March 24, 2006 4:00 AM PST

Broadband giants say Net neutrality fears are misguided

(continued from previous page)

Because no one carrier controls the Internet, companies such as Verizon or AT&T can only control packets on their portion of the network. Once those packets hop to another network, they have no control.

This free-for-all delivery system means that sometimes packets hit congestion and are delayed. This isn't a problem for applications like e-mail, but for video and voice traffic, which are sensitive to delays, it can be a problem. This is why video viewed over the Internet is often choppy or is interrupted.

To ensure that the quality of these applications is up to snuff, carriers like AT&T and Verizon could create what are called virtual private networks or VPNs.

Up to this point, Verizon and AT&T have offered these dedicated VPNs to business customers, who use them to link offices together throughout the country and the world. Because AT&T and Verizon can manage the network, they can guarantee service quality and ensure security of the content. This allows companies to deploy services such as voice over IP and streaming video.

Tauke and Cicconi said the same technology could be used to offer VPNs from content providers to consumers. And because video is an application that requires a high level of service guarantees, companies offering these services could find the VPN service appealing.

"The bottom line is, we have built and managed VPNs for a long time," said Tauke. "There's speculation that in the future we will introduce a service that provides VPNs from companies directly to consumers."

AT&T and Verizon's acquisitions of long-distance carriers AT&T and MCI last year have helped make this kind of business-to-consumer VPN service possible. The reason is that now AT&T and MCI own not only the broadband access network to consumers but also the long-distance network that could, for example, connect Google's servers in California to the broadband networks connected to consumers' homes.

But Net neutrality supporters such as Sumpter believe that allowing the phone companies to have so much power over how content is delivered into the home could be dangerous. He believes the phone companies could try to push competitors out of the market by charging unreasonably high fees for their VPNs.

"What I'm concerned about is the phone companies charging Google or someone like them a much higher price than what they charge their own affiliate offering a similar video service," he said.

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42 comments

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Appears disingenuous to me...
- The new Internet2 backbone demonstrates best-effort packet delivery works well for HDTV streams
- The hardware Cisco and other network vendors are hawking to the carriers appears designed to filter, restrict, and monitor third-party traffic
- Will VoIP providers like Skype and Vonage be blocked or degraded?

No one is asking the carriers the key, detailed questions on these points. Someone needs to ask. More info here on a recent blog post:

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2006/02/end-of-internet-another-fantastic-deal.html" target="_newWindow">http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2006/02/end-of-internet-another-fantastic-deal.html</a>
Posted by MercilessUnicorn (31 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Limit the discussion to reality please
Investing in or promoting nonproven or even nonexistant technology/specs is how we got here in the first place. I can give you 2 dozen websites that say "tetrabits of data over fibre optic" "10 gigabit connections" are the future but none of them can sell it to me at a competative rate. Almost all can't sell it to me at all.

Scroll down, see that privacy policy job? Ever click on it?
Posted by vampares (39 comments )
Link Flag
Appears disingenuous to me...
- The new Internet2 backbone demonstrates best-effort packet delivery works well for HDTV streams
- The hardware Cisco and other network vendors are hawking to the carriers appears designed to filter, restrict, and monitor third-party traffic
- Will VoIP providers like Skype and Vonage be blocked or degraded?

No one is asking the carriers the key, detailed questions on these points. Someone needs to ask. More info here on a recent blog post:

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2006/02/end-of-internet-another-fantastic-deal.html" target="_newWindow">http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2006/02/end-of-internet-another-fantastic-deal.html</a>
Posted by MercilessUnicorn (31 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Limit the discussion to reality please
Investing in or promoting nonproven or even nonexistant technology/specs is how we got here in the first place. I can give you 2 dozen websites that say "tetrabits of data over fibre optic" "10 gigabit connections" are the future but none of them can sell it to me at a competative rate. Almost all can't sell it to me at all.

