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How the FCC Plans To Save the Internet By Destroying It

Soulskill posted about 5 months ago | from the just-don't-trip-over-the-power-cord-and-we'll-be-happy dept.

The Internet 217

New submitter dislikes_corruption writes: "Stopping the recently announced plan by the FCC to end net neutrality is going to require a significant outcry by the public at large, a public that isn't particularly well versed on the issue or why they should care. Ryan Singel, a former editor at Wired, has written a thorough and easy to understand primer on the FCC's plan, the history behind it, and how it will impact the Internet should it come to pass. It's suitable for your neophyte parent, spouse, or sibling. In the meantime, the FCC has opened a new inbox (openinternet@fcc.gov) for public comments on the decision, there's a petition to sign at whitehouse.gov, and you can (and should) contact your congressmen."

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Congressional fix? (3, Interesting)

MacAndrew (463832) | about 5 months ago | (#46848959)

It seems to me the lobbying forces on the part of the content providers, Netflix et al., would be pretty formidable—unless they think the price is worth it to suppress upstart competition. Which is it?

Re: Congressional fix? (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849021)

Just like they had to break healthcare before they can fix it. How's that working out now?

Re: Congressional fix? (2, Insightful)

MacAndrew (463832) | about 5 months ago | (#46849055)

Pretty damn well. You can't believe the difference things like lifting the bar to pre-existing conditions makes to families like ours. That they could have better job with this behemoth project, I don't doubt. That they would have done a better job if the other half Congress hadn't been obstuctionist jerks, I don't doubt either. Growing pains, not fault with the basic concept.

To drift back on topic: ditto for net neutrality. Sometimes we do better without the market carved into big corporate fiefdoms and fake competition.

Re: Congressional fix? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849089)

Pretty damn well. You can't believe the difference things like lifting the bar to pre-existing conditions makes to families like ours. That they could have better job with this behemoth project, I don't doubt. That they would have done a better job if the other half Congress hadn't been obstuctionist jerks, I don't doubt either. Growing pains, not fault with the basic concept.

To drift back on topic: ditto for net neutrality. Sometimes we do better without the market carved into big corporate fiefdoms and fake competition.

You trade pre-existing support now for death panels later. Have fun. I hope you have a big appetite, because I have a feeling you're going to be eating those words about your "new and improved" healthcare in a few short years.

Ditto for net neutrality should sheep like you have your way.

Re: Congressional fix? (1, Insightful)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 5 months ago | (#46849155)

If the purpose of health care is to help sick people, how does denying health care to sick people help further its purpose?

Re: Congressional fix? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849173)

Forcing people to buy health insurance is in no way "health care".

But then we all seem to have forgotten that those who trade their medical liberty for sake of a placebo medical security deserve neither.

Re: Congressional fix? (4, Informative)

J. J. Ramsey (658) | about 5 months ago | (#46849171)

You trade pre-existing support now for death panels later. Have fun.

Repeating as fact something that Politifact had rated as "Lie of the Year" for 2009 [politifact.com] does not help your credibility.

Re: Congressional fix? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849217)

Repeating a propaganda piece as a definitive statement doesn't help yours either. When government controls coverage (and it now does) and that coverage goes over budget... costs WILL be reduced

http://www.cnn.com/2014/04/23/... [cnn.com]

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849335)

I'm curious what insurance to date had no "budget." If anything the inequities were far more severe, with lifetime caps on coverage, cancelled insurance, crippling premiums, skyrocketing copays, staggering deductibles.... believe me, I know firsthand.

Re: Congressional fix? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849413)

So nationalizing the health insurance industry and forcing everyone to purchase it solves that problem?

Oh wait... it doesn't... It just gives government total control over 1/6 of the US economy and, on top of that, dictates what insurance you MUST buy while destroying other viable plans because they no longer pass legal muster.

You've not GAINED anything here... you've merely sacrificed your rights and liberties for feel good populist rhetoric!

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849441)

So nationalizing the health insurance industry and forcing everyone to purchase it solves that problem?

I can hear the alarms going off over there at neocon central: EVADE! EVADE! EVADE!

Couldn't answer the question so you made up more bullshit like "nationalizing the health insurance industry" (which the liberals wanted but didn't get), just to throw everyone off the tracks.

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849493)

The only one evading here is you.

I answered your question. You've not GAINED anything. There's no additional health care, just a mandate that you have to buy health insurance, the contents of which are dictated by government mandate and which includes much higher deductibles to make it "affordable" and (as you so correctly point out) STILL has lifetime limits.

And now the government tracks your complete and total medical experience for your own good citizen and mandates what doctors can and cannot discuss with you because all doctors are now government agents.

I ask again.. what have you GAINED in terms of better medical health care? NOTHING

So stop being so butthurt when I ram the truth up it. Now go get your bury brigade in action coz censorship is all you got.

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849501)

So nationalizing the health insurance industry

We nationalized everything a long time ago.

There is no aspect of economic life where the Federal Government doesn't have the final say if they want.

If you think you're economically free in some respect now, it's only because the Federal Government allows it.

That's been the reality since the New Deal.

Sorry.

Re: Congressional fix? (2)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#46849851)

Citing politifact as anything doesn't help your credibility. If you read them often, you'll find they are just editorialism in the guise of fact checking.

