Camping the System: Net Neutrality and Eve

Robert Miller 2017-11-28

While camping a gate in Fountain recently an FC allowed certain traffic to jump through unmolested, while destroying other ships without hesitation.  In a similar fashion, ISPs may take advantage of changes coming to the Internet next month.

US regulations that require network providers to treat all traffic equally are expected to be rolled back next month by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). This raises the specter of tiered access to content and consequent problems for gamers and other content consumers. Some US Eve players wonder if this change will affect them, asking whether they will need to pay extra in order to access the servers, and some real life examples from other countries with weak neutrality enforcement paint a dismal picture.

Portuguese wireless carrier Meo “offers a package that’s very different from those available in the US,” according to Business Insider. “Users pay for traditional ‘data’ — and on top of that, they pay for additional packages based on the kind of data and apps they want to use.” Services such as email, chat, search, video and gaming are all charged separately. As recently as 2015, when neutrality rules went into effect in the US, consumers were forced to pay extra or were completely blocked from certain content. Your Internet service provider (ISP) could provide free search access to Ask Jeeves or Yahoo but charge you extra to use Google. Your ISP’s financial stake in a large content provider’s games could mean access to those games were free, but access to others could cost more. Your startup business couldn’t access consumers, who found your site difficult to reach due to bandwidth limits.

US House Representative Ro Khanna of California in an October Tweet said, “In Portugal, with no net neutrality, internet providers are starting to split the net into packages,” he wrote. “A huge advantage for entrenched companies, but it totally ices out startups trying to get in front of people which stifles innovation. This is what’s at stake, and that’s why we have to save net neutrality.”

Opponents of net neutrality argue the regulations “overturned decades of precedent that treated the internet as a realm where private individuals and groups could freely act and express ideas without the presence of government intervention,” according to conservative advocacy group Information Station. They contend that net neutrality equals government regulation of the internet and that the Internet is different than traditional utilities like water or electricity. “The expensive upfront investments that lead to monopolies in these industries don’t apply to internet service providers,” they say. “In fact, while there are only a handful of traditional utility providers, there are roughly 4,400 ISPs across the country. When this level of competition is naturally present, government involvement will only impede internet consumers and businesses alike.”

Neutrality supporters view the Internet as an indispensable “utility”, similar to water or electricity, and one that should be regulated and protected from special interests locking out those they dislike. Neutrality opponents view the Internet as a “wild west” environment where “competition” should range free.

Most observers aren’t buying that view. “The FCC under Pai is handing over the internet to a few humongous gatekeepers who see the rest of us as products to be delivered to advertisers, not as citizens needing communications that serve democracy’s needs,” said Michael Copps, a former FCC commissioner and current special adviser at Common Cause. In a statement earlier this week Copps said, “FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s scorched-earth plan for net neutrality displays callous disregard for both process and substance. The chairman’s plan to do away with net neutrality will be a disaster for consumers and yet another handout for big business.”

The FCC votes on the repeal December 14.

 

 

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Comments

  • Alot

    Dark turn of events. I’m always left wondering if absolutely anyone believes the Republican talking point of “net neutrality equals government regulation yada yada yada”. I feel that anyone who says they buy that are either payed to say it or could use some help in actually getting connect to the internet -.-

    November 28, 2017 at 7:12 am
    • Kyeudo Alot

      The free market works. The freer the market, the better it works. Most of the “evil ISP” stories are stories of government collusion with big business to shut competition out of a market. Getting the government out of the picture is how you eliminate evil behavior from ISPs. Businesses have a financial stake in treating their customers as good or better than a competitor would treat them, unless the government has eliminated the competition through one means or another.

      November 28, 2017 at 4:36 pm
      • Carvj94 Kyeudo

        Bullshit bro. ISPs mistreat their customers right now cause they usually have monopolies in their areas. Removing net neutrality only gives them more billing options. There’s literally no way this repeal could possibly result in cheaper internet costs.

        Hell when my modem broke (cause they always give you crappy ones rather than let you supply your own)they blamed my lack of connection on my wifi router. Told them that my computer was connected by cable not by wifi and they said that my cable must be faulty. After a bunch of back and forth they sent a tech out who immediately cut and made a new ethernet cable which didn’t give me internet access. Finally the tech looks at the modem and is like “oh. Your modems burnt out. The lights aren’t even on.” Tells me I need to pay attention to this stuff and tell customer support that it’s broken next time. So after he replaces it with a spare from his truck he goes on his way, and on my next bill I get charged an extra 30$ for the ethernet cable they made me even though I didn’t need or want it. Horrible customer service from my only option for internet.

        All that by the way was from a Comcast subsidiary. Four years ago they bought out the two small time ISPs in my area then merged them into the Comcast owned Spectrum . The reason net neutrality is needed is because the second it’s repealed Comcast and Time Warner are gonna be screwing the east and west cost respectively. Since whether you believe it or not they do in fact have an oligarchy. That’s why the they are the top ISPs despite being near the bottom of every customer satisfaction poll.

        November 28, 2017 at 5:27 pm
        • Kyeudo Carvj94

          “Since whether you believe it or not they do in fact have an oligarchy.”

          It sounds like you are complaining that, because the big businesses have influence on what regulations exist and what subsidies exist, the smaller businesses have no chance due to artificial barriers and so have allowed the big providers to monopolize areas.

          Maybe you don’t realize it, but your complaints all revolve around government killing the incentives to do better.

          November 28, 2017 at 7:06 pm
          • CK Kyeudo

            You have a point on this. Government allowing monopolies on the delivery system stifles development of new delivery systems. Nationalize the delivery system and you can allow a more open market for billing schemes.

            November 28, 2017 at 8:28 pm
          • Kyeudo CK

            I hesitate to support nationalizing anything. Nationalizing almost always results in lower quality, higher taxes, and rationing. If the government were responsible for getting everyone internet, they might say “Who needs speeds of more than 1mb/s ?” just so they can meet their mandate to have some percentage of homeowners covered with “high-speed” access. Also, you can’t opt out of the taxes. Look at Britain and the BBC. No one with a television over there can avoid paying the BBC, no matter how terrible the BBC’s performance or practices are.

            November 28, 2017 at 8:50 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            You say that but nationalizing the water and power supply gives us drinkable water and the electricity to power basic appliances. A good example is in northern states where before natural gas companies were more regulated they could cut the gas supply to your home in winter for any reason which caused water pipes to burst causing expensive fixes. Not to mention people who may have suffered and died due to a payment getting lost in the mail or something. Now they are required to provide gas to homes all winter and charge the owners a fair price for that gas later. That wouldn’t have happened if regulations and laws were not put in place.

            November 28, 2017 at 10:01 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Water and power were supplied long before they became something the government was responsible for getting to your home. I actually do wonder what the free market would do to work out the billing and logistical challenges of having multiple power companies covering an area, as that’s the main difficulty. I have full confidence that if things were returned to a private system that the power companies would be finding every way possible to get you the cheapest power they can.

            As for your example of gas companies with abusive practices, this is again due to having a monopoly. If one gas company keeps wrecking your pipes, you wouldn’t stay with them if there was another gas company in town that didn’t do that.

            November 28, 2017 at 10:40 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Your first paragraph argues against me while your second reiterates what I said. Nationalizing gas companies improved service while the product was kept fairly priced.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:29 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            You are failing to consider the alternative that we could have. The system we currently have is stagnant. You will never, ever have a sales rep quote you a better price for your natural gas than your current provider. There is no incentive to innovate. There is no incentive to improve.

            What could we have if the free market had been allowed to do what it does best? I guarantee that it would be at least as good as what we have. The free market always is more able to deliver than socialism.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:37 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Sure there’s no innovation (To be fair sending it through a pipe directly to your house is about the best it can be delivered) but the price is almost as low as it can go. Essentially they are guaranteed customers by the government and are allowed to make a small profit. I think you’re putting way too much faith in the free market. It’s great but it is just another system with flaws.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:01 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            The free market is the single best system to ever exist for getting goods and services to those who want them for the lowest price possible. Every transaction made in a free market is mutually beneficial. You want what they have, you have what they want, and you exchange. It is impossible to do better than the free market without existing in a post-scarcity world.

            Sending it through a pipe might be the best method of delivery, but I guarantee it is more complex than you think. What are the pipes made out of? Is there a better material? Cheaper? Safer? More durable? Less friction? How about the pumps needed to keep the pressure up? Can they be made more energy efficient? Can they up the pressure more so that fewer pumps can service more area? What is the best way to lay out the pipe network so that you need less pipe to reach more homes. How about your workforce? Can you get away with fewer people on maintenance? How many backhoes do you need? Is there a way to predict sections likely to fail so they can be replaced before there’s an outage? Can you do this without union labor? Is there a way to get the gas from the refineries for even cheaper? Is there something you can do with natural gas that you can’t do with gasoline? Can that be a new product?

