Total Pageviews

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Friday, June 29, 2018

Quartz - Tirole on how to regulate platforms

But at the platform level, competition confronts the existence of large returns to scale and/or network externalities, leading to natural monopoly situations and a winner-take-all scenario. Network externalities can be direct: I am on Facebook or Twitter because you also are; I will use Uber or Lyft if many drivers do so. Network externalities can also be indirect: We may not care directly about the presence of other users on the platform, but that presence leads to improved services, as in the case of many apps or delivery services. For example, I want to use Google’s search engine or Waze if you also use them, as the quality of predictions improves with the number of users.
Natural monopoly situations lead to widespread market power, and a concomitant willingness to lose money for a long time to “buy” the prospect of a future monopoly position—think of Amazon or Uber.
https://qz.com/1310266/nobel-winning-economist-jean-tirole-on-how-to-regulate-tech-monopolies/ 

Friday, June 22, 2018

Petty's Grievances: The 5G Hopes & Fears of Vodafone UK's CTO | Light Reading

Petty's Grievances: The 5G Hopes & Fears of Vodafone UK's CTO | Light Reading: "What now looks certain is that Vodafone -- along with many other European operators -- will use 5G first as a bigger pipe in areas where mobile data is gushing like an oil blowout. That has driven Vodafone toward the "non-standalone" variant of 5G, which combines the 5G New Radio (NR) standardized in late 2017 with an existing 4G network, to support mobile broadband services in urban hotspots. This makes commercial sense because 5G is about four times as "spectrally efficient" as 4G, according to Petty, and therefore a less costly option.

Lowering operating expenses may be the only way to improve margins, in this mobile broadband scenario, as Vodafone does not expect consumer spending to rise with the introduction of 5G." 'via Blog this'

Monday, June 18, 2018

What if autonomous vehicles actually make us more dependent on cars?

What if autonomous vehicles actually make us more dependent on cars?: "Autonomous vehicles may be able to park themselves away from urban centres, but they still need to be parked – and make return journeys to collect passengers, adding empty cars to the roads and contributing to congestion and air pollution.

 And there are lots of unanswered questions about how urban systems will work with the introduction of self-driving vehicles. For example, it’s not clear how self-driving vehicles will co-exist with pedestrians and cyclists. If they are programmed to stop whenever a pedestrian or cyclist gets in their way, there will be pressure to further separate vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists.

The vision of future cities in the 2050s may then start to look more and more like the vision of the 1950s, with futuristic new models dominating the foreground, while human activities such as walking and cycling are relegated to concrete overpasses and gloomy subways." 'via Blog this'

Zero Rating, Net Neutrality, and the Chilean Regulation: Marco Correa PĂ©rez (Wikimedia)

"The Chilean net neutrality regulation is one of the first national legislative efforts to recognize the principle of preventing
arbitrary discrimination of Internet traffic. One of the main challenges in interpreting and implementing this law within
Chile has been the regular practice of zero-rating, in which certain telecommunications providers prioritize certain
applications through free data. Although this practice was initially characterized as a breach of net neutrality by
the regulatory body (the Subsecretariat of Telecommunications (Subtel)), zero-rating is still practiced by mobile
telephone companies as part of their subscription offers.

This white paper summarizes the research and findings of
a larger academic project that seeks to analyze both the legal status of zero-rating in Chile and the evolution of the
Subtel criteria, which has led to the proliferation of this practice in the country" 'via Blog this'

Monday, May 21, 2018

Own initiative investigation into Hutchinson 3G UK Limited (Three)’s compliance with the net neutrality and roaming regulations - Ofcom

Own initiative investigation into Hutchinson 3G UK Limited (Three)’s compliance with the net neutrality and roaming regulations - Ofcom: "Update note 8 May 2018

 We have revised the scope of this investigation to include the Roaming Regulation and the related CIR in addition to the EU Open Internet Access Regulation. The investigation will examine Three’s practices of:

 Traffic management practices such as ‘throttling’ or intentionally slowing down particular categories of traffic (e.g. video traffic, Peer-to-Peer and Virtual Private Network traffic) when customers are roaming;

Restricting tethering – the practice of using one device to connect another one to the internet – on certain plans offered by Three, including when customers are roaming;

and
Imposing restrictions on the devices in which a SIM can be used – e.g. where a SIM purchased for a mobile phone cannot be used in a tablet.

