The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Net Neutrality And You

Let me try to explain what I think net neutrality means:

It is, to me, fair access to the Internet at a reasonable cost. By "fair access", I mean I get the speed I pay for. By "reasonable cost", I mean not excessive.

Recently, the FCC ruled on something they call "Open Internet" and this is, apparently, what they mean by "net neutrality." They put it this way, "It means innovators can develop products and services without asking for permission."

I was not aware anyone had to ask permission. Were you? It further says, "The FCC's Open Internet rules protect and maintain open, uninhibited access to legal online content without broadband Internet access providers being allowed to block, impair, or establish fast/slow lanes to lawful content." By the way, what is "legal (or "lawful") content? 

The "fast/slow lanes" are important. Presumably, some ISP's were restricting speeds at various times, or were perceived to be. I suspect they weren't. I see no percentage in doing that. If you are on cable, you might experience slowness at times; slow in terms of what you expect to get. I noticed, for instance, that early evenings (say, around 6 PM) that I would see longer ping times and slower test speeds. But still within what I pay for. I pay for 12Megabits per second and that's what I get during these "slow" periods. I get over 18 Mbps and 6.1 Mbps most of the time. I am amazed, in a way, at those speeds. I started on the Internet using a modem connection at 14400 bps with a much slower upload speed of 2400 bps. Not what anyone would call fast.

It's what my old BBS got and neither DSL nor cable was available where I lived.

But I wonder if anyone feels as I do about the FCC deciding they could regulate the internet. I am not a fan of government regulation. I think it is bad. Perhaps because I used to work for AT&T, what was called a "regulated monopoly." I was working for them when we went through what was called "Divestiture" and the result of that. It was supposed to reduce costs of phone service. It did, for long distance calling, but not for local service; that went up rapidly.

I do not think government regulation will improve service, internet speed, or provide "fair and equal access." I think it will make things worse, not better. I could be wrong. Let me know what you think.


Tal Hartsfeld said...

What is their TRUE motive for assuming control over what's essentially a public domain?

Douglas said...

Tal, I am convinced that government (and, especially, government bureaucracies) endeavor to expand their power and control through legislation, regulation, and interpretation. The question is always "what will this do to, or for, the general public?"