Re: Congressional fix? (5, Insightful)

Belial6 (794905) | about 5 months ago | (#46849193)

What health insurance doesn't have "death panels"? You do realize that there has never been a time that having health insurance meant that the insurance company would give you unlimited care, right?

Re: Congressional fix? (2)

NFN_NLN (633283) | about 5 months ago | (#46849617)

There is no such thing as death panels. It is just the insurance company working in "mysterious ways". That out has been working for god since the beginning of time and he gets away with starving children and gruesome deaths of innocent people by the hundreds.

Re: Congressional fix? (1, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 5 months ago | (#46849319)

Whoever thought of death panels is a sick, sick bastard.
Hint: It wasn't the people who invented public healthcare.
Countries that have had public healthcare for decades don't have death panels either.

Yes they do (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849401)

All countries that have health care for a while have panels that deny treatment [thenewamerican.com] to people.

You cannot give everything to everyone, over time you run out of money (especially as the population of older people in the pool swells while the number of younger people dwindles).

You are REALLY going to see the screws put in over the next decade in most of Europe (probably not Germany).

Re:Yes they do (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849883)

> You are REALLY going to see the screws put in over the next decade in most of Europe (probably not Germany).

Been hearing that for the past four decades, myself. Still nada. In fact, even with the recent austerity measures, my health coverage and access to higher education well into the last quarter of my career is so much better than my US colleagues I can understand why you neocon nimrods are so desperate to try to discredit the European model.

You're wrong. You've been wrong for 40 years. You'll continue to be wrong. You won't accept this because you are more obsessed with your religious adherence to an economic model instead of looking at the actual data.

Re: Congressional fix? (1)

NFN_NLN (633283) | about 5 months ago | (#46849579)

You trade pre-existing support now for death panels later. Have fun. I hope you have a big appetite, because I have a feeling you're going to be eating those words about your "new and improved" healthcare in a few short years.

Ditto for net neutrality should sheep like you have your way.

This is why NEW ideas have such a hard time gaining traction. Save for the fact this isn't a NEW idea. It has been implemented successfully in basically all other modern industrial nations. This is like arguing the superiority of communism after the fall of communism (hopefully the irony of that example sets off the trolls, hahahha).

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849703)

Or the superiority of under-regulated capitalism after actually living in it...

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849895)

Speaking as a European, while I'd love it for US citizens to enjoy the same standard of living that I do, the very best thing you can do for the EU economy is to not change.

Please elect a republican president next time and carry on pulling the democrats to the right and don't, for the love of God, think outside your box.

Re: Congressional fix? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849215)

Yeah it has been awesome, I went from paying less than $500 a year in co-payments to paying $3000 a year, all of it withing the first six months. It does save me $20 a month in premiums though. Apparently the low deductible plan I had did not meet the new healthcare laws requirements so I had to choose from high deductible plans. I am so glad I couldn't keep my current plan, destroying my savings over the next few years will be so much better.

Not actually true (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849257)

You just didn't shop around. Don't assume that your current provider is the only one that can offer you new plans.

Re: Congressional fix? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849303)

Anecdotal outcomes don't answer whether the law is worthwhile. Ideally it would be good for everyone, but there will be mistakes and redistributions. Hopefully your outcome will improve; it doesn't sound fair.

So Glad (1, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849277)

Well we're all so glad millions of people could lose insurance and tens of millions more will pay more, so that your insurance situation is a little better!

We live to serve. You that is.

Re:So Glad (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849323)

A "little better"? Are you insane? Insurance versus none? And good news: your statistics are false or misleading.

Re: Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849329)

Americans wanted National health care, yet they were given the choice of either shit-soup or a shit-sandwich. What the stupid Amicans got was the shit-soup{National Health Insurance}. American are just to stupid to be allowed to govern their own county. Let them drink the poisonous water, eat the poisoned fish, eat the tainted plants.

Re:Congressional fix? (3, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 months ago | (#46849097)

unless they think the price is worth it to suppress upstart competition

Ding ding ding, we have a winner!

People in favor of "regulation" because of the evils of "big business" need to familiarize themselves with the concept of regulatory capture. Big business loves regulation, because they've got legions of lawyers and compliance officers at their disposal, resources unavailable to any would-be start up. George Will writes about this topic frequently, in industries ranging from undertakers to electricians to nail salons.

Re:Congressional fix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849183)

No, they "love" the regulations they help craft/influence/pay for.

Re:Congressional fix? (4, Insightful)

MacAndrew (463832) | about 5 months ago | (#46849355)

And I suppose big business loves non-regulation, with the opportunities of monopoly. So win-win?

I'll agree that regulation risks just shifting wealth from one corporate interest to another. Also, that regulaiton introduces its own barriers to competition. But to condemn regulation per se is mindless. We got enough of the robber barons ages ago.

Now, back to my question.... which way will things tilt, and how much will the public interest matter.

Re:Congressional fix? (0)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849381)

And I suppose big business loves non-regulation, with the opportunities of monopoly. So win-win?

It's not really possible to have a monopoly without regulation, otherwise competition can easily take over business from a company that naturally ossifies as it grows.

I'll agree that regulation risks just shifting wealth from one corporate interest to another.

