no longer a pirate's fight today, writes TorrentFreak: Historically, there is a strong link between net neutrality and online piracy. The throttling concerns were first brought to the forefront in 2007 when Comcast started to slow down both legal and unauthorized BitTorrent traffic, in an affort to ease the load on its network. When we uncovered this atypical practice, it ignited the first broad discussion on net neutrality. This became the setup for the FCC's Open Internet Order which was released three years later. For its part, the Open Internet Order formed the foundation of the net neutrality rules the FCC adopted in 2015. The big change compared to the earlier rules was that ISPs can be regulated as carriers under Title II. While pirates may have helped to get the ball rolling, they're no longer a player in the current net neutrality debate. Under the current rules, ISPs are allowed to block any unlawful traffic, including copyright infringing content. In fact, in the net neutrality order the FCC has listed the following rule: "Nothing in this part prohibits reasonable efforts by a provider of broadband Internet access service to address copyright infringement or other unlawful activity." The FCC reasons that copyright infringement hurts the US economy, so Internet providers are free to take appropriate measures against this type of traffic. This includes the voluntary censoring of pirate sites, something the MPAA and RIAA are currently lobbying for. That gives ISPs plenty of leeway. ISPs could still block access to The Pirate Bay and other alleged pirate sites as a voluntary anti-piracy measure, for example. And throttling BitTorrent traffic across the board is also an option, as long as it's framed as reasonable network management. The worrying part is that ISPs themselves can decide what traffic or sites are unlawful. This could potentially lead to overblocking. Currently, there is no indication that any will, but the net neutrality rules do not preventing these companies from doing so.
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Net Neutrality is Not a Pirates' Fight Anymore

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  • ...there will be an encrypted version of the internet available on another level.

    Rest assured of it.

    • ...there will be an encrypted version of the internet available on another level.

      Rest assured of it.

      ..and if they ban or otherwise succeed in destroying encyption, there will always be someone who creates unsullied encryption to power it. Viva la revolución! You can't stop the signal!

    • by guises ( 2423402 )

      If the gov. or anyone regulates the internet... ...there will be an encrypted version of the internet available on another level.

      Yes we know this, that's what we have right now. You seem to have left out the second part of that thought though: "...and if they don't regulate the internet then there won't be squat, because the only access remaining will be whatever the ISPs choose to allow."

  • Thinks they support this for YOUR benefit.

    It is them using YOU for their own benefit.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      It doesn't matter. I want net neutrality because I want new entrants into a field to have equal ability to compete without being in a slow lane. I want ComCrap and VeriZonE to have to count their own lame services against their data caps too so that they can't push people off of NetFlix, Hulu, Amazon Instant, YouTube, etc. When the desires of the corporation and individual meet - for that moment they can be allies.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        > ComCrap and VeriZonE

        Okay, I get ComCrap, but how in the everloving fuck is "VeriZonE" supposed to be a jab? I get that it's _trying_ to be a jab at Verizon, but... like... "ZonE"? What??

    • by Roger W Moore ( 538166 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @03:15PM (#54795599) Journal

      Thinks they support this for YOUR benefit.

      Who cares that they only support this for their own benefit? In this case, their and our interests align extremely well: we want to be able to choose from whom to purchase internet services and they want us to have the freedom to choose because their services are currently a consumer favourite. Give it a few years and their opinion may change if they suddenly find they are competing with a new startup but the longer net neutrality lasts the better established and harder to change it becomes.

    • Thinks they support this for YOUR benefit.

      It is them using YOU for their own benefit.

      Because for every stance on an issue, only one party can possibly benefit?

      • by AHuxley ( 892839 )
        When a big brand wants DRM, movie and TV show streaming for "free" all over the USA?
        They want net neutrality so they don't have to pay for networks or share in billions of profits of new media content with networks.
        Any creative "new startup" will just not be easy to find in a search due to political or content issues.
        Net neutrality is not the freedom to start a new US search engine or talk about politics.
        Net neutrality is just a DRM movie or series getting to some user with no network costs.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @03:00PM (#54795505)

    All I see on Google's front page today is some tribute to a costume designer who died in 2012. Informing others about the recently deceased is apparently more important to Google.