We are aiming to complete our evidence gathering phase in this investigation by July 2018." 'via Blog this'

Digital Economy Act 2017 s.103 - Code of Practice for social media platforms

Digital Economy Act 2017: "103 Code of practice for providers of online social media platforms

(1)The Secretary of State must issue a code of practice giving guidance to persons who provide online social media platforms for use by persons in the United Kingdom (“social media providers”).

(2)The guidance to be given is guidance about action it may be appropriate for providers to take against the use of the platforms they provide for conduct to which subsection (3) applies." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Wetmachine » Yes, the 2017 Net Neutrality Repeal Is A “Rule” Under the CRA.

Wetmachine » Tales of the Sausage Factory » Yes, the 2017 Net Neutrality Repeal Is A “Rule” Under the CRA.: "I agree it is an uphill fight to get the CRA passed and signed by President Trump. But hey, it was always supposed to be impossible to get actual net neutrality rules the court would sustain, and it was always supposed to be impossible to get broadband declared Title II. Then it was supposed to be impossible for the Title II decision to survive judicial review.

As I often say, if I limited my advocacy to what was “possible” I’d never get anything done. But if it actually does pass, and get signed, then the 2017 Net Neutrality Repeal Order goes bye-bye like a bad dream." 'via Blog this'

Wetmachine » Tales of the Sausage Factory » UPDATE: Why Tech Freedom Are Totally Wrong About The CRA.

Wetmachine » Tales of the Sausage Factory » UPDATE: Why Tech Freedom Are Totally Wrong About The CRA.: "Last week, I wrote this blog post addressing the argument that the Markey resolution under the Congressional Review Act would not actually restore the 2015 net neutrality rules. Since then, my opposite numbers at Tech Freedom have put together this 8-page letter saying otherwise. To save myself the trouble of repeating myself, I will update my previous blog post to explain why Tech Freedom specifically is utterly and completely wrong.

 As I explained last time, the CRA defines a “rule” as meaning anything defined as a “rule” by 5 U.S.C. 551(4) (excluding agency actions relating to personnel or applying only to a single company, like a tariff filing). Or, in other words, anything generally subject to the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), regardless of what you call it, counts as a “rule” for CRA purposes." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Net Neutrality and Internet Regulation: What Needs to Change: Nina Cummins

Net Neutrality and Internet Regulation: What Needs to Change: "With net neutrality being a hot topic, what do you expect to occur in the next year regarding the debate into this area?

 I see the next year being characterised by national telecoms regulators and businesses each pushing to gain a better understanding of how individual provisions in Regulation 2015/2012 (sic: 2021) (the “EU Net Neutrality Regulation“) and the associated BEREC Net Neutrality Guidelines apply to specific business proposals and new offers they are seeking to launch.

Despite the intense debates, many operators and consumers have not experienced the ‘big bang’ effect some predicted. However, many businesses are still unclear about where parameters lie under the new neutrality rules especially with regards to new types of services or offers they are seeking to launch.

In some cases, consumers are missing out, as operators don’t have sufficient regulatory certainty as to how new offers will be received by the relevant regulators and don’t want to become the first test case in the area.

 Some of these uncertainties may be resolved through the recent consultation launched by BEREC (the body of European telecoms regulators)." 'via Blog this'

BEREC’s net neutrality process is a black box - Strand

BEREC’s net neutrality process is a black box: "Strand Consult finds BEREC’s views of “stakeholders” highly suspect, as the criteria for their selection is not public. More to the point, Strand Consult’s research uncovered that 6 of 14 BEREC’s official “stakeholders” had Google funding, including 3 of the 4 civil society organizations had funding from Google. The law allows the rejection of a freedom of information request to be overridden when it is in the public interest.