            I don’t work in natural gas and those are all the ideas that I can come up with off the top of my head, each a different avenue to explore. Each a potential way in which a business would gladly try to make your life better in exchange for your money.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:15 am
          • CK Kyeudo

            That’s how power is sold in Texas. The transmission lines are essentially nationalized while you shop around for who you buy your power from. All the power generation is put on the same grid. It works great.

            November 29, 2017 at 10:48 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            No i’m talking about how in no part of the united states do you have a choice between Time Warner Cable and Comcast. It’s a fairly easy to spot partnership that makes a illegal monopoly. But thanks to a few regulations that have nothing to do with net neutrality they claim that expansion into each other’s current network is too expensive to justify. Which is hilarious cause Comcast made about 2 billion dollars in profit last year.

            November 28, 2017 at 9:34 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            If they don’t think it profitable to move into each others coverage areas, so what? What I care about is the smaller companies. I actually get my internet from a smaller ISP. They’ve had to partner up with other small companies to afford the infrastructure costs, but I get a better quality of service than Comcast was offering and I get it for 10 dollars cheaper. Any area they expand into, Comcast loses customers almost immediately. Comcast would have to offer a lot in order to get my business back.

            Anything that can let those smaller companies startup and survive is something that will force the bigger companies to bring their prices down and their quality up or else lose market share to the new kids on the block.

            November 28, 2017 at 10:56 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Your dense. They pretend that they don’t wanna expand due to costs cause officially they can’t divvy up the country and if they do compete the winner faces anti trust regulations and will end up making a lot less money. So they focus on crushing all the other businesses where they can and just cause you’re lucky and can get internet through someone else doesn’t mean jack. At some point that company will get targeted and end up getting bought. Not like they can resist. Another thing is that net neutrality doesn’t raise the cost of internet. All ISPs charge by bandwidth NOW. So us people just getting internet for games and such are not paying extra because of a business “Using up” a lot of bandwidth like most people say. It’s not like Google is paying 80$ a month for whoever to connect to the internet.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:15 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Of course they can resist. They don’t have to sell stock on the public market. As long as the company is privately owned, they can only be bought if the owner wishes to sell.

            If the owners are offered a deal too amazing to refuse, it depletes the big ISP’s bank accounts and makes “New ISP Startup” a great venture capital investment. You make a moderately successful small ISP, the big company wants to buy you out and you make them pay royally for what you built. Repeat ad infinitum or until the big ISPs can’t drop millions of dollars to buy out your mom and pop ISP.

            ISPs charge by bandwidth now, yes, but usually that’s bandwidth on a shared line. The more bandwidth the average customer is sucking, the more bandwidth they need in that shared line to keep service tolerable for all customers sharing the line. If they can guarantee that some portion of their customer base won’t be capable of using a lot of bandwidth continuously, they can get away with less in infrastructure and maintenance.

            Google has actually bought the appropriate licenses to deal with the ISPs as a peer rather than as a customer. Because they are not an ISP, they already get to do all the things that real ISPs could do if net neutrality was repealed. This is why Google can support net neutrality – it can only hurt their competition, not themselves. It’s also why Google is unlikely to ever be part of a “premium internet” package.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:33 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Of course they can refuse to sell, But there are many ways to force them. Getting their workers to leave by offering them better pay and benefits is one way. There are also shady ways like bringing them to court over little things and showering them with legal fees.

            Your third paragraph there is actually an example of fair pricing. The customers in an area pay for ISPs to maintain and upgrade their infrastructure. More customers means more money for them to upgrade the area with either through more or better cables. After all if you’re paying for 60MB/s internet speeds they legally have to provide 60MB/s internet speeds.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:11 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Those shady things? Those are because the laws are poorly written. Those crappy laws need repealed or rewritten to prevent abuses.

            The workers getting offered better jobs? You can only hire so many people above the market rate before you can’t hire them all and it starts cutting into the bottom line. Labor costs are the biggest expense for most companies.

            My third paragraph was an example of why eliminating “net neutrality” would allow ISPs more flexibility. Say you don’t use Spotify, YouTube, Facebook, Hulu, Netflix, or any of the other big bandwidth hogs. If you could get access to your email and search the web for a cheaper price, but got slow-laned for those big bandwidth sites, you would love the deal. Everything you actually use on the internet, but cheaper? What’s not to love? The ISPs would probably love to offer that package. They can save on infrastructure because you are now only paying for what you want to use and they don’t have to pay to support what you don’t want to use.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:31 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            You keep using bandwidth like it matters in this situation. No matter what site you go to you cause bandwidth between you, your ISP and the server of the site you’re on. As in total bandwidth caused be you will remain almost the same, give or take various efficiencies in site programing, and your ISP will still be maintaining the same level of traffic between you and whatever site you happen to be on. If you don’t wanna use a site that doesn’t matter cause it’s using less resources from your ISP because you’re not using it. What changes with net neutrality being repealed is that ISPs will be able to influence what we use by slowing down access some sites while leaving others as is while potentially blocking some sites and charging us extra for access. So in other words they handle the same amount of bandwidth while being give new ways to charge us more.

            November 29, 2017 at 1:25 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            I don’t understand what concept you are trying to communicate. Could you clarify what you mean?

            November 29, 2017 at 1:27 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            I’m trying to convey how ISPs actually provide internet and that their cost of providing that service is based on the number of users rather than the sites visited. Although the exception is video streaming and downloads which would cost them a bit more.

            November 29, 2017 at 3:16 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Interestingly, the things that people are worried that ISP’s would throttle are downloads and video streaming. Did you just agree that bandwidth matters to ISPs?

            November 29, 2017 at 6:52 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Bandwidth only kind of matters. In the US at least you won’t find many examples of an area being overloaded with traffic cause the network that ISPs lay out is extremely strong. More than likely you or someone you know will never face a slow connection unless there’s an outage.

            Once the cables are laid out maintaing the network is fairly cheap. For example if I configured my gaming computer to work like an ISPs connection server it’d be able to provide somewhere around 50 people with service and all I’d face is a 150$ electric bill.

            November 29, 2017 at 4:45 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Why are you worried then? If the ISPs don’t have any practical reason to throttle bandwidth and they are already getting as much money from their customers as they can extract, what would change if net neutrality is repealed?

            November 30, 2017 at 9:53 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            The reason is the same as many people have said. They’ll be able to section off access to sites behind pay walls. More than likely being able to browse freely like we do now would be at a much higher price than it is currently. Personally even though I dont use some types of sites the option of being able go to them is important.

            A good example of what is likely to happen is many current AAA video games. You buy the game for 60$ and have fun but if you want the full experience you need to spend another 40$ or so to get all the DLC. The company would be able to make a profit selling the game for 80$ with everything included but people don’t want to pay that much for a games so they hide the costs via DLCs.

            Some people will be happy with limited access to the internet but at the very least everyone I know won’t be happy without unlimited access. Following my video game reference I don’t wanna pay 100$ two months from now for the EXACT same service I’m getting for 80$ now. Just so a minority amount of people have the option to spend a little bit less.

            December 1, 2017 at 2:54 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            But the company is already making as much money as they can off their monopoly. Unless “sectioning off access” in some way saves them money, something that you have disputed, then they have absolutely zero reason to do a cable-package scheme. Corporations are greedy, not malicious. You don’t do more work so you can get the same amount of money.

            With AAA titles, your 60$ gets you access to the majority of online play and also gets you a single player campaign that generally takes six or more hours to play through. You get your money’s worth and then if you want more you can buy more. People complain about DLC because they want it for free, not because the company is hiding the cost. Your own admission – that the total content is worth 80$ – means that you are not getting ripped off.

            Unless the company is saving money with the cable-package style plan, you won’t be paying more. Even if they could get you, personally, to shell out 20$ more for what you have now, there are more people who ditch broadband and that would cut their profit margins. Also, you don’t have any numbers to show that it would only be a minority of people who would be perfectly fine abandoning access to certain sites for a discount. Imagine how many people would love to get a discount for being unable to access porn.

            December 1, 2017 at 5:06 pm
      • Lekly Kyeudo

        The idea that a free market works is false. It is not even 100% supported by economists. The idea of it ‘working’ only benefits things like monopolies. You can do whatever you want to your customers if they have no other options. And don’t say that an alternative small business will emerge because that doesn’t realistically happen, they just get crushed.

        November 28, 2017 at 6:13 pm
        • Kyeudo Lekly

          You apparently flunked economics. Allow me to educate you.

          There are two parts to a free market. There’s the “free” and the “market”. The “free” part means you as the consumer have the choice to buy from whoever you want or to not buy at all. It also means the supplier has the choice to sell or to not sell at all. It means you have to think the purchase is worth it and they have to think selling is worth it. You will always want it cheaper and they will always want more profit, but you and they can come to an acceptable compromise.

          When you say “they can do whatever they want to their customers”, you are clearly wrong. Even if there is no other supplier in the area, there is a price above which you will choose to do without. Below that price, you want the service more than you want the money. You won’t like the price, especially when compared to the price available in a place with more competition, but you don’t want to move to where the price is cheaper.

