Journal: News & Comment

Friday, June 30, 2006
# 1:35:00 PM:

Live notes: Werner Vogels of Amazon at Gnomedex

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Talking about net neutrality/network discrimination at . Starting with a 5-minute lecture, then we'll talk about it. He has strong opinions, and thinks "network discrimination" is a good term.

  • Why you should be scared: phone and cable companies will fundamentally alter the Internet, and they've announced plans openly to do so.
  • They have the ability and permission to do it.
  • Until last year, U.S. Internet content delivery was regulated.
  • In reality, there is little or no choice of broadband access.
  • Only 1% have more than two choices (cable or DSL).
  • They're working together to rip you off.
  • As Telus in Canada demonstrated, the companies will restrict content they don't like.
  • Closed fast lane vs. open slow lane.
  • Also a paid police escort in the slow lane.
  • There is no incentive for the providers to do this in a fair way.
  • The only way to accomplish it is to deteriorate service for others who have not paid.
  • Preferential local on-ramps. High quality inserted at the last mile, for which the content provider must pay.
  • How can end users be safeguarded for this?
  • Freedom to access content, use applications, attach personal devices, obtain service plan information, obtain guaranteed basic Internet service.
  • Defeated in the Commerce Committee.
  • There is no network neutrality now, what we have is network discrimination.
  • Paying money is good, you need to pay for it.
  • That's not what we're afraid of—Amazon and Google et. al. wouldn't exist if net discrimination were in place a decade ago.
  • Akamai will give the same deal to anyone who can pay. What the cable and telcos want is to provide preferential access to the content providers that they are associated with.


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