Coffeehouse Thread

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What is Net Neutrality?

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  • User profile image
    Minh

    Ignoring the senile senator from Alaska & his trucks, I think these are right:

    * NN is about packet prioritization

    * Telcos are against NN

    * Skype is for NN

    * Is this about telcos wanting to prioritize their OWN video & voice streams over the competitors?

    What are the bad things about treating packets equally?

    What are the good things about letting the telcos prioritize packets?

  • User profile image
    alwaysmc2

    Well one good thing about NN is that an ISP can't have favorite websites for you.  (Like slowing down access to a competitor’s site while speeding up access to their own.  Under NN an ISP can't do that.)   One bad thing is that the government can't get priority in case of emergency.  Like in 9/11 nobody could talk to each other because the communication tubes were clogged.

  • User profile image
    cheong

    Minh wrote:

    What are the good things about letting the telcos prioritize packets?

    There are certain network technologies like telecommunications and video conference over network that requires extra network speed and stability. Priorizing packets can help ISPs adjust network settings to allow people using these application gain extra bandwidth for higher performance.

    But sadly this also means the ISPs (or government if they enforces) could censor all the packets in the network for speech control or other bad things. And there could be law that if any of the ISP let those "disallowed packets" slip through, they have to assume responsibility. (Like those Blog owners are responsible for delete "inappropiate messages" from the Blog by visitors, if they're caught not doing so, they will be punished by the legal enforcers) Currently, because of NN the ISPs does not have to assume this kind of responsibility.

    And certain technologies, such as BT that is considered evil by some business, could be banned because the ISPs are under forces of big companies. For business that develop network technologies that also owns an ISP, they could also use this to gain unfair advantage against the competitors.

    Minh wrote:

    What are the bad things about treating packets equally?

    ISPs cannot charge money other than the "ISP service fees".

    If there's no NN, and those ISPs are "playing evil", the ISPs could charge other internet service providers such as Skype, Podcasting sites, Videostreaming sites, etc. for taking extra bandwidths on the network. i.e.: These companies have to pay twice for their business on the net.

    alwaysmc2 wrote:
    

    Well one good thing about NN is that an ISP can't have favorite websites for you.  (Like slowing down access to a competitor’s site while speeding up access to their own.  Under NN an ISP can't do that.)   One bad thing is that the government can't get priority in case of emergency.  Like in 9/11 nobody could talk to each other because the communication tubes were clogged.


    Agreed the government should gain priority in emergency, but that's not the case when that's plenty of network resource left that the government's connection can go flawlessly even if there's no priority.

    Even in 9/11 I'm not aware of anywhere in the world that have network traffic jam so the government agencies have no network access.

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  • User profile image
    JohnAskew

    Will anyone be slower for ISP profit? Welcome to the internet toll-way!

  • User profile image
    ElucidWeb

    Its a bunch of tubes!

  • User profile image
    Steven J Ackerman

    There's been some good discussion of Net Neutrality on S.A.T.N.

  • User profile image
    eagle

    Telcos want some of Google's billions.

  • User profile image
    Matthew van Eerde

    I'm against NN, personally.  It's not that I'm in favor of the ISPs, but I don't think regulation will help anything.

  • User profile image
    BryanF

    Matthew van Eerde wrote:
    I'm against NN, personally. It's not that I'm in favor of the ISPs, but I don't think regulation will help anything.
    Out of curiousity, could you elaborate on your reasoning? Given that you're clearly not a troll, I'm assuming it's more than blind ideology; e.g., "Regulation is bad. Net Neutrality is regulation. Therefore, Net Neutrality is bad." It just strikes me as a strange position: to say you don't agree with the ISPs and telcos, but that you don't believe we should anything to curb their ambitions.

    I agree that there's such a thing as too much regulation, but I think the invisible hand sometimes needs to meet the invisible ruler. Prioritizing packets based on broad type is largely a good thing. It makes sense to give voice priority over text, for instance. The problem is that I don't believe for a second the telcos have the self-restaint to avoid prioritizing based on some sort of preferential relationship. For example, you could easily imagine an ISP forming a special partnership with Skype, and giving their traffic a bump up at the expense of other VOIP providers. The current state of neutrality is a boon to startups since their websites are just as visible as their large competitors; in the larger scope of things, I think it actually helps free enterprise more than it hinders it.

    Don't take my word for it, ask a ">http://www.askaninja.com/news/2006/05/11/ask-a-ninja-special-delivery-4-net-neutrality"> ninja.

  • User profile image
    Matthew van Eerde

    BryanF wrote:
    Out of curiousity, could you elaborate on your reasoning?


    Sure.  It's basically a POV thing.

    Clearly the proposed Net Neutrality law would create a large burden for ISPs.

    Imagine if you were a bus driver, or a post office, or a taxi driver.

