Everybody is against FCC Chairman Wheeler’s soon-to-be-forthcoming proposal, it seems, except Comcast, Verizon, AT&T and Time Warner Cable. And a few on-the-one-hand, on-the-other-hand academics like Kevin Werbach and Phil Weiser, both of whom have served in the federal government to augment their academic careers. It’s exactly as David Pogue outlined in his recent Scientific American column, The Net Neutrality Debate in 2 Minutes or Less, Network Neutrality is supported by . . .

. . . nearly every pro-consumer organization on earth, including the Consumers Union and Common Cause. Also, the creators of the Internet (including Vinton Cerf) and the Web (including Tim Berners-Lee). And every true believer in free speech, innovation and the American way . . .

and opposed by the telcos and cablecos.

In the last few weeks, we’ve seen screeds against Wheeler’s proposal by Dan Gillmor, Tim Wu, Cory Doctorow, The New York Times, The LA Times, The Washington Post, ZDNet, SPIN Magazine, GigaOm, Senator Bernie Sanders, Senator Al Franken, and, well, just about everybody. Even Public Knowledge, the watchdog group created by FCC Chairman Wheeler’s External Affairs Chief, has come out against it.

The New York Times’ The Strip says it like this:

The-Strip-Slide-5Gwg-Jumbo

So, why, might we ask, are the countries most despised companies — Comcast tops the list — getting what they want from the FCC while the vast majority of people are opposed? Maybe this story, unrelated to the FCC, might shed some light: Data driven research by economists at Princeton and Northwestern, looking at almost 2000 policy issues in a dispassionate, data-driven analysis, conclude that,

“… economic elites and organized groups representing business interests [influence]
U.S. government policy, while average citizens and mass-based interest groups
have little or no influence.”

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that this month’s surprise best-seller is another economic study, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty, which concludes that the long term return to capital exceeds long term economic growth, in other words, capitalism is sucking the economy dry.

It certainly has nothing to do with the fact that both Brazil and the European Community passed strong network neutrality legislation this month.

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3 Comments

  1. Blue Marble Times – Technology | Everybody vs. FCC except . . . says:

    […] isen.com – Everybody is against FCC Chairman Wheeler’s soon-to-be-forthcoming proposal, it seems, except Comcast, Verizon, AT&T and Time Warner Cable. And a few on-the-one-hand, on-the-other-hand academics like Kevin Werbach and Phil Weiser, both of whom have served in the federal government to augment their academic careers. It’s exactly as David Pogue outlined in his recent Scientific American column, The Net Neutrality Debate in 2 Minutes or Less, Network Neutrality is supported by . […]

  2. Mark Milliman says:

    David:

    I am not sure what you are trying to say here. Is it that the so-called self-serving capitalists are only supported by their cronies? Not so. They understand the issues at hand here. This is a traffic management issue plain and simple. Video has flooded the Internet and decreased the quality of service for all. Traffic management for time-sensitive traffic is a cost-effective way providing the best QoE for all services, even best-effort. Businesses have been purchasing managed services for years just for that reason. It is time that we extend it to the residential services.

    The net neutrality pundits have it wrong. They don’t understand the issues. What they want is just like Obamacare; a lower quality of service for everyone. The FCC is proposing rules that will provide a competitive playing field for the OTT providers since we cannot get it on a network-basis. I am not surprised at Vint Cerf’s position since such a proposal would cost Google millions per year. If he were still with Vz/MCI he would be singing a different song.

    I have not heard or read a single technical argument that supports “net neutrality” as the people above define it. My definition is more like that of Silicon Flatirons which allows traffic prioritization as a way to improve service delivery. This uproar has become more of an emotional issue rather than an intelligently debated one. I would hope that you would understand the discussion and come to the same conclusion.

  3. Eye Espy says:

    How can people be for or against something they have not seen? What is really going on is that corporations are trying to pressure the FCC into proposing something that is beneficial to them. This is not democracy, it’s bullying.