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Net Neutrality for Dummies

"Net Neutrality Proponents Must Rely on Hypotheticals"

Almost 5-years ago, I was sitting at a dinner in Las Vegas for Cisco's West Coast customers during Cisco Networkers. I was in good company: A VP from a major bank, a senior engineer from Walt Disney, and consulting engineer from Cisco. We got on the topic of Net Neutrality which was buzzing at the time. I made the case that (1) I hadn't actually seen any problem yet as described by Net Neutrality proponents and (2) wouldn't any problem be solved by the marketplace? If Verizon starts slowing content from Google, you can bet AT&T will be beating down Google's door to sell them bandwidth. At the consumer end, there is DSL, cable modem, wireless, and others. Only collusion of major ISPs (illegal, see Sherman Act) could have a global Internet effect. Sadly, my argument was quickly dismissed. Those at the table felt Net Neutrality laws/regulation were needed; immediately. I was reminded of this dinner a couple weeks ago when I listened to a really good video on Net Neutrality from Reason.TV. The best line in the video: "Net Neutrality Proponents Must Rely on Hypotheticals". Yeah, it sounds bad....scary. Too bad it hasn't happened yet. Five years later with the explosion of Google, Youtube, Facebook, and the millions of other websites and videos, and still no "slowing" on the Internet by ISPs. Amazing! No problem ever existed and the free market mentality of the Internet has kept it that way. It's a good video.



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