Scroll down, see that privacy policy job? Ever click on it?
Posted by vampares (39 comments )
Link Flag
Divide and Conquer.. it won't affect YOU, yet ;)
OK so what Verizon et. al. are trying to do is this- stop the public furor by presenting their plan as something which will only affect Big Players who have too much money for anyone to feel sorry for.

Obviously, once the principle of net neutrality is broken, there will be no stopping a "future CEO" of these said-same companies from concluding that they need to do exactly the same thing to mom and pop internet-store owners.

Get it straight- no one is going to hold up their fist and cry "no! you can't do that because your former CEO, five years ago, said that wasn't what you intended to do when.. er... oh ...never mind".

Of COURSE they know this and so do your policy-makers in Washington; those two players are just waiting to see if YOU dear taxpayer, understand this too.

In case you weren't aware of it, you, taxpayer have already PAID for the creation of internet, many times over. It isn't profit-seeking companies like Verizon who pay for the years and years and years of research it's YOU.

Verizon makes plenty of money (looked at you phone bill lately)? Their CEO is MORE than handsomely compensated for sending what used to be your job overseas. If they can't figure out a way to make money without destroying net neutrality, then they should do what the fre market says they shoudl do- get the hell off the stage and let the scores of other, younger, more creative and hungrier companies who CAN find a way take their place.

Can you afford your own TV show or political talk show on the TV? That's because there's a limited resource and lots of people who want it. The price gets bid up and the big players are the only ones who can afford it.

Now ask yourself this question- are your views represented on TV? That's because to be a big player and afford the aritime, you have tow the corporate line, or see the money tap in the form of advertising turned off.

Well that suits corporations just fine. It especially suits the CEOS and other NON WORKING people who live off their investments just fine.

And that's what Verizon and AT&#38;T will turn the internet into if this is permitted to go through. The REAL forms of persuasion and communication and the ability to reach anything like a meaningful audience will be the sole "property" of the corporate elites and those who can afford to pay their rent, that is, those who the corporate elites control.

It's a pretty good scam- get the taxpayer to pony up billions and billions for the new invention (because we dont' invent anything around here, buster, that would cut into our CEOs pay...) then hand it over to corporations so they can create artifical "shortages" of "good" bandwidth and profiteer from the ensuing market economics, thus solidifying your power position in Washington (we have the money) while also conveniently being able to destroy any voice the people may try to develop to change things.

Yep sounds like we're headed back to the good old days of the MSM (Mainstream Media).
Posted by asdf (241 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Divide and Conquer.. it won't affect YOU, yet ;)
OK so what Verizon et. al. are trying to do is this- stop the public furor by presenting their plan as something which will only affect Big Players who have too much money for anyone to feel sorry for.

Obviously, once the principle of net neutrality is broken, there will be no stopping a "future CEO" of these said-same companies from concluding that they need to do exactly the same thing to mom and pop internet-store owners.

Get it straight- no one is going to hold up their fist and cry "no! you can't do that because your former CEO, five years ago, said that wasn't what you intended to do when.. er... oh ...never mind".

Of COURSE they know this and so do your policy-makers in Washington; those two players are just waiting to see if YOU dear taxpayer, understand this too.

In case you weren't aware of it, you, taxpayer have already PAID for the creation of internet, many times over. It isn't profit-seeking companies like Verizon who pay for the years and years and years of research it's YOU.

Verizon makes plenty of money (looked at you phone bill lately)? Their CEO is MORE than handsomely compensated for sending what used to be your job overseas. If they can't figure out a way to make money without destroying net neutrality, then they should do what the fre market says they shoudl do- get the hell off the stage and let the scores of other, younger, more creative and hungrier companies who CAN find a way take their place.

Can you afford your own TV show or political talk show on the TV? That's because there's a limited resource and lots of people who want it. The price gets bid up and the big players are the only ones who can afford it.

Now ask yourself this question- are your views represented on TV? That's because to be a big player and afford the aritime, you have tow the corporate line, or see the money tap in the form of advertising turned off.

