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...

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  1. identicon
    Kirt Olson, 2 Aug 2006 @ 7:17pm

    Re: Re: It's not actually a lie

    "Kirt says: 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.

    "He misses my point. I was saying that putting overload protection in TCP killed the TOS model, because it forced TCP-dependence on IP and killed precedence."

    I don't know if I missed it before, but I'm not getting it now. I don't know what you mean by the "TOS model" which I cannot find mentioned in the piece from which I quoted.

    "There is no rational basis for a "one size fits all" pricing model in a system of mixed traffic for mixed use."

    In what ways do the US highway system, the national airspace system, or the national waterways system employ differential pricing? I see cars and trucks, jets and Cessnas, and Barges and rowboats sharing these traffic corridors. They transport different payloads, of differing priorities, through shared systems.

    [...]

    And he also makes several fanciful charges about things he imagines "organizations" have done. These charges being almost wholly without factual basis, I won't respond to them in detail...

    I believe you raised 4 points, saying they never happened. I answered each by saying that organizations have done these things repeatedly. I chose to use organizations because that includes regulatory agencies, corporations, privately held companines, trade associations and other forms of collective actors.

    I don't believe the discussion is moved forward by my documenting many cases, but I assure you I had cases in mind for every statement. And we don't have to limit ourselves to the recent past--the Jordaphone ruling in 1922 made interconnect with the PSTN legal and AT&T and the Bell System illegally threatened customers and shut off their services until the MCI case about 20 years later. These behaviors occur time and again even to the present day.

    Perhaps I should make my point in a summary way: We should not trust the suppliers of transport to provide equal opportunity for all users. Absent regulation, they will not do so and they will raise many arguments as to why they should not. If we want equal opportunity, we must make it a condition of doing business.

    --Kirt

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