Congressman Who Was Against Protecting Net Neutrality Flips Sides After Realizing The Harm Broadband Giants Can Cause

from the nice-to-see dept

Over the last few weeks we've seen a number of politicians come out on one side or another concerning the FCC's net neutrality plans, but most of them were pretty much expected. It actually was nice to see some net neutrality supporters be quite explicit in their support for Title II reclassification (like Senator Chuck Schumer), but beyond that there weren't too many surprises. That's why it was actually great to see Rep. Gary Peters, who is currently running for the Senate in Michigan, come out in favor of net neutrality, warning of the harm that could be caused by the fast lanes and slow lanes as allowed by the current FCC proposal.
"If large corporations can pay more for faster service for their content, this effectively creates a 'slow lane' for everyone else."
This is notable, because four years ago, Peters was actually one of the group of Representatives who actively opposed strong net neutrality rules by the FCC. It appears that four years later he's changed his mind. In his new statement, he makes it clear that he now realizes how many entrepreneurs and innovators rely on an open internet:
"Startups and small businesses are the engines of job creation and economic growth in Michigan, and they rely on open access to the Internet to stay competitive. I have serious concerns that allowing large, established corporations to purchase faster services puts these startups and small businesses at a disadvantage and stifles innovation."
That's a far cry from the letter Peters signed four years ago, which was entirely focused on the question of how these rules might upset the big broadband access providers. It's good to see Peters has realized that the future is in innovative startups, not in protecting big cable and telco oligopolies.

Filed Under: gary peters, innovation, michigan, net neutrality, reclassification, switching sides, title ii


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  1. icon
    Whatever (profile), 17 Jul 2014 @ 12:18am

    what is net neutrality really?

    How about this: What is net neutrality, really?

    Since not everyone peers with everyone else, there is always some inherent advantage of being peered in certain ways and not in others. Would it be considered a negative for companies like Netflix to run a big pipe to the door of the ISP and offer up the peering arrangements? Can you really stop what is the nature of the internet?

    Google as an example spents relentlessly on their own backbone to bring service directly to every major peering point in the world. That means that, like it or not, YouTube has an unfair advantage by having peering to every major ISP pretty much right on their network edge, no third parties in the way. So Google may have multiple 10gig peers right into your ISP - is that really fair? In internet terms, it's normal, but is it neutral?

    Would true net neutrality require the ISPs to peer only to third party interchanges, and have websites and services only connect that same way? Would that be more fair?

    Is the net really neutral, and can it ever be?

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