Well that suits corporations just fine. It especially suits the CEOS and other NON WORKING people who live off their investments just fine.

And that's what Verizon and AT&#38;T will turn the internet into if this is permitted to go through. The REAL forms of persuasion and communication and the ability to reach anything like a meaningful audience will be the sole "property" of the corporate elites and those who can afford to pay their rent, that is, those who the corporate elites control.

It's a pretty good scam- get the taxpayer to pony up billions and billions for the new invention (because we dont' invent anything around here, buster, that would cut into our CEOs pay...) then hand it over to corporations so they can create artifical "shortages" of "good" bandwidth and profiteer from the ensuing market economics, thus solidifying your power position in Washington (we have the money) while also conveniently being able to destroy any voice the people may try to develop to change things.

Yep sounds like we're headed back to the good old days of the MSM (Mainstream Media).
Posted by asdf (241 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Verizon
My experience with Verizon.
They DO impede competative services that operate on their network. (and I can prove it in court, so come on).

The mere fact that they are talking about "not being able to offer the same quality of service to competative vendors over the public network" Proves they are already doing this.

Their own movies travel over the very same network to their subscribers.

In order to NOT provide the same QoS they must go out of their way to throttle the opponants traffic.

Again, the mere fact that they are saying they won't guarantee equal QoS is because they ARE guaranteeing unequal QoS.

Now why whould they do that? Profit?
Naw!

Enter the throttle wars.
Cox should now throttle Vz movies.
AOL should now throttle Vz and Cox...
Ad naseum.
The cash paying customer is the one that will suffer the most.
Posted by johnericanderson (72 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Verizon
My experience with Verizon.
They DO impede competative services that operate on their network. (and I can prove it in court, so come on).

The mere fact that they are talking about "not being able to offer the same quality of service to competative vendors over the public network" Proves they are already doing this.

Their own movies travel over the very same network to their subscribers.

In order to NOT provide the same QoS they must go out of their way to throttle the opponants traffic.

Again, the mere fact that they are saying they won't guarantee equal QoS is because they ARE guaranteeing unequal QoS.

Now why whould they do that? Profit?
Naw!