          The “market” part means that there are no artificial barriers to sell. If you have the capital needed to provide the service, you can sell the service. An artificial barrier to selling your service was classically a government-granted monopoly, but it can also take the form of things such as a fixed regulatory burden or a subsidy. If it takes 5000$ worth of fees and paperwork every year in order to be considered a legitimate service provider, then any business that is too small to take that 5000$ hit dies. Likewise, if the first provider in an area is getting a government subsidy for proving to such a “remote” area, then they can offer service at such a price that they make a hefty profit while a competitor would be losing money to offer in the area.

          Those small businesses getting crushed? They are getting crushed because the cost of regulation is a small percentage of a big business’s budget, but would be a larger percentage of the small business’s budget. The government is literally giving them that monopoly.

          November 28, 2017 at 6:39 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            There is no market in most places man. Small ISP don’t get crushed they get bought out. You’re confusing crushing startup costs with maintenance costs.

            November 28, 2017 at 9:29 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Every government regulation that does not serve to guarantee that human rights are respected is just more money in the pockets of the existing companies. It doesn’t matter if that regulation is required only at startup or is recurring cost.

            If there is no market, blame government.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:03 pm
      • Rhivre Kyeudo

        I don’t see anyone yelling for people to remove food regulations. If no regulation is the best way, let’s start with food regulation removal. Businesses have a financial stake in treating their customers exactly as they can get away with treating them.

        November 28, 2017 at 6:37 pm
        • Kyeudo Rhivre

          Sure, as long as we keep the laws making it criminal to recklessly endanger the health of other people. Businesses where the food is contaminated will quickly be sued out of existence, if not jailed.

          People will not put up with being exploited. They will take their money elsewhere and will extract whatever punitive damages they can.

          November 28, 2017 at 7:01 pm
          • CK Kyeudo

            Laws are the ultimate form of regulation. If you want you food to be safe you have the choice of growing, harvesting, and cooking it yourself. Stop being poor and buy your own farm.

            November 28, 2017 at 8:32 pm
          • Kyeudo CK

            You’d really keep buying a brand after you found out that its product was commonly contaminated with mercury? You’d keep going to a burger joint even though you got food poisoning every time you went there? Customers are not morons. They take their money towards quality and low cost.

            Laws are the government interfering in an area with a loaded gun. Sometimes that is necessary, such as to punish murder or even to maintain acceptable air quality in cities. Other times, the government is interfering just because someone felt good for spending money to do nothing effective.

            November 28, 2017 at 8:54 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            You need to take a serious look at what companies owns what brands. You need to realize that due to corporate buyouts over the last few decades that when it comes to anything you spend your money on there may very well be only 1 choice and in most cases less than 5. Let’s say breakfast cereal. You go into any grocery store every option will most likely be owned by General Mills, Kellogg, Post or Quaker. If all of those companies are having problems with quality then what cereal do you buy?

            November 28, 2017 at 9:48 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Oatmeal. Fruit. Bagels. Bacon. Do without. The market is usually rife with substitutes for X, whatever X you plug in. If all three cereal companies are selling cardboard instead of food, then I might have to change my breakfast habits to something a little less convenient than prepared cereal. If every product in the whole store is terrible, I may have to go to a different store. If all the stores are terrible, then I may have to go directly to the source and buy from a farmer. You are not forced to pay for something that you don’t want.

            At any step along this path, all it takes to beat out the companies attempting abuse is to produce a decent product. Suddenly, to get my money and that of other customers a decent product is the minimum standard. As soon as all remaining companies are producing a decent product, stepping up the game even a small degree means people are switching. Either you do it cheaper or you do it with a higher quality. Now the other companies have to step up their game or lose. Round and round the cycle goes, at every step the consumer is the winner.

            November 28, 2017 at 10:49 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            You realize the farmers are employees of big companies too yea? Vertical integration is what it’s called. Barely any independent farmers anymore for the same reasons there are barely and small businesses anymore. For example. You want fresh green beans from a farm? That farms probably owned by B&G foods who make most canned foods.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:20 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            If all those farms are owned by a big company that sucks at delivering to me edible food, then there is now a highly profitable niche for independent farmers. The only way that niche wouldn’t exist is if the government is stopping people from starting their own farms.

            The free market finds solutions. Sometimes those solutions aren’t what we expect. As Henry Ford once said, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse.”

            November 28, 2017 at 11:42 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            But where are those independent farmers gonna farm? Most farmable land is already being used so there’s not much room to start up. Even if you do find and buy land to farm on there will be companies trying to force you to sell to them very quickly either by offering your workers better pay and benefits that you simply can’t beat or by manipulation of your supply chain through the same means. Big companies literally set goals on how many companies they want to “acquire” every year. Google buys out a company every two weeks.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:55 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            And? You can’t put out a thousand brush fires. There are millions of arable acres of land, sitting uncultivated thanks to the Bureau of Land Management. That land rightly belongs to the states and should be available for sale, if the government wasn’t preventing it.

            You can try to manipulate the supply chain, you can try to hire off all the workers, but if your product sucks and no one wants to buy it, you can’t force them to buy it. All your efforts are going to do is cut into your own bottom line. Your product sucking creates a niche for a better product to fill. That better product creates a niche to fill the supply needs of that better product. The chain continues all the way to the raw materials. It’s like a force of nature – it can only be held back for so long. Instead of fighting the inevitable, you could instead spend that money and effort providing the better product, not open a niche in which you can be outcompeted, and you and the consumer both win.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:39 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            In the farming case your very limited by land. You can’t necessarily just find a flat area and start planting crops or you’ll face bad harvests. In the case of innovation and new tech you’re also kind of screwed cause in some cases an old business might adapt and control the new market as it changes or in some cases buy the rights to the innovative company and simply bury the fact that there was an innovation. We just live in a time where companies can quickly dominate new areas of industry and are able to maintain huge empires through modern communications.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:32 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            You are trying very, very hard to make the case that removing regulations over food quality would result in everything being crap everywhere and the big corporations would successfully manage to stop anyone who actually made good food from having a company. You’ve edged into conspiracy theory territory. “We will spend billions so that we don’t have to spend millions to provide a good product”.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:49 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Other way around. Spend millions so that they don’t have to spend billions on making a good product. The more they ship the more they spend on production.

            Say my example company spends 50 billion a year making my various food products. If I have my farmers use low quality seeds to grow the product we sell we can save 5%. That’s 3.75 billion dollars saved. Then say a small company is making a better quality product that’s competing with me in part of a state. Well it’d cost me 20 million to buy them out or bury them another way. In the end i’d have saved 3.73 billion. Even if 100 companies started up (That’s a ridiculous amount of new successful companies.) and somehow managed to compete i’d still be saving money even if I bought them all out. To boot i’d even have more production and I’d be working to cheapen production costs while those people who sold their companies attempt to start a new one or live comfortably.

            November 29, 2017 at 1:53 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            You underestimate the scale of how hard it is to keep competitors out of a free market.
            “Low quality seeds”? Have you never gardened in your life? But I’ll grant your premise rather than quibble about the realism of the farming. 100 new companies starting up is actually ridiculously low. A quick Google search will tell you that roughly 500,000 new companies get started each month. According to Forbes, which appears to be drawing from data by the United States Census Bureau, 70% of them last at least 2 years, 50% last at least 5 years, 30% last ten years or more, and 25% last 15 years or more. Let’s just say that you have to buy out, using 20 million dollars per business, all the ones that would last 15 years or more to maintain your monopoly over crappy food. You would have to spend 2.5 trillion dollars per month to try to fight down that tide. Of course, not all those new businesses will be in agriculture. Your strategy is viable as long as only .00015 percent of them are in new farm. Of course, given that you have created a literal gold mine opportunity, either in selling food people actually like or in selling you startup farms, how long before just 1 in 100 new businesses are farms and you are shelling out 25 billion dollars a year? People aren’t that stupid.
            You cannot stop the market. It is a juggernaut beyond the scale of even the largest companies.

            November 29, 2017 at 6:34 am
      • Alot Kyeudo

        Dude, you’ve been actively responding to CK’s post where he gives an example of what happens in a completely free market. Without sufficient regulations, one supplier will eventually buy out every other supplier and once a single company has complete monopoly over a market, CK has just given you an example of how much monopoly holders care about their captive audience.

        Modern organisations are able to produce more efficient services the larger they get – and are able to operate at a loss for extended periods of time to kill out competition in a permanent manner instead of competing with them for market shares. Those two things mean that when a single company consumes a free market, is eventually becomes un-free. Its really unhealthy to have any corp, continent bound or global, holding that much centralized power – and for better or worse, the only way to prevent monopolies from happening is government regulation.

        November 29, 2017 at 8:16 am
        • Kyeudo Alot

          His problems are not what happens in a completely free market. His local ISP has an artificial monopoly because they are receiving a subsidy from the government to the tune of billions of dollars, which means they can operate at prices below what a competitor can.

