Here at the Lounge, we have been talking for years about how broadband providers have manipulated our bandwidth to increase profits on their content side. How ISP’s use Deep Packet Inspection for the sale of statistical information based on a customers use of the bandwidth, and how DPI and E-Mail manipulation are our number one privacy concern. We have talked quite often about the need for more competition in the broadband market and how in competitive markets, ISPs act much more pro-consumer. We talked about how in markets that do lack competition, the cable industry has flooded State and Local government with FUD and untold $$millions while lobbying for regulations that stifle competition and innovation.
In reality, the Money Grubbing Internet Service Providers should be required to provide non discriminatory internet access, guaranteed speed and data access, and to be free from anti-competitive abuses and practices.
Little does anyone remember, but back in the early 1990′s, there was an outcry from internet users across the country over a perceived notion that the telephone companies were doing everything in their power to disrupt the use of dial-up modems on their networks. In essence, the discussion today is just an extension of that from 20 years ago. We need Dumb Pipes.
First we must insist that is that the owner of the plumbing should not care what the plumbing is used for or who uses it. This means that just because you are the local cable company, you cannot discriminate in how your Internet service is priced to benefit your other businesses. Streaming a 3 gig movie should not, for example, be more expensive than streaming the same amount of data from a cable branded stream.That is the current business model for all of the Major Internet Service Providers
DPI issues would also be addressed. Deep Packet Inspection is a form of computer network packet filtering that examines the data part of a packet as it passes an inspection point, searching for predefined criteria to decide if the packet can pass or if it needs to be routed to a different destination. This is how they track your every move. They also can set up programs to look for anything in your e-mail, or watch your every click. ISP’s make $$$Millions of dollars selling your click history. We need to insist that these ISP’s de-monetize the data, or at the least, pay us for it.
The carriers very much want the FCC to stay as far away as possible from the network neutrality debate. And if their actions are any indication, they are trying very hard to push through as much change before the government steps in. In proposing what looked like Internet pricing intended to ward off competition to its cable TV business, Time Warner set off a shit storm of criticism. After seeing this particular danger lurking, Time Warner bailed on the new pricing. This was a direct result of the potential for increased oversight, not because the average customer would pay much higher prices. Either way, everyone must understand that laws are needed now. Once these pricing plans go live, there will be no turning back.
In closing, there is simply was no reasonable justification for the per-gigabyte pricing that the Internet Service Providers are proposing. I cannot imagine a situation in which a gigabyte of Internet data should cost $1 from the cable company, when it costs them about 3 cents to produce in a non-competitive market.
I strongly believe that Internet companies should provide either access or content, but not both. Verizon should not discriminate against Yahoo because it has a deal with Google. The Internet carrier should handle traffic for both companies equally, for the simple reason the consumer often often has only one broadband provider to choose from in most parts of the nation.
I believe Deep Packet Inspection for network management and e-mail is the single biggest privacy concern on the internet today, much like the post office searching every letter sent for a note from Kendal Meyers. We need to insist that these ISP’s de-monetize the data, or at the least, pay us for it