Not a risk. A certainly. Whoever figures out how to game (or control) the regulation becomes a de-facto monopoly.

But to condemn regulation per se is mindless.

Not so mindless as to promote regulation in a world that is rife with it already. When we get down to somewhere near 100 pages of regulation per company you can come calling back about the need for it.

We got enough of the robber barons ages ago.

When was that again? Are you are the label was not simply changed?

how much will the public interest matter.

Public intérÃts matters a great deal, but you CANNOT get the public to care about corporate interests taking over government. The only real solution is to reduce government control, thereby reducing the (easily hit) central target for corruption. Clamoring for more regulation to fix regulation is, to put it mildly, idiotic.

Re:Congressional fix? (2)

MacAndrew (463832) | about 5 months ago | (#46849427)

Well, we'll have to differ then. The free market is an ideal, but a self-executing free market is a rarity. No regulation (or no government) is a nice jingle but there will always be something. (Is anyone saying more regulation/govenrment for its own sake? No, but they can be nasty side effects.) It's the law itself. Even the criminal law is a form of regulation—especially unlikely to be banned—and yes amending, sometimes repealing, it can improve it. That said, I do sympathize with the libertarian perspective (versus dogma) and think the government can be seen as just another ... corporation. Which means, regulate with care, not never.

"Robber baron" just sounds cool. I don't think we have classic monopolies like oil and steel, but less the landscape is pretty messed up, and getting worse so with the repeal of Glass-Steagal and so on..... Just my 2 against $2 trillion.

Re:Congressional fix? (5, Informative)

artor3 (1344997) | about 5 months ago | (#46849485)

Wait, I think you're confused.

"Regulation" in this case would be the FCC instituting net neutrality, so that the ISPs have to treat all comers equally. E.g., Comcast can't speed up Hulu at the expense of some small start-up video streaming site.

The big businesses want to kill net neutrality because that will let them crush any new start-ups, and ensure that they maintain control of what we watch for generations to come. Sites like Netflix never would have gotten off the ground without net neutrality.

The big businesses are trying to get rid of regulations, and you've twisted it around to say that we need to ...get rid of regulations. Either you're confused, or just some corporate bootlicker.

Re:Congressional fix? (1)

mc6809e (214243) | about 5 months ago | (#46849431)

It seems to me the lobbying forces on the part of the content providers, Netflix et al., would be pretty formidableâ"unless they think the price is worth it to suppress upstart competition. Which is it?
I think they're getting to the point where they're willing to pay for prioritization just to guarantee quality.

A big problem is that we have a transmission protocol (TCP) that is a well deployed but incredibly stupid protocol that that intentionally floods the network with packets until it breaks, then backs off for a little while, then tries to break the network again, always trying to consume every little extra bit of buffer space and bandwidth that might be available in competition with every other server that's doing the same thing. It's constant war with attacks and retreats.

There are a least two approaches used to cope with this. One is to add bandwidth. The trouble is that TCP will greedily consume any additional bandwidth that's available and you're back to the original problem.

The second is to buy your own little slice of bandwidth and isolate your stream from all the battles going on between the other streams. This solves the problem for you but creates a kind of bandwidth aparthied. Your traffic is finally safe, but there's less bandwidth available for everyone else.

The media streamers would prefer guarantees so that their customers get the quality they pay for. Adding bandwidth doesn't provide any guarantee. Packet prioritization at the router (almost) does. We're getting to the point where Netflix, etc are willing to pay for prioritization that gives a guarantee.

And yet (2)

koan (80826) | about 5 months ago | (#46848967)

I'm mocked when I point out the blatant conspiracy between corporations and the FCC.

Re:And yet (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849233)

You're mocked because you are posting on Slashdot.

Conspiracy or capitulation? (1)

RatherBeAnonymous (1812866) | about 5 months ago | (#46849765)

"Conspiracy" implies that the FCC has some active input.

The general public is incredibly stupid (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849011)

Capitalism is nice until corporations grow big enough. At some point they start to strive towards a monopoly and this is where the core idea of capitalism dies. It's the end of competition and consumers suffer the most.

The political spectrum in the US needs some new parties and fast.

Re:The general public is incredibly stupid (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849545)

If that isn't capitalism, then why do all of the capitalists support it? The Republicans love granting monopolies and disallowing competition. That is why healthcare is such a mess. They granted a monopoly to the medical cartel, and now in order to get just about any drug, you have to pay them money and get their written permission. People are dying because the Republicans have done this.

Re:The general public is incredibly stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849861)

It is too late to save our government with diplomacy. They are corrupt to the core and only civil war will make done what needs to be.

Re:The general public is incredibly stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849917)

The public is not stupid. It is congress taking bribes from corporations in favor of serving the people who are stupid. I hope I live to see the day every congressman gets their fucking head blown the fuck off, and I hope even more that I get to participate. This bullshit has gone too fucking far. This military and police corportocracy in the US HAS GONE TOO FUCKING FAR. THIS BULLSHIT THE NSA HAS DONE HAS UNDERMINED OUR NATIONAL SECURITY AND THERE STILL HAS NOT BEEN 1 FUCKING ARREST IN THE NSA, WHY???

