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. icon
    Richard Bennett (profile), 1 Aug 2006 @ 5:58pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: It's not actually a lie

    I'm spouting telco talking points? Really? If by "talking point" you mean "inconvenient fact", I suppose that's true. So what? Very few people are capable of dealing with this issue at any sort of deep level, so alas, the public discourse is necessarily dumbed-down.

    At least you don't find me saying things like: "As has been pointed out repeatedly, QoS is not the best solution to the problem. More bandwidth works much better."

    That's a total non sequitur. How much bandwidth do you have to add to a link in order to ensure that low-volume VoIP always gets low latency? And what happens to the future load on the network when that bandwidth is added? And then how much more do you have to add? That's not a solution, it's prescription for somebody else's economic ruin. Bandwidth is not free.

    Trying to make out that Gary Bachula, the public relations director for Internet 2, has given the final solution on the QoS question is to embarrass yourself. QoS has been a hot research area for 30 years, and Bachula's personal opinion is simply one data point in a field with thousands. The engineers who carried out the QoS trial for Internet 2 (five years ago, doncha know) don't even agree with his assessment of their work, and one has come out in favor of the Stevens bill.

    It just so happens that on this issue the telcos are right and Google and the Lefty Blogs and the scare groups are wrong. Deal with it.

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