 Of BEREC’s 43 net neutrality meetings that Strand Consult could identify during the period, 3 were public and 40 were secret. Of the 40 secret meetings, Strand Consult could obtain some minimal amount of information for 30 meeting. Information for the other 10 secret meetings was flatly denied on the basis that is wished to protect the identities of the participants and that disclosure would undermine BEREC’s decision-making process. This claim strikes at the heart of Strand Consult’s critique of BEREC over the years: it selects experts without providing transparent criteria; it makes decisions based on expert’s testimony without making the testimony public; and it claims net neutrality is vital and necessary without providing any academic evidence, cost-benefit analysis, or regulatory impact assessment."

I thought they were better than that.... 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Ajit Pai hasn’t finalized net neutrality repeal—here’s a theory on why | Ars Technica

Ajit Pai hasn’t finalized net neutrality repeal—here’s a theory on why | Ars Technica: "You may have seen reports in the past few days saying that the net neutrality repeal has been finalized. Those reports were incorrect, though perhaps understandably so given that this process is kind of confusing.

The FCC published its "Restoring Internet Freedom" repeal order in the Federal Register in February. The post-publication 60-day waiting period would have let the repeal take effect on April 23, if not for the FCC's decision to make the core changes contingent on OMB approval.

 The only change yesterday was "a non-substantive title change" that switched the title of the FCC rules from "Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet" to "Internet Freedom," a spokesperson for Pai told Ars.

 Feld says the FCC could have structured the repeal in a different way that would have allowed the net neutrality rules and the Title II classification of ISPs to be repealed before the OMB signs off on information collection requirements. In fact, the Obama-era FCC ensured that the core net neutrality rules took effect in June 2015 even though the OMB didn't approve information collection changes until December 2016—18 months later.

 Pai's FCC got around to submitting the information collection changes to the OMB on March 28. The OMB will stop accepting public comments on the changes after April 27, but we don't know when the OMB will issue a final decision." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, April 19, 2018

IoT News - UK NetNeutrality - Ofcom Investigates 3 & Vodafone, reports June

IoT News - UK Not So Neutral, Caps for Cash & Suite Graphics - YouTube: "UK regulator Ofcom has decided to open investigations into Three UK and Vodafone to assess compliance with net neutrality rules. They expect to publish an update on both investigations in June. Three UK is under examination for restricting tethering on certain plans and imposing restrictions on the kinds of devices in which a SIM can be used. Vodafone is being examined for traffic management practices such as slowing down particular categories of traffic and that of customers who are roaming or abroad." 'via Blog this'

Monday, April 02, 2018

Potential Warning Signs in the Colocation Market

Potential Warning Signs in the Colocation Market: "Content and cloud providers are driving the network market. When we examine core submarine cable routes worldwide—notably the Trans-Atlantic, Trans-Pacific, and Intra-Asia routes—content providers account for a majority of the used bandwidth, moreso than the aggregate internet demand on these routes.

 "We're talking about a couple of companies in particular—the Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Microsofts of the world," said Jon. "We also know that the same providers have been building out their own proprietary data centers at a very rapid rate."

According to Jon, in the last two years we've seen 46 percent growth in the number of sites that these operators are deploying, with Google showing a 75 percent increase in their overall number of sites worldwide." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Comcast supports ban on paid prioritization—with an exception | Ars Technica

Comcast supports ban on paid prioritization—with an exception | Ars Technica: "Comcast Senior Executive VP David Cohen, who is generally the public face in Comcast's dealings with government policymakers, spoke about paid prioritization at the Free State Foundation's Telecom Policy Conference on Tuesday. (Video available on C-SPAN's website; the segment begins at 2:20.)

"How about if we agree to a prohibition on paid prioritization and we have a limited exception created in some way for this concept of specialized services," Cohen said." 'via Blog this'

Friday, March 16, 2018

SB 822 Would Secure Net Neutrality for California | Center for Internet and Society

SB 822 Would Secure Net Neutrality for California | Center for Internet and Society: "Some state-level attempts to legislate have just copied the text of the FCC's 2015 net neutrality rules. But that's not sufficient. Some important protections were fleshed out in the text of the order. Senator Wiener's bill explicitly codifies these protections as well.

The bill is on firm legal ground.

