FCC Votes, Approves Net Neutrality Rules For Broadband

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EternallyBored:

Saulkar:

Sarge034:

Here's one reason... "While the public has still not seen the full 332-page FCC proposal..." I'm all for NN, make no mistake, but I'm not a fan of passing laws when I don't know 100% what they are. Call it the crazy idea of wanting to be as informed as possible about potentially life altering decisions, and I tend to read contracts before I sign them too. I know, odd right? It never sits right with me when the actual document isn't released prior to the vote. Makes me wonder what is hidden in there they didn't want people to see. We all know summaries can be misleading and outright false *cough obamacare cough* with no repercussions.

I did not even realise that the FCC's proposals were not made public. Now I am genuinely nervous, what serpent have they traded the wolf for?

This is not unusual, the reason we haven't seen it yet is because the dissenting 2 boardmembers can delay its release in order to insert their own proposed edits before it gets put into action. We will see it released in a couple weeks, they can't delay it forever, they are likely delaying it long enough for the telecom companies to get their appeal ready to submit, because compainies like comcast have already released statements outlining their intention to challenge the new designation.

We'll get to see the actual content before they put anything into practice, they can't start enforcing anything before they've released it to the public.

Thankyou for that tidbit of information. I genuinely hope that the nefarious content is kept to a minimum but it is pretty much expected that there are going to be some needles in the broth. If not then I will be a happy panda.

I found this silliness that I will leave here for your entertainment:

This is your opposition.

SKBPinkie:
So the people who voted against NN are definitely full of shit, aren't they? I genuinely can't think of a single good reason why they'd be opposed to it, unless they were bought, or they're just fucking idiotic.

Content providers helping to pay for infasturcute upgrades tends to lead to a faster internet for all. Providing company with an incentive(a faster product) is not in itself a bad thing.

However, that lost my sympathy when Comcast throttled Netflicks until they payed up for network upgrades. And with some of these company owning there own movie streaming services it can just lead to problems of them sabotaging competitors.

direkiller:
However, that lost my sympathy when Comcast throttled Netflicks until they payed up for network upgrades. And with some of these company owning there own movie streaming services it can just lead to problems of them sabotaging competitors.

Yeah, not so much. You see, the issue between Comcast/Verizon and Netflix had fuck all to do with actual throttling and everything to do with peering ports, a matter that most likely won't be covered by these spiffy new rules. The issue was a matter of the Netflix traffic getting bottle necked at certain points at which time Comcast/Verizon would, as a courtesy, open new ports to alleviate the bottleneck and move traffic along. In fact, if anything, now that these new rules require that ISPs treat all traffic equally a case could be made where one could argue that Netflix speeds could well see a down tick.

You see, prior to the deal Comcast and Verizon were actually expending their own resources to speed along the massive amount of traffic caused by Netflix users. It shouldn't be looked at as unreasonable that they would expect Netflix to shoulder some of that burden as it was almost solely their traffic that was responsible for it. As I said above this matter likely won't be one that is addressed by the new Net Neutrality rules and in the instance it is it likely won't be addressed in a way that is favorable to the current arrangement between Netflix and Comcast/Verizon.

hentropy:
The ACA also gives us a good snapshot of the opposite side, though. When the full text was released, there was a rather disgusting effort to try and take one small part of it way out of context, interpret it in a disgusting way and then scream about DEATH PANELS!!!!! and other outrageous nonsense.

It got to the point where a real conversation about healthcare could never take place one way or another. I didn't necessarily support the ACA when it was up for a vote, I supported the bipartisan Wyden-Bennett bill that would have ended employer-healthcare monopolies. At the same time, the ACA, for all of its faults is a whole lot better in my perspective than nothing. I feel the much the same way about the rules, whatever is in it is probably better than what we have now, and I'd rather have it passed so we can get to the lawsuits sooner than later.

In a perfect world, I'd love to see these bills or rules or whatever before they pass, but it seems like all that does in today's political environment is give the opposition time to egregiously lie about it unquestioned, then suddenly you have a mass of people in DC protesting "Obamacare for the Internet". All because you wanted to "wait and read every word" of rules that the vast majority of people would not understand and even less people have any sway over.

So the options are what? Trust them to read it for us or trust the opposition to read it for us? Why not the stunning third option of read it yourself? All summaries and biased slander become pointless if you're informed. I thought "open transparency" was a standing point for Obama...

Ncrdrg:
Techdirt specifically writes that while this is an issue, it's not something specific that only happened to the vote on net neutrality/reclassification. It's something they've been doing for a long time. And we might not see the full rules until a few weeks because the Republicans refuse to submit their edits and until they do, it's not finalized.

I wasn't saying it was. I specifically stated that I hate it when proposals are not released for public viewing before a vote. I said nothing about stalling tactics, as I would remind you both sides use them. However as this WAS PASSED INTO LAW, there are no edits to wait for. It's a done deal and now we have to wait to read what the rules actually are.

Saulkar:
I did not even realise that the FCC's proposals were not made public. Now I am genuinely nervous, what serpent have they traded the wolf for?

Yerp, especially when Wheeler was the one not so long ago 100% opposed to NN. That's why I find this quote hilariously ironic. "There are a few irrefutable truths about broadband," said chairman Wheeler minutes before the vote. "One is you can't say you're for broadband, and then turn around and endorse limits." How about endorsing limits and then saying you're for broadband? XD

Adam Jensen:
This just means that corporations that happen to be in favor of what's also best for the people have more money and influence over politicians (for now) than anti-net neutrality companies. Feel free to celebrate, but don't forget that the war isn't won, it's just one battle. As long as money in politics is a thing it will never be over. That's what you need to focus on in America. Getting the money out of politics once and for all with a constitutional amendment. These are the guys that are trying to do that: http://www.wolf-pac.com/ If you're an American and if you want your democracy back, consider helping them in anyway you can. Don't be naive. This is not the last you'll hear from ISPs and net neutrality.

