Morons Unite For FCC Net Neutrality
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- Written on: February 26th, 2015
Net neutrality is an elegant concept. The system we have now allows a small number of corporations who own data transmission networks to allow, disallow, or charge premiums to deliver content. That means if you are Netflix, Comcast wants to charge you several million dollars to stream video over their network. If Netflix doesn’t pay, Comcast might just “deprioritize” Netflix data so your favorite shows buffer continuously.
The original effort for net neutrality believed that corporations should not have a say over what data is sent or received over their networks. They should treat all data the same regardless of who is sending it or what kind of data it is.
If you think the FCC Decision tomorrow is going to give you Net Neutrality you might need to take off your rose colored glasses and check back into reality.
The FCC, a supposedly independent government regulatory commission (not really the case here though) is going to decide whether or not to implement a 317 page policy that regulates the Internet based on the 1934 Telecommunications Act. Don’t worry though… The act was updated to cover new technologies in 1995 when AOL was king of the dial-up connections.
Why does the FCC need 317 pages to do this? Because they can do whatever they want. Whenever they want. They can implement a new Internet tax, they could impose decency standards on content posted online, they could force cable companies to treat TV shows and internet data identically meaning your TV might start buffering the nightly news at some point in the future, and the list goes on.
Mark Cuban who is involved in business dealings with cable companies as well as Netflix believes this is going to be an absolute disaster. A couple of his bandwidth calculations are off but his general point is valid without any specifics from the FCC to discuss. Watch a clip of an interview he did here:
The best part is that no one really knows what the FCC has planned at this point because they won’t show the proposed regulations to anyone (except for Google apparently). The FCC claims that they never share proposed regulations before they are implemented. That has worked out so well in the past with things like FDR’s New Deal and Obama’s Affordable Care Act so what could possibly go wrong?
The US House of Representatives is so concerned about the new potential regulations and the impact they might have on the defacto embodiment of the 1st Amendment that they asked the FCC chairman to testify today about the new regulations. He refused.
Tomorrow morning I will be a guest on 1110 KFAB out of Omaha NE at 8:40 to talk about the pending vote. you can listen online at www.kfab.com. The sad thing is when this ruling is announced tomorrow it will be a done deal. There is no more debate and modifications can be made, but will probably be done sparingly.
Compared to a worst case scenario, the announced regulations tomorrow will probably not be as bad as they could be. My fear is that by letting the government in the door at all we are ceding the central point that the government has no business regulating this AT ALL. What gives the government the right to regulate protected speech moving across privately owned networks?
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