How Can The Same Senators Vote Against Net Neutrality, But For Broadcast Flag?

from the consistency? dept

Those who are against adding any language to the latest Telecom Act on net neutrality keep saying it's important not to regulate the industry -- because government involvement leads to inefficient results that could strangle the technology. That's a defensible position (though, there are reasonable responses to it). However, what makes no sense at all is for a Senator to declare that net neutrality legislation isn't needed because it's a bad idea to regulate this important technology... and then turn around and support the idea of a broadcast flag in the exact same bill. We mentioned back in May when Senator Stevens telecom bill first came out that he had brought back the broadcast flag concept that refuses to die. After the courts told the FCC that they couldn't mandate a broadcast flag, the entertainment industry hasn't missed an opportunity to try to sneak the broadcast flag amendment into just about any bill they can find. Today, as the Senate debated various amendments in the telecom bill, they decided to keep the broadcast flag in there (though, it's possible that someone will introduce an amendment to get rid of it later). However, it's hard to see how someone could credibly claim that net neutrality legislation is bad because it adds regulatory hurdles to a new technology, while at the same time saying the broadcast flag is good, because it adds an even bigger regulatory hurdle to technology. About the only reason to support both seems to be if you have to make good to friends you have in both the telco industry and the entertainment industry. Update: At the House (not Senate) hearings on the broadcast flag: "We have to stop measuring creativity by the financial interests of ten companies."

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  • identicon
    alternatives, 27 Jun 2006 @ 8:58pm

    Stop whining about broadcast flags

    and just stop using thier IP.

    Screw 'em. No one HAS to play with their bat and ball.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 27 Jun 2006 @ 11:50pm

      Re: Stop whining about broadcast flags

      It's not the broadcasters who own the IP. Hell, my equipment would have to honour the broadcast flag if it was set on something that's in the public domain.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      ebrke, 28 Jun 2006 @ 9:35am

      Re: Stop whining about broadcast flags

      You know, some months ago I was upset by the idea of a broadcast flag--you know, all I want to do is timeshift a few shows I like because I go to bed really early because I have to get up at the crack of dawn, etc.

      But really, you're right: screw them. I'm not going to die if I miss these shows. I realized that I frequently don't watch what I tape now. And the stuff goes into syndication and you get it rerun forever on cable channels, and there's less and less that's worth watching anyway.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Coward mouse, 27 Jun 2006 @ 9:36pm

    Good bedfellows?

    Is it such a stretch to imagine that he is in bed with both the telcos and the entertainment industry? Or even surprising?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Malcolm, 27 Jun 2006 @ 9:37pm

    "About the only reason to support both seems to be if you have to make good to friends you have in both the telco industry and the entertainment industry."


    Look - If the good Senator can piss off the people who give him money, or piss off - well, the rest of us, he'll piss off the rest of us. Every time.

    After all - what can we do, fire him for incompetence? If all of the Alaskans with an interest in staving off the broadcast flag rose up against him, would he feel any heat?

    John Sununu is talking about introducing an amendment to remove the broadcast flag language. The House version of the bill doesn't have any language like that in it at all.

    Keep pushing your Congresspersons, in the Senate and in the House, to stop this thing. Don't send email - bots can send email. Make a phone call on the way to work, and let the offices of your lawmakers know how you feel. They'll respond to those. And don't let up the heat.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Trebor, 27 Jun 2006 @ 9:56pm

    Greed leading the blind

    They had the best hookers at the lobby party.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Sean, 27 Jun 2006 @ 10:10pm

    Heh...

    If you think about it for a few moments, you notice that this all seems to be about publicity for both sides. If you think for a moment longer, if you can somehow stop givingour attention to this it may just go away, as they thrive off this negative and positive attention.

    But hey, it's almost impossible to do that, and if we did they may just start passing bullshit laws and bills that will throw us into a full on Communist Government.

    Oh well. Fuck all this bullshit. Just leave the Internet the way it is, a place where we truely are 'free'.

    That's my two cents.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Michael, 28 Jun 2006 @ 5:54am

    What's the big deal?

    Shouldn't we be outside or you know... paying attention to our families and friends rather than watching tv?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 28 Jun 2006 @ 6:35am

    They are typical politicans - anything they do results in more power or money for them. So if there's any question why a politican does a certain thing, the answer's always power or money - or both.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    hexjones, 28 Jun 2006 @ 6:39am

    Shouldn't we be outside or you know... paying attention to our families and friends rather than watching tv?

    It's raining and everyone wants to watch a movie.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Daryl Licked, 28 Jun 2006 @ 7:09am

    congressional influence

    walter williams said it best.
    we need an amendment that whatever congress passes for one person must aply to all

    the alternative is to get congress and house back to the old days when they had no ability to influence anything, and therefore couldnt be bought off.

    so when do i get my 40 and a mule?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    ExploiT, 28 Jun 2006 @ 7:56am

    I agree with the senator.

    Well i completely agree, even though i dont like how he is in bed with the 2 industries....i agree with him saying that government regulation is a bad idea...it simply is...a capitalist economy is meant to be let be and ran fluid and free...the government shouldnt influence it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike (profile), 28 Jun 2006 @ 8:33am

      Re: I agree with the senator.

      Well i completely agree, even though i dont like how he is in bed with the 2 industries....i agree with him saying that government regulation is a bad idea...it simply is...a capitalist economy is meant to be let be and ran fluid and free...the government shouldnt influence it.

      Wait, how do you agree with him when he's saying regulation is a bad idea for one industry, but essential for the other?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      hexjones, 28 Jun 2006 @ 9:42am

      Re: I agree with the senator.

      I agree with him saying that government regulation is a bad idea...it simply is...a capitalist economy is meant to be let be and ran fluid and free...the government shouldnt influence it.
      I like what Tim Berners-Lee said "For example, the market system depends on the rule that you can't photocopy money."

      Meaning that there IS an important role that government plays in a free-market. There isn't really capitalism unless everyone plays fair.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Don S, 28 Jun 2006 @ 10:27am

        Re: Re: I agree with the senator.

        There is more to the Broadcast Flag than just a digital marker on the signal. It also involves allowing content creators the right to approve or disapprove of any technology that might be able to play said content. This would also apply to satellite radio. If this gets on the books, Hollywood-mandated DRM won't be far behind. THAT is what all the fuss is about and why you should be very concerned about it.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Mousky, 28 Jun 2006 @ 10:53am

        Re: Re: I agree with the senator.

        He is not saying there is no role for the government in the free market. Everyone recognizes that the government has a role in the free market. What he is saying that the government should NOT influence the market. There is a difference between enforcing rules and influencing the market.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    eb, 28 Jun 2006 @ 9:46am

    Oops, forgot to complete post

    How does he say its a bad idea for one industry but essential for the other? Easy--whatever benefits corporate interests is good, period. He's a politician, he can always spin it somehow.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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