Not really. This came about because public opinion was overwhelmingly supportive of it, Obama threw the gauntlet down for it because he doesn't have anything to lose anymore, and Republicans were against it, which made it a great PR adoption for Democrats. Trust me, plenty of Republicans still list companies like Comcast as their top donor. This was just a perfect storm where a lot of moving parts came together at the right time.

Sarge034:
So the options are what? Trust them to read it for us or trust the opposition to read it for us? Why not the stunning third option of read it yourself? All summaries and biased slander become pointless if you're informed. I thought "open transparency" was a standing point for Obama...

It's not a matter of trust. You never have to "trust" anyone in politics, and I certainly wouldn't. As a politically active citizen and voter, my only concern is to try and get my government to do what I think is best according to my own principles. In this case, I want net neutrality to be implemented in some form, and the sooner the better. In my view, there are two options, and they have nothing to do with trust:

1. Release the full text before the vote. Watch Fox News (and possibly other news agencies) go bonkers over it because of vested telecom interests in the news media, where they will somehow try to make it about "censorship" or something else that is incredibly evil. Every attempt to debunk the outrageous claims gets ignored, and pro-NN groups try their best, but they end up looking like the greedy ones somehow. Net neutrality doesn't pass because Wheeler is spineless and does a double-cave. ISPs keep their strangle-hold on things.

2. Don't release the text and pass the thing. We get net neutrality, possibly with a few annoying things in the rules, but it's better than nothing.

I prefer the second option myself. It's my inherent distrust of American political discourse and my favoring of practicality that leads me there, not my starry-eyed optimism and implicit trust of the government.

Remus:

Aerith:
"It's too important to be left without rules and a referee on the field."

Which is why there already are rules (the law) and there already is a referee (the cops). And besides, whose going to provide those new rules and the new referees? The government? Don't make me laugh. If you can't even treat your vets with an inkling of respect, how can we expect you to treat the internet with respect?

So if my internet gets throttled because I'm using a major website like Facebook, Twitter, Amazon or Netflix, my one recourse for action should be to dial 911 and call for the arrest of Lowell C. McAdam, or Randall L. Stephenson? How exactly do you think they would take that?

Yes, because 911 is exactly who I meant :P Not the Law Enforcement Agencies or officers in charge of overseeing harassment, abuse, doxing and more.

Aerith:
"It's too important to be left without rules and a referee on the field."

Which is why there already are rules (the law) and there already is a referee (the cops). And besides, whose going to provide those new rules and the new referees? The government? Don't make me laugh. If you can't even treat your vets with an inkling of respect, how can we expect you to treat the internet with respect?

The FCC has been regulating the internet for years.

This "the government messes everything up!" doom crying is ludicrous. The same referees will be upholding the same rules that have been in place for... DECADES!

Only recently did a lawsuit oust them from control so that ISPs could start shaking down internet based companies for exorbitant fees by strangling their connection speeds. Which Comcast has already started doing so it's not a hypothetical possibility. It's already happening. The FCC blocked that kind of crap which is why the lawsuit was filed to get them out of the picture. This is bad for large companies who would have had to increase prices to cover the cost of being extorted, small companies who would be strangled because they can't afford to pay up, and you in the form of higher cost for products and services.

It's not about big scarey government coming to take away your porn and rights. It an ridiculously rare case of the big scarey government telling bigger scarier corporations to back the hell off. Don't worry, it wont become a trend. Probably be the only time you see it happen in your life time.

Mid Boss:

Aerith:
"It's too important to be left without rules and a referee on the field."

Which is why there already are rules (the law) and there already is a referee (the cops). And besides, whose going to provide those new rules and the new referees? The government? Don't make me laugh. If you can't even treat your vets with an inkling of respect, how can we expect you to treat the internet with respect?

The FCC has been regulating the internet for years.

This "the government messes everything up!" doom crying is ludicrous. The same referees will be upholding the same rules that have been in place for... DECADES!

Only recently did a lawsuit oust them from control so that ISPs could start shaking down internet based companies for exorbitant fees by strangling their connection speeds. Which Comcast has already started doing so it's not a hypothetical possibility. It's already happening. The FCC blocked that kind of crap which is why the lawsuit was filed to get them out of the picture. This is bad for large companies who would have had to increase prices to cover the cost of being extorted, small companies who would be strangled because they can't afford to pay up, and you in the form of higher cost for products and services.

It's not about big scarey government coming to take away your porn and rights. It an ridiculously rare case of the big scarey government telling bigger scarier corporations to back the hell off. Don't worry, it wont become a trend. Probably be the only time you see it happen in your life time.

It's not that it's a "big scary government" but more a small-minded incompetent government :P Whether it's America or over here, I don't have much confident in the politicians running things. They're not exactly competent. Or caring about their people.

Aerith:

Mid Boss:

Aerith:
"It's too important to be left without rules and a referee on the field."

Which is why there already are rules (the law) and there already is a referee (the cops). And besides, whose going to provide those new rules and the new referees? The government? Don't make me laugh. If you can't even treat your vets with an inkling of respect, how can we expect you to treat the internet with respect?

The FCC has been regulating the internet for years.

This "the government messes everything up!" doom crying is ludicrous. The same referees will be upholding the same rules that have been in place for... DECADES!

Only recently did a lawsuit oust them from control so that ISPs could start shaking down internet based companies for exorbitant fees by strangling their connection speeds. Which Comcast has already started doing so it's not a hypothetical possibility. It's already happening. The FCC blocked that kind of crap which is why the lawsuit was filed to get them out of the picture. This is bad for large companies who would have had to increase prices to cover the cost of being extorted, small companies who would be strangled because they can't afford to pay up, and you in the form of higher cost for products and services.

It's not about big scarey government coming to take away your porn and rights. It an ridiculously rare case of the big scarey government telling bigger scarier corporations to back the hell off. Don't worry, it wont become a trend. Probably be the only time you see it happen in your life time.

It's not that it's a "big scary government" but more a small-minded incompetent government :P Whether it's America or over here, I don't have much confident in the politicians running things. They're not exactly competent. Or caring about their people.

