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Thread: President Obama Urges FCC to take Strongest Measure Possible to Protect Net Neutrality

  1. #1
    What's Jailbreak? Akshay Masand's Avatar
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    Default President Obama Urges FCC to take Strongest Measure Possible to Protect Net Neutrality


    In a recent move that is likely to see support from various content providers such as Apple, Netflix and others, President Barack Obama publicly called on the FCC to take on the strongest measure possible when it comes to protecting net neutrality. Obama’s plan calls on the FCC to reclassify broadband services under Title II of the Telecommunications Act, which classifies Internet connections as a basic utility such as water or electricity. This would essentially prevent Internet service providers from deciding how much customers’ connections are used.

    It’s been quite some time but many advocates have called on the US government and others to implement laws preventing ISPs from creating a “tiered” Internet ecosystem. Observers on the other hand have expressed concern that ISPs could begin charging users to access certain websites or favoring one online service over another with faster connection speeds. An ISP could potentially offer faster access to a favored service than content from Apple’s iTunes for example. Alternatively it could block it all together and charge people to access it.

    Obama had the following to say regarding his stance:

    Whether you use a computer, phone or tablet, Internet providers have a legal obligation not to block or limit your access to a website. Cable companies can't decide which online stores you can shop at, or which streaming services you can use, and they can't let any company pay for priority over its competitors.
    As of right now, the Obama administration is pushing what it calls four “commonsense steps” as the basis for its net neutrality initiative:

    1. No blocking: ISPs cannot be permitted to block access to legal content.
    2. No throttling: ISPs cannot intentionally slow down some content or speed up others.
    3. Increased transparency: Ensure that some sites are not getting special treatment in places other than the "last mile" of connection between ISPs and consumers. If necessary, the FCC could apply net neutrality rules to points of interconnection between the ISP and the rest of the Internet.
    4. No paid prioritization: Prevent ISPs from cutting deals with content providers for faster access. Obama has asked the FCC to explicitly ban any such restrictions.
    For those of you who didn’t already know, the FCC is an independent organization but the fact that the president of the US is urging the matter will likely give the issue a higher priority.

    Those of you interested in watching President Obama's message can do so below:



    Although Apple has supported net neutrality, many of its partners have not. Verizon Wireless for example was widely criticized previously after it claimed that data throttling was a “widely accepted” practice. We’ll have to see what comes of the whole issue but the fact that the Obama administration is in favor of net neutrality is good news for consumers all over the US.

    Source: The White House (YouTube)

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand

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    Livin' the SPIDEY Life SpiderManAPV's Avatar
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    Wow... I agree with his stand on something.

    ......beware......
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  3. #3
    Verizon want to placate us by saying data throttling has been a “widely accepted” practice. I love that argument! :-) So logically, we should also learn to embrace and accept garroting, the persecution of ethnic minorities, slavery, child abuse by Catholic priests and many forms of fanatical terrorism.

  4. #4
    Legislation such as this would not have prevented the connectivity issues that customers of Netflix and Comcast experienced before both companies came to a "peering" agreement in which money changed hands. In fact, things could digress back to that if such peering agreements were deemed unlawful. Comcast wasn't blocking or throttling Netflix, they just had no incentive to prioritize the traffic, which led to slowdowns and bottlenecks.

    While I commend and agree with the President's recommendation, it will not be a fix-all for everyone's internet woes.

    Mark O.

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    What's Jailbreak? Ginsu's Avatar
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    I'd be excited....if this were anything more than lip service.

    He's not making anything happen here. If he wanted to actually DO something, he'd be supporting a bill, or writing an executive order.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by csglinux View Post
    Verizon want to placate us by saying data throttling has been a “widely accepted” practice. I love that argument! :-) So logically, we should also learn to embrace and accept garroting, the persecution of ethnic minorities, slavery, child abuse by Catholic priests and many forms of fanatical terrorism.

    While I don't support the practice... Throttling has in fact been widely used, I don't know about accepted.. but I worked for an ISP back in the late 90s and early 2000's .. that was a common practice.. they throttled the heaviest users and over-sold resources .. in otherwords, say we had 400 dialup lines, we would sell dialup accounts to 600 or so people before ordering more lines .. it was just because it was unlikely that we would have 400 lines tied up at once... unlikely but it happened sometimes.. we even offered a no busy signal guarantee

    All of this is common practice, and that's why internet providers want this kind of thing.. they oversell their resources.. they purchase enough bandwidth from their upstream provider to handle probably 60-70% of their customer base with the hope that not everyone will be slamming them at once.. if net neutrality dies they can prioritize traffic and continue to oversell, and perhaps oversell even more to increase profit... net neutrality going through however forces them to oversell less, cutting into their profits..

    I fully support net neutrality.. I just figured I'd explain this from the perspective of someone who's worked on the inside when it comes to internet providers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ginsu View Post
    I'd be excited....if this were anything more than lip service.

    He's not making anything happen here. If he wanted to actually DO something, he'd be supporting a bill, or writing an executive order.
    The FCC is an independent organization.. I don't think an executive order would do much good... he can make an executive order to urge them to do something, but he couldn't force them..

    He could support a bill, but the democrats don't have much power now ... the republicans would shoot it down just to spite him, besides.. I believe the republicans generally don't support net neutrality anyway.. for the rest of his term, Obama will be pretty much a lame duck president now that republicans have the senate.. he doesn't fit the official definition, but it may as well be that way.. there's no way he will get cooperation now.

    It's all on the FCC to make this decision, one can only hope they listened ...
    Last edited by oneduality; 2014-11-11 at 03:28 PM.

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    Livin' the SPIDEY Life SpiderManAPV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oneduality View Post
    He could support a bill, but the democrats don't have much power now ... the republicans would shoot it down just to spite him, besides.. I believe the republicans generally don't support net neutrality anyway.. for the rest of his term, Obama will be pretty much a lame duck president now that republicans have the senate.. he doesn't fit the official definition, but it may as well be that way.. there's no way he will get cooperation now.
    I'm in the deep south here and virtually everyone wants net neutrality. Obviously that isn't all republicans, but at least down here the vast majority are for it.

    ......beware......
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by musicelect View Post
    Comcast wasn't blocking or throttling Netflix...
    Of course not! They would never! Neither would Verizon or AT&T. They were simply "managing their network resources" as has become "commonly-accepted practice". But it's curious how the need to "manage networks" instantly goes away once the service provider receives a large pile of cash.

    These ISPs at least need to be transparent. If I know that certain services are going to be throttled, I can make a decision before signing up. If I later discover I have to use a VPN to get useable transfer speeds, somebody has been a little disingenuous...
    Last edited by csglinux; 2014-11-11 at 07:24 PM.

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