While everyone's worked up about how to keep the Internet an open platform, another little-known controversy is quickly gaining steam. How it plays out could determine whether millions of Americans get to build their own, local alternatives to big, corporate ISPs such as Comcast and Verizon.
Chattanooga's public electric utility offers residents lightning-quick connections -- much to big telecoms' dismay.
The FCC says it's writing rules for the Internet to preserve the status quo. To quote the FCC website: "The 'Open Internet' is the Internet as we know it." Open, in part, "because it treats all traffic that flows across the network in roughly the same way." Some people fear Internet providers could change the flow by charging more for certain businesses, but it's a complicated issue. And "Net Neutrality" is not a scintillating term, as even the man who coined it admits.
A Net Neutrality proposal—one that Comcast publicly supports and has been subject of protest and mainstream media criticism from those who believe the rules would slow innovation, limit speech and drive up the cost of access to the Internet—is open for public comment. And now, op-eds in favor of the unpopular proposal from Comcast-linked think tanks are appearing in major publications - from the Wall Street Journal to U.S News and World Report - without disclosing the institution's ties to Comcast.
The Federal Communications Commission could have used an Internet “fast lane” on Tuesday as a flood of Net Neutrality comments caused its website to sputter and forced the agency to extend its deadline for accepting public input on its controversial plan.
A senior congressional Republican this week introduced legislation that would bar the federal government from using its powers to help community-owned Internet service providers compete with private telecommunications companies. The House approved the proposal, 223-200.
If you're a Netflix customer on Verizon, there's a good chance you've spending a lot more time with that bright red buffering screen than you'd like. That's why, over the past few weeks, Netflix and Verizon have been displacing blame by taking pot shots at each other. But while they're busy bickering, we're the ones suffering. What the hell is really going on?
If Internet service providers are allowed to speed up, slow down or block various Web-based services to serve their own interests, it will have a chilling effect on innovation, investment and startup activity in Maine and elsewhere, said a panel of experts including U.S. Sen. Angus King.
While the FCC has every right to step in and prevent acts like this from occurring, they’re standing idly by while Internet service providers continue to pour millions of lobbyist dollars into the coffers of those in Washington who should be doing what’s best for the people.
Verizon lobbyists are canvassing Capitol Hill with a curious new argument against Net Neutrality — it hurts disabled people. The odd pitch comes as the Obama administration is mulling a plan to scrap Net Neutrality — the idea that Internet service providers should treat all websites equally — and instead allow ISPs to create Internet "fast lanes" for companies that can afford to pay for speedier service.
Earlier this month, the FCC voted in favor of a pretty thoroughly terrible proposal that would kill Net Neutrality as we know it. A proposal that would give broadband companies an absurd amount of powers that they themselves delineated. And a proposal that would give Verizon (and broadband carriers in general) the ability to act as internet gatekeeper—playing favorites and charging whatever the hell they damn well please.
Nobody should be surprised anymore by news of big, fat telecom mergers. AT&T's acquiring DirecTV for nearly $49 billion is just the latest in a long line of tie-ups among phone, cable and satellite companies. It's the lies I can't stand.
Brian Williams met Edward J. Snowden in the Kempinski Hotel in Moscow last week after months of negotiations between NBC News and intermediaries for Snowden.
AT&T's recently announced, almost $50 billion bid for DirecTV says a lot about where the media industry is going but even more about how far the NFL’s power has gone. According to press reports and SEC filings, AT&T can walk away from the deal if DirecTV fails to renew its NFL Sunday Ticket package with the NFL.
For the next several months, the FCC will hear public comment on proposals for governing Internet traffic that have reignited the debate over net neutrality – the idea that all content should be treated equally by Internet service providers. Craig Aaron, president and CEO of Free Press, a nonpartisan organization that advocates for universal and affordable Internet access, explains why Net Neutrality is crucial.
Telecom conglomerates often prevail in debates about the future of media by pretending that the issues are too complicated for Americans to understand. But there is nothing complicated about the current battle over the future of the Internet. Nor is there anything complicated about the need for citizens to rise up and defend net neutrality -- also known as the First Amendment of the Internet, because it provides the guarantee of free speech online for all.
Community and media activists rally outside shareholder meeting to oppose acquisition of Time Warner Cable.
AT&T, the second largest wireless provider in the nation, announced its purchase of satellite television giant DIRECTV for nearly $50 billion. The companies said the takeover will allow for more bundling of mobile, TV and Internet plans, and they will serve a combined 26 million video users. Matt Wood of Free Press and Jim Nail of Forrester Research join Gwen Ifill to discuss the move.