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Conservatives push back on Net Neutrality

Conservatives push back on Net Neutrality

“The Internet does not need the federal government’s ‘help.'”

Conservative advocacy organizations are using their resources to put muscle behind the growing anti-internet regulation movement.

Those on the other side of the issue, who advocate for “Net Neutrality,” want to use Title II of the Communications Act as a way of reclassifying broadband internet providers as “utilities.” If this reclassification takes place, regulation advocates will be able to enact stricter rules regarding how providers allocate their resources.

Conservatives at advocacy groups like American Commitment and Tech Freedom aren’t ready to let go of a truly free internet without a fight, though. They’ve launched new landing pages for the cause, and Don’t Break the Net, respectively, providing a way for Americans to add their voices to the hundreds of thousands who have already responded to the FCC’s comment period on Title II regulations.

From American Commitment:

“Everyone needs to get this story right: on our side are the vast majority of the American people who love the Internet the way it is — unregulated, supported by private investment in a free economy, competitive, and highly innovative. On the other side are radical left activists, who are seeking political control over the Internet,” said Phil Kerpen, president of American Commitment. “This exceptional outpouring of support for true Internet freedom is proof positive that the American people firmly oppose any federal regulation of the Internet.”

The wonks at Tech Freedom have provided a succinct debunking of advocates’ arguments for Title II regulation:

Title II would crush broadband investment, and it won’t even ban the practices, like fast lanes, that its advocates worry about. It would hurt startups by saddling them with excessive regulation, and it would protect big broadband companies from new competitors, leaving consumers with even fewer choices. Title II would also hurt the underserved by slowing deployment in minority and rural communities. And it would vastly increase the FCC’s powers over the Internet:

You can’t have “just a little Title II” any more than you can be “slightly pregnant.” The ensuing decades of litigation and political bickering would be a boon to lawyers, but not to anyone else.

Net Neutrality advocates claim that without new regulations, broadband companies will engage in anticompetitive behavior, such as “fast tracking” for payment. The problem with this argument is that we already have regulations that affect broadband companies; he FCC still has power under Section 706 of the Communications Act to enact regulations—including regulations that Net Neutrality advocates are trying to shoehorn in via Title II.

“Title II really is a polarizing distraction from what we should actually be focusing on which is a simple, clear solution on net neutrality and making completion easier across the board,” said TechFreedom President Berin Szoka in a call with bloggers last week.

The comment period on the new proposed regulations closes at midnight.


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Kiss the internet as we know it goodbye. It’s too big, too critical, to leave to private sector control. They will find a way, sooner or later.

    LOL Yup, and it got to be too big and too critical, by careful shepherding by the government HAHAHAHAHAHA … NOT!

    So you’re okay with letting companies like Google decide what content you can or can’t see? how about cable companies throttling video streaming services into uselessness because they don’t want competition? Because that’s where it’s headed without some sort of regulation.

      RickCaird in reply to Sian. | September 17, 2014 at 3:12 pm

      That is an incredibly silly claim. There are Internet content providers out the wahzoo. The idea that not having net neutrality will drive them away is insane.

      What is insane is thinking putting the government in control will not encourage the Google’s of the Internet not to use government regulation and crony capitalism to further their agendas.

        There’s lots of providers, but they all use fiber run by just a few major companies, who often have regional monopolies and who are already shaping the content they allow through. Ask Netflix how much they have to pay to bribe Comcast, Verizon, Cox and Time Warner to not throttle their content.

        Self-regulation is great when it works. I’m not sure it’s working here. What’s the answer? I don’t really know.

MouseTheLuckyDog | September 15, 2014 at 9:57 pm

Are you insane?

Let me sum up the whole thing.

1. We invented the whole thing!
2. For a long time we were the country leading in internet connectivity.
3. Around 2000 we created a bunch of new regulations, created a bunch of new tax breaks. The effect of these changes are that now “big telco” controls the internet.
4. As of now, we are 31st in the world in internet connectivity.

Guess what, looks like giving the telco’s. One of the biggest being Ma Bell, isn’t working. Monopolies tend to damage a free market as much as government intervention.

The basic premise of net neutrality is simple: someone presents a packet to be transferred to the internet infrastructure with “delivery information”, net neutrality says that the deliverer delivers it regardless of what it is.

About fifteen years ago, net neutrality was the way the internet worked. Then Comcast decided to interfere with some traffic. That is what started the whole debate. The internet has gotten along fine with net neutrality, so why change it?

If the don’t stop f’ing around, some smarta$$ is going to create a second internet based on satellites and no wires anywhere.

The instant there’s a choice, it’s over for govt excessive groping. We have private launch capabilities now – one of the plus consequences of NASA getting put to slow death.

What the telecomm companies are doing right now is technically against the law (civil). They are in breach of contract with their consumers, particularly comcast who has been caught red-handed. However, no one is willing to call them on it.

They are not fast tacking service, they are like highwayman who extort businesses by holding their connections hostage, even though their service has already been contractually need paid for by the consumer. This is like sending a package via UPS and when they show up the at the door of the reciepent, they hold onto for a while unless they get an extra payment when they have already been paid. The reason why streaming services are getting hit by this is because they compete directly with the cable companies main revenue stream tv. It’s just freaking crazy. Why do we need to reclassify this as a utility, this is straight up extortion and racketeering. I will not entirely defend Netflix in this matter, because they demand free space at the ISP’s data center, access that is rightfully sold at a premium, but blocking netflix but cutting it’s bandwidth and jumping latency is ridiculous

This is actually a case where there is a difference between being a Conservative and being a Constitutionalist. Unlike most of the illegal things the government does, this is bona-fide interstate commerce. So unless you believe interstate commerce refers literally to the states themselves (anyone got sources one way or another?), there should be no Constitutional objection.

On the other hand, until we get a press again, I don’t want let the federal government control anything, not as long as there’s one law for the Left and one for the Right.

(There do seem to be decent arguments on both sides, and I really don’t know enough to judge between them.)