  • Seriously? Accepting an article linking network neutrality to piracy? Fuck off, /.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Agreed. This article seems like something written by the foes of net neutrality to create an piracy association in the new feed

  • by HalAtWork ( 926717 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @03:09PM (#54795559)

    This issue has always had broad implications.

  • I got a pop-up message when I visited my web host provider, DreamHost [], this morning.

    Please upgrade your plan to proceed.

    Just kidding. You can still get to this site *for now*. But if the FCC ends net neutrality, your cable company could charge you extra fees just to use the websites and apps you want. We can stop them and keep the Internet open, fast, and awesome if we all contact the U.S. Congress and the FCC, but we only have a few days left. Learn more. []

  • I accuse YOU of ILLEGAL PACKET PRIORITIZATION for refusing to let me RFC 1149 [] pigeons land!

  • now that they see the profit that they can get with the internet, everybody and their neighbour want a (bigger) share of it. Copyright holders are building their own netflix-esque apps. We already pay ISP's for internet access, now they want to charge the providers for additional bandwidth.

    • Re:profit (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Rockoon ( 1252108 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @06:16PM (#54796729)
      The thing about internet access is its a two way street. It isnt just you that needs to pay, its the people sending stuff to you.

      Way back, Netflix had a problem because their ISP, Cogent, was demanding settlement free peering from Level 3, however Cogent was dumping way more data onto their network than vise-versa so Level 3 told them to shove off. In response to this, Netflix negotiated with Level 3 and switched to using them as an ISP. it turned out that Netflix got the cheapest rate ever from any ISP for so much data. Almost overnight, it was then Level 3 demanding settlement free peering from Cogent but turns out Cogent no longer wanted settlement free peering since it was now Level 3 dumping more data onto their network than vise-versa.

      The problem has always been that Netflix is a cheapskate when it comes to their ISP choice. They go with the lowest bidder and then... surprise... the lowest bidder couldn't deliver the enormous and still growing volume of Netflix traffic to other backbones.

      So then Netflix went on a campaign. Vilify your local ISP for the fact that Netflix's ISP couldnt deliver enough data over the interlinks between ISPs at the cost they were charging Netflix.

      This whole damn thing w.r.t. Netflix has been them manipulating your opinion by hiding details about the economics of the Internet. The sender pays the cost of delivery, and it must be this way because the receiver may not have asked for the data. That bill you are paying to your local ISP may seem like it covers the costs, and maybe it even does, but the fact remains that it is not only illogical for the receiver to pay, making it so allows quite simple abuse that cant be prevented. Packets would be hot potatoes that the ISP's would dump off their network as soon as possible, even if its destination was within their network. Imagine if you had to pay a penny for each email you received. Yes, all that spam too. Netflix argument, once all the facts are on the table, is exactly that. They want the receiver to pay because... they are the sender.

      Comcast did some bad shit with torrent packets... but they were in the right to limit the interlink between their backbone and Level 3's because Level 3 was insisting on keep their settlement free status even though the facts on the table were that they were no longer even close to qualifying for such status. Not even close. We are talking hundreds-to-one ratios where even a 2:1 ratio is on the verge of unacceptable.

      If you want to do the right thing, demand that Netflix accepts the consequences of going with the lowest bidder. Refuse to let AT&T, whose crappy twisted pair cant deliver HD content to most of its customers, defend its crap network via legislation.

      MOST OF ALL THO - Refuse to let the ISP's be defined as common carriers while the DMCA is still in effect. Common Carrier status comes with benefits as well as downsides. They will use the DMCA to eliminate the downsides and you wont be able to do anything about it because... common carrier. STOP BEING SUCKERS
      • Thank You!

        Netflix knew what they were doing when they bought transit from Cogent instead of directly on the large ISP networks they wanted to access. Some articles have suggested that Netflix wanted to save money on CDN costs by offloading traffic via Cogent (and eventually Level 3).