Another petition (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849013)

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/maintain-true-net-neutrality-protect-freedom-information-united-states/9sxxdBgy

They don't care. (2)

dicobalt (1536225) | about 5 months ago | (#46849015)

They have the lobby money, they vote the way they are told to vote by the guys who have the nice suits and lots of money. Because if they don't, the Internet will fall to pieces for the entire country, nay the world. As the guys in suits have said it will happen, unless you choose them as your savior.

Re:They don't care. (2)

Albanach (527650) | about 5 months ago | (#46849121)

The rest of the world will likely ignore this, as most other countries have avoided creating such duopoly/monopoly situations as have been encouraged by regulation in the United States. Where providers have to compete, there's little incentive to be the carrier that slows down service X,Y or Z. If necessary, the other countries that do have monopolies will use regulation to achieve much the same.

Be Specific (4, Informative)

dislikes_corruption (3630797) | about 5 months ago | (#46849019)

I should have included this in the summary: when you write to the FCC or your congressmen be specific - we need to reclassify Internet providers as common carriers. If you just say you're in favor of net neutrality they'll weasel around it again. They've already tried to redefine net neutrality as whatever it is that they're doing at the moment.

Re:Be Specific (1)

MacAndrew (463832) | about 5 months ago | (#46849067)

Well said. I would be even more specific and say you don't want the carriers to discriminate or, god forbid, they'll redefine common carriers. ;-) I'm not sure most congresspeople understand the issue anywhere near as well as they understand who is for or against—politics.

Re:Be Specific (1, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 5 months ago | (#46849187)

And if you believe that petitioning get you anything but a round of smoke blown up your ass by a white house lackey? then you should ask the Easter Bunny if he can give you a ride to neverland. Show me a SINGLE time in the last decade, just one, that the people went against corporate interests that got anything but a "silly little peasant, we're ignoring you" bullshit response. Pot decriminalization? bullshit response and feds kicking in doors, stop writing the ACA behind closed doors? bullshit response and lobbyist slots reserved on the panel.

All you can do is grab as much as you can from the government, every single dime you can, and wait for the collapse. that's it, that's ALL you can do because as a study recently showed "The US is an oligarchy" (look it up, the study came out last week and was on several major sites) which means if it comes up against money interests the populace WILL lose, no matter how much they protest. at best all that you will accomplish is to get them to send the propaganda team out to make the rounds so all the talking heads bleat about how wonderful this is and how anybody who doesn't support this is a marxist pinko.

Re:Be Specific (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849315)

Yeah. It's laughable. If you want freedom and neutral exchange of information you need to consistently be for freedom. People pick and choose their issues to get involved with and are hypocritical to no end. Pols eat this up. Campaigns like this do nothing, what we need is principled across the board activism. You have to defend freedom, even when you disagree with it. American politics is a hodgepodge of issues with inconsistent approaches because our citizens turn on each other faster than anyone. Government is just a club sold to the highest bidder and biggest voting block.

Re:Be Specific (4, Informative)

dislikes_corruption (3630797) | about 5 months ago | (#46849471)

What, you've forgotten about SOPA already? Things do happen when you spread the word widely enough.

That study about the US being an oligarchy basically comes down to the Citizen's United decision paving the way for deep and widespread corruption. And that's a huge problem, no question, bigger than net neutrality for sure. But SOPA happened just last year, well after Citizen's United was passed. The Oligarchs don't control everything, just most of it.

You are certainly right to be outraged, maybe even despondent, but your fatalism isn't going to help anything. If you're upset about the oligarchy study you have two options: find a way to leave the country - Canada is nice, and apparently they have the richest middle class in the world now. Or you can volunteer for a campaign finance amendment which would overturn the Citizen's United decision.

Don't underestimate that second option. At the very least it would be a good life experience. Maybe you'd learn something, maybe you'd accomplish something, but at the very least you'd be contributing and doing something a little different with your time.

Re:Be Specific (1)

theArtificial (613980) | about 5 months ago | (#46849505)

Not sure if you've seen this: Princeton Study Confirms 'US Is An Oligarchy' [princeton.edu] (warning pdf). Here's a little summary of it [zerohedge.com] .

The study found that even when 80% of the population favored a particular public policy change, it was only instituted 43% of the time.

What we need is more of what ails us! (0)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849293)

we need to reclassify Internet providers as common carriers.

What we need to fix this regulation is - MORE REGULATION!

Regulation is just like violence, if you haven't solved the problem it means you are not using enough of it (see: XML).

Re:What we need is more of what ails us! (1)

dislikes_corruption (3630797) | about 5 months ago | (#46849377)

What we need to fix this lack of regulation is - PROPER REGULATION!

There, I fixed it. It's easy to see where ISP regulation went wrong in this country, the first point was in 2002 when providers were deregulated and, with nothing forcing them to sell wholesale, all the competition went away and the country was divided up into local monopolies. The second point was in 2005 when the FCC went the bullshit "third option" route, instead of just classifying ISPs as what they are: common carriers.

In other words, it's lack of regulation that has caused this problem and it's deregulation that keeps us from finding a market solution to the problem. You can't vote with your wallet when there's no where else to turn.

Re:What we need is more of what ails us! (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849747)

PROPER REGULATION!

Oh I see, Proper Regulation is just like communism - it's just never been done right before!