          One supplier will not eventually buy out all other suppliers, not unless they are literally offering the best service possible. Natural monopolies can happen, but they can only be maintained by no one else being able to provide as much quality at the lowest possible price. If anyone can do it cheaper or at a better quality, there is a niche in the market for another supplier to thrive. A supplier can try to buy out his competition, but he can’t force them to sell, not unless they have sold stock in their company and lost the majority share in the business. Even if they buy out other suppliers, that doesn’t stop new suppliers from popping up. I actually looked up the statistics on new businesses – it’s about 500,000 founded in America each month. Half last for five years or more.

          A big company can operate at a loss for a while, but not forever. Every time they put their prices back up to make a profit, it opens a window for other companies to start up and cut into their market share. Eventually, the big company won’t be able to operate at a loss anymore. They may kill hundreds of businesses doing so, but again there are 500,000 new businesses started every month.

          As long as the rule of law is respected and human rights are protected, only a natural monopoly can exist without governmental assistance. Natural monopolies are nothing to fear, because they exist only so long as no one can do anything better. Only artificial monopolies invite abuse and even then a limit exists to how much they can exploit their monopoly. CK still buys internet, which means that he wants to have internet more than he wants the money he pays every month, even with the crappy customer service they give. He could go back to dialup, switch to satellite internet, or do without entirely, but he wants high-speed enough that he puts up with the monopoly.

          Government regulation, beyond what is necessary to protect human rights and the rule of law, can only cause these artificial monopolies to happen. The government can only make it worse, not better.

          November 29, 2017 at 5:01 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            “One supplier will not eventually buy out all other suppliers, not unless they are literally offering the best service possible. ”

            Being able to buy out other suppliers has nothing do do with having a superior service, it has to do with having the capital to do so. While the subsidiaries from the government speed up the process, I see no stated argument as to what stops the exact same process happening at a walking pace.

            Plus while its a nice idea that smaller companies can come in and fill niche demands, you take for-granted the capital you need upfront to get into these sorts of markets and the lengths of time larger companies can run at a loss if its beneficial to their long term success. So while its a cute idea that 500,000 companies will cram in to offer internet services after every massacre, the obvious risks to putting that much money into a field where you will actively be attacked by larger corps will put off most logical entities.

            Though I’d rather turn this around. Lets say that all restrictions by government were immediately lifted in his local area. Please explain to me the chain of events which would lead to another service provider being available to this guy which the current providers would not crush in the exact same way they do now.

            November 29, 2017 at 5:20 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            You cannot force someone to sell a privately held company. It doesn’t matter if you have all the money in the world. If they don’t want to sell, you don’t get to buy. Further, buying out one company does not stop another company from springing up to take its place. If the market niche is viable, there will be a company to fill it.

            It’s not a cute idea. It’s a fact. 500,000 companies start up every month, across all sorts of fields. The only thing that has allowed these artificial monopolies to thrive is government grants and subsidies that keep funneling tax money into propping up their bottom line.

            Even calling them a monopoly is usually not quite correct, either. They are only a monopoly on “high speed” internet. If you are willing to make due with less, only 6% of America has only one internet provider, with most having access to 10mbs down and 1 up. That’s plenty to surf the web, shop online, or check your email. It’s just not something you want to stream or game on.

            If by restrictions you also include the subsidies, then the chain of events goes something like this: His taxes go down, but the price of internet goes up, because the ISP wants to keep its profit margins the same. Someone sees that the price for high-speed internet is high, does the math, and comes up with a plan to provide equivalent service for cheaper. They probably need to round up some venture capital because of the infrastructure costs of laying cable, but the profit margins in the area are high. If they don’t botch the rollout of their service, they get customers who want high speed internet for cheaper than the old monopoly is selling at. They survive long enough to develop a customer base and start eating into the profit margins of the larger ISP. The ISP probably tries to buy them out. They decide not to sell because the profitability of the business in the long term is more than the offer. The old monopoly tries selling services at a loss. The new ISP goes under, but everyone else enjoys cheaper than normal internet until it does. Prices go back up. The cycle repeats. Many businesses are crushed, but the old monopoly is bleeding money every time and everyone gets cheaper internet as it does so. Eventually, the old monopoly can no longer afford to operate at a loss. Both businesses offer service at the natural price point of the market, not as good as when the monopoly was underselling, but not as bad as when the monopoly was a true monopoly. The process might take decades to play out, but every time will be marked by the consumers benefiting. The whole thing could be shortcut by someone finding a way to reduce the infrastructure cost dramatically, such as some form of high-speed long-distance wireless, but technological innovation is hard to predict. Consolidated Oil went from dominating the lighting business to 0% market share in less than a decade because of the invention of the light bulb.

            November 29, 2017 at 6:42 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            No one cares how many companies start up each month across every industry, if we are talking about the telecoms industry, give the number of telecoms businesses which start up monthly or stick to facts which are relevant to the topic at hand. And again, large companies are more efficient then small ones, they don’t need those subsides to offer cheaper services to the masses because they have the infrastructure to do so.

            That aside you keep trying to downplay the costs of setting up an independent ISP service to begin with. The licenses are hella expensive, setting up the infrastructure is hella expensive and start up ISP’s need to piggyback off the infrastructure of larger corps, and under your proposed fully deregulated industry those larger corps can go from being passively hostile to sabotaging the smaller entities which rely on connections which run through them in any way they desire. While you cant force smaller ISPs to sell, you can render them unprofitable in their early stages when they still have to pay off massive debts, account to investors and try grow a market base in a market where the unsavvy couldn’t be bothered to change and the savvy just hop the the cheapest option. Which again doesn’t matter because regardless what the difference is between what larger companies like to charge for internet and what they have to charge to stay profitable, the larger company will always be able to undercut a smaller competitor profitably because they can more efficiently generate a service.

            Endearing though your fairy tale story is or an endless line of bright eye’d entrepreneurs who each have miniature fortunes to squander in an openly hostile industy (cause they all so sure they going to be the one not to be crushed) that simply isn’t how tech industries work anymore. There is no second youtube, there is no second Nvidia and heck, I’m not even seeing a second discus anymore. The only factor which dislodges the old monopolies are disruptive technologies – renovations which allow people to bypass the old monopolies completely instead of competing with them.

            Though if you can give me some examples where deregulating an ISP market improved general service, do tell, I’d love to hear about it -.-

            November 29, 2017 at 8:04 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            Took me more digging than I’d like to find that number – US census bureau data has codes for just about everything. According to the most recent numbers I can find, it was over 30,000 new businesses in the information sector in one year.

            Large companies are not necessarily more efficient. Because of their size, they take more time to respond to shifts in the market, adopt new technologies, or offer customized services to their local area.

            I’m well aware that breaking into a market with established heavyweights is a rough, uphill battle. You, however, seem to be far beyond me in pessimism. No second YouTube? Since the Adpocalypse, places like VidMe and Minds have been growing in popularity. Gab is growing and providing an alternative to Twitter. Sure, right now there’s a lot of cross-posting of content, but Adpocalypse 2.0 is just starting on YouTube. I wouldn’t be surprised to see it fall to 2nd place, even with Google behind it.

            I’m not aware of any cases where ISPs were deregulated, so I can’t provide any examples. Government rarely gives up power once it seizes more.

            November 29, 2017 at 10:13 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            Sorry if finding that number was a lot of effort but it is another irrelevant statistic. No one cares about information processing businesses or research intensive businesses – and if someone actually managed to obtain a stranglehold on a predominantly software capital based market, my hat off to them. Only number which matters here is the number of ISPs which are opening up.

            And again, no one cares about inefficient large companies. Just the ones efficient enough or large enough to crush opposition to the point where it damages the competitiveness of the market itself.

            The odd thing about calling me pessimistic however is that you are only calling me pessimistic. The role of government regulation is to preemptively prevent worst case situations which would damage markets or populations before those situations happen – as opposed to letting them happen and waiting for the bloodbath to auto-correct through the wonders of the “open market”.

            If there are no examples of deregulated ISPs, could you at least provide some examples of situations where lessened regulations led to improved or wider access to the internet for the area involved?

            December 2, 2017 at 10:34 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            So, you demand to know the number, I give you the best number I can find, and then you say my number doesn’t matter because it doesn’t laser focus down on the single product you care about.

            You really do not understand markets, it seems. Businesses open up where they see openings. They don’t open up where there aren’t openings. Whatever the numbers are right now, they will change as soon as there’s blood in the water. The only thing the numbers right now can tell us is how many people are actively watching an area and have the money to jump in.

            Government regulation has a terrible track record of preventing damage, especially when it actually matters. The housing market crash was entirely a product of regulations creating unnatural incentives, starting all the way back with programs put in place by FDR, and followed with regulations that made recovery harder, not easier. Speaking of FDR, after the stock market crash, the New Deal programs are what drove the unemployment rate into the double digits and slowed down the recovery – the market was already showing signs of recovery until the government started getting involved.

