Net neutrality closer to death than analog TV

That's the gist of an article in the Wall Street Journal this morning that also hints strongly at the impending death being a murder conspiracy hatched by the victim's own inner circle and led by its most charismatic leader: Google.

Or maybe I've been watching too many TV crime dramas.

What does appear certain is that purists within the network neutrality debate are losing powerful allies at a rapid clip mere months before a congressional moratorium on premium "fast lane" Internet services expires. Google apparently can't wait for the green flag to drop.  

From the Journal article:

Google's proposed arrangement with network providers, internally called OpenEdge, would place Google servers directly within the network of the service providers, according to documents reviewed by the Journal. The setup would accelerate Google's service for users. Google has asked the providers it has approached not to talk about the idea, according to people familiar with the plans.

Asked about OpenEdge, Google said only that other companies such as Yahoo and Microsoft could strike similar deals if they desired. But Google's move, if successful, would give it an advantage available to very few.

Google denies this deal would violate network neutrality.

And I've got a shiny new set of rabbit ears I'll sell you for a song.

(Update: Google lawyer insists the WSJ is "confused" and that Google remains committed to net neutrality. Om Malik from GigaOm offers his take here.)

(Update 2: WSJ blog has gone and collected all the various reactions to its own story.)

(Update 3: Wired, too, says the Wall Street Journal is all wet.)

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