AT&T lobbying story hits a nerve with readers
Lots of feedback on the Telecom lobbying story last week, that looked specifically into the message blitz by AT&T against the FCC's move toward open-Internet access rules.
Reader "rurik" was annoyed by AT&T's practices:
If only the telecoms would put all that lobbying money towards technology and service, instead of wasting it on advertising and mis-information. Then, perhaps, our bills would be exponentially lower. I loathe the fact that my money goes towards lobbying for things I'm against. I need to find a telecom that doesn't support the current, greedy, corrupt system.
10/22/2009 11:40:24 AM
More on service:
All I know is I pay $60 for a wireless connection that promised connections speeds in the upper thousands and I get routinely, at any time of day, 20k to 40k. Will the new rules protect consumers from under delivery?
10/22/2009 9:21:10 AM
My response to Beacon is that he's isn't alone: Apparently more than half of the nation is getting slower broadband speeds than what they were promised and paid for, according to a recent FCC report. The report is part of the agency's task to come up with a plan, by next February, on how to provide high-speed Internet to all U.S. homes and businesses. And these issues -- speeds slower than paid for -- are being addressed in that plan as well as by the consumer bureau of the FCC which has its own investigation going on right now on consumer broadband experience. Stay tuned, I'll be watching this issue very closely.
Many said the FCC's move undermines an ISP's ability (AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Sprint Nextel, Cox) to provide a good Internet experience for all its users.
The technical side of this issue should be further explained. Some Internet users are hogging the available bandwidth and are causing others to have slow Internet connection speeds. There is no such thing as unlimited bandwidth; it is a shared resource, a finite physical medium (fiber or copper cable). It's no different than I-95 during rush hour. Imagine someone driving a vehicle that is 100 times larger than a standard car. That eliminates 99 other potential drivers. There's simply no room.
10/22/2009 9:03:14 AM
And there was lots of confusion still to what net neutrality is. The way I understand it, the open-Internet rules at the FCC would prevent the companies that give you access to the Web (your ISP, like Comcast, Verizon Communications, AT&T, and T-Mobile) from choosing what legal content its customers can access. In real terms, that means AT&T can't decide to block Skype's voice application from the iPhone, that runs exclusively on its 3G network -- indeed, after pressure, AT&T recently agreed to allow the iPhone application to run on the AT&T wireless network.
VirginiaGal2 explains further:
Net neutrality is simply a rule that your ISP cannot censor, slow, or block legal content. That is not "government control." Given that most of our news and entertainment is increasing coming from the Internet, it's a basic, simple consumer protection. It was also the rule under which the Internet was built and expanded, up until the early 2000's, when the FCC under Bush decided to tinker.
And some say a federal rule will be felt negatively by consumers:
I hope you "pro net-neutrality" folks understand the shoe that will drop if this happens. Users (us) will be charged for what bandwidth we use per month. Just like cell phones. Net neutrality takes the bandwidth fees from Google, Facebook, etc and spreads those same fees on individual users. Enjoy your last few months of set prices for access. Welcome to pay by the minute network access. ENJOY! 10/22/2009 7:16:28 AM
October 26, 2009; 9:00 AM ET
| Tags: at&t lobbying, facebook, fcc, google, net neutrality
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