FCC, in ‘Net Neutrality’ Turnaround, Plans to Allow Fast Lane

Edward Wyatt, reporting for the NYT:

The new rules, according to the people briefed on them, will allow a company like Comcast or Verizon to negotiate separately with each content company — like Netflix, Amazon, Disney or Google — and charge different companies different amounts for priority service.

That, of course, could increase costs for content companies, which would then have an incentive to pass on those costs to consumers as part of their subscription prices.

Proponents of net neutrality have feared that such a framework would empower large, wealthy companies and prevent small start-ups, which might otherwise be the next Twitter or Facebook, for example, from gaining any traction in the market.

Some claim chowder from 2007, “Obama Pledges Net Neutrality Laws if Elected President”:

The question, selected through an online video contest, was posed via video by small-business owner and former AT&T engineer Joe Niederberger, a member of the liberal advocacy group MoveOn.org. He asked Obama: “Would you make it a priority in your first year of office to reinstate Net neutrality as the law of the land? And would you pledge to only appoint FCC commissioners that support open Internet principles like Net neutrality?”

“The answer is yes,” Obama replied. “I am a strong supporter of Net neutrality.”

He went on to explain the issue briefly: “What you’ve been seeing is some lobbying that says that the servers and the various portals through which you’re getting information over the Internet should be able to be gatekeepers and to charge different rates to different Web sites… so you could get much better quality from the Fox News site and you’d be getting rotten service from the mom and pop sites,” he went on. “And that I think destroys one of the best things about the Internet — which is that there is this incredible equality there.”

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

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