Well the FCC has been doing a pretty good job regulating the internet for the past 25 years or so. I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt on this especially considering the only alternative we have would be the for profit horror of a corporation controlled internet.

hentropy:
It's not a matter of trust. You never have to "trust" anyone in politics, and I certainly wouldn't. As a politically active citizen and voter, my only concern is to try and get my government to do what I think is best according to my own principles. In this case, I want net neutrality to be implemented in some form, and the sooner the better. In my view, there are two options, and they have nothing to do with trust:

1. Release the full text before the vote. Watch Fox News (and possibly other news agencies) go bonkers over it because of vested telecom interests in the news media, where they will somehow try to make it about "censorship" or something else that is incredibly evil. Every attempt to debunk the outrageous claims gets ignored, and pro-NN groups try their best, but they end up looking like the greedy ones somehow. Net neutrality doesn't pass because Wheeler is spineless and does a double-cave. ISPs keep their strangle-hold on things.

2. Don't release the text and pass the thing. We get net neutrality, possibly with a few annoying things in the rules, but it's better than nothing.

I prefer the second option myself. It's my inherent distrust of American political discourse and my favoring of practicality that leads me there, not my starry-eyed optimism and implicit trust of the government.

And that's my point. The fuck does it matter what Fox says if you've read the damn thing yourself and know the truth? Society has become so reliant on other people interpreting facts for them that they believe Fox, or CNN, or MSNBC, or the summaries and can't or refuse to think for themselves.

But fine, let's run with your "anything is better than nothing" mindset. This law was passed and NN is a thing. Congratulations, NN is a thing. *THEORETICAL SCENARIO AHEAD, you have been warned* However, on page 149/332 it says that to qualify to upgrade to unthrottled internet you have to pay an "upgrade fee" that would pay for the needed infrastructure. Then on page 223/332 it says that because of the increased projected network traffic from unthrottled internet, ISPs can charge more for internet than they do now to cover operation costs. But on page 284/332 it states that ISPs can continue to honor existing contracts and also renew those contracts if both parties consent.

Nothing in the summary was a lie, but the loop holes are enormous. Unless the government regulates the price of internet (which is a bad idea) or provides subsidies (which is a REALLY bad idea) then any loop holes present the opportunity for ISPs to screw us over harder than they already do. The fact Wheeler once lobbied for ISPs and was about to serve us to them on a silver platter does noting for my faith that the legislation he put forth isn't riddled with a bunch of little loop holes that add up to something monstrous. That added to the fact he refused to make the legislation public knowledge just gives me a bad gut feeling. And seeing as how my gut has saved my life a few times, I tend to listen to it.

RedEyesBlackGamer:
Not really. This came about because public opinion was overwhelmingly supportive of it

There's more people in favor of gun control and marijuana legalization than there are people who even know what net neutrality is. Yet those issues remain unresolved because the people with the money make sure of it. You saw what happened after Sandy Hook. And now with Republicans in charge of the Congress there's already talks of reverting marijuana legalization in states that legalized it. Don't be naive man. Public opinion in the US doesn't mean jack shit anymore.

RedEyesBlackGamer:
Obama threw the gauntlet down for it because he doesn't have anything to lose anymore, and Republicans were against it, which made it a great PR adoption for Democrats.

One of Obama's top donors is Google. Generally, Google, Facebook, Microsoft and other pro-net neutrality companies are Democratic donors.

The ONLY WAY for public opinion to be relevant in shaping policies is to remove money from politics. It is the only solution that will work. So get to it if you're an American and if you care about your future.

direkiller:

Content providers helping to pay for infasturcute upgrades tends to lead to a faster internet for all. Providing company with an incentive(a faster product) is not in itself a bad thing.

However, that lost my sympathy when Comcast throttled Netflicks until they payed up for network upgrades. And with some of these company owning there own movie streaming services it can just lead to problems of them sabotaging competitors.

Yeah, that was supposed to be the plan when Montana allowed what's now Charter to have a local monopoly around here.

Of course, after laying down cable in most of what's considered "populated" around here, they promptly stopped and have been coasting. The closest competition is Centurylink, which offers a line, in certain areas, that's half the cost for a quarter of the bandwidth.

So yeah, Charter has "competition" and thus, is no longer a monopoly, in the same sense that, technically, the local AA ball club is "competition" for the Yankees.

Adam Jensen:

RedEyesBlackGamer:
Not really. This came about because public opinion was overwhelmingly supportive of it

There's more people in favor of gun control and marijuana legalization than there are people who even know what net neutrality is. Yet those issues remain unresolved because the people with the money make sure of it. You saw what happened after Sandy Hook. And now with Republicans in charge of the Congress there's already talks of reverting marijuana legalization in states that legalized it. Don't be naive man. Public opinion in the US doesn't mean jack shit anymore.

RedEyesBlackGamer:
Obama threw the gauntlet down for it because he doesn't have anything to lose anymore, and Republicans were against it, which made it a great PR adoption for Democrats.

One of Obama's top donors is Google. Generally, Google, Facebook, Microsoft and other pro-net neutrality companies are Democratic donors.

The ONLY WAY for public opinion to be relevant in shaping policies is to remove money from politics. It is the only solution that will work. So get to it if you're an American and if you care about your future.

Obama appointed Wheeler the head of the FCC, who is a guy who worked as a lobbyist for the cable industry. This move is a 180 for Obama.
And look at the Republican Party's complete turnaround on same-sex marriage now that polls are continuing to show rising support for it. The establishment Republicans have throw in the towel and only the far right, whose only chance in the primary is courting the Christian Right, are still actively against it. When public opinion radically shifts enough, politicians suddenly care.

Adam Jensen:

The ONLY WAY for public opinion to be relevant in shaping policies is to remove money from politics. It is the only solution that will work. So get to it if you're an American and if you care about your future.

How do you propose we do that? The only ones who can oust big money from politics are politicians. For a politician to have any hope of getting elected he needs to sell his soul to corporate America for huge wads of campaign cash otherwise his opponents will steam roll him with attack ads. The people who benefit most from it are the only ones who can stop it. Do you see the problem here?

There's no way of getting anyone in who cares about this issue and sure as hell no way of getting enough people in at once to actually accomplish anything.

