Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Blocking Bits and Editorial Control

Sue Crawford has a couple of blog posts (here and here) about the Net Neutrality debate. There have been 4 biggies: one was blocking free conferencing calls, and the 3 she mentions:

Like the Verizon/NARAL flap and the Pearl Jam escapade, here’s another story about currently-legal action, permitted under someone’s elaborately-walled Terms of Service, that interferes with basic communications. Comcast will say “we’re not blocking.” But they’re degrading, prioritizing, and filtering, without telling users. And they’re planning to do much more of this. What’s the solution? Structural separation. You’re either a plain-vanilla transport company serving all comers, or you’re something else competing for our attention. But this mixture, this hybrid of apparent-communication plus editorial control, is unacceptable.

At some point, we will have law which will be messy and awful. Thanks to the big guys for bringing this about.

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