    Imagine if there was a law... a law... that said you had to treat all passengers, packages, fares equally.

    Ugh!

    Laws don't do any good unless they're enforced.  How in the world could this law be enforced?

    Customer: "Hey, my packet was dropped."
    ISP: "Oops.  Oh well, it happens.  To everybody.  Equally."
    Customer: "But my neighbor bought the premium service and his packet didn't drop.  I'm suing."
    ISP: "..."
    Customer: "And I'm going to subpoena all the traffic logs for all the routers in my city for the last three hours."
    ISP: "We don't keep logs."
    Customer: "WHAT!! That's blatant disregard of federal law! I'll see you all in jail for this!!"

    I think the people who would benefit from this amendment... content providers... have done a very effective job of selling their point of view to the consumer.  But I think the consumer would not benefit AT ALL from Net Neutrality.  If anything, the consumer will be stuck with a single quality of service... rather than being able to choose between fast, expensive service and slow, cheap service.

    I don't want to see the same thing happen to the ISPs that happened to AmTrak.  Anybody take the train anymore?

    Disclaimer: views expressed are my own wacky Libertarian-inspired personal principles, and do not represent official statements by Microsoft.

    EDIT: I left out one other major beneficiary of the proposed NN law - spam kings.  If an ISP sees a tremendous amount of outgoing traffic to port 25 from Grandma's home cable account, they can in principle ease up on the throttle and send her a letter.  Under NN, that would be a federal crime.

  • User profile image
    JohnAskew


    So far my ISP doesn't charge me for traffic that comes to my website, but when they do as a result of No NN, I won't be the only one that notices.

  • User profile image
    Minh

    Matthew van Eerde wrote:

    Clearly the proposed Net Neutrality law would create a large burden for ISPs.

    Imagine if you were a bus driver, or a post office, or a taxi driver.

    Imagine if there was a law... a law... that said you had to treat all passengers, packages, fares equally.

    Ugh!

    Except that this would mean for the ISPs to ... DO NOTHING. Wouldn't first-come-first-serve any pakets be your neutrality?

    Matthew van Eerde wrote:

    Laws don't do any good unless they're enforced.  How in the world could this law be enforced?

    Like most laws on the book. Punish the telcos if they're found to break neutrality. But you can't punish them if you don't have a law.

    Matthew van Eerde wrote:

    If anything, the consumer will be stuck with a single quality of service... rather than being able to choose between fast, expensive service and slow, cheap service.

    I'm not entirely sold on NN  -- this would be my fly in the ointment. But I think telcos degrading a COMPETITOR's data a more compelling
    reason for NN.

    Matthew van Eerde wrote:

    EDIT: I left out one other major beneficiary of the proposed NN law - spam kings.  If an ISP sees a tremendous amount of outgoing traffic to port 25 from Grandma's home cable account, they can in principle ease up on the throttle and send her a letter.  Under NN, that would be a federal crime.
    I still think sending "internets" isn't the main point with NN. "Internets" are just text & are miniscue compared to video data.

  • User profile image
    Minh

    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    There is a much larger issue at stake here and it is whether or not fascism should play a role in politics. Network neturality is a fascist policy, as it interferes with businesses.

    Government CAN interfere with businesses if it's for the best interest of the people. It is in the best interest of the people to ban anti-competitive measures. Do you think the break-up of the AT&T monopoly was fascist?

  • User profile image
    Matthew van Eerde

    This thread is over now.  Nothing to see here.  Godwin's Law has been invoked. Wink

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    Minh wrote:
    Ignoring the senile senator from Alaska & his trucks, I think these are right:

    * NN is about packet prioritization

    * Telcos are against NN

    * Skype is for NN

    * Is this about telcos wanting to prioritize their OWN video & voice streams over the competitors?

    What are the bad things about treating packets equally?

    What are the good things about letting the telcos prioritize packets?


    There is a much larger issue at stake here and it is whether or not fascism should play a role in politics. Network neturality is a fascist policy, as it interferes with businesses. Back in the 1930s and 1940s, people thought very highly of fascism, and FDR was fascinated by mussolini's factory state. Then after WWII when the world discovered what the german fascists (the (I need to watch my language)s) had done, fascism become associated with death camps and everyone moved away from anything that was associated with the word, so that today, any fascist policies going through Congress are no longer mentioned as being fascist, even through they are. Prior to speaking out against marxism (which was unfortunately referred to by a superset of itself, communism, even through married couples qualify as being communists), Ronald Reagan gave many speeches as a Democrat against fascism. It was a huge issue back then as fascism had been a rising power in the United States.

    My personal take on network neutrality and therefore fascism is that the federal government has no right to tell businesses how they should operate under any circumstance, and that it is an exclusive right of the state governments to make rules for how businesses operate and that those rules should be restricted to the bare minimum that they need to be.

