The Fallacy of Net Neutrality

The Fallacy of Net Neutrality

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a€œThere is little dispute that the Internet should continue as an open platform, a€ notes the U.S. Federal Communications Commission. Yet, in a curious twist of logic, the agency has moved to discontinue the legal regime successfully yielding that magnificent platform. In late 2010, it imposed a€œnetwork neutralitya€ regulations on broadband access providers, both wired and wireless. Networks cannot (a) block subscribersa€™ use of certain devices, applications, or services; (b) unreasonably discriminate, offering superior access for some services over others. The Commission argues that such rules are necessary, as the Internet was designed to bar a€œgatekeepers.a€ The view is faulty, both in it engineering claims and its economic conclusions. Networks routinely manage traffic and often bundle content with data transport precisely because such coordination produces superior service. When a€œwalled gardensa€ emerge, including AOL in 1995, Japana€™s DoCoMo iMode in 1999, or Applea€™s iPhone in 2007, they often disrupt old business models, thrilling consumers, providing golden opportunities for application developers, advancing Internet growth. In some cases these gardens have dropped their walls; others remain vibrant. The a€œopen Interneta€ allows consumers, investors, and innovators to choose, discovering efficiencies. The FCC has mistaken that spontaneous market process for a planned market structure, imposing new rules to a€œprotecta€ what evolved without them.PC World rates this 4G service a€œdirt cheap.a€9 Third, to upgrade the 2G experience , MetroPCS performed a little magic. Working with ... 10 But the special data- compression tweak improves customer service, providing economic merit. The confusion ... And benefits springing from the option for consumers to get more when they pay more are simply dismissed: a€œWhat if that $60 unlimited plan were $100?

Title:The Fallacy of Net Neutrality
Author:Thomas W. Hazlett
Publisher:Encounter Books - 2013-10-10


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