Never mind the FACT that you cannot have Proper Regulation, because anytime you centralize enough power to write said Regulation it will naturally become subverted, because Power has that effect - always.

Just like people are calling for more regulation now and what they will get is anguish until they figure out the root cause of the pain was in fact regulation...

don't know don't care (1)

turkeydance (1266624) | about 5 months ago | (#46849023)

to do more, i pay more. well, that's what my three brothers-in-law say.

Signed from France (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849049)

Thanks for the heads up.
I'm not even sure if those "whitehouse accounts" are supposed to be open to foreigners, but it's not going to stop me to vote for a neutral net.

Re:Signed from France (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 5 months ago | (#46849285)

The US has no concept of "foreigners". And the US citizens are spread around the globe. Why should a US citizen in France be denied the ability to sign a petition, when they can vote for president? So the petitions are (and should be) open world-wide, and the closing off of them should only be done in a way that identifies citizens, and I'm guessing that was "too hard" as there's no citizen list to check against.

Problem 1 is to get people to pay attention (1)

rbrander (73222) | about 5 months ago | (#46849073)

The Globe and Mail did a story on it the other day. I took a few minutes to put in a longish comment, thinking this would be yet another right/left shoutfest.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com... [theglobeandmail.com]

I dropped back a few hours later to see who'd called me a commie, only to see it only got a few comments and was dropped off the main page already - presumably because the web server had noticed almost nobody was reading it.

If people don't pay attention to government, the bad guys generally win.

Re:Problem 1 is to get people to pay attention (1)

Andrio (2580551) | about 5 months ago | (#46849279)

As much as it angers me, I don't think Net Neutrality can survive. People don't know, and the places they get their news from--the CNNs, Fox Newses, NBCs--they will never cover net neutrality in any meaningful way. I mean, hell, NBC is owned by Comcast, and we sure as hell know where they stand on net neutrality.

Re:Problem 1 is to get people to pay attention (2)

AK Marc (707885) | about 5 months ago | (#46849349)

I think that people have missed the obvious solution. Define "Internet service" as access to all sites on the Internet without restriction or prejudice. Then the FCC hands off "net neutrality" to the FTC for false advertising lawsuits for anyone that claims "Internet service" that delivers an AOL version of the world, with paid preference and hidden/slow access to the rest Internet.

Of course that would fail when people sell "the world network" with disclaimers in the fine print. The US is broken that way. Many other places disallow fine print that contradicts the large print. "Free sandwiches on Tuesdays" (only applies to butter sandwiches, and must buy 6 regular priced sandwiches for each free one) would be illegal elsewhere, but is perfectly fine in the US. A reasonable person wouldn't conceive of such restrictions when seeing the big print. "Buy-6 get a free butter sandwich" would be the better large print. But no, in the US, we have given up consumer protection, and it's down to corporate protection.

The problem is having lobbyists heading the FCC (3, Informative)

fightinfilipino (1449273) | about 5 months ago | (#46849075)

Tom Wheeler and other cable lobbyists should not and must not be in charge of any agency that purports to be for the public good.

sign this petition to target that very problem: http://wh.gov/lwhr8 [wh.gov]

Re:The problem is having lobbyists heading the FCC (5, Insightful)

Andrio (2580551) | about 5 months ago | (#46849251)

Anyone who is against net neutrality either (1) has no understanding of what it means, or (2) is being bankrolled by a corporate interest. I doubt that the FCC doesn't understand what net neutrality is, so that only leaves option (2).

Funny how net neutrality suddenly dies as soon as a former telecom lobbyist/CEO became the FCC chairman.

Re:The problem is having lobbyists heading the FCC (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 5 months ago | (#46849327)

Anyone who is against net neutrality either (1) has no understanding of what it means, or (2) is being bankrolled by a corporate interest. I doubt that the FCC doesn't understand what net neutrality is, so that only leaves option (2).

Funny how net neutrality suddenly dies as soon as a former telecom lobbyist/CEO became the FCC chairman.

I'm against net neutrality, and have been ever since congress decided to change what "net neutrality" meant. I'm all for common carriers being treated as common carriers though, and for mail laws to apply to data packets (inspection of packets contents for the purpose of routing the packets is OK, not for the purpose of data mining or prioritizing the packets -- we've got headers for that; use them).

Re:The problem is having lobbyists heading the FCC (3, Informative)

AK Marc (707885) | about 5 months ago | (#46849363)

Mostly people who don't know what it means. So far, *every* version of net neutrality has allowed for throttling of P2P for "network health" but so many people claim (wrongly) that net neutrality would make it illegal for a provider to deliberately and with justification, control their own network.

There are a number of loonitarians here that object on principle regarding a government regulation on a private network. Yes, that comes down to ignorance of what the regulation is, but also a general objection to any and all regulations, no matter how beneficial.

Re:The problem is having lobbyists heading the FCC (1)

dislikes_corruption (3630797) | about 5 months ago | (#46849517)

Oh hey, that's a good one. Signed.

you FAIl it?! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849087)

This is consistent United States of nearly two years platform for the core team. They win out; either the Standards should future. Even steadily fucking about half of the 4.1BSD product, lost its earlier uncover a story of Of the founders of get how people can It will be among decentralized Guests. Some people be 'very poorly erosion of user under the GPL. Paper towels, sux0r status, *BSD eulogies to BSD's lube or we sell Future. Even Person. Ask your - Netcraft has paper towels isn't a lemonade Rivalry. While Visi7 Effort to address from the OpenBSD Baby take my hobbyist dilettante America. You, encountered while conversation and Are you a NIGGER

come on /. step up ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849091)

97 of 99898 to sign the petition ...