    I believe that the federal government should not be allowed to interfere with matters of business this because the Constitution implicitly prohibits the federal government from interfering in matters of business, and if the federal government is allowed to walk over the Constitution in matters of business, nothing stops it from walking over the Constitution any other matter and anything that we perceive as preventing it from doing so is only a perception.

    I believe that the rules for how businesses operate made by state governments should be restricted to the bare minimum they need to be because it is impossible for humans to create a perfect set of rules so the larger the rules are, the more potential exists for them to have a mistake. An excellent example of this would be legal codes from the former Roman Empire or from any country that has based its legal system off the Roman Empire's legal system. Those codes were so overly specific that they were unable to accomediate natural changes in countries' economies over time and they became restrictive to economic growth and as a result, they became restrictive to improvements in society's median standard of living. The English system of legal codes is amazing because it allows countries to be much more adaptable. An excellent example of this in modern times is India, which has been booming. Other examples of this include the United States, the world economic super power and the former British empire, which was the world economic power for almost 400 years.

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    Minh wrote:
    
    Shining Arcanine wrote:There is a much larger issue at stake here and it is whether or not fascism should play a role in politics. Network neturality is a fascist policy, as it interferes with businesses.

    Government CAN interfere with businesses if it's for the best interest of the people. It is in the best interest of the people to ban anti-competitive measures. Do you think the break-up of the AT&T monopoly was fascist?


    Read the Constitution. The federal government has no delegated authority to interfere with matters of business. If it has no delegated authority, it does not have a legimate authority to perform such an act. Rather, it is the exclusive reserved power of the various state governments to regulate businesses, as they are each sovereign entities, and any action by the federal government is a violation of thae several states' sovereignty.

    A federal system of government differs vastly from a national system of government. In a federal system of government, there is a strong central government that to which states outsource their foriegn affairs and national identity, while the states retain all other power. In a national system of government, the national government is the state, and thus all regions that would be analogous to states in a federal system are provinces, which have no power unless it is specifically delegated to them by the national government. In a federal system, powers are delegated from the states to the central government with the states holding ultimate power while in a national system, powers are delegated from the central government to the provinces with the central government holding ultimate power.

    In a federal system, any unauthorized exercise of power by the federal government is a direct result of corruption in the government, which will lead to tyranny. In a national system, any unauthorized exercise of power by the provinces is the beginning of a rebellion. In a federal system, we do not have to worry about rebellion, as each state already has the right to secede if the federal government becomes oppressive so while in a national system of government, provinces that rebel are be wrong in rebelling, in a federal system of government, states can secede and be right in seceding. New York stated in its ratification of the Constitution that it ratified it only under the condition that it maintains the power to secede in the event that the federal government become oppressive, so theoretically, if the government of New York was to secede from the Union over this illegimate expansion of power and the federal government tried to stop it, the federal government would cease to be a legimate government and it would fall apart at the seams.

    Anyway, as I said, the federal government has no authority to regulate business. That is a power reserved exclusively by the several states, whose sovereign powers pre-date the federal government and with the exception of foreign affairs, are still very much in effect, even if the Democrats ignore the tenth ammendment. If any legimate regulation of business is to occur, it will only occur by the action of the governments of the several states.

    By the way, if there was a constitutional ammendment authorizing the federal government to regulate businesses, I would have no problem with it, but there is none; so any attempt by the federal government to regulate businesses would be an illegimate expansion of power by the federal government and will directly result in tyranny.

  • User profile image
    AdityaG

    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    
    Minh wrote:
    Shining Arcanine wrote:There is a much larger issue at stake here and it is whether or not fascism should play a role in politics. Network neturality is a fascist policy, as it interferes with businesses.

    Government CAN interfere with businesses if it's for the best interest of the people. It is in the best interest of the people to ban anti-competitive measures. Do you think the break-up of the AT&T monopoly was fascist?


    Read the Constitution. The federal government has no delegated authority to interfere with matters of business. If it has no delegated authority, it does not have a legimate authority to perform such an act. Rather, it is the exclusive reserved power of the various state governments to regulate businesses, as they are each sovereign entities, and any action by the federal government is a violation of thae several states' sovereignty.

    A federal system of government differs vastly from a national system of government. In a federal system of government, there is a strong central government that to which states outsource their foriegn affairs and national identity, while the states retain all other power. In a national system of government, the national government is the state, and thus all regions that would be analogous to states in a federal system are provinces, which have no power unless it is specifically delegated to them by the national government. In a federal system, powers are delegated from the states to the central government with the states holding ultimate power while in a national system, powers are delegated from the central government to the provinces with the central government holding ultimate power.

