Do you buy books online, use Google, or download to an Ipod? These activities will be hurt if Congress passes a radical law that gives giant corporations more control over the Internet.

Internet providers like AT&T and Verizon are lobbying Congress hard to gut Network Neutrality, the Internet's First Amendment. Net Neutrality prevents AT&T from choosing which websites open most easily for you based on which site pays AT&T more. doesn't have to outbid Barnes & Noble for the right to work more properly on your computer.

Politicians don't think we are paying attention to this issue. Many of them take campaign checks from big telecom companies and are on the verge of selling out to people like AT&T's CEO, who openly says, "The internet can't be free."

The free and open Internet is under seige--can you sign this petition letting your member of Congress know you support preserving Network Neutrality? Click here:

A list of all the ways you might be affected by Net Neutrality is located on the bottom of this link:

Nuri Hodges

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moveon is an ultraleft organisation that would have the government install active censorship of your internet activity not dissimilar to what the government of countries like Cuba and North Korea do.

That, combined with the communist, anti-business, ranting tone of your post says enough about the validity of it.

I think it doesn't really matter, whether it is the right or the left. Either way you look at it, the net neutrality is in jeopardy.

Personally, I look at it like this-- you're already paying for your Internet connection. Why should there be anything else to be concerned with after that? If the ISPs don't feel like they're getting a fair shake out of their agreements with certain websites, they need to renegotiate their deals with the website.

Bottom line: The "Net" as we know it has no rights, and there isn't any First Amendment, per se. The people providing the physical lines can do whatever the heck they want with the connection media, and what they charge with it.

Is it right? No. I don't think so. I think everyone has paid for their Internet connection already, and all of the Tier 1 ISPs have made agreements on how to pass the traffic. But, are they within their right to do it? Sure, I believe they are. It's their ball, and they can do what they want with it, be it take it home, let everyone use it for free, or charge whatever they feel like for the service.

...But one of the benefits of a capitalist society is that if you don't like your current provider, you can change. There will be ISPs that don't agree with doing this, and as such, they won't participate in the program. If you vote with your dollars, then you'll get your message across.

This is also something that has been reported on by NPR. Call 'em ultraleft if you want, but you'll be wrong.

The arguments posed by the telecomms are rather flimsy, in my view. And given the lack of knowledge/deliberate misunderstanding that has been displayed by the house and senate over technology issues, does have a point.

There is no guarantee that changing the backbone won't lead to extortion and strangling of internet start-ups.

What if Daniweb ran really slow, because Dani wasn't able to pay several thousand a month for access to a high-bandwidth connection?

The telecomms are being greedy, IMO. They are arguing, in part, that this change will let new businesses deliver streaming video without worry about ever seeing a slowdown. One specific hypothetical mentioned was "What if there was a wedding that the couple wanted to show to a grandmother in a nursing home? Wouldn't it be nice if there was a way to guarantee that Grandma would be able to see it in real-time?"

Frankly, it's bunk. You could get similar advantages by improving the network.
The funny thing is, if you have an industry that can afford a lobbyist, like the telecommunications industry can, why do you need to use the lobbyist to promote a law that will directly increase your profits? Answer: Greed.

Internet neutrality is an important issue, I think. The reason for changing it are probably rooted in filesharing and the sudden popularity of sites like youtube. If they can limit access to their high-bandwidth services, they can lock down businesses who don't pay through the nose. Sounds decidely like strongarm tactics/extortion to me.
Also: Even though the US is the 'home' of the internet, what about international ISPs? Will they have to pay more as well?
Would that cut down on the amount of international customers?

Well said Alex. We're not a communist society in which Big Brother determines by decree what we can think and do.
Giving the government ever more and more power over the activities of people and companies brings that scenario ever closer though.

It also opens up a massive can of worms. It would allow for people to sue ISPs if they think their websites aren't given enough bandwidth, whether it's true or not.
Especially in a littigationhappy society like the current USA that's a major concern.

Especially in a littigationhappy society like the current USA that's a major concern.

You'd be surprised how seriously this threat is taken. Most large companies, even if they've done nothing wrong, have entire divisions of people devoted to settling lawsuits, be it a small-claims suit, or a class-action one.

People will sue over this. I say go for them-- teach the greedy telcos a lesson. Believe it or not, companies do care about their public image, and will really take strides to avoid that type of bad PR.

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