Enter the throttle wars.
Cox should now throttle Vz movies.
AOL should now throttle Vz and Cox...
Ad naseum.
The cash paying customer is the one that will suffer the most.
Posted by johnericanderson (72 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Verizon, bad giant
I have found Verizon to be far less than an honest People Business, and more like the Ghost of Jessie James and his gang. The difference I find is the form of lacking integrity used by both. The James gang robbed the rich without using lies, deceit, and cheating them out of their money. Verizon on the other hand, are far greater enemies to the people because they do use lies, deceit, cheat and steal people's minutes. It is for sure Verizon is not a company inwhich a person's word or the old hand shake would be a contract agreed upon and fulfilled. Therefore on a scale of one to ten of business integrity. I would have to put Verizon right beside of RCA, that being a one (1), and only because they have a product to sell. Neither are the people friendly local neighborhood business America grew up with. The long lists of complaints about the same things and servie seem to be never ending. It is all about their god of dollars. But their barns will also one day be full, then there will be enough mustard to cover those hot-dogs.
Jimmie King
Posted by oldgrapeape (48 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Verizon, bad giant
I have found Verizon to be far less than an honest People Business, and more like the Ghost of Jessie James and his gang. The difference I find is the form of lacking integrity used by both. The James gang robbed the rich without using lies, deceit, and cheating them out of their money. Verizon on the other hand, are far greater enemies to the people because they do use lies, deceit, cheat and steal people's minutes. It is for sure Verizon is not a company inwhich a person's word or the old hand shake would be a contract agreed upon and fulfilled. Therefore on a scale of one to ten of business integrity. I would have to put Verizon right beside of RCA, that being a one (1), and only because they have a product to sell. Neither are the people friendly local neighborhood business America grew up with. The long lists of complaints about the same things and servie seem to be never ending. It is all about their god of dollars. But their barns will also one day be full, then there will be enough mustard to cover those hot-dogs.
Jimmie King
Posted by oldgrapeape (48 comments )
Reply Link Flag
oh yeah sure...
'We promise not to abuse our power if you give us control' sounds a bit too much like 'I promise not to *** in your mouth, baby' to me.
Meanwhile Verizon has crippled my motorola phone solely for the purpose of forcing consumer to purchase more services from them and increase their revenue by eliminating consumers ability to do things for themselves.
No thanks.
Posted by skeptik (590 comments )
Reply Link Flag
oh yeah sure...
'We promise not to abuse our power if you give us control' sounds a bit too much like 'I promise not to *** in your mouth, baby' to me.
Meanwhile Verizon has crippled my motorola phone solely for the purpose of forcing consumer to purchase more services from them and increase their revenue by eliminating consumers ability to do things for themselves.
No thanks.
Posted by skeptik (590 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Sounds like protection money to me
Yeah. "See, Mr. Google, we can make sure your customers coming up to your store aren't "roughed up" by any Internet thugs hanging around. Just put some money in this envelope and hand it to "Lefty" here every week and youse will be fine. Pleasure doin' business wit' ya. Nah, don't worry about the FCC, neither - they know who owns these piece of the neighborhood."
Posted by gparshal (15 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Sounds like protection money to me
Yeah. "See, Mr. Google, we can make sure your customers coming up to your store aren't "roughed up" by any Internet thugs hanging around. Just put some money in this envelope and hand it to "Lefty" here every week and youse will be fine. Pleasure doin' business wit' ya. Nah, don't worry about the FCC, neither - they know who owns these piece of the neighborhood."
Posted by gparshal (15 comments )
Reply Link Flag
We need Eliot Spitzer
Someone please call Eliot and tell him, when he is done with the RIAA, these guys deserve a visit.

Quite simple you can own the pipe or you can own the content but when you own both, you will by default create a conflict of interest (at the very least).
I cant wait for a DSL customer to prove the Telco ISPs are interleaving, dropping or re-ordering packets.
Posted by LarryLo (164 comments )
Reply Link Flag
We need Eliot Spitzer
Someone please call Eliot and tell him, when he is done with the RIAA, these guys deserve a visit.

Quite simple you can own the pipe or you can own the content but when you own both, you will by default create a conflict of interest (at the very least).
I cant wait for a DSL customer to prove the Telco ISPs are interleaving, dropping or re-ordering packets.
Posted by LarryLo (164 comments )
Reply Link Flag
we need another BROADBAND wires to compete with monopoly
one is New Broadband over Power lines !!!

re: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/" target="_newWindow">http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/</a>
Posted by 200mbpsBPL (102 comments )
Reply Link Flag
we need another BROADBAND wires to compete with monopoly
one is New Broadband over Power lines !!!

re: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/" target="_newWindow">http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/</a>
Posted by 200mbpsBPL (102 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Net Neutrality
I am glad to see the "bad guys" from the telcos explain clearly what it is they want to do. Now maybe we can move ahead so that I can see [a movie] clearly. There is no need for the Congress to get involved and no reason to fear the bogeyman in the internet closet.
Posted by NJSolly (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Net Neutrality
I am glad to see the "bad guys" from the telcos explain clearly what it is they want to do. Now maybe we can move ahead so that I can see [a movie] clearly. There is no need for the Congress to get involved and no reason to fear the bogeyman in the internet closet.
Posted by NJSolly (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Handful of companies?
"This debate is all about movies," he said. "A handful of companies who have plans to stream movies want to ensure their product is as good as ours. Or they want ours to be dumbed down for them."

