Network Neutrality Update

– I’ve written on this before. The big corporate folks ‘own’ most of the media we have; TV, Radio, Newspapers, etc.

– The Internet is the one place left where all information comes to you equally unencumbered – at least so far.

– But, the Internet represents big profits to some. It represents ways to control the information we see to others. It is the most powerful form of media still existing not under the control of those with deep vested interests regarding what may appear on it.

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NETWORK NEUTRALITY UPDATE….Slowly but surely, support for network neutrality on the internet is eroding:

Google Inc. has approached major cable and phone companies that carry Internet traffic with a proposal to create a fast lane for its own content, according to documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. Google has traditionally been one of the loudest advocates of equal network access for all content providers.

At risk is a principle known as network neutrality: Cable and phone companies that operate the data pipelines are supposed to treat all traffic the same — nobody is supposed to jump the line.

….Separately, Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc. have withdrawn quietly from a coalition formed two years ago to protect network neutrality. Each company has forged partnerships with the phone and cable companies. In addition, prominent Internet scholars, some of whom have advised President-elect Barack Obama on technology issues, have softened their views on the subject.

….Lawrence Lessig, an Internet law professor at Stanford University and an influential proponent of network neutrality, recently shifted gears by saying at a conference that content providers should be able to pay for faster service.

It’s not too surprising that big content companies are quietly changing their tune on this: big companies are usually willing to pay for preferential treatment that helps them keep little guys little, and preferential access to the internet is no different from any other competitive advantage.

More…

Here are links to three earlier pieces I posted that touch on this important topic.

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