Network Neutrality

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What position do you advocate?

  • By COB Sunday, flesh out the arguments here. Respond to the arguments other parties make.

BT

Prioritization. Huge investments in network infrastructure. Because bandwidth is expensive, we need to prioritize, and we want to charge content providers for priority. Disney should pay us if they want to reach our customers faster. The basic premise is that every bit of internet traffic costs money and somebody should pay for it. We have three parties here; contents providers, contents consumers and network operators. Basically, consumers and contents providers get their economic surplus as the traffic increases while network operator gets nothing but a flat rate. BT is not a nation owned company any more - BT has its shareholders to serve and employees who rely on the revenue from the network service. Operators could not put up with the situation that the operators of the Internet is the biggest victim in the new economy - actually the Internet economy. The solution would be in metering of upward traffic for every consumers and contents providers. BT does not want to invest more on the infrastructure to convey meaningless ad banners that is more and more traffic consuming and voice traffics that cannibalise our own revenue of telephone.

Disney's proposal of two tier internet is interesting though. As Clark, one of authors of 'end-to-end argument', is working on the Internet2 (see http://www.technologyreview.com/infotech/wtr_16051,258,p1.html), let's see what he would come up with.

Facing competition, don't want to cut Google off (and make consumers flee). Squeeze the mid-sized guys.


Network Neutrality, BT

Disney

We're big enough to cut a deal with the ISPs. Besides, we provide exceptional content which our customers should be able to enjoy without any type of streaming issues. We would welcome a structure where-by we could ensure that our customers' desire for high quality content is fulfilled.

Our proposal is that that the ISPs begin a two-tiered system where the quality content providers (companies like ourselves) pay for a certain amount of guaranteed bandwidth and what is left over goes to the other providers. This would mean that those other providers would be limited in the quality (bit rate) by which they can stream data.

By limiting the quality of the 'second tier' providers, the levels of content copyright infringement should decline as customers will only have one location visit to watch their desired content at a high enough quality level. This will protect our future revenues and ensure that we have the financial capability to continue making high quality content.

Google

We speak for the users and their freedom. If we can't get neutral net from BT, we'll build our own, because we rely on user content.

Startup

[The entrepreneurs were omitted from the table/group assignments. A metaphor for the way they're often left out of the policy debate? ]

Think about the kinds of entry barriers that various network rules would impose.

Government

Internet is a utility, but bureaucrats aren't always good at regulating utilities. We'll think about it, form a committee and come back in 5 years. (BT sets its lobbyists to work.)

Public interest consumer group

The Internet is a utility. We don't allow Dyson to pay for priority electricity, we shouldn't allow Disney to pay for priority Internet.

Where do government subsidies fit into the picture?

Big picture

Is this "rough consensus" or negotiation among established players?