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Old 12-23-2016, 09:16 AM   #1
Snakeadelic
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The end is nigh?

I do very little deliberate reading about politics, governmental policy, etc. because such things tend to jackhammer my panic triggers...and one thing above all else is scaring the hell outta me right now.

Apparently, the Republican members of the FCC--an agency that once tried to censor mature content from SATELLITE providers, meaning they tried to expand their single-nation authority into GODDAMN OUTER SPACE--cannot wait for Inauguration Day. They appear to believe they have been promised the power to end net neutrality by handing all Internet-related services and infrastructure over to the ownership and management of telecommunications companies. This seems to me to be the precise reason the concept of 'net neutrality' was defined to begin with--to stop this exact thing from happening.

If what I've read is accurate, I give the current state of Internet access until Tax Day 2017 to collapse. Who will suffer most? It sure won't be streaming providers, though I would be totally unsurprised to find pay-per-view the new standard for EVERYTHING, including with commercials. Facebook? Sell your stock soon, because the end of net neutrality will give PHONE COMPANIES the right to charge you access to Facebook, regardless of what Facebook wants or how much money they throw at Washington, DC.

The ones who will suffer are the people looking for their first job fresh out of (or still in) high school. Almost no business exists any more without a website, and very few places handle paper job applications any more. What's going to happen to the under-educated masses when they have to find a way to cough up, say, $10 every time they want to access a job application or resume website? What about those who apply for welfare programs that require them to submit a certain number of applications per week to receive assistance? How many of them will not be able to afford to apply for jobs? And where will they go? Libraries and public schools won't be getting any price breaks in a nation without net neutrality; they can't even get funding for arts programs or vocational training any more.

Already-overloaded state agencies will probably also get no breaks. I will not be at all surprised if, by next summer, I have to come up with a cash-only usage fee every time I take my EBT card to the store to use my SNAP (formerly Food Stamps) to buy groceries (I survive on the luxurious amount of $172 a month for food). Since I'm on disability and have less than $400 a month cash to live on after the rent and utility portions I am required by Federal law to pay, I'm not going to be able to afford copays on every prescription, copays for every medical visit, and copays to buy food!

It's been a long time since I so hoped to be wrong.
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Old 12-23-2016, 11:10 AM   #2
Undertoad
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Quote:
If what I've read is accurate
Yes, no, this is a vile load of steaming horseshit.

Please tell us what you read so we can mock it with impunity and tell you the settings for your browser to block its website for the rest of time.

If you doubt what I am saying, A) you may be hallucinating, but B) you may read the previous sky-is-falling promises about how the Internet will fail due to insert your special article or opinion about the future here,

Like this one from 2006

Or this one from 2010


Or this one from 2014


...and then read the posts that follow (from me!), explaining why they will not happen and everything is fine and we are actually in charge on the Internet.

But upon reflection, you will realize that the fact that you can read the posts at all will be proof enough that the various predicted end of the Internets did not happen.
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Old 12-24-2016, 04:52 PM   #3
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Seen as graffiti in the background in 28 Days Later:

Quote:
The end is very fucking nigh.
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Old 12-25-2016, 08:36 AM   #4
Snakeadelic
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As previously mentioned, I really do hope I'm wrong!

https://www.google.com/search?q=fcc+...rality&tbm=nws

The results of my search string "FCC Net Neutrality", filtered by the News option. I realize most of the sources are NOT inherently trustworthy, but that is a LOT of sources saying the same thing...Trump is opposed to Net Neutrality, Wheeler is resigning from the FCC because he believes he will be unable to save Net Neutrality from Trump cronies, the usual...

And there is that one lovely headline about AT&T and Verizon both telling the FCC that the federal government will not be allowed to tell them what they can and cannot do (which is precisely why the FCC was created, to limit the predatory business practices in broadcast entertainment and prevent monopolies).

At least, if any or all of this proves to be what we're in store for, I won't have to update my browser or OS again any time soon--if Net Neutrality fails and the telecom companies are allowed to charge for ALL data transmission the way they want, I won't be able to afford the Net even if I'm still on disability (I've got serious concerns about social welfare programs getting gutted).
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Old 12-25-2016, 10:19 AM   #5
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OH MY GOD THE INTERNET IS GOING TO BE NOTHING BUT ADS -- AND IT WILL BE TOO EXPENSIVE TO BUY THEM!!!
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Old 12-25-2016, 10:24 AM   #6
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Before we go any further, can you define the term "net neutrality"?