If such a movement did somehow pick up steam amongst the public the media, mostly owned by said corporate America, will demonize it any way possible turning public opinion against it.

We are thoroughly fucked. I don't see anything short of total economic collapse or civil war changing this.

viranimus:
Snipped because I dont want to say the same thing again

While this outcome arguably might be the lesser of two evils, this was not a victory. Now while the tech corporations such as amazon, google, netflix, hulu, steam, apple, ect, who actually benefit from net neutrality have won, We as non corporate entity citizen consumers suffered yet another blow. It did not matter which way it went, We were going to be made to suffer.

So get ready to lose your "unlimited" tethered broadband connections and have to struggle with broadband capacity micromanagement as that is going to likely be the first of many changes to the way broadband ISP providers operate as this bill was drafted by one of their former and foremost lobbyists. So now these services will be regulated like utilities and ultimately that means that ISPs wont have to continue worrying about having to meet the demands of the public. All they will have to do in order to implement charges, policies, and other chicanery is simply buy the legislation they want. That in and of itself is a pretty scary thought knowing that these providers are in what is considered pure profit industries.

I have to wonder if the ISPs are singing "this is my corporate states of Whatever!"

/sigh. It really is true, we really do have the government we deserve, because the people do not realize that are in the middle of an economic war of attrition, and not only are we losing, we might have already lost.

Devin Connors:
So how do you feel about today's ruling? Victory? Defeat? A big ol' ball of indifference? Let us know in the comments.

While the ruling falls short of forcing line-sharing upon ISPs, this is still the most crushing victory imaginable for Net Neutrality in the US. I'm very, very happy with this outcome.

Mid Boss:

Adam Jensen:

The ONLY WAY for public opinion to be relevant in shaping policies is to remove money from politics. It is the only solution that will work. So get to it if you're an American and if you care about your future.

How do you propose we do that? The only ones who can oust big money from politics are politicians. For a politician to have any hope of getting elected he needs to sell his soul to corporate America for huge wads of campaign cash otherwise his opponents will steam roll him with attack ads. The people who benefit most from it are the only ones who can stop it. Do you see the problem here?

There's no way of getting anyone in who cares about this issue and sure as hell no way of getting enough people in at once to actually accomplish anything.

If such a movement did somehow pick up steam amongst the public the media, mostly owned by said corporate America, will demonize it any way possible turning public opinion against it.

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Fuckin' wrong. That's what people told Martin Luther King. That's what they told women who didn't have the right to vote. If women who couldn't vote managed to get a right to vote then how can anyone claim that you can't get the money out of politics? That is not the mindset that can change things. Ironically, that is the exact kind of mindset that makes sure that nothing ever changes. It's the mindset that corrupt politicians and businessmen alike count on. They don't count on people to actually get up and do something for a change. People have no fuckin' idea how powerful they are because they are convinced that they're powerless.

I have already provided a link to the group that is fighting to introduce a new constitutional amendment that would get the money out of politics. And they're doing a fine job. Four states have already signed the petition to call for an Article 5 Convention. But they need people. Go to their website and see in what way you can help. Also spread the word around. Tell the people you know to get involved. Only the future of your entire country depends on it: http://www.wolf-pac.com/

Sarge034:
Snip

I was about to say the same thing. Without releasing the full text to the public prior to the vote it's all too easy to pass a bill that in reality does little to nothing to protect net neutrality or worse actually ends up doing the exact opposite of protecting it without "we the people" being able to so much as complain about it, not that our complaining would have made a difference in the end anyway. Most of the laws in this country that directly screw the average joe over were passed precisely because of tricks like this. Jensen is right with one thing though, as good or bad the only reason a bill like this even had a chance in the first place is because there were just as many if not more big corporations on it's side as were opposing it, the opinions of "we the people" had nothing to do with it and it's the same with any other law that has ever been passed.

Mid Boss:
Snip

Exactly, as long as those that need regulation are the ones that decide they ever will be regulated they never will be. These people have no motivation whatsoever to limit their own power and every motivation to do whatever they can to increase it as much as possible. Besides, there already ARE anti-bribery laws in place designed to prevent politicians from being influenced by those with deep pockets, but they just use semantics, loopholes, and technicalities to get around it anyway so even in the incredibly unlikely event they did pass such a law they'd just do the same thing.

EternallyBored:
This is not unusual, the reason we haven't seen it yet is because the dissenting 2 boardmembers can delay its release in order to insert their own proposed edits before it gets put into action.

Except that's not even remotely true. The two dissenting board members requested that the full 332-page document be publicly made available for viewing and comment at least 30 days prior to a vote. They were overruled.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2015/02/26/389259382/net-neutrality-up-for-vote-today-by-fcc-board

...in fact, if I might be allowed to cross-post from another thread, as I really don't want to have to make all my points again...

rgrekejin:

Cowabungaa:

XanCo:
But hey, the government now has the authority to tax and police the internet via a law they kept locked away from public eyes until well after it was passed.

image
It's all well and good to hate on "dem evul gov'ment bastards" but it just looks like vapid ramblings when they're not backed up.

Certainly. It's a widely-known and reported fact that the FCC's final version of the rules are 332 pages long, but they have not released the rules for public comment, and the FCC directly declined to do so when asked.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2015/02/26/389259382/net-neutrality-up-for-vote-today-by-fcc-board

The relevant bit:
"Thursday's vote comes after Commissioners Michael O'Rielly and Ajut Pai asked that the FCC "immediately release the 332-page Internet regulation plan publicly and allow the American people a reasonable period of not less than 30 days to carefully study it."

That request was denied; we'll post the document here when it's available."