            Further, if you want to talk about things that can damage a market, government regulation is threat number one. Look at solar and wind energy. Those industries only really exist because the government has instituted policies and issued subsidies that allow solar and wind companies to turn a profit, despite their severe issues delivering power when people actually want it, the huge amounts of space generating facilities need, and the high cost of power. All of that taxpayer money funneled into something that’s a pipe dream. Meanwhile, punitive regulatory standards for things that do not pose a health hazard such as CO2 emissions basically restrict the growth of more cost effective power systems.

            You call it a “bloodbath”, but the only people who lose are the people who take risks. Most people at worst collect a final paycheck and go looking for a new job in a similar company. The entrepreneurs are the ones that lose their savings, but they knew that was a possibility when they decided to start a business. The consumer is certainly not the one who loses when a “bloodbath” breaks out – prices go down and supply is up.

            Again, government rarely gives up power. You generally can’t find examples in the exact area you want, so you have either businesses that have never been heavily regulated just doing their thing or you have businesses that have been heavily regulated. Depending on when regulations started, you might be able to show the damage the regulations caused, but the farther back the regulation happened and the more gradually it happened, the harder it is to pin any specific change to the regulation. Occasionally, you get an opportunity to compare similar places where one side has an effect on it and another does not. For example, if you want to see how the current health insurance situation has distorted health care costs, compare cosmetic procedures like laser eye correction to normal health care costs. Control for inflation and prices are down for the cosmetic procedures while they’ve majorly increased for normal healthcare. I am not aware of an area like this for ISPs, where one kind of coverage has been free of regulation while another has not.

            December 4, 2017 at 5:52 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            You cute but waving your arms in the air and claiming economics is a mysterious art beyond anyone’s comprehension but yours is a shoddy straw-man to back up an unsubstantiated argument. No one here is debating that subsidies to large profitable businesses (that tend to bankroll politicians) is not irregular (or exploitable) and no one here is talking about the american housing market bubble – or the lack of regulations (and regulation enforcement) which allowed banks to make unsafe, over-sized loans on houses which crashed the whole deal when sellers realized it was more profitable to forfeit their housing purchases to the banks then payoff those oversized loans.

            We talking about the internet and only the internet. Not the global push towards the necessity of green-energy to slow climate change (to which the Republican Administration just forfeited the role of “Global Leader” at the Paris accords), just the internet. Not the pricing variance of luxury medical procedures, the internet. Because unlike forgoing glasses, the internet is a critical resource for free speech and the communication of data world wide and you have given no reason as to why the stable and profitable foundation it is based on should be deregulated to allow freer market shenanigans.

            Comparing different markets can be useful in retrospect but is not some prophetic tool to guarantee how unrelated markets will behave in practice and neither is the excuse “I could find no solid information about the topic at hand” and excuse to substitute “This data which is neither guaranteed nor likely to represent the topic we talking about” as a factual basis for debate.

            I would love to see someone provide a substantiated argument for why deregulating the internet is a good idea – cause I’ve never actually seen someone do it. Your complained about governments being inefficient, your complained about governments being corrupt, you’ve complained about subsidies being bad and you’ve talked about supposedly repressive constraints in other industries and yet through all of this, you’ve said you don’t need to quote any studies or articles to prove your view point on the actual subject of internet deregulation because you couldn’t find any.which suited your point of view.

            What I will concede however is that I just found out today what that VidMe site was that you claimed was a valid competitor to mega-corporations like Youtube. Turns out it just closed down because it was not possible for it to compete with mega-corporations like Youtube or Facebook -.-

            December 4, 2017 at 8:35 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            You cute but waving your arms in the air and claiming economics is a mysterious art beyond anyone’s comprehension but yours is a shoddy straw-man to back up an unsubstantiated argument.

            Your attempt to straw man my criticism of you doesn’t work. I’m not claiming that economics is an inscrutable art, only that you apparently do not understand how and why people start businesses. You are demanding that I provide numbers for how many new ISPs open in order to demonstrate how many will be founded following a substantial exit of government control from a market where government interference is unnecessary. You might as well use figures about sugar production before the Cuban embargo to talk about sugar prices in the future.

            or the lack of regulations (and regulation enforcement) which allowed banks to make unsafe, over-sized loans on houses which crashed the whole deal when sellers realized it was more profitable to forfeit their housing purchases to the banks then payoff those oversized loans.

            I think you mean the regulations that incentivized making unsafe, over-sized loans. Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac, both government-backed institutions, were requiring active proof that banks were not redlining and, because of that push, purchasing subprime mortgages. This created a carrot-and-stick combo to push banks to make those terrible investments, which they only did because they could offload them quickly.

            We talking about the internet and only the internet. Not the global push towards the necessity of green-energy to slow climate change (to which the Republican Administration just forfeited the role of “Global Leader” at the Paris accords), just the internet. Not the pricing variance of luxury medical procedures, the internet.

            We are discussing not just the internet, but the principles of free market economics. I am pointing out that because of the government, you are paying more in the United States for power than you otherwise would. I am pointing out that when the market is allowed to work its magic, the price of procedures goes down and quality goes up rather than the reverse trend seen in other areas.

            Because unlike forgoing glasses, the internet is a critical resource for free speech and the communication of data world wide and you have given no reason as to why the stable and profitable foundation it is based on should be deregulated to allow freer market shenanigans.

            The “stable and profitable foundation” it has is free market enterprise. All problems that have been brought up so far can be laid at the feet of government intrusion into a system where they are unnecessary.

            Also, this isn’t “access to the internet” we’re talking about. Everyone in the country has access to the internet of some form or other, right now. Dial-up is still a thing. What’s of concern is high-speed internet. A luxury of a luxury.

            You can do without the internet entirely. It is not critical for life. You won’t starve to death without it. You won’t freeze to death without it.

            Comparing different markets can be useful in retrospect but is not some prophetic tool to guarantee how unrelated markets will behave in practice and neither is the excuse “I could find no solid information about the topic at hand” and excuse to substitute “This data which is neither guaranteed nor likely to represent the topic we talking about” as a factual basis for debate.

            When you choose to set an impossibly high bar for evidence, imagine my shock when I can’t provide evidence that you consider valid.

            I would love to see someone provide a substantiated argument for why deregulating the internet is a good idea – cause I’ve never actually seen someone do it. Your complained about governments being inefficient, your complained about governments being corrupt, you’ve complained about subsidies being bad and you’ve talked about supposedly repressive constraints in other industries and yet through all of this, you’ve said you don’t need to quote any studies or articles to prove your view point on the actual subject of internet deregulation because you couldn’t find any.which suited your point of view.

            Do you want me to link you to a copy of the The Wealth of Nations? Maybe a transcript of an Econ 101 course? How about a lecture from Yaron Brook about why socialism is evil? That last one would probably get you up to speed on the basics in the least amount of time, but it’s hardly the most in depth.

            I have made no claims to not need studies. I thought we were talking about the basic principles upon which our civilization has been operating for hundreds of years, a history replete with examples that the government can screw up the market, but they can’t fix it. I thought you were reasonably well informed about stuff such as supply and demand curves, market alternatives, and what not.

            The internet is not some special commodity. It is as normal as it gets – a non-essential service with a bevy of providers, each able to deliver different grades of service at different price points. About the most you can claim is that it has a high cost to entry, but there are industries out there with worse barriers and considerably more freedom. The auto industry, for example.

            What I will concede however is that I just found out today what that VidMe site was that you claimed was a valid competitor to mega-corporations like Youtube. Turns out it just closed down because it was not possible for it to compete with mega-corporations like Youtube or Facebook -.-

            I said its popularity was growing. Apparently, that popularity was not growing fast enough yet. YouTube has, for a long time, been providing the best service at the best price. It still is running a good service at a good price. They’ve got momentum, brand recognition, and a huge backer in the form of Google. I don’t expect YouTube to die overnight. VidMe was just one out of a number of options – Minds, DailyMotion, Vimeo, etc. Twitch is certainly an up-and-comer these days, thought it is more known for gaming streams that other content at the moment. Most new companies don’t last long enough to become a giant. However, giants were all once new companies.

            December 4, 2017 at 11:27 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            And again, check the title of this article and the topic everyone here is talking about and its the regulation of the internet and nothing else. As is you are the one that keeps trying to divert the conversation to a myriad of other topics for the sole purpose, as far as I can tell, of muddying the actual debate everyone starts with.

            The UN has a non-binding resolution that access to the internet is a basic human right. If you consider that the sort of ruling made for non-essential services then you have a pretty messed up definition on what constitutes non-essential services.

            And this is where the conversation gets pointlessly repetitive. You keep claiming that you can’t find any material to support your view on why the internet should be deregulated and that somehow talking about the glory of “free market economics” and vague gestures that “government interference is the source of all ills” is thus a valid substitute set and I’ll keep stating that you have provided no source material or references which speak about the topic at hand: The benefits or detriments or deregulating the internet.

            You seem to have an extensive repertoire of sources on the ills of socialism, the banking sector and free market trade. The fact that you unable to provide any such sources for the topic at hand sends a stronger statement then any other the other arguments you keep trying to cram in front of the internet debate.

