Net Neutrality: The other side of the story

Plenty of articles have been written about how terrible it is that Net Neutrality has been removed and it is a lot harder to find the other point of view so here it is…

People who support Net Neutrality include Socialists and people who don’t know what Net Neutrality is.

The simplest way to explain it is that it doesn’t actually mean what the words say just like many Progressives are anything but progressive Net Neutrality is not inherently neutral at all but is about regulating the internet.

Screenshot-Whaleoil

So-called Net Neutrality allowed Google to take billions from ISP competitors and Google was against Search Neutrality which allowed hundreds of thousands of small businesses to stay in business.

[…] The commission voted Thursday afternoon to officially end the series of rules structuring what’s known as “net neutrality.” In its most basic formulation, net neutrality ensures that telecom providers don’t discriminate in providing internet service to consumers by price or content. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai argues that these rules have restricted both competition and investment in broadband expansion, and favor content companies like Netflix over actual providers of internet service (like Verizon and Comcast). Pai contends that the FCC must regulate less and collaborate more with the industries it oversees.[…]

-chicagotribune.com

NetNeutrality

Voices on both sides of the Atlantic have claimed that this repeal means the death of the Internet as we know it, that internet service providers will now have the ability to introduce fast and slow lanes, and that they will be able to charge more for allowing users to access popular services such as streaming platforms.

Such consequences do indeed sound very dramatic, but the vast majority of arguments that the authors rely on are plain wrong. They demonstrate confusion about the terminology and misunderstand both the technical con-cepts and basic Internet architecture.

[…] What is “net neutrality”?

A good place to start is to first define what we mean by “net neutrality.” The term was coined by the American scholar Tim Wu in a 2003 paper exploring whether a neutral Internet, which the author defined as the Internet which does not prefer one application (such as email) over another, is best preserved through regulation.

[…] The term as we understand it today is best defined as the idea that the Internet is neutral towards the traffic that flows through it. In other words, a neutral Internet does not discriminate traffic by origin or content.[…]

To better understand whether the “repeal” of today’s net neutrality is a threat, we need to consider three things.

1) US repeal returns the Internet to its 2015 status
The Internet that we know and love today was born, developed, and matured, without any specific legislation protecting its neutrality.[…]

2) Net neutrality does not affect the “backbone” of the Internet
The structure of the modern Internet is very complex and divided according to how providers obtain traffic. In a very simplified form it can be divided into:

The Internet backbone. This can best be described as large global networks that connect the entire In-ternet. When streaming services enter into arrangements to enable faster or more efficient content dis-tribution this is almost always on the backbone and not on the last mile.[…]

The last mile: This refers to the connection that delivers the Internet to the retail user. This is the con-nection we purchase from our local ISP and it is what most users see as “the Internet.” Net neutrality as a concept—and this is a key idea—by definition operates only on the last mile.

[…] A vast majority of the real and imagined problems associated in the public mind with net neutrality either origi-nate on the backbone or are confined to the backbone and thus cannot be solved by any neutrality legislation.

[…]  The concept of net neutrality is no longer useful
[…] net neutrality does not say anything about whether the Internet is open, generally accessible, censored, or otherwise free.

Having net neutrality laws—any form of net neutrality laws—in no way guarantees Internet freedom. Such free-dom can just as easily be violated by measures completely outside of the scope of such rules.

The impending December repeal, […] will likely have no effect whatsoever on the Internet as we know it.[…]

-sciencenordic.com


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