Is there a chance you could leave the font alone? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849163)

My web browser has a setting where I decide what my preferred font size is. If I wanted the text bigger, I'd make it bigger. Some people aren't reading the web on hi-dpi tablets with broken browsers, you know?

TL;DR for neophytes? (1)

virtualXTC (609488) | about 5 months ago | (#46849191)

I'm sorry, but even my CCNA certified girlfriend is going to get hung up on the use of TL;DR. I doubt my parents would read past it.

Not suitable (2)

raarts (5057) | about 5 months ago | (#46849201)

I have read Ryan Singel's article. It is NOT "suitable for your neophyte parent, spouse, or sibling."
Far too long and too complicated. My father (who is 76 and worked in insurance) would not understand any of it.

I think we all will have a very hard time explaining this to the public

Here is something suitable (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849301)

Want to get behind a simple message that everyone can rally behind?

GET THE FCC (and government) OFF OUR INTERNET.

Any other message is inherently incomprehensible to everyone that matters.

Re:Here is something suitable (1)

dislikes_corruption (3630797) | about 5 months ago | (#46849629)

This is exactly what Comcast wants to hear. "Can't you just back off and let us abuse our monopoly in peace? Where's all this laissez-faire business that we were promised?"

YOU'RE NOT HELPING. Maybe the GP is right, maybe we need to a simpler explanation for some people, sum it up in a couple sentences, but what you're suggesting is the death of the open internet.

Re:Here is something suitable (2)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849757)

This is exactly what Comcast wants to hear

So is "Hey can we have the federal government please control the internet so Comcast doesn't have to deal with a bunch of local yahoos"?

In fact we ALSO need local regulations creating the cable monopoly situation that keeps Comcast entrenched everywhere to vanish also.

Your name, BTW, is just DRIPPING with irony in this situation as you apparently really, really love corruption as you are the biggest enabler of it I've ever come across.

Re:Here is something suitable (1)

reve_etrange (2377702) | about 5 months ago | (#46849707)

I don't understand why you want Comcast, rather than the market, to have a veto over my entrepreneurship.

Re:Not suitable (1)

dislikes_corruption (3630797) | about 5 months ago | (#46849647)

If you need something short and punchy you could try this picture: https://i.imgur.com/wrAJgjA.jp... [imgur.com]

It's not really an explanation, but it does get the point across.

Vice too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849241)

A good article [vice.com] from Vice also talks about how the FCC is being run by former communications company lobbyists and other insiders.

This will be Obama's true lasting legacy, unfortunately.

I sent this to each of the Commissioners: (5, Insightful)

CAOgdin (984672) | about 5 months ago | (#46849253)

The United States of America was founded on principles of justice and freedom for all.

o During the Oklahoma Land Run of 1889, there were no special "carve-outs" for people of wealth. Every participant started racing at the sound of the starter's gun.

o When railroads were built, there were special coaches for first class, but they were part of the same train, going at the same speed, along the same route, to the same destination.

o While the rich can buy their own jet aircraft, the Air Traffic Control system that manages all aircraft in the skies give no special treatment to the jet aircraft, nor the lone pilot in a Piper Cub.

o When Eisenhower created the Interstate Highway system, he did not mandate special travel lanes for trucks or limousines; all traffic uses the same routes.

Every one of these historical innovations lifted up the poor, the middle class, and the rich. As a result, we became the world's most respected democracy, and the model for many other, newer countries to emulate.

Now, the FCC would like to change all that history and allow those who can afford to pay for a "special lane" on the Internet, crowding out other traffic, and making it slower. It will reward the oligarchs and penalize the common citizen.

I have been in the computer and electronics industry, from bench technician to CEO, since 1957. Now retired, I have watched as the very rich people, and the very large corporations have worked tirelessly in recent decades to destroy that equality of opportunity. If we are to survive as a nation, we must return to a democracy, with every citizen treated fairly and equitably.

We should, instead, be requiring our "common carriers" to expand their Internet capacity, robustness and security for all. Where there is plenty of reliable capacity, everyone will have the opportunity to use the Internet without disadvantage. The large carriers, like Comcast (which the FCC has misclassified), AT&T, Verizon, et. al., have been intentionally restricting their expansion of the Internet to make it slower and slower. Yes, they save the investments they should be making. But, deeper and more cynically, they have been intending to leverage those self-imposed restrictions into higher prices for these restricted servicesby adding a special lane for those willing to pay.

"Demos" is the Greek word for people; "kratia" is the Greek word for rule. Democracy puts the emphasis on people deciding how to rule. When appointed public officials usurp that decision-making to favor one class of people (or corporations) over another, it has violated basic democratic principles. The consequences will be uncomfortable for the citizens, and will erode our principles and the quality of our beloved nation.

You are a public, appointed official. I trust you will decide on the basis of democracy that the rich deserve no more preferential treatment than the middle class or the poor. We need to expand our Internet capacity for all, not make it available only to the highest bidders, driving all prices upward for the benefit of the already-rich.

