Funny, The Telcos Weren't So Against Regulations When It Helped Them

from the hands-off-now? dept

It's getting somewhat annoying to see just how partisan the network neutrality debate has become, with both the telcos and the internet folks spinning the rhetoric in the debate well beyond the actual issues. Both sides are making statements that have little basis in reality, but it still seems like the claims from the telcos and their supporters that this is about "keeping regulatory hands off the internet" are the most silly. Remember, these are the telcos. They've benefited from billions of dollars in subsidies and regulations in their favor over the years -- regulations that granted them monopoly rights of way and helped them get rid of most of the competition. That, again, is the real issue. If there were true competition that would allow others to enter the market, then there wouldn't even be a debate about network neutrality, because no firm would realistically be able to break network neutrality without a serious backlash. So, the next time someone says this is all about keeping regulators away from the telcos, remind them that regulations built these telcos into the position they're in today -- and ask them if they're willing to trade in all the benefits they got from those other regulations?
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  1. identicon
    Patrick Mullen, 24 May 2006 @ 6:37am

    Re: commodity bandwidth would make it irrelevant

    And one issue is that while it may just require a flick of a few swwitches to activate the "dark fiber" it does cost a bit of money to light it and keep it lit. The fiber was dark because there wasn't demand for it, now, quite a bit of that inventory is gone.

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