While the FCC's 2017 Order explicitly bans states from adopting their own net neutrality laws, that preemption is invalid. According to case law, an agency that does not have the power to regulate does not have the power to preempt. That means the FCC can only prevent the states from adopting net neutrality protections if the FCC has authority to adopt net neutrality protections itself.


But by re-classifying ISPs as information services under Title I of the Communications Act and re-interpreting Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act as a mission statement rather than an independent grant of authority, the FCC has deliberately removed all of its sources of authority that would allow it to adopt net neutrality protections. The FCC's Order is explicit on this point." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Consultation: Regulation (EU) 2015/2120 and the BEREC Net Neutrality Guidelines

Consultation paper on the evaluation of the application of Regulation (EU) 2015/2120 and the BEREC Net Neutrality Guidelines: "Document number: BoR (18) 33
Document date: 08.03.2018
Date of registration: 14.03.2018
Document type: Public Consultations
Author: BEREC

In this paper BEREC invites stakeholders to participate in a public consultation on an evaluation of the application of the BEREC Net Neutrality Guidelines (the “Guidelines”) in the context of the Net Neutrality Regulation (the “Regulation”). The objective of this consultation is to gather information on how stakeholders have experienced the application of the Regulation, as provided for in the Guidelines, since April 30th 2016.

BEREC realizes the importance many in the public domain attach to expressing their position on the general subject of net neutrality.

Yet, in this consultation BEREC focuses on the actual experiences of stakeholders with the application of the current Regulation and Guidelines. It is noted that early 2019 the Regulation itself will be evaluated by the European Commission. In addition to the general aspects of the application of the Regulation and Guidelines, BEREC is especially interested in the experiences of stakeholders concerning impact of the Guidelines on the adoption of new technologies." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, March 08, 2018

Senator Introduces Fake Net Neutrality Bill Championed By ISPs Then Pretends He's Fighting Against Them - Motherboard

Senator Introduces Fake Net Neutrality Bill Championed By ISPs Then Pretends He's Fighting Against Them - Motherboard: "Understandably fearing that the FCC’s effort might not survive a court challenge by Mozilla, consumer groups, state attorney generals, and others, ISPs have a backup plan. They’ve convinced ISP-loyal lawmakers like Marsha Blackburn to support fake net neutrality legislation that could actually make the problem worse.

 Blackburn’s misleadingly-named Open Internet Preservation Act, introduced in the House last fall, bans behaviors that ISPs weren’t really interested in anyway, such as the outright blocking of certain websites or services. But it intentionally ignores trouble areas where anti-competitive ISP behavior is now actually occurring, such as usage caps, overage fees, zero rating, and the gaming of network interconnection points.

 Blackburn, a major recipient of ISP lobbying cash, claims her legislation would hold ISPs accountable, but the intention is more nefarious. The real goal of such bills is to pre-empt the tougher net neutrality rules now taking root across more than half the states in the nation." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

REVIEW: Network neutrality: From policy to law to regulation

Network neutrality: From policy to law to regulation, Christopher T. Marsden, Manchester University Press, Manchester, UK (2017), p. 304, Paperback, £24.99, ISBN: 9781526105486 - ScienceDirect: "The writing style of the author is readily accessible and exceptionally readable. This is important for a text to have an audience beyond academia. In particular, the description in Chapter 4 of the way in which the European Union, in its various forms, created ‘a messy compromise’ law was fascinating. This chapter provides a fabulous case study in European Union regulatory decision making.

This volume would sit well as a reference in either the law or regulation of the digital economy. However, its widest appeal is likely to be as a postgraduate text in either law or business. Its accessibility means that it should have a broader appeal as a text in areas such as politics or policy studies. It would also be valuable to practitioners in at least two areas.

The first area is competition law, where it would appeal to regulated industries, their advisors and associated policy makers. The volume's investigation into a flawed policy process provides valuable insights.