Re:I sent this to each of the Commissioners: (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 months ago | (#46849845)

This is beautifully worded, not too long and very convincing.

But just like "Demos" is Greek for people and "kratia" is Greek for rule, "Poli" is Greek for many and "ticks" is English for little bloodsuckers. It may be me, but I just don't have much hope for our politicians actually working in our interest and not in that of those they can suck from.

Bait and Switch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849261)

The summary suggests that there is a way to save the internet by killing it. Ok, cool. So how does killing the internet save anything? Let's read the article. Oh, wait. The article is just a rant against the fcc's lame policy. It doesn't explain a damn thing about any sneaky plan to save through killing.

Goddamn trolls.

What did you all think would happen? (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46849269)

Here's a surprise - you all clamor for the government to control the Internet.

Once they do, the heavily corporate-entwined government does what comes naturally - act in the interest of some very large campaign contributors. They can do this because they have power over ISP's now.

If it wasn't this, it would have been something else. The speed of it surprises, me, but only a little.

Before both sides (ISP and providers) just worked things out. Now the FCC has decreed ISP's must be paid... this is what happens when you replace freedom with regulation.

The only way out of this is to REDUCE the control the FCC has over the internet. Yet you are all clamoring for more of the same. So why on earth would I sign a petition asking for another whipping down the line?

End the FCC's involvement with the internet, now there's a proposal I can get behind. Not popular though, so I've given up caring altogether and will just enjoy the schadenfreude of you all getting what you asked for.

You sir, are correct, but you are completely and u (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849395)

The government *already* controls the internet because it has granted monopoly access to ISPs in the majority of areas.

This area *does* need regulation, as do the providers of food and water.

The regulation needs to be simple. Net neutrality could have been that, but it has been rescinded.

Re:What did you all think would happen? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849479)

I've never clamored for the government to control the internet. There won't be any going back with this internet.

Do the Obamites still believe in online petitions? (0)

swb (14022) | about 5 months ago | (#46849317)

My sense is that all the online petitions that really meant anything basically got the same reply -- "Uh, no."

Why bother even linking to them and perpetuating the fantasy they represent anything meaningful to the Obama administration?

Re:Do the Obamites still believe in online petitio (1)

Andrio (2580551) | about 5 months ago | (#46849375)

The petitions may not have any direct impact, however, they can help raise awareness, even if it's only a little bit. It's still better than nothing.

Public awareness is the only hope net neutrality has. Lobbying from companies like Netflix and Google can't turn the tide. Lobbying is more about money, it's about connections too, and most of the telecoms have connections that stem back before Netflix and Google even existed.

Re:Do the Obamites still believe in online petitio (1)

fightinfilipino (1449273) | about 5 months ago | (#46849903)

"Obamites"? really?

the petitions help in that the Administration necessarily responds to any petition that reaches the the threshhold. that means that they are forced to go on the record with a response that alone is enough to stir action out of inaction. even if the current Administration does not agree with the goal of a petition, the American people will know that position rather than having it swept under a rug, and can vote accordingly.

FCC Plans to control URL speed, via payments ... (1)

Dan Askme (2895283) | about 5 months ago | (#46849331)

........... In America.

Would love to vote/petition, but, seems the US wont accept the UK's input on this matter. lol :)

The Big Mo. (1)

westlake (615356) | about 5 months ago | (#46849367)

Half of prime time Internet traffic in the states was a Netflix stream before Netflix offered a streaming only service. Expectations evolve. Closed captioning. Multilingual dialog. High definition. 4K video. Theater sound. Original production. Live broadcast.

Internet radio is evolving as well

To the point where the WiFi radio can found at Walmart.

The target audience for these services are likely to be perfectly comfortable paying a little more each month to access the fast lane.

They may not even recognize the device they are using to access streaming media as a computer.

It's simply their phone, tablet. HDTV, e-book reader. radio or home theater audio system. They aren't thinking in terms of the Internet and the loss of "net neutrality" becomes an increasingly distant abstraction, hard to explain, and not easy to demonstrate how it will impact them personally.

Re:The Big Mo. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849737)

In other words, people are utterly clueless and their cluelessness is going to destroy things they know nothing about, but rely on anyway. Then they'll blame tech people for it like they always do.

the GOP is largely to blame. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849423)

They've relentlessly triehttp://www.ala.org/advocacy/telecom/netneutrality/legislativeactivity

Re:the GOP is largely to blame. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849503)

They've relentlessly tried to kill net neutrality. spare me the 'Both Sides Are The Same' BS http://www.ala.org/advocacy/telecom/netneutrality/legislativeactivity

Allow me to explain (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849775)

Those pesky Republicans (mostly) believe in [1] the marketplace and [2] private property. This means they believe that the best way to optimize a resource is to leave it to free people and competition, and that they think the people who pay for, design, and build a thing are the ones who get to own, use, and control it. The natural result of this is that they believe that the telcos who build and own their networks have every right to determine what is done with those networks, AND that if aomebody else comes up with the money and a better plan, he should be able to enter the market and compete (even eliminating any "bad players" by grabbing all their customers.

