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Tag: FCC

We’ve Done This Before: A Net Neutrality Solution

As I’ve written before, the FCC’s claim that rolling back Net Neutrality will result in more competition (which presumably will be better for consumers) is flawed because of the cost of the last mile. What that means, in summary, is that over the last 30 years various cable and telecom companies have bared the cost of laying all the cable/wire necessary to bring internet service to most of the homes and businesses in US cities. They did this because city governments were more than willing to trade the enormous cost of creating a citywide network for the provider having (in most cases) an effective monopoly on providing internet access.

This isn’t the first time a service or utility has evolved in this manner in the United States. The railroads, the telegraph and later telephone service were all networks that were developed in much the same way.

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The Last Mile: Why Net Neutrality is a Must

During the Obama administration, internet service providers (ISPs) were reclassified as Telecommunication Service Providers.  This meant that they would be treated like phone companies, as common carriers with all the regulation that implies. Prior to this they were classified as Information Providers which clearly made no sense since ISPs provide the network, not the actual content. Most importantly, Net Neutrality prevents ISPs from providing paid fast lanes which would allow companies to pay ISPs to make traffic to their site faster than traffic to other sites.

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