HideTechdirt is off for the long weekend! We'll be back with our regular posts tomorrow.
HideTechdirt is off for the long weekend! We'll be back with our regular posts tomorrow.

Mike McCurry: Will You Pay Google's Bandwidth Bills For The Rest Of This Year?

from the worth-asking dept

We've already covered how much dishonesty there is in the network neutrality debate -- often involving editorial pieces in major newspapers penned by lobbyists. In almost every case, those editorials aren't just misleading, they include flat out lies. Broadband Reports points us to the latest, written by Mike McCurry, who runs a lobbying effort funded by AT&T. He's written up an editorial for the Baltimore Sun that doesn't bother to mention his lobbying duties, or who has funded them. McCurry tries to make it seem as though the whole net neutrality thing is simply a ploy by Google to get "free" bandwidth. He notes, derisively, that "a $117 billion company like Google wants legislation that would drive Internet prices higher." Of course, he doesn't happen to mention that his viewpoint is funded by AT&T, who at close of business on Monday appears to be worth (oh, look at that) $117 billion as well.

While we're not convinced legislation is the right solution (it's focused on the wrong thing, first of all), it's extremely worrisome that the telcos and their friends keep resorting to trotting out lies. There are plenty of legitimate reasons to not support the various laws as written, but this constant string of lies certainly suggests that the telcos recognize their position is pretty weak. However, rather than just accepting the rhetoric on both sides, shouldn't we call the lies out? Among the whoppers in the editorial: "The "neutral" proposal that companies like Google are touting will ensure that they never have to pay a dime no matter how much bandwidth they use, and consumers who may only use their computers to send e-mail and play Solitaire get to foot the bill." That's a flat out lie. Google pays tremendously large bandwidth bills, and the more they use the more they pay. However, if McCurry is going to pretend Google "never [has] to pay a dime no matter how much bandwidth they use," let's see him put up or shut up. If McCurry really believes that, will he agree to pay Google's bandwidth bills for the rest of this year? We're sure Google would have no problem having McCurry contribute -- but we doubt he can actually afford their bandwidth bill. Still, if he's so concerned about his own bill from playing Solitaire, we're also quite sure that Google would simply trade him. So, come on, Mike, why won't you trade bandwidth bills with Google? According to you, you wouldn't have to pay a dime...

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    Kirt Olson, 1 Aug 2006 @ 9:09pm

    Re: But what does this guy know?

    " On the technical side, my objection to the 'Net Neutrality' bills (Markey, Snowe-Dorgan, Sensenbrnner, Wyden) is the ban on for-fee Quality of Service [QoS]. QoS is a legitimate service offering, especially in the day of BitTorrent and what's to follow it.

    "QoS is perfectly permissible under the original architecture of the Internet - IP packets have a Type of Service field - and it's necessary if you want to offer telco-quality voice. The original architecture was flawed in that it didn't have overload protection."

    You mix comments on fee-for-QoS and QoS alone. I have no problem with QoS offerings on a flat-fee Internet. If we decide that certain services need specific packet handling, let's do it for all comers as part of the service. The proposed laws prohibit the fees, not the function.

    "They all seem to be worried that ISPs have secret plan to sell top rank - to pick a search engine that loads faster than anyone else's. But it's not clear that a), anyone has done that; b), that it's technically achievable; or c) that it is necessarily abusive; or d) that their customers would stand for it."

    It is clear that organizations:

    a) have chosen favored {applications|partners|suppliers} and arranged that they worked better than competitors or even blocked competitors altogether. Antitrust legislation offers some relief, but even so organizations try these tactics.

    b) used laws to bolster what may have been technically marginal as in the DMCA.

    c) abuse laws, regulations, standards and contracts to enrich themselves at the expense of weaker players.

    d) possess a reach that eliminates or reduces customer's abilities to affect the organization. Absent local competitors and high levels of consumer interaction, bad suppliers thrive on the customers who don't know another way.

    Markets do not automatically provide social good or technical superiority. Neither does regulation do this automatically. It takes thought, effort, discussion, and political action to approximate social good.

    --Kirt

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown for basic formatting. (HTML is not supported.)
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Special Affiliate Offer

Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.