The second area is that of communications enterprises. The book will provide practitioners in this space with a basis to understand where network neutrality law and policy is likely move next." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, March 01, 2018

Ofcom's 2018 Code Offers Clarity on Home Broadband ISP Speeds - ISPreview UK

Ofcom's 2018 Code Offers Clarity on Home Broadband ISP Speeds - ISPreview UK: "One other gripe is the way that Ofcom’s changes to the MGALS rule could also be interpreted to mean that 10% of broadband lines are faulty. As the MD of AAISP, Adrian Kennard, said, “The problem is that if you are unfortunate enough to be in that bottom 10th percentile, and bear in mind that one in ten people will be, you may well have a service that is indeed doing the best it can and there is no fault whatsoever on the line that can be fixed by anyone” (example).

Otherwise the changes seem to be positive and any providers worried about the cost have at least dodged a bullet due to the regulator’s decision to keep the revised code “voluntary“.

As usual the underlying challenge is the problem of balancing consumer expectations with reality, which can be inflated by how some ISPs advertise their packages. The ASA’s separate move to adopt average speeds into advertising are partly designed to tackle this (here).

 Ofcom’s changes are an attempt to force a greater degree of honesty into the market, which in practice might struggle if they continue to insist that member ISPs must all carry out their own speedtests (easy for end-users, but not ISPs). Some ISPs suggest that it might have been better to encourage more providers to join the code than creating a huge barrier to entry via cost.

 Provisional List of UK ISPs Planning to Adopt the New Code

* Virgin Media
* BT
* Sky Broadband
* EE
* TalkTalk
* KCOM (Hull Area)
* XLN Telecom
* Plusnet
* Daisy

 Implementing these reforms will require providers to make major changes to their systems, develop new speed testing methods, and train staff. Providers have a maximum of 12 months to make these changes before the new requirements come into force for services purchased from 1st March 2019." 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Rupert Murdoch's Sky bid challenged by Comcast - BBC News

Rupert Murdoch's Sky bid challenged by Comcast - BBC News: "Fox's Sky bid has not been viewed favourably by the UK's competition authority, which in January provisionally found that it would not be in the public interest.

 The Competition and Markets Authority is concerned that if the deal went through, the Murdoch Family Trust would have too much influence over public opinion and the political agenda.

Last week, 21st Century Fox said it would keep Sky News running for at least 10 years, with a fully independent board for the channel, to try to make the proposed deal more attractive to regulators.

 The picture was made more complicated in December of last year when Walt Disney agreed to buy the bulk of 21st Century Fox's business, including its 39% Sky stake.

If that acquisition goes through, it could lessen the Murdoch family's UK influence. 


Mr Roberts said that Comcast was prepared to co-own Sky with either Fox or Disney, as long as Comcast held a majority stake." 'via Blog this'

Sunday, February 25, 2018

AT&T didn’t waste any time abandoning net neutrality – BGR

AT&T didn’t waste any time abandoning net neutrality – BGR: "As of right now, the only three services using AT&T’s sponsored data program are DirecTV, UVerse, and Fullscreen. By a huge coincidence, those are three video services owned by AT&T. “Now your plan includes sponsored data. This means, for example, that customers who have DirecTV or U-verse TV can now stream movies and shows … without it counting against their plan data,” AT&T told customers in a text message earlier today.

This flies directly in the face of a statement AT&T made just last year, when it was trying to persuade consumers that the FCC’s net neutrality repeal wouldn’t be the end of a free and open internet. “AT&T intends to operate its network the same way AT&T operates its network today: in an open and transparent manner. We will not block websites, we will not throttle or degrade internet traffic based on content, and we will not unfairly discriminate in our treatment of internet traffic,” executive Bob Quinn said at the time.

By any definition, offering paid fast lanes to companies constitutes “discriminating” against internet traffic. I’d say that only prioritizing traffic from AT&T-owned companies, or companies willing to pay up, constitutes unfair discrimination, but then again I’m not an AT&T lawyer." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, February 22, 2018

T-Mobile treats everyone equally unequally - EDRi

T-Mobile treats everyone equally unequally - EDRi: "On 8 February 2018, the regulatory authority published its decision on our objection to its decision on our request for enforcement action against T-Mobile’s service “Data-free Music”.