My definition includes priority packet routing but I will understand if you use different terms.
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Old 12-25-2016, 10:41 AM   #7
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I thought it meant no favoritism for traffic passing through, whether from another source, or generated by the last mile provider. If that's correct, it should include pricing to both the source of the traffic and the end user.
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Old 12-25-2016, 03:04 PM   #8
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That's kinda what I thought it to be. Paying for priority.
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Old 12-26-2016, 12:53 AM   #9
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I admit to being confused on the whole issue. Please elaborate in detail.
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Old 12-26-2016, 07:36 AM   #10
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Where when one type of network traffic is prioritized, how slow is the remaining traffic?

I don't want to be annoying about this, asking leading technical questions, but here we are 20ms to most of the Internet and that is pretty amazing. In order to make any prioritizing service something I would pay for, you would have to slow down my Internet. I don't think you can actually do that, unless you are bad at running a network, or intent on providing poor service.

Intent on providing poor service was tw's original bogus argument in 2006. We see how that has worked out: VoIP is now the predominant way phone calls are made and nobody has blocked or slowed *anything*.

And why would they? Around here, salespeople get $300 bonuses for signing people up for Comcast or Verizon so there is ZERO incentive to provide shitty service for traffic in bits. And it costs them money to engage engineering services to slow or block traffic.

The first thing I remember the net broadly calling a "Net Neutrality violation" was when T-Mobile announced they wouldn't count music services against your bandwidth limits. People were quick to call foul, although it is a carrier telling you that you can have free services (I thought you always had to pay MORE? WTF) and it has nothing to do with prioritizing (which was the original technical definition).
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Old 12-26-2016, 07:54 AM   #11
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That's impossible to answer, we have no idea what they will do or how.
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Old 12-26-2016, 11:35 AM   #12
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Fundamental to net neutrality (as even discussed in a 2006 threads) is "content providers" and "data transporters" (carriers). First defined in the early 20th Century when Bell Companies dominated telephone systems. Using monopoly powers to subvert and dominate the entire telephone business - because profits were more important than the product. In a major concession to government, Bell companies became utilities. They cooperated with all other telephone companies. Separated service from manufacturing. And did dedicated research into advancing the technology of the industry. They became interested in advancing the product and not maximizing profits.

Bell companies became data transporters. Each company has exclusive service areas that answer to state PUCs. They transported data. Did not care what that data was. Offered same services to everyone. And only restricted what could be safely connected to their systems using an approval system.

So phone systems expanded into a nationwide cooperative system that made the North American phone system an envy of the world.

But this system began to break down in the 1970s when new technologies demanded that communciation systems do more. For example, anyone could have modems and dedicated phone lines. Those costs more than even leasing video terminals from phone companies. Bell companies were not innovating fast enough for content providers.

Bell System was broken up into Operating companies (the baby Bells) and AT&T. So that AT&T could innovate more and also be content providers. Data transporters (baby Bells) only transported data.

Trouble is the internet required the entire phone system to be scrapped and rebuilt. A concept clearly defined by Clayton Christensen's "Innovator's Dilemma". A fundamental replacement of circuit switched technology with packet switched technology was necessary. $Multi-million switching computers had to be replaced. Unfortunately companies such as AT&T wanted to control content and did not want to innovate. Data transporters refused to innovate - refused to install packet switched technologies.

DSL was available and demonstrated in 1981. It took Clinton's 1996 Federal Communication act to force the baby Bells to innovate. It took more than 15 years to make that innovation available.

Meanwhile, some companies wanted to be both content providers and data transporters. Since controlling both could massively increase profit margins due to no competition.

AT&T first tried to cut back into the data transporter business by buying the nation's two largest cable companies. But when the baby Bells separated from AT&T, the baby Bells got product people; AT&T took MBAs. AT&T business school trained management was so dumb as to spend about $140billion on cable companies. Then discover those cables could not support communication without another $80billion to replace all cable wires.

Along comes Comcast. Comcast bought AT&T's fiasco for $80billion two years later. (Yes, AT&T routinely made deals that were that financially bogus - but necessary due to MBA trained management.) Then spent another $80billion to replace all obsolete technology cable wires. Then Comcast began a program of increasing costs to everyone (using a strategy that Putin loves). A $8 cable provider now charges $50 for same service. PUCs condoned it since more advanced electronics now did same functions.