As for the authority to tax the internet, that's not true. What the FCC has actually done is reclassified the internet as a utility, which allows federal, state, and local governments to attach "utility fees" to internet service, like they do for cable and telephone service. Although these are not technically taxes, they're functionally identical from a consumer perspective. Almost every expert who has looked at the issue expects state and local governments to attach some kind of new fee to internet service, although how big those fees will be remains to be seen. What's more, now that internet is a utility, the FCC has no control over what fees state and local governments decide to attach to it - that part of the situation is out of their hands, so no promises they make with respect to it can be considered binding.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2015/feb/26/mike-lee/effect-net-neutrality-rules-taxes-uncertain/

As for their ability to police the internet, we don't know the full extent of that because, obviously, no one has seen the full law. But we've seen a portion of it, the "general conduct" rule, where the FCC grants itself power to review and punish conduct "harmful to consumers". What, exactly, constitutes "harm to consumers" is left vague and open-ended, and there are fears that this vague language could lead to future abuse by unscrupulous FCC employees with an axe to grind.

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2015/02/dear-fcc-rethink-those-vague-general-conduct-rules

and

rgrekejin:

Kardsymalone:

rgrekejin:
snip

Can you explain why you think the FCC is going to censor the internet when in the general guidelines it says that they punish impacts on free expression impacts on innovation and impacts on competition

The FCC guy also says that the internet shouldn't be controlled by either government or corporate (of course apart from shit like deepweb and the various shady activities on the internet such as CP)

First off, let me say that my primary concern isn't with the FCC censoring the internet. It's that utility-style regulation will eventually lead to utility-style lobbying and an utterly complacent system like that which exists in telecom and power, where prices ratchet in a single direction and companies have even less incentive to improve the product and it's delivery than ISPs do now. And if you think I doth protest too much, here are some recent examples of regulations originally meant for consumer protection being used to quash innovation and competition:

Television companies were recently able to sue and effectively shut down both Ivi and Aereo, innovative web streaming services that provided a DVR-like ability to record live TV. Although the Aereo loss was technically a copyright infringement lawsuit, Ivi lost in the end because of a regulator's refusal to allow it classification under the cable regulatory system (Oh look, it's the FCC again. Hi FCC!).

"Consumer protection" regulations are also being cited by taxi and limo companies whose existence is threatened by Uber and Lyft, causing degradation of the services offered by the companies in some places, and resulting in their outright banning in many others. Here's a good article on that, as well as on the concept of "regulatory capture", and how it relates to net neutrality.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrydownes/2013/02/06/lessons-from-uber-why-innovation-and-regulation-dont-mix/

Sarge034:
And that's my point. The fuck does it matter what Fox says if you've read the damn thing yourself and know the truth?

Because me reading it and understanding it doesn't stop the majority of people from freaking out about nonexistant clauses because Fox News told them to? You seem to be suggesting that you will somehow have a lot more power if you can simply read it. The only thing that will actually change with the release of the text is the opposition's ability to wage a campaign against it. Your voice won't matter any more than it does currently.

But fine, let's run with your "anything is better than nothing" mindset. This law was passed and NN is a thing. Congratulations, NN is a thing. *THEORETICAL SCENARIO AHEAD, you have been warned* However, on page 149/332 it says that to qualify to upgrade to unthrottled internet you have to pay an "upgrade fee" that would pay for the needed infrastructure. Then on page 223/332 it says that because of the increased projected network traffic from unthrottled internet, ISPs can charge more for internet than they do now to cover operation costs. But on page 284/332 it states that ISPs can continue to honor existing contracts and also renew those contracts if both parties consent.

Nothing in the summary was a lie, but the loop holes are enormous. Unless the government regulates the price of internet (which is a bad idea) or provides subsidies (which is a REALLY bad idea) then any loop holes present the opportunity for ISPs to screw us over harder than they already do. The fact Wheeler once lobbied for ISPs and was about to serve us to them on a silver platter does noting for my faith that the legislation he put forth isn't riddled with a bunch of little loop holes that add up to something monstrous. That added to the fact he refused to make the legislation public knowledge just gives me a bad gut feeling. And seeing as how my gut has saved my life a few times, I tend to listen to it.

It wouldn't be net neutrality with those kinds of loopholes, and I won't be the only one pissed about them. I find the scenarios presented very unlikely based on empirical observation: they are huge giveaways to the ISPs, in which case the Republicans would be on board. If it were a unanimous vote then I'd probably be more worried than if it were split. But it's clear that the Republicans on the board (who have read the new rules) along with Repbulicans in general are very unhappy with this proposal.

I understand the concerns, and for what it's worth I agree with you on most points, but at the same time it's also a matter of "don't hate the player, hate the game". There's a game being played here, and while I might not like the game, I still want a certain outcome.

Ignignokt:
I found this silliness that I will leave here for your entertainment:

This is your opposition.

He has an extremely punchable face.

While I'm no fan of hipsters and their ilk, like any other "ask an idiot on the street something", I've no doubt he cut out the people that actually know what they're talking about. And his metaphors....god dammit, this isn't slowing everything down, this is telling companies "you can't fuck over your competition by slowing them down". Comcast and Verizon are a prime example: two companies with their own "view on demand" content that decided to fuck Netflix over by throttling it, then forcing Netflix to pay up when it started losing customers.

While I'd definitely preferred that the full text be released, this at least raises hopes. For West Virginia especially, the municipal broadband section is sorely needed. I'm in one of the more fortunate areas, in that we have both Comcast and Frontier, and I can at least get 25mbps from Comcast, rather than the "10mbps if you're lucky" that Frontier offers.

By the way, did I mention fuck both Comcast and Frontier?

I'm not perfectly confident that this will pass the existing Supreme Court- and given the amounts of money involved, this is almost certain to go that far.

But for the time being, my baseline reaction is "Fuck, yeah", with a side of "If you oppose this, you should be thrown in jail for fraud the next time you dare call yourself a public servant, you cash-grabbing flunkies."

immortalfrieza:
I was about to say the same thing. Without releasing the full text to the public prior to the vote it's all too easy to pass a bill that in reality does little to nothing to protect net neutrality or worse actually ends up doing the exact opposite of protecting it without "we the people" being able to so much as complain about it, not that our complaining would have made a difference in the end anyway. Most of the laws in this country that directly screw the average joe over were passed precisely because of tricks like this. Jensen is right with one thing though, as good or bad the only reason a bill like this even had a chance in the first place is because there were just as many if not more big corporations on it's side as were opposing it, the opinions of "we the people" had nothing to do with it and it's the same with any other law that has ever been passed.

