My Net Nootrality Studies


If I write “net nootrality” the way it should be spelled, my posts pop up on a zillion google alerts — which produce an avalanche of emails from stakeholders in the debate.
I’m trying to get ready for a China trip so I can’t handle an email tsunami this week. But suffice it to say that I’ve spent some time with players in the Net N standoff from across the spectrum and have some more commiserating and learning to do — but this is a really intriguing, high stakes policy challenge.
However, at the end of last April, I received this email from some Net N enthusiasts committed to laissez-faire gaming rights:

Group InfoName: Gamers For Net Neutrality
Type: Organizations – Non-Profit Organizations
Description: Stand up for your gaming rights and join more than 1.5 million Americans of every political persuasion in the fight for Net Neutrality — the principle that ensures that gamers are free to go where they want, do what they like, and connect with whom they chose online.
Without Net Neutrality, your Internet Service Provider is free to charge you extra for playing World of Warcraft®, to interfere with Xbox Live®, or to completely shut off your ability to access your favorite Web sites. Net Neutrality affects your entire online experience!
Join Gamers for Net Neutrality. Together, we’ll fight to protect Internet freedom and find innovative ways to educate the entire gaming community about the importance of this issue.

Frankly, I don’t even really want to comment on this. I just want to have it here as it reminds me of some of the odd bedfellows that hang around with civic-minded, commons concerned advocate organizations like Free Press (though I should say that I see no connection between FP and the senders of this email — just a common cause).
But more to digest on the subject which does fascinate me. The infrastructure upgrade costs of the internet backbone — which is privately held in many different hands — is going to be staggering, and the question of who will pay and how is not insignificant.
More soon.
— Steve Clemons


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