This service was launched shortly after the new European net neutrality rules were introduced. “Data-free Music” allows users to listen to a selection of online music services without using any data from their data plan. This sounds better than it is – and below we explain why.

Bits of Freedom asked ACM to enforce the rules because with this service, T-Mobile gives some services preferential treatment. The regulatory authority did not agree with Bits of Freedom. Now, it has also dismissed Bits of Freedoms’ objection to this decision." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, February 08, 2018

Activists Plan 'Operation: One More Vote' to Save Net Neutrality

Activists Plan 'Operation: One More Vote' to Save Net Neutrality: "Several internet rights groups are planning to push lawmakers into becoming the final vote needed in the Senate to support a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution that would ignite an attempt to save net neutrality.

 Last month lawmakers said they needed just one more Republican vote in the Senate in order to have the votes needed to pass a CRA resolution that would overturn the Federal Communication Commission‘s (FCC) decision to rescind net neutrality rules, which ensured that internet service providers (ISPs) treat all internet traffic equally.

If the Senate is successful, a similar bill would need to pass through the House of Representatives before reaching President Donald Trump‘s desk to sign into law." ENDS! 'via Blog this'

California Senate defies FCC, approves net neutrality law | Ars Technica

California Senate defies FCC, approves net neutrality law | Ars Technica: "ISPs would be forbidden from using deceptive or misleading marketing practices "that misrepresent the treatment of Internet traffic or content to its customers."

Violations would be punishable under the state's existing consumer protection laws, which allow for injunctions and financial damages.

The California bill would also prohibit state agencies from buying Internet service from an ISP "unless that provider certifies, under penalty of perjury, that it will not engage in" the activities banned by the bill.

 The Montana and New York executive orders focus exclusively on the purchasing requirements for state agencies instead of imposing requirements directly on ISPs. The California bill is a more direct challenge to the FCC's preemption order because it requires all ISPs to follow net neutrality rules regardless of whether they provide Internet service to state agencies." 'via Blog this'

Net neutrality fight returns to D.C. - The Boston Globe

Net neutrality fight returns to D.C. - The Boston Globe: "Now, Democrats hope to turn this into an important election-year issue.

Senator Ed Markey is gathering votes for a Senate bill that would overturn the FCC decision. Think of it as a reversal of a reversal. Markey can’t file the bill until the ruling is listed in the Federal Register, something that’s expected any day now.

Markey has all 49 Democrats on board, and one Republican (Susan Collins of Maine). He needs one more colleague." 'via Blog this'

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

MEPs urge US to halt net neutrality repeal - Mobile World Live

MEPs urge US to halt net neutrality repeal - Mobile World Live: "MEP Marietje Schaake, who is also VP of the European Transatlantic Legislative Dialogue, called the move to revoke the policy a “historic mistake”, adding: “Internet and the flow of data does not stop at the border and the FCC’s decision has a global impact. A reversal of net neutrality rules by the United States is a threat to the open, free and fair internet.”

“The European Parliament has been a vocal proponent of net neutrality rules within Europe. Today we undertake action to also preserve the open internet in the US.”" 'via Blog this'

CMA provisionally finds Fox/Sky deal not in the public interest - GOV.UK

CMA provisionally finds Fox/Sky deal not in the public interest - GOV.UK: "Fox announced on 14 December 2017 it had agreed the sale to Disney of certain assets including its interests in Sky. It also announced it was continuing its proposed acquisition of the shares in Sky it does not own. Should both acquisitions be completed successfully Disney would assume full ownership of Sky, including Sky News.

The sale to Disney will itself be subject to regulatory scrutiny and it is unlikely to be completed until after the CMA inquiry has concluded. It is therefore uncertain whether, when or how that transaction will be completed. As such, the CMA’s analysis of the Fox/Sky transaction cannot take it into account in its assessment of the transaction but implications of the Disney transaction in relation to remedies is considered in the notice of possible remedies." 'via Blog this'

Monday, January 22, 2018

Wetmachine » Tales of the Sausage Factory » The History of Net Neutrality In 13 Years of Tales of the Sausage Factory (with a few additions). Part I

Wetmachine » Tales of the Sausage Factory » The History of Net Neutrality In 13 Years of Tales of the Sausage Factory (with a few additions). Part I: "As I record in my first “Net Neutrality Primer” from 2006 , the FCC under Republican Chairman Michael Powell classified cable modem as an “information service.”

