FCC Pushes Back Public Comment Deadline For Internet “Fast Lanes”

July 15, 2014 20:22 pm

by Nathan · 6 comments

It’s fun watching the back-and-forth of the Net Neutrality debate. The FCC, by edict, said that Internet service providers (ISPs) could not provide preferential treatment of certain types of Internet traffic over another type. The rationale behind it is that all packets (technical jargon for the bits that are being sent to your house) should be treated equal and the all-knowing FCC should step in to prevent this problem. I have still yet to see a prevalent problem of this, so I personally believe that Net Neutrality regulation is an excuse for a government to regulate the Internet.

The FCC regulations were challenged, and the FCC lost in court. Well, the FCC has done a 180 and now supports Internet “fast lanes”. The premise of the fast lanes are so that content providers could pay for prioritization over other traffic. In one article over the National Journal, they say “websites”, but it doesn’t take much reading in between the lines to surmise that they are looking at streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu.

Anyway, comments on the new proposed rules were supposed to close today, but the FCC was experiencing technical difficulties of handling the traffic (maybe they should invest in those fast lanes themselves) after receiving 670,000 comments by today. They have bumped that deadline to Friday at midnight, so feel free to voice your opinion for or against.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Kilkenny Kid July 15, 2014 at 9:19 pm

Agreed….just another government overreach into the private market. Where is the “market failure”? This Net Neutrality issue was dreamed up by Google and their allies in an attempt to force Internet Service Providers to be nothing more than regulated utilities subject to the FCCs authority in order to cary their traffic for free and prop up their business plan. Crony capitalism at its worst!

griftdrift July 15, 2014 at 9:28 pm

Private market. Interesting. Regulated utility. More interesting.

analogkid July 16, 2014 at 11:51 am

John Oliver explains the importance of net neutrality better (and funnier) than I ever could:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fpbOEoRrHyU

Note: Contains some language which is not censored.

smvaughn July 16, 2014 at 1:43 pm

I don’t really get the mainstream conservative opposition to net neutrality. We seem to have two options:

1) Entrenched monopolies get to choose winners and losers;
2) Consumers get to choose winners and losers.

Option 2 requires the government to act by saying that the entrenched monopolies can’t do #1. Have we really hit the point in discourse where government action targeting monopolism is impermissible government overreach?

Almost all of the arguments I’ve seen against net neutrality are ideological platitudes (Kilkenny provides many fine examples). I say “almost all” because OP added a new one, which was of the “I can’t see it; therefore it must not be real” variety. But then there’s this: http://knowmore.washingtonpost.com/2014/04/25/this-hilarious-graph-of-netflix-speeds-shows-the-importance-of-net-neutrality/

Kilkenny Kid July 16, 2014 at 4:19 pm

What “Entrenched Monopolies” are you referring to? If there was a Monopoly issue with the Internet, which there is not, the Fed can solve via Anti-Trust enforcement.

Btw, in reference to the linked chart, Netflix’s campaign to intentionally confuse the issues of Net Neutrality and ISP Peering arrangements is nothing more than a self-serving PR stunt.

Net Neutrality is simply a solution in search of a problem.

zedsmith July 16, 2014 at 11:31 pm

Is that supposed to be a refutation of the netflix PR stunt?