That's the interesting part about the FCC though. If we did feel the law was acting in anything other than the 'public interest" we could petition the FCC and Congress to change it. That's why the first proposal from Wheeler got shot down actually, damned if I can't find anything about it now, but so many people spoke out about the proposal that if he had gone through with it he would have been acting against the public's wishes/best interest. It'll be a long process no doubt, but at least we have more options than with, say, Congress.

hentropy:
Because me reading it and understanding it doesn't stop the majority of people from freaking out about nonexistant clauses because Fox News told them to? You seem to be suggesting that you will somehow have a lot more power if you can simply read it. The only thing that will actually change with the release of the text is the opposition's ability to wage a campaign against it. Your voice won't matter any more than it does currently.

I'm saying if we care enough about a topic to have an opinion why don't we care if it's an informed opinion? This is more a commentary on the state of the public as sheep. Your point is that if they release the document it will be taken out of context and used against them, true enough. But is hearing wheeler's out of context summary any different? I mean other than you agreeing with it? And you would be surprised how much power you actually have if you become informed, knowledge is power as they say.

It wouldn't be net neutrality with those kinds of loopholes, and I won't be the only one pissed about them. I find the scenarios presented very unlikely based on empirical observation: they are huge giveaways to the ISPs, in which case the Republicans would be on board. If it were a unanimous vote then I'd probably be more worried than if it were split. But it's clear that the Republicans on the board (who have read the new rules) along with Repbulicans in general are very unhappy with this proposal.

I understand the concerns, and for what it's worth I agree with you on most points, but at the same time it's also a matter of "don't hate the player, hate the game". There's a game being played here, and while I might not like the game, I still want a certain outcome.

First off, stop playing the political game. You are very much saying it's "us" vs "them" and that makes you sound ignorant or combative. Anyone who goes about anything based solely on party lines is a mindless drone.

"Most surprising of all, given comments by Republican lawmakers over the past couple of days, is that support for net neutrality is bipartisan. Indeed, Republicans were slightly more likely to support net neutrality than Democrats. Eighty-one percent of Democrats and 85 percent of Republicans in the survey said they opposed fast lanes. The poll's margin of error was 3.2 percentage points."
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/11/12/wonkbook-polling-shows-even-republicans-overwhelmingly-support-net-neutrality/

Anyway... It WOULD be NN as that's what the law calls it. Don't like it? Perhaps you shouldda know what you were supporting. I simply can't respect the view that this is the game so play it, I can't. That kind of view is what politicians and lobbyist depend on. Things only get better if you give enough of a damn to force them to be better. Wheeler didn't change his tune out of the kindness of his heart, no?

cpukill:

By the way, did I mention fuck both Comcast and Frontier?

I agree, this video is laughable, filled with party centric editing used to spindoctor its position.

As from someone on the other end of the state, count yourself lucky you have comcast compared to what the largest bulk of the state has in Suddenlink, which on its best day is like a bad impression of an internet service provider.

Frontier is even worse than you think. While they can "sell" you a 12 Mbps connection, I know at my house, while definitely rural, is less than a mile way from the nearest hub and the best speed they can potentially offer is about 1.4 Mbps out of the 12 Mpbs package that they would sell me.

So yeah Ill join in with you in saying fuck comcast and frontier, and add in Suddenlink to boot.

Captcha: Romney Ryan?!?! Whatthe

viranimus:

cpukill:

By the way, did I mention fuck both Comcast and Frontier?

I agree, this video is laughable, filled with party centric editing used to spindoctor its position.

As from someone on the other end of the state, count yourself lucky you have comcast compared to what the largest bulk of the state has in Suddenlink, which on its best day is like a bad impression of an internet service provider.

Frontier is even worse than you think. While they can "sell" you a 12 Mbps connection, I know at my house, while definitely rural, is less than a mile way from the nearest hub and the best speed they can potentially offer is about 1.4 Mbps out of the 12 Mpbs package that they would sell me.

So yeah Ill join in with you in saying fuck comcast and frontier, and add in Suddenlink to boot.

Captcha: Romney Ryan?!?! Whatthe

It really shows just how badly cable companies are fucking over consumers when the masses in the conservative U.S. cheer for more government oversight.

cpukill:
Comcast and Verizon are a prime example: two companies with their own "view on demand" content that decided to fuck Netflix over by throttling it, then forcing Netflix to pay up when it started losing customers.

Netflix was not throttled by either company. What actually happened had to do with a matter of Netflix traffic getting bottle necked at various ports and . . .oh hell, I'll just quote myself from earlier.

ME:
The issue between Comcast/Verizon and Netflix had fuck all to do with actual throttling and everything to do with peering ports, a matter that most likely won't be covered by these spiffy new rules. The issue was a matter of the Netflix traffic getting bottle necked at certain points at which time Comcast/Verizon would, as a courtesy, open new ports to alleviate the bottleneck and move traffic along. In fact, if anything, now that these new rules require that ISPs treat all traffic equally a case could be made where one could argue that Netflix speeds could well see a down tick.

You see, prior to the deal Comcast and Verizon were actually expending their own resources to speed along the massive amount of traffic caused by Netflix users. It shouldn't be looked at as unreasonable that they would expect Netflix to shoulder some of that burden as it was almost solely their traffic that was responsible for it. As I said above this matter likely won't be one that is addressed by the new Net Neutrality rules and in the instance it is it likely won't be addressed in a way that is favorable to the current arrangement between Netflix and Comcast/Verizon.

As an interesting aside, Netflix a company that, according to some was actually throttled by the big corporations (they weren't throttled at all in reality) is actually against Net Neutrality.

The three questions you have to ask yourself when it comes to Net Neutrality right now are the following.

ONE: What is the actual problem that needs to be fixed? There isn't a problem right now. Nobody is being throttled. This is a purely hypothetical problem right now. We are handing control of the internet over to the government based on what MIGHT happen.

TWO: How can the internet be more free and open than it already is? The answer certainly isn't "By letting the government regulate it to hell and back" but that seems to be the route everyone was so desperate to go down.

