Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Net neutrality rules would let consumers "curate" their own accounts

According to a Washington Post story today by Nancy Scola, there is general agreement that network neutrality rules should allow customers to decide within their accounts if they want to pay to curate or prioritize some services over others, as with this link.  The could massage their accounts to make video play more quickly.  But there could be some question as to the granularity of the "customer".  Is it just a family or a small business?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

FCC extends period for commenting on net neutrality, is overwhelmed

WJLA and News Channel 8 in Washington DC report that the Federal Communications Commission has extended the period for commenting on the rather ambiguous rules it has suggested (particularly for "express lanes") through Friday, July 18.  The deadline had been today.  But the commenting system had problems processing all the requests.  The WJLA news story link is here. The FCC comment link appears to be here.
The Wall Street Journal reports (Gautham Nagesh) on extensive backlash on the issue, and that Silicon Valley companies want to see the Internet regulated as a utility, link

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Aereo shuts down for now, lobbies to "protect my antenna"

Aereo TV suspended operations around noon on June 29, and has directed consumers to a lobbying campaign website “Protect My Antenna”here.

Is Aereo conceptually like satellite TV (with the Dish)?  I have never used it, although I admit that the idea of a service that does not require cables to your home (that storms and falling trees can cut) with all channels, is appealing.  I haven’t looked at the business model for satellite, but I presume that it pays for licenses to use content from the various stations.  A similar idea would exist for Sirius XM radio subscription for music in your car.

On the surface, right now, this doesn’t bode well for Aereo-like service.
It’s true, consumers can use their own rabbit-ears or digital antennae (since 2009) free.  But even with this, there are restrictions.  The NFL and MLB have always said that consumers cannot charge admission to watch games.  That was an idea that could have been of issue in the 1960s.  What comes to mind is a Sunday afternoon picnic in June, 1961, right after I graduated from high school, when the “new” Washington Senators blew a 7 run lead with two outs in the bottom of the ninth in Fenway Park in Boston.  I saw it all on a porch with the burgers and goodies.  And it was free.