Tuesday, March 18, 2014

CS Monitor offers major perspective on neutrality debate

The Christian Science Monitor has a major perspective this week by Henry Buinius, “Net neutrality: Is the Internet about to change?” The link is here

Is the Internet essentially a public utility, like the phone systems was (remember the breakup of ATT), or perhaps the interstate highway system, or is it more like the cable industry, something that is a bit of a luxury?  The lack of neutrality is blamed for the fact that Americans pay more for service that is not as fast as the service in, say, South Korea.  Of course, the US has more area to cover and a lower population density in many parts of the country.
The article notes that the loss of “neutrality” could lead to a value added structure.  But maybe the building of the railroads is a good metaphor.  That took entrepreneurs and risk takers, and they needed rewards. 

Network neutrality, or its lack, could have major social implications eventually.  But so could space travel, which back in the 1960s we thought would come first.  And it would not have been neutral.  

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