            December 5, 2017 at 8:31 am
          • Kyeudo Alot

            Took me a few days to decide if I even wanted to reply to you anymore. I keep trying to get you to look at a larger part of the picture, but you seem tunnel-visioned on a specific detail. It’s like banging my head against a wall and I’m no longer sure if my head is the harder object.

            As is you are the one that keeps trying to divert the conversation to a myriad of other topics for the sole purpose, as far as I can tell, of muddying the actual debate everyone starts with.

            How many times do I need to say it? Internet service is not a special type of good. The principles governing the pricing of the majority of goods and services apply to internet service, just as they apply to the price of grapefruit, the price of a car, the price of a doctor’s visit, or the price of a night with a prostitute. The price of the internet is set by the confluence of supply and demand. The higher the demand or the lower the supply, the higher the price. The higher the supply or the lower the demand, the lower the price. When government intervenes in the market, it shifts demands up or brings supply down. Price goes up in response. Whether its the drug war, farming subsidies, governmental student loans, or zoning restrictions, it all plays by the same rules when it comes to how it affects the market.

            The UN has a non-binding resolution that access to the internet is a basic human right. If you consider that the sort of ruling made for non-essential services then you have a pretty messed up definition on what constitutes non-essential services.

            This is the same UN that put Saudia Arabia, Pakistan, China, and Libya on their council about human rights, among other places that wouldn’t know what a human right was if it bit them. The UN itself is a giant machine for doing nothing. The UN’s opinion on what constitutes a human right isn’t worth the paper its printed on.

            There are no such things as positive rights. A positive right always boils down to the right to take what someone else has, which goes against the basics of property rights, or the right to force someone to serve you, which goes against every form of personal freedom conceivable. Internet access is not a human right, not unless you happened to be born with a modem embedded in your spine.

            And this is where the conversation gets pointlessly repetitive. You keep claiming that you can’t find any material to support your view on why the internet should be deregulated and that somehow talking about the glory of “free market economics” and vague gestures that “government interference is the source of all ills” is thus a valid substitute set and I’ll keep stating that you have provided no source material or references which speak about the topic at hand: The benefits or detriments or deregulating the internet.

            Let’s start from first principles, then I don’t have to try to provide you with sources you’ll read or respect. Let’s take it all the way back to the very most basic example in all of economics: a transaction between two individuals.

            For the discussion, here’s the example. You run a hot dog stand. I am a hungry person. I give you my money, you give me a hot dog. Now, why did this happen? It’s pretty simple. You want money – you run a hot dog stand because you think you can make a better living doing that than doing something else and you need to pay the bills and also want to more than just make ends meet. I want food – I’m hungry and I want a hot dog. Now, I could go home and cook my own hotdog, but that means waiting until I get home, having the ingredients, and so on. I want your food more than I want my money, so I pay you.

            Why do you set the price where you do? On one hand, you have the cost to run the business. You need to pay for the hotdogs, the energy required to cook them, and any other expenses associated with your stand and also you want to profit. On the other hand, if you charge too much, I might decide that I would prefer to go through the trouble of making my own hotdog.

            Now, you could sell me a crappy product, but I’m not going to put up with that. I’d rather make my own hotdog than pay to eat botulism or something that tastes like shoe leather. You might get me to buy from you once, but probably never again, so I have a decent guarantee that you will do at least a reasonable job.

            This whole thing has been entirely voluntary. I didn’t force you to make hotdogs, you didn’t force me to buy hotdogs. Neither of us got the price we prefer, but we came to an agreement that the price was worth the product – you decided my money was worth a hotdog and I decided your hotdog was worth my money.

            So far, this example is also a monopoly. You are the only seller in the market and so my options are either get it from you or make my own. However, you’ll notice that you cannot exploit me even though you are a monopoly. I have to agree that your product is worth my money before I will give you my money.

            Suppose that there is now another stand. Instead of hot dogs, it sells hamburgers. Hamburgers are not hot dogs, but they can be a substitute. If I don’t care whether I have a hamburger or a hot dog, then I’ll just buy whichever I see as the better value. If I care, I might be willing to pay more for a hamburger just because I like hamburgers better or vice-versa. Because you now have competition, you may be willing to accept a lower profit margin on your hot dogs just so that more people will choose the hot dog over the hamburger.

            Now, let’s get the government involved. The government imposes a tax on beef but not on pork. The hamburgers are more expensive now. You can either now more easily undersell the hamburgers because of the price difference, or you can raise your prices a bit and enjoy a larger profit per unit sold. Either way, your business just got more profitable than the hamburger stand due to the government interfering. Maybe the profit margins are now too slim and the hamburger stand closes and now customers have fewer available choices. Maybe, because you raised your prices, the hamburger stand can still stay in business, but now the customer is paying more for hot dogs and hamburgers than they otherwise would. Down either road, the government just hurt the customer and also favored one business over the other.

            Are you following the outline here? This is hyper-simplified, but maybe this sketches out the principles and philosophical questions a bit more clearly than when I was trying to be concise.

            You seem to have an extensive repertoire of sources on the ills of socialism, the banking sector and free market trade. The fact that you unable to provide any such sources for the topic at hand sends a stronger statement then any other the other arguments you keep trying to cram in front of the internet debate.

            The internet has only been a thing of importance for the last twenty years, give or take a few. It existed before then, but it was a novelty. Banks, health care, and socialism have existed for centuries. There are plenty of examples to choose from with the latter – I can do a google search and pick the most appropriate example out of a bushel of options. The internet? I have a relatively short, relatively uneventful history to pick over.

            Try to open your eyes and see the scope of the picture.

            December 8, 2017 at 11:49 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            I guarantee that your head is harder then whatever wall you’ve been banging it against – although I’m not sure why you aspire to possessing such a dense noggin.

            One of the FCC commissioners tasked with looking into the effects of ending net neutrality has stated that this change will allow ISPs to purposefully choose which online voices to amplify and which to censor and has literally called on the public, as a literal vote holder in the decision, to protest in any way they can.

            Tom Wheeler, the former FCC chairman has called the change flat out evil and gave the interesting statistic that 2/3rds of Americans have no choice of where to get their internet from regardless of what their providers are allowed to inflict on them.

            What I have come across oddly enough was the effect of Bill Clinton’s deregulation of public media. Before Bill Clinton there were over 500 independent cable media companies in America. Now all cable based media is pretty much owned by 6 companies, each with extremely similar views. Where is this shifting market you’ve been harking on about across all your page length cliches? I’ll give you a hint, they don’t exist. The one thing that you’ve made clear from your juvenile hotdog rant is that you don’t understand the difference between competing in cottage industries and trying to break into markets which require state spanning infrastructure to operate as well as deal cutting with the existing infrastructure owners to even enable your area based product to operate – cause I can’t make internet at home if I don’t like the offer of my sole hotdog provider is offering and neither can small, medium or even most large businesses attempt to instantiate their own – which would lead to the exact level of free choice decimation which was observed in American cable news.

            And on that point, I find the idea that you cannot find a single quotable source to back your point, from the 20 most data intensive years of human history, to be utterly laughable. Not to mention the irony that you claim to just pick random sources from google searches when everyone else around here seems intent on protecting the equality of net use so that no one can sensor what information you can obtain through random web searches.

            Which brings us back to the looping point. I say provide me some evidence that this unique human resource, which is central to the free flow of information in the modern age, would be better off being deregulated – to which you say you don’t have to because somehow your blind faith to an extremist neo-liberal wet dream trumps the factual basis upon which modern discussion is held.

            If you want some eye opening, on the submissions made to the FCC which were traceable to individuals (discounting the 50000 submitted complaints which have just dissapeared, discounting the reams of internet submitted feedback which could have included bots and the apparent submissions by dead people (who seem’d to favor repealing neutrality for some reason)) it turns out that 98.5% of people oppose repealing these common sense rules. If yours is the mentality of the 1.5% of people who’d prefer to repeal net neutrality it is a fairly revealing, if unpleasant, look at the mind frame required to oppose such things.

            December 10, 2017 at 9:32 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            One of the FCC commissioners tasked with looking into the effects of ending net neutrality has stated that this change will allow ISPs to purposefully choose which online voices to amplify and which to censor

            Yes. Private companies can decide what to do with their platforms. Twitter does this. YouTube does this. Facebook does this. Google does this. The New York Times does this. You are under no obligation to allow someone else to use your resources to spread a message with which you disagree unless you have made an agreement with them that they can do just that.

            Your customers can choose to go to alternatives if they find your policy objectionable. Free speech means the right to speak, not the right to a megaphone and an audience.

            and has literally called on the public, as a literal vote holder in the decision, to protest in any way they can.

            You are making an appeal to authority here. He’s involved in politics. Making public statements is part of how the game is played. Looking like he’s defending the public from the evil corporations is how he gets what he wants. It’s the equivalent of Donald Trump talking about crimes by illegal immigrants and so we need a wall.