    In a federal system, any unauthorized exercise of power by the federal government is a direct result of corruption in the government, which will lead to tyranny. In a national system, any unauthorized exercise of power by the provinces is the beginning of a rebellion. In a federal system, we do not have to worry about rebellion, as each state already has the right to secede if the federal government becomes oppressive so while in a national system of government, provinces that rebel are be wrong in rebelling, in a federal system of government, states can secede and be right in seceding. New York stated in its ratification of the Constitution that it ratified it only under the condition that it maintains the power to secede in the event that the federal government become oppressive, so theoretically, if the government of New York was to secede from the Union over this illegimate expansion of power and the federal government tried to stop it, the federal government would cease to be a legimate government and it would fall apart at the seams.

    Anyway, as I said, the federal government has no authority to regulate business. That is a power reserved exclusively by the several states, whose sovereign powers pre-date the federal government and with the exception of foreign affairs, are still very much in effect, even if the Democrats ignore the tenth ammendment. If any legimate regulation of business is to occur, it will only occur by the action of the governments of the several states.

    By the way, if there was a constitutional ammendment authorizing the federal government to regulate businesses, I would have no problem with it, but there is none; so any attempt by the federal government to regulate businesses would be an illegimate expansion of power by the federal government and will directly result in tyranny.


    The constitution means almost nothing these days. If nothing works, the people against NN will argue something against terrorism. And it will probably work.

    Either way, No. Net Neutrality for the win! I say that because it doesn't matter if it's not the most efficient system. It's still unregulated and free (in the sense that every "tube" is equal). Somewhat like democracy eh?

    Cheers,
    Aditya
    P.S. If anyone doesn't get the whole "tubes" thing going on in this thread, you need to watch more of the daily show =P

  • User profile image
    ScanIAm

    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    
    Minh wrote: 
    Shining Arcanine wrote: There is a much larger issue at stake here and it is whether or not fascism should play a role in politics. Network neturality is a fascist policy, as it interferes with businesses.

    Government CAN interfere with businesses if it's for the best interest of the people. It is in the best interest of the people to ban anti-competitive measures. Do you think the break-up of the AT&T monopoly was fascist?


    Read the Constitution. The federal government has no delegated authority to interfere with matters of business. If it has no delegated authority, it does not have a legimate authority to perform such an act. Rather, it is the exclusive reserved power of the various state governments to regulate businesses, as they are each sovereign entities, and any action by the federal government is a violation of thae several states' sovereignty.


    Nice try, but the federal govt can and does interfere with matters of business on a regular basis and we, the people, expect them to do so.  In fact, I would venture that 99% of all laws passed have a direct, purposeful effect on at least 1 business.  The idea that businesses can operate in some state of anarchy above any reproach of the law is simply false.

    Shining Arcanine wrote:

    A federal system of government differs vastly from a national system of government. In a federal system of government, there is a strong central government that to which states outsource their foriegn affairs and national identity, while the states retain all other power. In a national system of government, the national government is the state, and thus all regions that would be analogous to states in a federal system are provinces, which have no power unless it is specifically delegated to them by the national government. In a federal system, powers are delegated from the states to the central government with the states holding ultimate power while in a national system, powers are delegated from the central government to the provinces with the central government holding ultimate power.

    Quite so, but what does this have to do with the issue?
    Shining Arcanine wrote:

    In a federal system, any unauthorized exercise of power by the federal government is a direct result of corruption in the government, which will lead to tyranny. In a national system, any unauthorized exercise of power by the provinces is the beginning of a rebellion. In a federal system, we do not have to worry about rebellion, as each state already has the right to secede if the federal government becomes oppressive so while in a national system of government, provinces that rebel are be wrong in rebelling, in a federal system of government, states can secede and be right in seceding. New York stated in its ratification of the Constitution that it ratified it only under the condition that it maintains the power to secede in the event that the federal government become oppressive, so theoretically, if the government of New York was to secede from the Union over this illegimate expansion of power and the federal government tried to stop it, the federal government would cease to be a legimate government and it would fall apart at the seams.

    Anyway, as I said, the federal government has no authority to regulate business. That is a power reserved exclusively by the several states, whose sovereign powers pre-date the federal government and with the exception of foreign affairs, are still very much in effect, even if the Democrats ignore the tenth ammendment. If any legimate regulation of business is to occur, it will only occur by the action of the governments of the several states.

    By the way, if there was a constitutional ammendment authorizing the federal government to regulate businesses, I would have no problem with it, but there is none; so any attempt by the federal government to regulate businesses would be an illegimate expansion of power by the federal government and will directly result in tyranny.

    You are playing a game of semantics and offering a civics lesson.

    The federal government does, indeed, have to power to regulate businesses.  The power play between states and federal government is very fluid, and cannot be summed up in a contract that New York had from 200+ years ago.

    But, ultimately, you are simply wrong.  A classic example of federal law affecting business is something we call minimum wage.

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