Tag Archives: net-neutrality

Google, Verizon, and Net Neutrality

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A recent caller wanted to discuss an article he had read on Lockergnome. Written by none other than Ron Schenone, the piece talks about how Google and Verizon have been discussing paths they feel the Internet should take.

The proposal between the two companies is just that – a proposal. It’s not “a secret behind the door deal designed to sabotage net neutrality. But more like recommendations that could open the dialogue and provide congress with a direction to take and hopefully protect all consumers as well as service providers.”

A tiered Internet, controlled by just a few providers, is extremely dangerous in my opinion. It’s human nature to not want to be controlled. Information should be just as free from control. When we yield control of information to private services, I become greatly concerned.

Anyone who says they are for Net Neutrality is GOOD… it means simply being in favor of having open and equal access to everything by everyone. Google was for it at one point. Sadly, that seems to have changed.

When you restrict access to information, you begin to restrict our very lives and what we believe in. I feel it’s a violation of our own Bill of Rights. There has to be a means of checks and balances. As some countries have said, having Internet access could very well a RIGHT. Having access to that information is something that everyone should be blessed with.

What are your thoughts on Net Neutrality?

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Senator Who Said Internet a Series of Tubes Dies in Plane Crash

Perhaps best known to geeks as the man who said that the Internet is “a series of tubes,” former Alaskan Senator Ted Stevens died in a plane crash Monday, according to NPR news reports. Stevens was 86.

As head of the Senate Commerce Committee, Stevens introduced the “series of tubes” description as he was explaining the need for net neutrality:

[T]he Internet is not something that you just dump something on. It’s not a big truck. It’s a series of tubes. And if you don’t understand, those tubes can be filled and if they are filled, when you put your message in, it gets in line and it’s going to be delayed by anyone that puts into that tube enormous amounts of material, enormous amounts of material.

Stevens’ comments became the object of wide parody and humor, as seen in this video from The Daily Show:

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Sen. Ted Stevens
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Despite his flawed understanding of the Internet, Stevens’ political accomplishments were many. The longest-serving Senator in U.S. history, Stevens was in office from his appointment in 1968 until his 2008 defeat by Democrat Mark Begich.

As Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Stevens made his home state the “largest per capita recipient of federal dollars,” according to NPR.

He was famously known for funding the “Bridge to Nowhere,” which would connect mainland Alaska to an off-shore island where only 50 people live–all at a cost of $450 million.

The plane Stevens was on was traveling to a fishing lodge in Bristol Bay, about 300 miles southwest of Anchorage. Four others on the nine-person flight were also killed. Low visibility is believed to have played a part in the crash.

How Do You Make International Calls?

Skype users won’t be shocked to see the numbers released in a recent report by telegeography. The findings show that Skype-to-Skype calls accounted for 13 percent of total International call minutes in 2009. The stats showed that a whopping 54 Billion (out of a total of 406 Billion) International call minutes were done through Skype. Even more interesting is the fact that while overall International telephone traffic has slowed down, Skype’s traffic has been on the rise.

The Skype minutes for last year were generated by 520 million users from 250 different countries. These kinds of numbers give even Facebook a run for its money. While some may scoff at the service, it’s quite clear that it holds a lion’s share of the VoIP users out there.

Are you a Skype aficionado? Have you ever used it to speak with someone in another country?

You won’t need to make any long-distance calls to grab the latest software titles for your computers and mobile devices.

What is Net Neutrality?

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http://live.pirillo.com/ – The idea of Network Neutrality is very good… in theory. Some companies, however, don’t want Net Neutrality

Network Neutrality refers to a principle that is applied to residential broadband networks, and potentially to all networks. When you hear the word neutral, you tend to think of equal opportunities for everyone, right? Not so in the case of many companies. They WANT to favor certain customers, and be able to allocate more bandwidth to them.

Net Neutrality is anti-consumer. It promotes the best interest of sellers by lowering their cost of distribution. Broadband service providers would be the ones to gain the most from ending Net Neutrality because they could collect fees from content providers.

Google has gone to the FCC in favor of Net Neutrality. “The Federal Communications Commission must be given power to prevent broadband providers from doing things like charging content providers extra for the privilege of faster delivery or other preferential treatment.”, according to a CNET article on the Senate decision to veto this bill.

Other than this, consumers have really no special interest groups fighting for Net Neutrality. I do… in my own boisterous, opinionated way. I firmly believe that each and every person should have equal opportunities when surfing the Internet. Why should it always come down to large companies, and those with deep pockets?

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What is Net Neutrality?

Opinions on net neutrality are quite extreme. Thanks to a Gnomedexer liveblogging this discussion (thanks Kathy), we have a better idea as to what’s really happening:

Telecos want to resell access to you – the consumer – to the people who develop content. They will use their market power to restrict consumer choice. Example: Canadian teleco blocking access to union site during strike.

Telecos have proposed a two-tiered plan. First, a closed fast lane, which they own, for their content. It’s what cable does now. Telecos want to become video providers. [Note: look at ownership of cable teleco and corporate media.]

And second, there will be an open, but slow lane. Paid police escort exists in the slow lane — if you pay the police they will escort you thru the slow lane. [Like the frequent flier “skip the wait” line at airports.] However, the telecos will limit available police escort and auction it to the highest bidder. There is no incentive for telecos to do this any other way.

Werner Vogels, CTO of Amazon.com, holds a Ph.D from the Virjie Universiteit in Amsterdam and is responsible for driving Amazon’s technological vision. Before joining Amazon, he worked as a research scientist at Cornell University where he was a principal investigator in several research projects that target the scalability and robustness of mission-critical computer systems.

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Net Neutrality is Dead

I have one word for y’all: Ouch:

Senate panel narrowly rejected strict Net neutrality rules on Wednesday, dealing a grave setback to companies like eBay, Google and Amazon.com that had made enacting them a top political priority this year. By an 11-11 tie, the Senate Commerce Committee failed to approve a Democrat-backed amendment that would have ensured all Internet traffic is treated the same no matter what its “source” or “destination” might be. A majority was needed for the amendment to succeed.

Sometimes I just don’t understand why the Internet doesn’t have its own government. Can’t we make ourselves our own country or something? Wasn’t it started started with the idea of easy, equal access for everybody? I don’t know whether to laugh or cry at this point. Someone, please wake me up? Todd’s right: this is a national emergency. I’ll take his assertion one step further: this is an INTERNATIONAL emergency. Help us Obi-Tim Kenobi – you’re our only hope.