Friday, February 03, 2006

From Tiered Internets to No Internets

Yesterday Techdirt posted about the bandwidth problems Telcos are sighting in the case to charge for "premium" access to thier lines.

From the post:

"Business Week is pointing out one very important fact. The real bandwidth hogs are the telcos themselves. How come Verizon doesn't have enough bandwidth to handle all that internet traffic? Turns out that it's reserving 80% of the bandwidth for its own TV efforts. I don't think that's what the government had in mind when it made all those concessions to get the telcos to offer fiber.

So, basically what's happening here is the telcos didn't think far enough ahead to build new networks that can actually accommodate both the internet and their television pipe dreams... so they're just shoving the internet part aside. That's not a problem with all those popular web services, it's a problem for the telcos and their poor network planning and design."

And now this from The Nation: "The End of the Internet?"

"The nation's largest telephone and cable companies are crafting an alarming set of strategies that would transform the free, open and nondiscriminatory Internet of today to a privately run and branded service that would charge a fee for virtually everything we do online."

They link to a series of white papers cached at The Center for Digital Democracy.

"Under the plans they are considering, all of us--from content providers to individual users--would pay more to surf online, stream videos or even send e-mail. Industry planners are mulling new subscription plans that would further limit the online experience, establishing "platinum," "gold" and "silver" levels of Internet access that would set limits on the number of downloads, media streams or even e-mail messages that could be sent or received.

The future of the online media in the United States will ultimately depend on whether the Bells and cable companies are allowed to determine the country's "digital destiny." So before there are any policy decisions, a national debate should begin about how the Internet should serve the public. We must insure that phone and cable companies operate their Internet services in the public interest--as stewards for a vital medium for free expression."



Post a Comment

<< Home