Net Neutrality Debate Again Descends Into Shouting, Farce
from the par-for-the-course dept
Net neutrality is a complex issue, but as tends to happen with most things these days, it gets boiled down into easily consumable, though not wholly accurate, ideological soundbites from both sides. And even when people try to have an open, even-keeled discourse about the issue, they still run into problems explaining things well. For the most part, debate on net neutrality has glossed over the fundamental, but perhaps less incendiary issues, and been characterized by intellectual dishonesty and propagandizing from activist groups on both sides. It was hardly surprising, then, to read about a panel at the Supernova conference descending into a shouting match between a Commerce Department official (ie the "anti-regulation" guy) and "pro-net neutrality" supporters in the audience. Really, it's an apt characterization of the whole debate: a bunch of yelling, very little exchange of useful information, and nobody really moves from their previously established ideology. All this means is that, in the end, it's very unlikely for the right, or even a good, solution to emerge. Instead, it will just come down to whichever side can muster the most political clout -- which is pretty much how things have gone in telecom regulation anyway.