Net Neutrality

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A Perfect Storm: Net Neutrality Debate Poised to Spread Its Wings Down Under

To date, proponents of a neutral internet have had relatively scant reason to raise their voices beyond anything more than a murmur in Australia. While the FCC's Open Internet Order of 2015 has been hailed as a significant win for consumers in the US, and the wording of proposed legislation to institute ex-ante regulation of service providers is soon to be considered in the EU, Aussies have been quarantined from anything other than the fringes of the Net Neutrality debate. more»

Did Google's Infrastructure Coup Work?

There is no doubt that the Google fibre rollout in Kansas City has been a success. Take-up rates are as high as 75%. However, when it was first announced in 2010, we stated that the real reason behind Google's entry into this market was to prove that FttH can be cost-effective and can generate a profitable return -- in the hope that the sluggish telcos would become more active in the rollout of FttH networks. Yet, Google is proving that this indeed can be done, the telcos remain sluggish in deploying FttH. more»

FCC Open Internet Rules

At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Tom Wheele, the FCC Chairman, gave a range of spirited responses to a grilling from the Director of the GSMA, Anne Bouverot. She was following the line of the telcos and questioned if the FCC intervention would stifle growth and investments in the market; however she had problems reconciling her position with the fact that, despite these regulatory changes, the American industry was still prepared to invest a whopping $45 billion in new spectrum. more»

Comcast Streaming of NBC Broadcast Content

NBC soon will join the ranks of content providers offering a streaming option to cord cutters and mobile consumers. This future service warrants special attention, because two corporate affiliates within the Comcast family will participate in many parts of the United States: Comcast as the last mile, "retail" ISP and Comcast the parent of NBC-Universal. Operating as an ISP, Comcast has at least three pricing/interconnection options, each of which raise questions relating to network neutrality... more»

Could Net Neutrality be to Investments in the Internet What AT&T's Regulation was to Bell Labs?

As the FCC moves forward with its plans to regulate the internet in the U.S., it's worth taking a look at what's happened when the government has regulated other innovative industries. As a facilitator of innovation, I've always been fascinated with the history of Bell Labs. Bell Labs was once thought of as the source of most modern innovations... The work done at Bell Labs built the foundation for modern invention leading to phones, space exploration, the internet, music distribution, cell phones, radio and television and more. more»

Dictators Could Rule the Internet: A Response to Robert McDowell and Gordon Goldstein

The Obama administration's proposals to regulate the Internet according to common carrier rules have set off a storm of opposition from carrier interests, whose scale and reach have been impressive. The arguments they muster are fatuous and deceitful. The Internet is not what the carriers own or have created; the Internet is what they seek to extract money from. "Regulating the Internet" is not the issue; regulating the carriers is. more»

Packet Loss: How the Internet Enforces Speed Limits

There's been a lot of controversy over the FCC's new Network Neutrality rules. Apart from the really big issues -- should there be such rules at all? Is reclassification the right way to accomplish it? -- one particular point has caught the eye of network engineers everywhere: the statement that packet loss should be published as a performance metric, with the consequent implication that ISPs should strive to achieve as low a value as possible. more»

What's Certain About the Regulatory Uncertainty Debate

Incumbent carriers, such as AT&T, Comcast and Verizon, have made countless "curtains for the Free World" assertions in the Network Neutrality debate. They claim that if the FCC reclassifies as common carriage aspects of Internet access, it will create "regulatory uncertainty" and "disincentive investment." Not one of the countless sponsored researchers funded by incumbents has provided a shred of empirical evidence to support these assertions. more»

Decision Time for the Open Internet

On February 26 of this year the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) of the United States will vote on a proposed new ruling on the issue of "Network Neutrality" in the United States, bringing into force a new round of measures that are intended to prevent certain access providers from deliberately differentiating service responses on the carriage services that they provide. more»

Are the TISA Trade Talks a Threat to Net Neutrality, Data Protection, or Privacy?

On December 17th a US proposal for online commerce in a major trade negotiation, the Trade in Services Agreement ("TISA") leaked. A flurry of press releases and opinion pieces claim that TISA is a threat to the Internet. The headlines are lurid: "TISA leak: EU Data Protection and Net Neutrality Threatened" and "Leaked TISA text exposes US threat to privacy, civil rights"... Because I've spent years in Geneva regularly meeting with and advising negotiators on the networked economy I have a very different perspective. more»

Content - The Next Regulatory War Zone

At the 2014 TelSoc Charles Todd Oration the former Chair of the ACCC, Graeme Samuel, warned against the looming content monopoly... "There is a constant risk that the exclusive tie-up of rights to content for new and emerging markets will allow the right holders to shut out competition across a wide range of services delivered over new networks." He didn't think that the current telcos have the right expertise to enter the content market... more»

The EFF and Hanlon's Razor

The EFF has just posted a shallower than usual deeplink alleging an "email encryption downgrade attack" by ISPs intent on eavesdropping on their customers. They, along with VPN provider Golden Frog, have additionally complained to the FCC reporting this. Here, they've just noticed something that's common across several hotel / airport wifi networks... more»

Zero-Rating and the Creation of Digital Castes

During the last Internet Governance Forum in Istanbul, a day was devoted to Net Neutrality with three panels devoted to the subject. The first was exactly about Zero-Rating: Net Neutrality, Zero-Rating & Development: What's the Data? the second was Network Neutrality: a Roadmap for Infrastructure Enhancement and last, the main session Network Neutrality: Towards a Common Understanding of a Complex Issue and Zero-rating was discussed on all three panels. more»

Taking It to the Streets

It is interesting to see telecommunications policy issues being covered by the general media. Of course, we expect to see coverage of communications issues in the business press. The sector is a large employer, makes massive investments in infrastructure and virtually every citizen buys communications products and services every month. Still, covering the sector in the business section is different from seeing coverage move to the front page or the general editorial pages. more»

Beyond Neutrality - Enabling a World of Connected Things

The growing interest in the "Internet of Things" is forcing us to think beyond the web to a much larger world of connected devices. We can tolerate the many barriers to connectivity because we expect that someone can provide the necessary credentials to log in to the providers' services and to adjust Wi-Fi access keys whenever the access point changes or simply to click "agree" at a hotspot. This doesn't work for "things" which can't recognize a sign-on or "agree screen". more»

News Briefs

The FCC Approves Net Neutrality Rules

FCC Chairman: It's Time to Settle Net Neutrality Questions

FCC Expected to Propose Regulation of Internet as Utility

Obama Urges FCC to Treat the Internet As a Utility

FCC Receives 3.7 Million Comments on Net Neutrality

Major Web Companies Reiterate Opposition to Paying ISPs for Fast Lane Access

Broadband Providers Should Not Treat All Bits the Same, Says Cisco

Group Launches Coalition for Local Internet Choice

Apple Rumored Building Its Own CDN, Negotiating Paid Interconnect Deals With ISPs

NY Tech Companies Visit FCC to Express Net Neutrality Concerns

Mozilla Offers Proposal for Solving Net Neutrality Problem

Internet Civil Rights Was Signed Into Law by Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff

European Parliament Votes to Drop Mobile Phone Roaming Fees While Abroad

FCC Not Backing Down from Net Neutrality, Plans to Set New Rules

U.S. Court Strikes Down FCC's Net Neutrality Rules

Verizon and the FCC Clash Over Net Neutrality Laws

Over 80 European Organizations Demand Protection for Net Neutrality

European ISPs Lobby ITU for Rights to Charge More for Better Services

Why SOPA Defender Joins Internet Society as Regional Director

Netherlands First European Nation to Adopt Net Neutrality

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