Comcast bought content providers (ie Universal Studios, Spectacore, NBC, etc) so as to dominate in both data transporting and content provider industries. A monopoly once averted in a phone industry in the early 20th Century now exists in the internet. Critical to free market competition is separation between content providers and data transporters. This is a key ingredient to a concept called net neutrality.

Content providers include Google, Skype, Netflix, Amazon, CBS, Paramount, ABC/Disney, etc. Data transporters who have no business regulating what data is transported are Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner, etc. That separation of powers should even exist in mobile phones. Any phone manufacturer (Apple, various Androids, etc) who meet industry specs must operate on any phone system (Verizon, T-mobile, AT&T). And those data transporters do not care what data is being transported. You pay them only to transport data - when net neutrality exists.

Free markets need and net neutrality is based upon this separation of powers and markets - between data transporters and content providers. Clinton's 1996 Federal Communication Act - that finally made the internet possible - has been under attack by right wing Republicans whose interests are quite clear: enrich the few companies who in turn are generous with campaign contributions. This sudden shift in power and increased monopolies even force the Silicon Valley to hire and spend massively on Washington lobbyists.

After 1996, your had tens or 100 choices of data transporters including Covad, PSInet, etc. Thanks to extremists in the George Jr administration (ie Michael Powell who then became chief lobbyist for the cable industry - he knows who can best butter his bread), you only have two data transporters. In NYC that is Time Warner and Verizon. In Philadelphia, that is Comcast and Verizon.

Republicans got the monopoly (a duopoly) they wanted by dismantling a 1996 Federal Communication Act. By limiting your choices so that these large companies can increase prices with extraordinary profits. So that the data transporters can own or manipulate the innovators (ie content providers) for ever increasing profits. Comcast is doing today what the Bell Company tried to do in the early 20th Century.

Net Neutrality is based, in part, the the fundamental concepts of data transporters and content providers. Making innovation possible by demanding that data providers provide service to all. So that content providers can concentrate on innovation - not on maximizing profits in a monopolistic manner. Net Neutrality is fundamental and essential to have an economy that innovates.

Last edited by tw; 12-26-2016 at 11:50 AM.
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Old 12-26-2016, 12:07 PM   #13
xoxoxoBruce
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Originally Posted by tw View Post
...you only have two data transporters. In NYC that is Time Warner and Verizon. In Philadelphia, that is Comcast and Verizon.
But that's unusual, most of the country is stuck with one and many places it's DSL or less.
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:26 AM   #14
Snakeadelic
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tw said: So that AT&T could innovate more and also be content providers. Data transporters (baby Bells) only transported data.

I believe AT&T managed to push through their buy of Time-Warner, which means a telephone service provider now owns (pasted from a search result):
HBO
Turner Broadcasting System
The CW Television Network
Warner Bros.
CNN
DC Comics
and as of August 2016, Hulu, owning 10%.
In the past, other major divisions of Time Warner included Time Inc., AOL, Time Warner Cable, Warner Books and Warner Music Group.

A big concern among tv fans on a budget is that with AT&T owning HBO, The CW, and DC, content like say Game of Thrones, Supernatural, and anything Batman or Superman would be completely under the control of AT&T, from scripting to casting to denying availability to non-AT&T customers. Not sayin' I'm sure about that happening, but I've talked to many people lately who would be absolutely crushed to have so much popular content in a position to be withheld...especially in areas that don't get AT&T service!
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:34 AM   #15
Snakeadelic
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A bigger concern I have heard about for many is that the data transporters are DESPERATE to find a way to charge extra for ALL net access. Prioritizing data speeds is only the beginning of what the lower-class and low-middle-class people I've spoken to are worried about.

There is the fear that if Net Neutrality (treating internet access as a public utility like water, gas, or electricity) is ended, your ISP subscription money will only be enough to allow accessing the internet. Few doubt that if allowed, the big telecommunications companies will charge either per minute or per data amount the very minute doing so becomes legal. That would cripple schools and libraries, and in my case it would mean only 1 computer in my household would be able to be used for internet activities due to both of us being on fixed (and very low) incomes. My sweetie's social life is online, whereas this forum is pretty much the only place I socialize online, so my computer would be offlined permanently (or until regulations dropped the costs by A LOT).
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