            Tom Wheeler, the former FCC chairman has called the change flat out evil and gave the interesting statistic that 2/3rds of Americans have no choice of where to get their internet from regardless of what their providers are allowed to inflict on them.

            Another appeal to authority here. His opinion means nothing and his statistics are bunk. 99% of America has the option of satellite and 96% have at least two options for hardline access. They may have only one option for high-speed internet, but that’s just a question of speed.

            Further, all of those Americans have the option of doing without internet. The ISPs can’t force them to buy the service if they don’t think the services is worth the price.

            What I have come across oddly enough was the effect of Bill Clinton’s deregulation of public media. Before Bill Clinton there were over 500 independent cable media companies in America. Now all cable based media is pretty much owned by 6 companies, each with extremely similar views. Where is this shifting market you’ve been harking on about across all your page length cliches? I’ll give you a hint, they don’t exist.

            Cable-based media was replaced by satellite-based media, internet-based media, and so on. The market shifts. Oil refineries used to make kerosene and dump the rest. Now the kerosene is an afterthought compared to all the other petrochemical products like gasoline and plastics. Tomorrow, we might discover some new fuel source that is more convenient than gasoline and all the corner gas stations will vanish.

            This is part of what I’m talking about when I say you are tunnel-visioned. You don’t look for the underlying reasons behind a statistic.

            The one thing that you’ve made clear from your juvenile hotdog rant is that you don’t understand the difference between competing in cottage industries and trying to break into markets which require state spanning infrastructure to operate as well as deal cutting with the existing infrastructure owners to even enable your area based product to operate – cause I can’t make internet at home if I don’t like the offer of my sole hotdog provider is offering and neither can small, medium or even most large businesses attempt to instantiate their own – which would lead to the exact level of free choice decimation which was observed in American cable news.

            All you are talking about there is the price of the hot dog stand. Yes, there are many industries with heavy up-front costs. Auto manufacturers need a factory. Oil companies need a refinery. Rail companies need tracks and trains. Just because the startup cost is high doesn’t change the way the market works. It just means your supply side of the equation is going to be lower than it otherwise would.

            Unlike food, you don’t need internet. With food, you eventually have to eat. You never have to get on the internet.

            And on that point, I find the idea that you cannot find a single quotable source to back your point, from the 20 most data intensive years of human history, to be utterly laughable.

            Just because the last twenty years have been good at recording data doesn’t mean they have actually seen a relevant example. Governments hate giving up power. Deregulating an industry is rare. I am not aware of any times that ISPs have experienced a major drop in the number of regulations applicable to them. Are you? If so, I’d have a point to start from to find those examples you want.

            Which brings us back to the looping point. I say provide me some evidence that this unique human resource, which is central to the free flow of information in the modern age, would be better off being deregulated – to which you say you don’t have to because somehow your blind faith to an extremist neo-liberal wet dream trumps the factual basis upon which modern discussion is held.

            The internet is not a unique resource. It’s the current superior method of communication over distance. Going backwards, the previous holders of that title is television, telephone, telegraph, newsprint, handwriting, messengers on horseback, and word of mouth. Its centrality is only due to its convenience. If it stops being convenient, we go to one of the others.

            Neo-liberal? What do you even mean by that? The premises of free market capitalism go back centuries. Adam Smith published the Wealth of Nations a few months before the Declaration of Independence was written and signed. Ayn Rand died something like three decades ago.

            What factual basis are you talking about? I’m afraid I find myself unfamiliar with a set of facts that doesn’t include “the government sucks at everything it does”.

            If you want some eye opening, on the submissions made to the FCC which were traceable to individuals (discounting the 50000 submitted complaints which have just dissapeared, discounting the reams of internet submitted feedback which could have included bots and the apparent submissions by dead people (who seem’d to favor repealing neutrality for some reason)) it turns out that 98.5% of people oppose repealing these common sense rules. If yours is the mentality of the 1.5% of people who’d prefer to repeal net neutrality it is a fairly revealing, if unpleasant, look at the mind frame required to oppose such things.

            You are making an appeal to popularity here. Just because 98.5% of people who voiced an opinion loudly enough to be heard said one thing means little. They don’t necessarily reflect the population, nor do they necessarily have an informed opinion. You can find tons of people who want to see Obamacare repealed and the Affordable Care Act left in place.

            December 11, 2017 at 6:58 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            Quick side question before we continue with this idiocy. Are you for the current tax repeals the Republicans are pushing for or against it?

            December 11, 2017 at 7:22 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            Generally for them, although I don’t think they address the underlying problems and I think there will be some negative consequences because of them.

            December 11, 2017 at 8:31 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            Well, definitely in line with everything else you say. So back to the vague, baseless and meaningless arguments you put forth on the topic at hand.

            You’ve freely, with no sources, studies or articles to the otherwise, stated that the collaborative conclusions of multiple countries, in a world spanning organisation founded to promote peace, are irrelevant because you don’t like some of the countries which came to the same conclusions as all the others. You’ve deny’d that two generations of internet watchdogs coming to the same conclusion have any relevance because they don’t exist in complete isolation either from reality or the plane of existence that you seem to inhabit. You’ve stated that 98.5% of people agreeing on something (a practically non-existant level of agreement in any poll) you believe the bell curve somehow applies more harshlyan entire population which can agree on this issue then your supposed “smart” colleagues who seem unable to submit written appraisals to the FCC.

            You have failed to see any difference between the internet and outdated media sources while you yourself continue to state how you rely on it to debate. Have failed to recognize the impact of losing the internet to any given social group while reminding everyone that you not in a position were you’d lose it regardless, have repetitively failed to understand the difference between breaking monopolies in given, artificially decaying, markets and the emergence of disruptive technologies which momentarily create new vibrant markets before they are consumed and decay like the old.

            You’ve spat at statistics, called fowl every presented norm you don’t like and have said that every other person mentioned, no matter how reputable, is wrong because you disagree with them.

            Which you can do. I find it all laughably naive and an attempt of a simple mind to reduce complex issues into simple enemies it can feel opposed to but the fact that you disagree with every other person here isn’t the pathetic part.

            The pathetic part is that you have over the course of a week been able to provide jack shit to substantiate any of this besides made up cafeteria lunch menu scuffles. That you ca provide no real world parallels to what you consider a “generic” trade commodity is laughable. Despite the internet being no different from any other market you can provide no parallel industry which benefited from the chain of events the internet is going through.

            Again, I’d love to see someone actually put down a coherent reality backed debate over why deregulation of the internet would have a positive effect but you seem unable to provide any vantage, any reference, any academic summery that I or anyone else could go look through to get an alternative view of things.

            All you seem able to do is pick out individual sentences from other peoples fields of expertise and claim why those individual remarks are wrong – near all of which I disagree with but am unwilling to play into your desperate ploy to change the subject from facts-relevant-to-the-internet.

            So I ask you again, for all your criticism of everyone else, put down proof to the coherence of anything you are saying. Or we can just loop through this all over again.

            December 11, 2017 at 10:25 pm
          • Kyeudo Alot

            Take a moment to go back and critically read what you just wrote. In the space of a few paragraphs, you’ve committed two appeals to popularity, two appeals to authority, at least one straw man, at least one ad hominem, a clear example of tu quoque, and moved the goal posts at least once. There are a couple scraps of legitimate arguments buried in there, but for the most part you are using many words and lots of emotion to say nothing. You are clearly intelligent, so why do you fall into the most common logical fallacies so readily?

            Now, to address the things you said which seem most relevant and/or annoying.

            You have failed to see any difference between the internet and outdated media sources

            I most certainly did not “fail to see any difference”. I clearly called it superior to the other option, due to the convenience with which it can get the job done. That does not render it immune to competition from “outdated” technologies. 57% of Americans still get their news through TV, despite the internet allowing you to get in-depth stories from multiple perspectives on the topic and read and/or listen at your leisure.

            Alternative options, such as going back to older methods or simply doing without, put natural controls on market prices. This is basic economics.
            Honest question: Have you ever taken a basic economics course?

            Have failed to recognize the impact of losing the internet to any given social group while reminding everyone that you not in a position were you’d lose it regardless

            What right do you have to the internet? You don’t own the cables. You don’t own the servers. You don’t pay the electric bills for those cables and servers. You don’t pay for the maintenance costs for those cables and servers. You pay a private company a fee to use their service – that’s it. You have only what rights to use the internet that you pay for. If you don’t pay for an internet free of censorship, any censorship you get is your fault because you didn’t feel like paying extra for the company to keep its political leanings out of your content.

            the emergence of disruptive technologies

            All new technologies are disruptive. Some are just more disruptive than others. Some are small advantages for those that adopt them, others are massive and anyone who doesn’t switch goes out of business. Small innovations, some as small as saving a single drop of solder when sealing a drum, produce competitive advantages.

            Do you know why Walmart is so successful? It’s because they are their own distributor. They cut out a single step in the chain of buyers that everyone else is using, which made them able to undersell just about anyone they want and still turn a profit or to sell at competitive prices on other items and reap absurd profit margins. I used to work there and their inventory system lists the profit margin clearly – 70+% for some items. Setting up that system wasn’t that big an investment, comparatively speaking, because they started it when they were smaller and built up.