Who are these companies? They didn't mention any names. Furthermore, who needs a VPN to their home for movies? If you want to be able to guarantee Qos from content provider to content consumer, why not utilize basic open standards to do so? Because they don't want to. IPv6 has better built in Qos than IPv4 also it has better addressing too. But by deploying this. they will be standardizing the net as a whole and subsequently will not be able to boast that they have any differentiating features about their network versus their competition thus losing a potential revenue stream.
Posted by challman (27 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Handful of companies?
"This debate is all about movies," he said. "A handful of companies who have plans to stream movies want to ensure their product is as good as ours. Or they want ours to be dumbed down for them."

Who are these companies? They didn't mention any names. Furthermore, who needs a VPN to their home for movies? If you want to be able to guarantee Qos from content provider to content consumer, why not utilize basic open standards to do so? Because they don't want to. IPv6 has better built in Qos than IPv4 also it has better addressing too. But by deploying this. they will be standardizing the net as a whole and subsequently will not be able to boast that they have any differentiating features about their network versus their competition thus losing a potential revenue stream.
Posted by challman (27 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Another Baloney Sandwich
"Cicconi said that trying to achieve the same level of quality for
video over the public Internet would be too expensive, because
it requires extra equipment and network resources."

BS. Well he is generally right in that the issue here is about
media, but not about qos issues for delivering media content.
The intent here is pretty clear. ISP's, which are mostly telco and
cable operators, would prefer that consumers get media content
directly from them, particularly in the case of cable companies
who already provide it by means of a cable hook-up to your TV.
But media content delivery is rapidly switching over to the web
as the delivery medium of choice. Apple, obviously, has already
been very successful in establishing iTunes on the web for all of
your musical needs (and now some video as well). What do the
telcos and cable companies see of Apple profits as this content
rushes down the internet and into their subscriber's homes?
Nothing. Not that they are the least bit entitled to a penny of
someone else's hard work, but somewhere in America, there is a
telco/cable exec typing "grrrr" in a memo right now. lol

Now Amazon is rumored to be readying a movie service. iTunes
is moving full steam ahead in that direction. Google established
a video download service earlier this year. If one or all of these
really take off, what happens to cable? What happens to the
telcos, the cable wannabes?

The answer is, no matter where you get your media content, the
telcos and cable companies are going to make sure they are in
for some of the profit, regardless of whom or where on the
internet you get it from. Charging for "packet priority" is just
setting up a toll booth on the media (formally information)
superhighway.

And the fact is, the internet will serve just fine for media content
delivery without the need for ISPs to intervene with preferred
packet switching schemes. P2P, Bittorrent and binary tree
networking nodes can handle HQ media content delivery using
the internet as it exists today, without any need for "preferred
packet switching" And in the final analysis, the telco/cable
companies STILL win with the addition of new subscribers
wanting a piece of the new media content action on the internet.

The "tiered internet" concept is simply greed by any other name
Posted by Terry Murphy (82 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Another Baloney Sandwich
"Cicconi said that trying to achieve the same level of quality for
video over the public Internet would be too expensive, because
it requires extra equipment and network resources."

BS. Well he is generally right in that the issue here is about
media, but not about qos issues for delivering media content.
The intent here is pretty clear. ISP's, which are mostly telco and
cable operators, would prefer that consumers get media content
directly from them, particularly in the case of cable companies
who already provide it by means of a cable hook-up to your TV.
But media content delivery is rapidly switching over to the web
as the delivery medium of choice. Apple, obviously, has already
been very successful in establishing iTunes on the web for all of
your musical needs (and now some video as well). What do the
telcos and cable companies see of Apple profits as this content
rushes down the internet and into their subscriber's homes?
Nothing. Not that they are the least bit entitled to a penny of
someone else's hard work, but somewhere in America, there is a
telco/cable exec typing "grrrr" in a memo right now. lol

Now Amazon is rumored to be readying a movie service. iTunes
is moving full steam ahead in that direction. Google established
a video download service earlier this year. If one or all of these
really take off, what happens to cable? What happens to the
telcos, the cable wannabes?