THREE: What is up with all the secrecy? This Net Neutrality is over 300 pages in it's current form and it has yet to be released to the public. I'm sure we have nothing to worry about and those are just 300 plus pages of consumer protection that is entirely in our best interest.

Callate:
I'm not perfectly confident that this will pass the existing Supreme Court- and given the amounts of money involved, this is almost certain to go that far.

And you shouldn't be confident because the FCC simply doesn't have this kind of authority. This falls in the wheelhouse of Congress if we are being entirely honest. The FCC has already had it's authority over the internet successfully challenged once and I wouldn't be surprised or heartbroken to see it happen again. They are literally trying to regulate the internet with an 81 year old law made to regulate the very first phone companies. We were still sending telegraphs when this law was written. It's safe to say that they are reaching at best attempting to apply it to the internet and broadband.

Devin Connors:
This reclassification also includes mobile broadband (your cellular data plan), and the ruleset also includes points on consumer privacy/protection, and Internet access provisions for rural areas, and disabled persons.

I'm curious what this part means specifically. Does it mean that AT&T is now required to upgrade the lines on our street so we can actually get DSL, even though we're also served by Time Warner and can get Internet from them? I doubt AT&T's DSL would actually be cheaper (introductory price aside), but being able to legitimately threaten to switch to them would at least give us some leverage when we demand Time Warner stop jacking up their own prices.

RedEyesBlackGamer:

viranimus:

cpukill:

By the way, did I mention fuck both Comcast and Frontier?

I agree, this video is laughable, filled with party centric editing used to spindoctor its position.

As from someone on the other end of the state, count yourself lucky you have comcast compared to what the largest bulk of the state has in Suddenlink, which on its best day is like a bad impression of an internet service provider.

Frontier is even worse than you think. While they can "sell" you a 12 Mbps connection, I know at my house, while definitely rural, is less than a mile way from the nearest hub and the best speed they can potentially offer is about 1.4 Mbps out of the 12 Mpbs package that they would sell me.

So yeah Ill join in with you in saying fuck comcast and frontier, and add in Suddenlink to boot.

Captcha: Romney Ryan?!?! Whatthe

It really shows just how badly cable companies are fucking over consumers when the masses in the conservative U.S. cheer for more government oversight.

If you noticed my other posts, I am not cheering for government oversight, nor am I cheering the ruling.(Nor am I even remotely conservative for that matter) If there are any cheers from anyone, it is that there is now the potential for something other than absolutely no oversight whatsoever. The whole reason this got pushed to the forefront is because ISPs were getting completely out of control and every year more and more brazen. What far too many do not actually understand is that now instead of these companies (In theory) having to answer to their customers, Now they have to answer to various government agencies when this gets "regulated like a utility" which companies like Comcast, Suddenlink, Frontier, Cox, AT&T, Ect ad naseum are absolutely ecstatic about this ruling because they know from experience that is a whole lot cheaper to buy legislation than it is to buy a ruling in the court of public opinion.

However, at the same time, I will agree with you that Ive not been made to be terrified of the concept of government fulfilling the role it is supposed to fill and actually acting to keep out of control and destructive capitalism in check. Government is not a bad thing, nor is capitalism. Its a government with an uninvolved populous and cut throat capitalism that are problems.

So while this was always a lose lose scenario for the public, the simple truth is that due to the nature of the already existing regulations governing various ISPs was already fostering anti competitive structure in all but metro areas, there was no viable competition for the largest bulk of American consumers with ISPs acting in "natural monopoly" mode, which led them to behave every bit like

It was never as if the whole "vote with your wallet" thing even had leg to stand on. Well over half of the American people have access to two broadband providers (OR LESS). So when providers cut up the country into territories like competing drug cartels, there is no Free market Salvation. Only consumer market exploitation.

So to the consumer even if it adds a middleman into the equation and ultimately puts them further away from being able to make their providers accountable, at least some regulation is better than what they were doing with no regulation at all because if nothing else, those government officials are still accountable.

Edit: Ive still yet to have anyone be able to provide a legitimate answer when it comes to "fending off Big government" If people are really so adamant about getting government out of their lives because they dont trust the government to do anything, why do they have so much more trust and faith in corporations?

well i guess its time to bring out the champagne.

Aerith:
"It's too important to be left without rules and a referee on the field."

Which is why there already are rules (the law) and there already is a referee (the cops). And besides, whose going to provide those new rules and the new referees? The government? Don't make me laugh. If you can't even treat your vets with an inkling of respect, how can we expect you to treat the internet with respect?

Except that there actually are no laws governing it for the service that it is. which is how it resulted in being so completely broken to begin with. and the cops are not referee, the cops are the security service meant to take out the hooligan. so far this was being played with no referee and with rules the players made themselves, which, as youll probably agree, is a sport few would watch.

Adam Jensen:
This just means that corporations that happen to be in favor of what's also best for the people have more money and influence over politicians (for now) than anti-net neutrality companies. Feel free to celebrate, but don't forget that the war isn't won, it's just one battle. As long as money in politics is a thing it will never be over. That's what you need to focus on in America. Getting the money out of politics once and for all with a constitutional amendment. These are the guys that are trying to do that: http://www.wolf-pac.com/ If you're an American and if you want your democracy back, consider helping them in anyway you can. Don't be naive. This is not the last you'll hear from ISPs and net neutrality.

Does it really matter though? corporations in and of themselves are not good or evil. and if their goals coincide with those of the people - thats good enough for me.
And just because the war isnt won doesnt mean its not time to celebrate. good victories need to be delebrated, it keeps morale of your troops up.

Democracy isnt coming back in US. not as long as you got legal bribery, and lets face it, thats never going away now. the only way to have strong enough force to get rid of lobbying is to have a collapse situation, and i dont want US to collapse, that would be pretty shit.

Baldr:

Because majority of internet traffic comes from less than 5 sources: Netflix, Google, Amazon, and Apple. Which means people who only use the internet for like email and facebook are going to be paying higher prices for internet because people are clogging the internet for 4K Netflix streaming.