        Far too many people seem eager to embrace the idea of the receiver bearing the burden without understanding what that would mean in the long term.
        For those who don't understand what I'm referring to, it's the idea that 'residen

      • by hagnat ( 752654 )

        when i say "we already pay for internet access", i was including Netflix on that bundle. My criticism is that now ISP's want to charge for premium/priority bandwidth, which might put some companies out of the market if their competitors simply can pay more to have more priority.

        your explanation of the relationship between Netflix and cogent was enlightening, thank you.

  • Like I said earlier in another thread. The term Net Neutrality is a trap because most of the supporters don't have a clue that it means!!!

    This is not "Net Neutrality" this is a ticket to traffic shaping and selective throttling of the packets anyway an ISP wants.

    From the summary
    "And throttling BitTorrent traffic across the board is also an option, as long as it's framed as reasonable network management. The worrying part is that ISPs themselves can decide what traffic or sites are unlawful. This could
    • I suggest we wait until they actually do something and then act.

      In the past, Torrent traffic DID cause performance problems on DOCSIS networks [] []

      On a side note, ISPs can and do change the egress path for traffic leaving their network to address latency, peer link imbalances, etc.
      There's no good reasons to stop them from doing this.

      How do you feel about business internet connections getting better SLA and prioritization over residential customers

      • I Agree Some What ;) Very Valid points.

        If we wait and it is already law. We all know once we have lost it. Getting it back is harder.

        I browsed your links and I understand. But you can not filter and block their complaints without blocking and slowing down fair use!

        Look at the Bogus DMCA!!! Law firms sending hundreds of false take downs out and the targets have no ability to respond except a draconian useless system that does not allow any response to false take down orders.

        If the government has the
  • I don't think people emphasize enough the extent to which net neutrality is largely an antitrust measure.

    When broadband is a 2 or 3 player oligopoly there are plenty of incentives for deals that aren't in the interests of consumers or web innovation. These are much like the exclusive dealing agreements which were one of the classic motivations for antitrust law in the first place.

    If the market were competitive -- if customers had access to more than a dozen different decent service providers, as many did in

  • I did when it was first released and not sure if this pdf is the same one []

    But a large majority of it covers cell phones.

  • Amazon, Google, and Netflix want to use the infrastructure as much as they want without having to compensate the people who paid to build it and maintain it. I wonder what Elizabeth Warren would say about this. "You moved your goods to market on roads the rest of us paid for."

    • Amazon, Google, and Netflix want to use the infrastructure as much as they want without having to compensate the people who paid to build it and maintain it.

      Bullshit. Amazon, Google and Netflix are paying for their bandwidth just like any other content provider. They aren't getting a free ride at all. They pay for their connectivity just like Slashdot, ESPN, Wikipedia, and every other website. The rules don't change because they provide streaming media.

      • But they are the heaviest user of it and they expect to pay the same amount as anybody else. Not only that but their customers are the ones using all the bandwidth and they expect to get the bandwidth for nothing. The implication is that somehow "the government" or some other public tax-payer funded entity is who built and owns the infrastructure. That's not the case. And it's not the same as an electric, water, or natural gas utility because the customers have no choice in the provider. There is only

        • Do you honestly think that they are paying the same rates as Slashdot for their bandwidth needs? Or Wikipedia? Wake up. They have massive bandwidth needs to serve their customers and they are paying for it. They have peering agreements when their networks connect to other networks. Don't spew stuff that's not true.

          • Actually, you're making my point. These guys get a better deal that the average consumer. Hell, Amazon gets a big break on shipping with the US Postal Service. []
            That means that they are using the infrastructure but not paying the same for it as everyone else. Net Neutrality isn't going to change that. And that's only half of the equation. The high usage consumers aren't paying their fair share either in most cases because data rate caps are high enough that most people i

Did you hear that two rabbits escaped from the zoo and so far they have only recaptured 116 of them?