Tech at Night

I went ahead and took Martin Luther King day off, so it’s a double dose of stories to cover tonight. Though first, in case you missed it, make sure to see my post today on Marsha Blackburn‘s call to action against stifling, destabilizing Internet and technology regulation.

Other than that, the big story this week so far has been the FCC finally approving the NBC Universal/Comcast merger. I don’t even know why the center-left is even supposed to be worried about that merger at this point. After all, they passed Net Neutrality, right? Anyway, it’s a real shame that this approval has only come with a number of special set asides for left-wing causes, but as I’ve said before, I’m guessing the shareholders will take what they can get after all of this delay.

Of course, the neo-Marxists are sobbing hysterically about this development. Let’s all pause, lower our heads, and take a moment to laugh at Free Press’s Josh Silver.

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Tech at Night: The home stretch for Net Neutrality

On December 3, 2010, in General, by Neil Stevens
Tech at Night

Good evening. In case you missed it, I weighed in with great detail on the Level 3/Comcast/Netflix flap, getting down to the basics to unravel the issue technically.

But tonight we discuss Net Neutrality. House Republican Reps. Cliff Stearns and Joe Barton fired a warning shot, challenging the FCC to justify any action it takes this month, so now that’s an issue getting some attention. ISPs are already scoffing at one proposed legal avenue because it’s ridiculous. Net Neutrality has zero to do with deploying high speed Internet access, and in fact such regulations would likely hinder deployment. Even left-wing universal access folk have been saying that for ages.

I guess it’s a good thing various big names turned down stimulus bucks for deployment.

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Tech at Night

Just as I was saying copyright was soon to replace Net Neutrality as the big tech issue of the moment, circumstances prove me wrong. Instead, regardless of the results of the December FCC meeting and the future of that whole Net Neutrality debate (more later), the coming issue now is going to be peering.

Some will play word games and say it’s all covered under the blanket issue of Net Neutrality, but be careful. Net Neutrality as promoted and sold by Free Press, the FCC, Google, Verizon, and others has been all about the so-called last mile from the Internet to your home or business, including wired and wireless access. That’s what the FCC is talking about regulating as Net Neutrality, that’s been the focus of the scare stories calling the need for Net Neutrality a Crisis™, and we cannot now let them do a bait and switch.

So in your mind, I suggest separating the Comcast/Level 3/Netflix issue from the Free Press/Net Neutrality issue. The former deals with the back end of the Internet, from the user’s perspective, while the latter deals with the front end that we directly pay for and use.

They’re both important though, so here’s my explanation and view of the Comcast/Level 3 Peering controversy broken out as a separate post because it got so long. To sum it up, Comcast did the right thing, because Netflix and Level 3 were being unfair and trying to take advantage of sharing deals made in good faith.

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