As the FCC Order described, this eliminated the mandatory rules governing Title II telecommunications services that governed things like phone lines and DSL lines. Importantly, however, the FCC did not relinquish authority and oversight over broadband (indeed, they called the accusation they were abandoning all oversight of broadband “fear mongering”).

This is rather important for those who keep asking the question “why do we need net neutrality now when everything was fine before 2015?” As demonstrated with links by this little walk down memory lane, until December 14 2017, we always had rules to prevent the companies that owned the lines from blocking, degrading or otherwise interfering with the broadband traffic. The idea that we needed entirely separate rules to prevent this behavior didn’t even become a thing until after the Cable Modem Declaratory Ruling." 'via Blog this'

Monday, January 15, 2018

States Push Back After Net Neutrality Repeal - The New York Times

States Push Back After Net Neutrality Repeal - The New York Times: " lawsuits against the commission are expected shortly after the policy becomes official. Last week, a lobbying group for big technology companies including Facebook, Google and Netflix announced that it planned to join the lawsuits, giving the opposition substantial new resources. More than a dozen state attorneys general have also announced plans to sue the commission.

 But state lawmakers say they cannot wait around to see what happens with those efforts.

State Representative Norma Smith, a Republican who introduced the other bill in Washington, said net neutrality was an important safeguard for small businesses that might not be able to pay internet service companies for fast speeds. Even though Republicans in Washington, D.C., supported the repeal, she said many Republicans in her state supported her bill." 'via Blog this'

Monday, January 08, 2018

How Law and Computer Science Can Work Together to Improve the Information Society | January 2018 | Communications of the ACM

How Law and Computer Science Can Work Together to Improve the Information Society | January 2018 | Communications of the ACM: "Net neutrality is a simple term that describes the complicated reality of highly complex engineering task: how to permit sufficient permission-free innovation in the network. The over-politicized doomsayers on both sides fail to mention what is becoming abundantly clear: policy can only partially steer traffic management practices. Net neutrality can do no more than prevent large telecoms companies continuing blocking Skype and WhatsApp or throttling back video traffic their subscribers want to see.

Net neutrality cannot stop innovation by telecoms companies (whose own corporate histories show a somewhat checkered relationship with Internet protocol network deployment). Regulators are simply not that competent, even if they had the resources and will to carry out laws to the letter, which they do not. More scientific exploration of the limited effects of Net neutrality policies would be rather useful. An example of regulators trying to do this in a non-confrontational manner is the extensive work produced by the Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications.

 Heroic policy interventions by government often fail, especially when aimed at industry self-regulation.

How can legislators discuss complex laws when they do not know the difference between an Internet access provider (IAP) and an Internet service provider (ISP)? In European law, an access provider (telco) is an 'Electronic Communications Service Provider' (ECSP), distinct from an Information Society Service Provider (ISSP). 'Information Society' was Europe's rhetorical counterpoint to Al Gore's 'Information Superhighway.' Lawyers often fail to master these terms.

Minimal rules made sensibly by technically proficient people are achieving quietly what millions of email messages to regulators and legislators cannot: conduct rules to stop telecoms companies blocking legitimate content while giving them the latitude to experiment where not harmful to the public Internet. Note that common carriage was a rather successful way of delivering public (alongside private and business) communications services in previous technologies." 'via Blog this'

FCC issues final order dismantling net neutrality - CNET

FCC issues final order dismantling net neutrality - CNET: "The Federal Communications Commission released on Thursday the final text of its order repealing controversial Obama-era net neutrality regulations.

The 539-page Restoring Internet Freedom Order comes about three weeks after the agency voted 3-2 along party lines to dismantle rules passed in 2015 to ensure that all traffic on the internet is treated equally and to prevent broadband and wireless providers from blocking or slowing online content. The agency also voted to eliminate the legal foundation that gives the FCC oversight of internet service providers." 'via Blog this'