The I In IP Is For What? Incumbent?

from the so-that's-how-it-works dept

It’s no secret that the telcos want to create a two-tiered internet that lets them control and charge for certain services. However, it’s interesting to see them try to doubletalk their way around the issue. A spokesperson from AT&T is trying redefine certain services as not really being on the internet — even if they are: “Our IP [Internet protocol] video service is not the same thing as the Internet.” Yes, and I assume that their VoIP isn’t the internet either. And, soon, it will be that their search engine or their favorite websites won’t be on the internet either.

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Comments on “The I In IP Is For What? Incumbent?”

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Andy Abramson (user link) says:

Not The Same


I thing the IP network that the spokesperson is really a private managed network, the same way the ATM machines we all use are not accessible to the public via the Internet. Same for cash registers, credit card scanning devices, even the EDI data that runs from WalMart stores to their distribution centers and to manufacturing partners.

While they all use IP based communication networks, the so called “Internet” as the general public knows it is not traversed.

What the spokesperson is talking about is the network that connects the various cable MSO’s various systems, sending content, billing data, corporate info, etc.

Matt says:

Re: Not The Same

The type of network you’re describing is a closed-circuit LAN, which IS part of the internet, abeit a part that is not accessible to the rest of the world (sort of like a locked door. However, it sounds like the spokesperson is talking about an IP Video service, for transmission of video accross the internet. And yes, if it is transmission of data between computers, and the conncetion between the systems is not ad hoc, it is the internet. The data is travelling across a net of interconnecting servers, routers, and end-user computers.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Not The Same

Sounds like you are talking about a VPN.

The definition I found for VoIP is this:
VoIP stands for ‘V’oice ‘o’ver ‘I’nternet ‘P’rotocol. As the term says VoIP tries to let go voice (mainly human) through IP packets and, in definitive through Internet. VoIP can use accelerating hardware to achieve this purpose and can also be used in a PC environment.

Sounds like some kind of encapsulation, that being, it uses the internet protocol as a transport for their data.

Hence, it’s using the internet. 😉

UDP, TCP/IP, HTTP, FTP are all “protocols” that use the IP stack to encapsulate the data.

No difference.

Harry Bools says:

Re: Re: Re: TELCO's

I think you’re missing the point. Ok, so yes the Internet means different things to all of us, but the Internet was designed as a utility network, not as an entertainment venue. Neither was it designed to make money. It was designed by the government as a means to bridge the data communication gap that existed back in the 60s and 70s.

And yes it has evolved over the years. But it did so because of the freedom of our open commerce system. It was business that drove the Internet to develop in the way that it did. And as the Internet developed into a larger organism to serve the business needs, consumers began to flock to the Internet as an easier means to by their goods and services. And thus Internet marketing was born to fill the need to advertise to those consumers. But all along, the government, Universities, and businesses have used the Internet for their own ends.

If the Telco had offered a private, cheaper solution for their services over their private WAN in the early 90s you wouldn’t hear people complaining like they do today. We’ve gotten spoiled by what the Internet brings us.

And you may as well know people, that in the upper echelons of the Internet, nothing is free. AT&T pays SBC Ameritech, Qwest, and UUNet for access through their networks and vice versa.

While I agree that we shouldn’t let the TELCOs get as big as they once were, if we don’t allow them to continue to evolve with the rest of the Internet, it will hurt our communications in the long run.

Rikko says:

Re: Re: Re:2 TELCO's

And you may as well know people, that in the upper echelons of the Internet, nothing is free. AT&T pays SBC Ameritech, Qwest, and UUNet for access through their networks and vice versa.

Yes, and we pay AT&T for our own access to all of these networks. It’s exactly like mini-dish satellite TV. The providers have big dishes that they get the primary feeds from, and they pay those operators the licensing fees.
Then they retrieve those signals, combine them and beam them up to their own satellites, and those signals are in turn received by the end users with smaller dishes. And the end users pay the licensing fees to their middleman operator.

Nobody here is getting something for nothing – but I see the telcos trying to get more for the same.

jeff (user link) says:


That’s a good point. I’m from Colorado, ALL we have in this area for decent broadband is Comcast (HURRY UP SBC AND COX, C’MON). If people actually knew what the things they do meant, surely the majority of their customers would be rather upset and they’d stop paying their bills.

About two months ago, I got a letter from Comcast telling me that I was going to be charged a little more every month for “using” the e-mail service they provide. The only way in which I “use” the e-mail service is to log in every once in a while to check and see what thousand-count the spam messages are up to. The e-mail account they give you when you get hooked up with service cannot be cancelled.

And they wanted me to pay them for using it…so they wanted me to pay for a service I couldn’t chose to receive or not receive.

The spam-count is up to 8-thousand-something today.

After receiving that letter, I ripped the cable box and modem out of the wall, put ’em in a box and brought ’em down to the billing center to close my account. It took a solid 45 minutes and I had to be quite an asshole, but at least I don’t have to pay for their crappy e-mail services…and they finally allowed me to use a cable modem I purchased myself. I broke theirs while yanking it out of the wall (broke the coax connector).

Moral of the story: whenever a big company tries to screw you, just break their sh*t and scare ’em a little, they’ll let off.

LoneWolf (user link) says:

No Subject Given

I use the internet for basically entertainment purposes only, and I watch lots of videos (podcasts rock). Thats it. Now the possability of me having to pay more to do the same thing I’ve been doing for the past 6 years is rediculous. However, if my ISP offered a higher package for high bandwidth needs I’d gladly upgrade in a secound. And, I’m NOT paying them for which serivces I choose use. I’m paying them for the connectivity and bandwidth as a single package where I can choose what I want to use it for from then on. Taking away that choice reduces value and as a web designer is a huge turnoff knowing that the technology will now be limited and controled by several telco’s.

Anonymous Patriot (user link) says:

Never underestimate the power of human ignorance

The problem is that most people don?t realize that all the internet is, is a large network of computers.

When you say ?internet? to most people ? they think of the world wide web, and are just as likely to think of ?the internet? as synonymous with ?Internet Explorer.?

And how can you blame people, with AOL running commercials promising to ?take people to a better internet,? and our illustrious, if illiterate president telling people that ?Every internet address begins with WWW!?

So of course the telcos see dollar signs. If the web has become ?the internet? then all of the other things that the internet can do / provide outside of the web must be EXTRAS ? which you should have to pay for. ?See, we aren?t going to let you use our pipes for free…?

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