Netflix does not allow high enough quality (remmeber i said quality, not resolution) streams to clog anything. majority of internet traffic is porn anyway, so netflix isnt going to destroy the infrastructure. and if netflix alone cna clog your infrastructure thats some god damn awful infrastructure. please update at least once in two decades.

Coreless:
Wow more regulations and more rules because that is always what works lol.... slowly but surely we will give away all of our freedoms in the name of "neutrality", "fairness" or "equality and the cycle continues.

if by freedoms you mean freedom for monopoly to rob you legally then im all about giving that up. and while government regulation is not always the best choice, its obviuos that the opposite here is a complete failure.

XanCo:

Yeah, not so much. You see, the issue between Comcast/Verizon and Netflix had fuck all to do with actual throttling and everything to do with peering ports, a matter that most likely won't be covered by these spiffy new rules. The issue was a matter of the Netflix traffic getting bottle necked at certain points at which time Comcast/Verizon would, as a courtesy, open new ports to alleviate the bottleneck and move traffic along. In fact, if anything, now that these new rules require that ISPs treat all traffic equally a case could be made where one could argue that Netflix speeds could well see a down tick.

See, such problems as peering ports should not exist if those 200+ billion of subsidies were actually used to improve infrastructure. i know for a fact major ISPs like comcast are still using some nodes built in the 80s and are having trouble with bit lenght becoming unsupported due to tech being extremely outdated but the executives do not allow improvement because that would cost actual money.

Aerith:

It's not that it's a "big scary government" but more a small-minded incompetent government :P Whether it's America or over here, I don't have much confident in the politicians running things. They're not exactly competent. Or caring about their people.

as opposed to companies who are..... still incompetent and ready to kill you to get more profit as long as they can get away with it. the truth is government run companies are MORE efficient than market ones most of the time. the whole "inefficient government" scare is just a big bullshit. Yes, government is poor innovator, but they are not supposed to be. theres little inovation in, say, water supply service. pretty much all government service privatizations were failures. government is not as incompetent as you think. Comcast on the other hand....

viranimus:

cpukill:

By the way, did I mention fuck both Comcast and Frontier?

I agree, this video is laughable, filled with party centric editing used to spindoctor its position.

As from someone on the other end of the state, count yourself lucky you have comcast compared to what the largest bulk of the state has in Suddenlink, which on its best day is like a bad impression of an internet service provider.

Frontier is even worse than you think. While they can "sell" you a 12 Mbps connection, I know at my house, while definitely rural, is less than a mile way from the nearest hub and the best speed they can potentially offer is about 1.4 Mbps out of the 12 Mpbs package that they would sell me.

So yeah Ill join in with you in saying fuck comcast and frontier, and add in Suddenlink to boot.

Captcha: Romney Ryan?!?! Whatthe

Gonna have to remember that one, hadn't even heard of Suddenlink.

Comcast is like the perpetual Starscream around here. Paying lip service when they're in the limelight, then trying to stab you in the back when you're not looking. Can't tell you how many times I've had to call them up after seeing my bill suddenly increase 20 dollars. Many times it's been for equipment I don't even have (i.e. I've used my own modem and router for over 8 years with these chucklefucks, yet about once a year at random I'll start getting charged for a Comcast-provided modem/router). When I moved about 10 miles, they decided to jack my bill up 30 dollars a month because the service at my old house was somehow radically different from the service I was receiving at my new house, even though it was the same basic TV package and Internet package I had been in for years.

THEN the customer service line...it's like a game of Russian roulette, except that instead of 1 chamber in 5 having a bullet, it's more like 4 chambers out of 5, and you just hope that the other person on the line isn't lying through their teeth. Last year, I called the disconnection line, fully intent on getting rid of the TV side of things and just stream (yes, it would have been the same price, but it was the principal of the thing), but I managed to find my 1 in 5, and he gave me free HBO for a year so long as I wouldn't cancel.

cpukill:

Space age snippage

I would say consider yourself lucky. That is actually pretty surprising considering that they service more counties in WV than any other provider short of frontier.

Anywho, I Wish I could say I was being facetious by saying this, but to give you an example of how much worse it can get, Suddenlink is like your Russian roulette analogy, save it is a 6 shot revolver and each chamber is loaded. It is not just typical poor customer service, like CSRs not knowing what they are doing or cant apply a plan change to an account without making peroration errors forcing a correction call after the next bill. Suddenlink is downright consumer hostile.

Warning, In order to keep this logical and compressed for space in consideration for others who wont want to read it, Spoilering this into sections for easier digestion.

One of the most memorable calls I had to suffer through was early in January.

Then things got so crazy that I truly wish I had recorded the conversation because some of the responses from SL were so outlandish, that no one would believe them if you told them and just assume you were over exaggerating.

For example here are some key points from that point onward.

So honestly it might be good to get familiar with them, because if the comcast TWC deal does in fact get approved, in all likelihood comcast will have to sell off many of their existing licensed markets to other providers in order to dodge anti trust. If comcast wants to shed anything in West Virgina, Suddenlink is in all likely going to be the first one they sell off the market to given suddenlinks already dominant position across the rest of the state, along with similar technology, existing infrastructure and existing resources in proximity.

______________________

Now so this isnt a complete derail, Suddenlink is a perfect example of the anti consumer behavior that rationalized the need for something to be done. The proposal was NOT an acceptable solution to the existing problem, but that is something it was at least attempting to address.

Sarge034:

I wasn't saying it was. I specifically stated that I hate it when proposals are not released for public viewing before a vote. I said nothing about stalling tactics, as I would remind you both sides use them. However as this WAS PASSED INTO LAW, there are no edits to wait for. It's a done deal and now we have to wait to read what the rules actually are.

Actually, edits was the technical term that used in the article but in simpler terms, it means for it to be finalized to be published to the public, the 2 republicans have to submit their dissents and so far, they refuse to do so. So until they get tired of protesting by not writing their dissenting opinions, we won't see that bill. So techdirt said it could take a few weeks. I'm in agreement with you about it being against the principle of transparency to hold a vote on something the public cannot see.

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