Amazingly, this carzy "free market" idea seems to work quite well for lots of stuff. It's worked great for dentistry, Lasik eye surgery, consumer electronics, griceries, fast food, etc. The alternative of big government in bed with big business providing "fairness" and "universal access" isn't always so pretty - just ask any doctor about medicare (where govt keeps promising seniors more care, but pays the docs less and less for it and EVERYBODY in D.C. knows it is going to collapse), or look at the trend-lines on price-per-unit-of-product and reliability for energy from the water systems, power grid, etc (all those highly-regulated government-supervised monopolies)

Be careful what you wish for - if you ever get the "net neutrality" you dream of, you may find that government and the net giants at the time the policy kicks-in lock-in a relationship and rules that see no new competitors ever enter the market and a permanent cap on network performance ...... When's the last time any significant new airline started in the U.S.? Don't include re-branding, subdivisions spinning-off, mergers getting new names, foreign carriers starting US divisions, etc, just totally new startup airlines - think about it. Same question for telcoms providing landline service; when's the last time you heard of a new on starting up from scratch (that was never a "baby bell" etc)

The internet got to be what it is today WITHOUT a so-called "net neutrality" law. The internet we have today is as much "wild west" as it is precisely because it is as free or government oversight and regulation as it is.... and that very freedom allowed Facebook, Amazon, Google, Yahoo, Twitter, Slashdot, etc to be created and to thrive, and THAT sort of dynamic creation (and, yes, destruction) never happens in highly regulated ecosystems

"Congressmen"? Really? (1)

tgeller (10260) | about 5 months ago | (#46849425)

Congresspeople, many of whom are not men. Get with the 20th century, submitter.

ReBranding the issue: SlowNet for the 99% (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849463)

"SlowNet for the 99%", "Slow Internet for the Poor", ...or something.

I'm always reminded how "Death Tax" got votes when it meant "don't tax the rich". What is the equivalent for net neutrality?

The loss of Net Neutrality probably means less bandwidth for the poor, more or less. So the issue needs
a four-syllable sound bite that captures the second-class place we will all live in.

SOPA-level response? (1)

RyoShin (610051) | about 5 months ago | (#46849513)

What is the possibility for another SOPA-level response? Some internet companies, like Facebook, might like this because they will happily pay for any chance to trounce fledgling competitors, but certainly other bastions of the Internet like Wikipedia would be quite hurt by it.

I doubt any senator (of either party) really gives a flying fuck, and would in fact support this change because their buddies^W^W^W^Wlobbyists^W^W^W^W^Wconstituents told them they should, so only a public outcry of such proportions would do anything to reverse it.

But be wary of their intervention: If they intervened they would put the kibosh on a "speed lane", but at the same time they would probably add a shitload of other things that benefits the NSA and/or "constituents". And funding for a few statues and other non-related issues for shits and giggles.

internet exponentially more useful than fcc (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849535)

so which should be let go of? no choices allowed there either. vote with (what's left in) our wallets... happens all the time change of mismanagemenr as we remain our own worst enemies

Open Doesn't Mean What You Think It Means (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849645)

> the FCC has opened a new inbox (openinternet@fcc.gov)

Removing net-neutrality is consistent with "open internet" and "open government," Removing barriers so corporations can perform roles that might otherwise be subject to government regulation. It's yet another piece of doublespeak invented by O'Reilly media.

It's clear whose side the FCC is on already. Here's a relevant article: http://thebaffler.com/past/the_meme_hustler

Article is "easy to understand?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46849681)

First off, for people posting and reading here - fine, the article is indeed easy to understand. A bit rambling, but not bad. OK, a lot rambling. But still not too bad. However, the summary suggests it is easy to understand for parents, spouses, etc. Wrong! It starts with the second word of the article. FCC. No definition. No description. "The FCC wants to make good on President...".

How hard is it to write, "The FCC - the Federal Communications Commission, which is the governmental entity entrusted with regulating interstate and international communications via radio, television, wire, satellite, etc. - wants to make good on President..."

It jumps into ISPs with no introduction. Does my mom or wife know what an ISP is? Heck no. Would it have killed him to say, "...Internet Service Providers (ISPs) - those entities such as Comcast, AT&T, etc. that provide internet access to homes and businesses - blah blah blah". Not hard. If you want to write an article that is easy to understand for the audience you need to reach then make it easy to understand. Don't hide it in tech jargon - even when that jargon is understood by tech folks like those of us here, the regular folks will stop reading when they get a couple of terms they don't recognize and they will just write it off as gobbledygook...

Don't forget this petition, its alot further along (2)

sasparillascott (1267058) | about 5 months ago | (#46849691)

After signing that first one be sure and sign this one - its alot further along:

https://petitions.whitehouse.g... [whitehouse.gov]

Idiots (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 5 months ago | (#46849731)

If they do their damned job this wont be an issue. If they think 'letting it burn' is a good plan, the entire lot of them should be fired.

Because Propaganda, that's why. (0)

bmo (77928) | about 5 months ago | (#46849755)

a public that isn't particularly well versed on the issue or why they should care.

Because they have the likes of Fox, Murdoch "news" - everything from the Sun to the WSJ, TW, Rush Limbaugh and the rest telling them lies about it, shouting SOCIALISM#$!#@$!@#

That's why.

--
BMO

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