The answer is, no matter where you get your media content, the
telcos and cable companies are going to make sure they are in
for some of the profit, regardless of whom or where on the
internet you get it from. Charging for "packet priority" is just
setting up a toll booth on the media (formally information)
superhighway.

And the fact is, the internet will serve just fine for media content
delivery without the need for ISPs to intervene with preferred
packet switching schemes. P2P, Bittorrent and binary tree
networking nodes can handle HQ media content delivery using
the internet as it exists today, without any need for "preferred
packet switching" And in the final analysis, the telco/cable
companies STILL win with the addition of new subscribers
wanting a piece of the new media content action on the internet.

The "tiered internet" concept is simply greed by any other name
Posted by Terry Murphy (82 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I could see this as reasonable if.....
telco's/cable providers sold a certain amount of bandwidth, lets say for discussion purposes 5 mbit, and we all know that cable lines can run faster then that, because we have seen commercial companies run 10-15 mbit with little trouble. If they sold 5 mbit as general internet surfing (hey, if you want to watch online movies at 5 mbit, they won't stop you) but if you ordered their video package, they would give you another 10 mbit that would be a dedicated line to their video service (so you would have a total of 15 mbit).

The question is, will they filter other companies on purpose?
Posted by mwa423 (78 comments )
Reply Link Flag
RE:
Thing is, they would eventually gouge the customers with a "Oh, but this is the good tier, you pay 400% more" circumstance.

I'd bet that they would only limit data competitors that ticked them off, but nobody really noticable. Just the little thorns in their side.
Posted by Tomcat Adam (272 comments )
Link Flag
I could see this as reasonable if.....
telco's/cable providers sold a certain amount of bandwidth, lets say for discussion purposes 5 mbit, and we all know that cable lines can run faster then that, because we have seen commercial companies run 10-15 mbit with little trouble. If they sold 5 mbit as general internet surfing (hey, if you want to watch online movies at 5 mbit, they won't stop you) but if you ordered their video package, they would give you another 10 mbit that would be a dedicated line to their video service (so you would have a total of 15 mbit).

The question is, will they filter other companies on purpose?
Posted by mwa423 (78 comments )
Reply Link Flag
RE:
Thing is, they would eventually gouge the customers with a "Oh, but this is the good tier, you pay 400% more" circumstance.

I'd bet that they would only limit data competitors that ticked them off, but nobody really noticable. Just the little thorns in their side.
Posted by Tomcat Adam (272 comments )
Link Flag
Make it like a carpool lane
Carpool lanes on freeways filter according to number of passengers (2 or more), but not according to Porche vs. Yugo, or rich vs. poor neighborhood residences.

If pipe operators want to differentiate real-time data (streaming) as opposed to messaging (email web downloads) fine, as long as all video bytes get the same priority and all email bytes get the same priority. (Actually, I think they do that already, and nobody is complainng about that.)

There is *already* a customer-driven market to differentiate bandwidth accoridng to willingness to pay.

Telcos want to add something extra which is simply unnecessary: the power of the *transport supplier* to differentiate bytes -- but the market already works fine. If there is more demand for bandwidth overall, prices will suport the investment.

The trouble for Wall Street is that this becomes a commodity (i.e., very competitive) market, and high competition means limited ROI (though usually very *reliable ROI* -- stable but moderate). Frankly, there will always be investors for reliable investments even at less than gargatuan rates of return.

The pipes should be a common carrier like telephone service (especiallly since teleh[phone service wil go over these pipes increasingly over time). They have been operated as such from the get-go, and that's why innovation at the end nodes has been so tremendous.

Keep the pipes dumb and the ends nodes smart, that's the key to sustaining competition and innovation.

Don't break the Internet. That's exactly what Whitacre and his cronies have proposed, and if they really want to do this then we need to make it explicitly illegal.

They want to reduce competition. That's just wrong.
Posted by dknews (13 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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