FCC’s Net Neutrality Rules Would Break the Internet

C-Net’s Marguerite Reardon’s at it again, with a new piece on the goodness of the FCC’s proposed rules on “Open Internet.”   http://www.cnet.com/news/fccs-position-on-net-neutrality-hasnt-changed/

She spends the whole article mouthing soothing platitudes from the talking points Comcast prepared for her.

I can’t believe anyone is so stupid as to believe these rules won’t terribly harm consumers.  So I can only guess that Maggie’s on Comcast’s payroll.  I felt strongly enough about it to leave the comment below on the C-Net website:


This article, coming on the tails of Ms. Reardon’s magnificent piece rationalizing the unbearable goodness of the TWC – Comcast merger has me utterly convinced that Ms. Reardon’s 100% on Comcast’s payroll.

She regurgitates Comcast’s and Wheeler’s talking points, 1,2, 3 right down the line, without any measure of objectivity.

But of course, Ms. Reardon.  The FCC rules will change nothing.  We can rest easy.

Except that little bit about prioritizing traffic from people who pay extra.  Whoopsie!

It’s clear that if some people (Google, Netflix, YouTube, etc.) pay extra for faster connections on the last mile, then the unspoken condition is that all else will be slowed down.  And if you believe the ISP’s aren’t above artificially slowing down traffic in order to make bucks selling priority connections, I’ve got a nice bridge I think you’ll be interested in…

It’s absolutely guaranteed that if these rules pass, traffic will generally slow down for the non-prioritized.

You wanna watch a video on an off brand web site?  Get used to the “Buffering…” notice and prepare to wait endlessly to see the video clip.  There’ll be all sorts of lame technical excuses why this happens from the ISP’s, mainly “net congestion.”  And the admonishment that if the website would only pay their “troll toll,” then the video would have enough bandwidth to play instantly.  It’s not the wonderful ISP’s fault; it’s the cheap web sites that won’t pay their fair share to have their traffic prioritized.

But of course the ISP’s would not be actually blocking websites or anything like that and so it would all be nice and legal.  Yeah, right.

The content providers that paid the troll toll would have their content delivered zip, zip, zip.  Magnificent.  And the ones that didn’t?  You remember what 56K modems were like?  Everything was slow as molasses…   Well that’s what non-payer’s content will look like – if these rules pass.

This is asinine.

These rules clearly demonstrate the idiocy of having industry insiders regulating their own – the fox guarding the hen house.  Basically it’s like giving the keys to the kingdom to Comcast and Verizon and pals and saying, “Have at it.  Do what you like.  You’ve got carte blanche.”

This is the result.

But how could it be otherwise?  Wheeler was the head of the cable industry’s biggest lobbying association.  He was also head of the wireless industry’s top lobbying group.  His whole life is built on “what’s good for cable and wireless.”  How on earth could anyone realistically believe he could dramatically switch to a pro-consumer standpoint and leave behind all the years and dollars of his life as an industry lobbyist?

These rules clearly show where Wheeler is at.  This is a man who knows which side his bread is buttered on!

But sadly, what’s good for Comcast and AT&T and Verizon and so on is most emphatically not good for consumers.

In the final analysis, all these rules do is legalize and legitimize a new, very lucrative revenue stream for these humongous, rich and powerful corporations.  All at the expense of consumers.

And in doing so, they will break the internet.

This is outrageous.

Internet access isn’t a frivolous luxury – not in 2014.  It’s a basic utility, just like water, electricity and sewer.  The ISP’s should be classified and regulated as common carriers.  That is the only answer that will suffice.

As to you, Ms. Reardon;  you should be ashamed of yourself!  Much luck in your new job as a PR flak for Comcast.