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Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2007-02-15 10:51
The highlight of the FTC Broadband connectivity workshop was Phoenix' George Ford's evisceration of Tim Wu's Wireless net neutralty paper.
Mr. Ford also eviscerated Mr. Wu's recommendation to apply the monopoly Carterfone decision to the competitive wireless industry.
Mr. Wu's biggest mistake was submitting this paper before the FTC an organization well-known for its analytical rigor and expertise in the subject of competition.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2007-02-14 10:09
Overall I think the FTC has done a pretty good job of presenting a balanced view of the net neutrality issue. I commend them for calling the workshop "broadband connectivity competition policy." That is what the issue is all about-- in generic non-loaded terminology.
To be brief, I will highlight just what I thought was most noteworthy.
The distinguished practioner and academic, Fred Kahn, is always a joy to learn from. Besides making his main point that government should resist its propensity to meddle he was particularly critical of many people's use of the term "discrimination." As an economist, he was frustrated that people were using the term discriminatory just if it was differential. For those that don't know or understand economics or competition policy, Mr. Kahn stated simply -- if there is opportunity cost involved, its not discriminatory. What he reminded people of is that there are lots of legitimate economic, functional, and consumer welfare reasons why service and prices can and should be different.
Alan Davidson of Google clearly took a different tack than usual. He further retreated trying to respin Google's grandiose vision of net neutrality to be more "reasonable." He gave Google's blessing to the Internet continuing like it is -- charging differently for different speeds. He also gave America Google's permission to continuing caching and stopping denial of service attacks on the Internet. Thank you Google for your permission, it means so much.
Alan Davidson of Google then went on to say that Google only has a very "small" problem with just "one type" of router discrimination -- trying to appear reasonable. Unfortunately, to anyone that uderstands networks and competiton, his "reasonable" approach is about as "reasonable" as a doctor telling a patient that all the parts of their body are healthy but that he just needs to remove their "small" cerebellum.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2007-02-14 00:15
My core problems with Professor Tim Wu's white paper for the FTC on wireless net neutrality are with his disguised core assumptions.
First, it is clear from Mr. Wu's top two recommendations that Mr. Wu rejects U.S. competition policy and wireless competition policy as abject failures.
Mr. Wu should come clean and just say in a straightforward language what his White Paper strongly implies.
Second, Professor Wu analysis suffers from what I call the "perfection fallacy."
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2007-02-12 13:03
The evidence continues to mount from highly respected sources that Google's business model is aligned with and tolerant of promoting illegal activities.
Today, if you want another high profile reminder that Google's business model is aligned with, and tolerant of, promoting illegal activities, go no further than Page One of TheWall Street Journal: "Media firms say Google benefited from film piracy."
This is just additional evidence that Google's entire business is aligned with doing whatever it takes to encourage clicks on their ads or their "keywords" because every such click is money to Google.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Fri, 2007-02-09 18:50
Just got back from New York where Dan Brenner of NCTA and I faced off against NN proponents Professor Susan Crawford and Skype's Chris Libertelli.
It was a different format less washington-ish and more finance-ish given the audience and Eli Noam's deft moderating hand.
The quip of the day goes to my colleague Dan Brenner who summed up the net neutrality proponents views as "love the carriage, hate the carrier."
I framed my views in an MBA context, explaining what was really going on competitively and commercially in the NN debate.
The best question was how could one bridge the gulf between the polarized sides.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Fri, 2007-02-09 18:01
I was delighted to see Mark Goldberg's post alerting us in America that the Canadian Government is opposed to embracing net neutrality regulation as well.
I love Mark's no apologies free market stance. He knows the Internet's growth, vitality, and diversity has come from free citizens, freely interacting and cooperating, free of government intervention. As he said, let freedom reign!
This is more evidence that the rest of the world is not pro-net neutrality despite the balderdash NN proponents toss around.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2007-02-08 15:58
What do the following three stories of the last few days have in common?
What's the common thread? Its obvious that the capacity of the Internet will have to increase exponentially and rapidly to handle the coming exponential increase in traffic generated by Internet video.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2007-02-07 15:03
"GOOGLE'S HYPOCRITIC OATH"
As a 'Googler", I swear to fulfill to the best of my ability and judgement this covenant:
I will do harm to competitors while claiming to be their victim.
I will use double negatives like "don't be evil" to simulate sincerity and maintain 'plausible deniability.'
I will defend Google's legendary secrecy and lack of transparency by explaining secrecy is what keeps the Internet 'open'.
I will claim Google works for consumers even though all of Google's revenues come from advertisers.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2007-02-07 11:51
Today's WSJ article: "MySpace pact with Google hits a snag" is a helpful reminder of the competition double standard and hypocrisy of net neutrality proponents Google and eBay.
Google the dominant search gatekeeper with 47% share and rising is the world's leading Internet access technology. They have a pact with Myspace, one of the fastest growing sites on the planet that would pay MySpace's News Corp. $900m for placing Google's search on MySpace.
Meanwhile, the pact is supposedly hung up because MySpace would still like to have a "discrimnation" deal with eBay too, where MySpace users could use post eBay auctions on their MySpace page. But Google only likes "discrimination" that is in its favor.
Listen to a priceless quote from the WSj article today:
How does Google explain their attempt to "block, degrade and impair" eBay's ability to easily reach Myspace consumers is not precisely the net neutrality "discrimination" problem that they want to ban?
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2007-02-06 11:38
I have attached the link to Esther Dyson's important interview on net neutrality.