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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
    Marc K, 10 Jun 2008 @ 11:08am

    What does tiered bandwidth have to do with tiered access?!

    I just thought that this question needed to be asked:

    If I pay Virgin Media £23 each month for a cable package that includes "Unlimited" Internet at 2 Mb/s down and 384Kb up ('Subject to whatever we think is "Fair Use" at the time -- not to mention bandwidth throttling policies that seem to set the bar very low -- because we don't actually want you to download all that stuff we bait you with in our adverts!'), then I want to access WHATEVER site that I want, or use any service, within my allocated bandwidth.

    I use Quality of Service on my home router on the odd occasion that I do use BitTorrent etc (which can be perfectly legal in any case), but I'm not much of a "bandwidth hog" -- and surely it's the ISP's fault for telling me that I can "download X TV shows in Y minutes!" (Virgin actually do this in national newspapers! The irony, of course, is that it's often right next to a "get off your sofa" themed advert for Virgin Active gyms, of all things!) in the first place? Seems like they're complaining that their customers are actually doing what they'd told...

    Of course I understand the "burst" nature of a quoted maximum speed, but it annoys me to hear the Virgin Media Chief say that Net Neutrality is "bullocks". I'm sure that if he was in my situation and he read all the articles around about how the iPlayer's bandwidth spikes "should be paid for by the BBC", for instance, only for Virgin Media to go on to incorporate it as part of its much-touted "we'll record all the crap we can for you!" Catch Up TV On Demand service, that he'd be pretty annoyed! Seems like he needs a taste of the "slow lane" -- but this is what I'm on about, it's not just like dialup when the bandwidth is limited but you can still use whatever service you can manage to, it seems more like they want a system where the actual bandwidth you're paying for is even more uncertain, as it varies according to who's established deals with the ISP.

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