            You’ve spat at statistics

            The only statistic you’ve provided so far is that 98.5% of the submissions made to the FCC, after culling out anything submitted via the internet among other things, favors a particular position. I didn’t spit at them, I pointed out why they are invalid as evidence in a battle of ideas. You can’t show that these 98.5% of opinions come from people who are well-informed on the topic. You can’t show that these opinions were arrived at via a rational chain of logic. You can’t show that these opinions are based in reality. You also can’t show that you have a representative sample of the population, especially as you have thrown out every email they received.

            Meanwhile, I have provided you statistics on hard facts, such as the vivaciousness of small businesses and the availability of multiple options for internet access to the overwhelming majority of America, which you have simply ignored.

            called fowl every presented norm you don’t like

            In a battle of ideas, the norm does not matter. Acceptance of slavery was the norm for close to 11,000 years.

            every other person mentioned, no matter how reputable, is wrong because you disagree with them.

            No, they are irrelevant because you do not provide the justification for their ideas. That is different than being wrong. Simply citing their opinion is as relevant in a debate as saying “the Bible says this, therefor that”. Unless we both agree that a person is an authority on a topic, citing their authority does you no good.

            The pathetic part is that you have over the course of a week been able to provide jack shit to substantiate any of this besides made up cafeteria lunch menu scuffles.

            This is an outright lie. I have provided multiple statistics and multiple examples from other industries. You have ignored them or dismissed them as irrelevant because you seem to believe that internet access is somehow fundamentally different than other services.

            Despite the internet being no different from any other market you can provide no parallel industry which benefited from the chain of events the internet is going through.

            You keep dismissing my parallels as irrelevant because they don’t deal with the internet specifically. If you will admit that examples from other industries are relevant, I can provide examples readily.
            http://www.igsenergy.com/blog/examples-of-regulated-and-deregulated-industries/

            If you will not admit that examples from other industries are relevant, then will you, for the sake of the debate, point me to an instance when the internet was subjected to deregulation?

            I’d love to see someone actually put down a coherent reality backed debate over why deregulation of the internet would have a positive effect

            Here’s Yaron Brook on why capitalism is the only moral system of commerce: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44E6ujRLchs

            If that’s not good enough, define what you are looking for. I can’t read your mind.

            December 12, 2017 at 6:14 pm
          • Alot Kyeudo

            That seminar was plain bizarre. When he started by saying that the world had tried the extremes of capitalism and socialism and everything in between I thought he was going to provide actual comparisons between extremely capitalist states and the states which have a capitalist basis with socialist leaning. Instead he gave two examples of why full on communism was bad before launching into a common sense argument that selfishness was a healthy motivator for individuals and that rich people had no reason to feel guilty about being rich – neither of which were being argued against by anyone to my knowledge. Then in the question section he spent a third of his time running away from questions asking for explanations of instances where capitalism had failed (withdrawing back into his right to be selfish arguments), a third of the time agreeing with socialist policies and a third of the time citing cliched arguments such as living wages being detrimental to economies and European style universal health care being extremely slow (the sort of claims which have been debunked time and time again). The point about Swedish people being culturally inclined to say they were happy was an interesting point but one of the only actual points made across the 1:20 hours I spent listening to the thing.

            The airline example at least is an interesting example of government trying to reduce increasing prices by slashing regulation. A move which led to momentarily cheaper prices at the cost of much worse service and many countries in the rust belt becoming aptly named fly over states.

            The telecommunications industry on the other hand you seem to have conceded is stagnant during your argument that the latest disruptive technology remains vibrant while not disputing that the older technologies have come to be controlled by a few permanent monopoly holders.

            The only statistics I recall you sighting however are that 99% of Americans have access to satellite (despite the fact that 99% of Americans cannot afford them) and that 96% of Americans have access to internet, which has very little to do with the watchdog’s claim that 2/3rds of Americans have access to only a single internet provider – though I’d be interested in seeing the sources those came from and any other statistics you apparently quoted.

            On what I’m looking for, is an example of an instance where deregulating an already profitable market led to more competition emerging in that market instead of a few of the more dominant players gaining a stranglehold on the market and stifling it.

            December 13, 2017 at 12:01 am
  • Daito Endashi

    It confuses me that “neutrality opponents” are in favor of net neutrality, the wording they chose is weird…

    November 28, 2017 at 7:54 am
    • Carvj94 Daito Endashi

      I’m guessing it’s an anti government thing. Cause they really do act like removal of net neutrality will somehow make it more free….. Even though net neutrality is literally there to force freedom on the internet whether ISPs want it or not. 100% guarantee that the first year after this gets repealed it will seem calm while ISPs plan how to use their newfound freedom to screw over their customers.

      November 28, 2017 at 5:00 pm
      • Kyeudo Carvj94

        It doesn’t force freedom. It puts a regulatory burden on businesses and restricts their ability to offer service to customers.

        Consider this analogy. Say you operate a toll road. You get passenger cars and semis. The semis cause more wear and tear on your road than the passenger cars, so you charge them a higher toll to use your road. The government comes along, says that charging the bigger user more is unfair, and requires you to treat both exactly the same, regardless of cost. What are you, as the owner, going to do? Well, now the higher maintenance cost of the semis has to be born by the passenger cars, because you have to cover your costs and still make a profit. You are a business, after all. However, because you still need your price to be reasonable enough that passenger cars are going to use the road, you probably won’t be setting it as high as the old toll rate for semis was. This ends up meaning the semis get a price cut, the passenger cars get a price hike, and you as a business owner get the blame.

        This is essentially what “net neutrality” does to smaller ISPs. Netflix and YouTube are large bandwidth hogs and streaming video suffers more from a slow connection or connection interruption than, say, uploading a file to DropBox. Having the hardware to handle streaming smoothly is more expensive than just having the hardware to support browsing Walmart’s store. If the ISPs can’t charge just the people who use streaming services, then the ISPs have to charge everyone for those services, even those who don’t need that higher bandwidth. The high demand users are getting subsidized by the low demand users.

        November 28, 2017 at 6:59 pm
        • Carvj94 Kyeudo

          You don’t really understand how much profit big ISP makes. Your analogy makes sense except that small ISPs make a decent profit regardless and huge ISP like Comcast make massive profits by making themselves your only option in an area then overcharging you by billing you for more than double for spotty service. With this change the big isp can and will charge everyone more because like right now they are the only option in many areas and they know it.

          November 28, 2017 at 9:16 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            I understand they are making money hand over fist. I don’t care. They can make all the money they want as long as I’m getting a product I want at a price I am willing to pay.

            You aren’t really arguing against net neutrality here. You are arguing against artificial monopolies. They can’t charge exorbitant rates unless they are literally the only choice in town. That situation won’t change, with or without net neutrality. In fact, they are probably already charging as much as they can in these areas where they have a monopoly. They can’t charge more without too many customers saying “56k dialup is good enough if that’s what it costs for more”.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:09 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Right right. But your argument against net neutrality was that small ISPs can’t compete with big ISPs. At least that one was. Which has nothing to do with net neutrality.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:46 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Small ISPs haven’t been shut out completely, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t at an unnecessary disadvantage. Regulations are easier to deal with the more assets you have. Small companies don’t have many assets, ergo they are hit comparatively harder than the bigger company. If we can drop some of those regulations because they aren’t necessary to protecting human rights, then we can let the smaller companies have all the more chance to survive and thrive.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:53 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            That’s all true but small ISPs don’t usually close due to high maintenance costs. While it’s harder it’s really only preventing everyone and their mom from doing a startup ISP. Once they clear all the entry fees keeping the business afloat is fairly simple for ISPs. They close in one way or another because of other reasons like big companies forcing a buyout. At this point it’s the big ISPs that are stopping smaller ISPs from starting up. Even making it free to legally form an ISP it would still just be putting more small fish in a pond full of big predators.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:20 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Unless the big ISPs are using illegal actions to shut down their competition, let them hunt all they like. They can only force a buyout by becoming majority shareholders in the company. You don’t have to sell stock in your company. You can keep it privately held and they can’t do anything but offer you more money than the business is worth. If they do give you more than it is worth, sell it, start a new ISP with the funds, and go back for another piece of pie.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:25 am
  • Parasomnia Owns

    This is false. Portugal abides by EU’s guidelines on Net Neutrality and the service offered has NOTHING to do with what’s being described!
    Please do some basic research and allow someone who actually knows Portuguese to avoid you lying to your readers.

    No internet packages in Portugal have the mentioned restrictions. None.
    The page you see in the screenshot offers something completely different.

    For CAPPED MOBILE DATA PLANS (not the ubiquitous unlimited non-mobile internet service!) you have the option of having specific services be uncapped for an extra charge.
    It’s common to have a 10-15GB mobile data cap.. but data from Spotify or YouTube be left out of that cap for an extra fee every month.

    Please stop spreading misinformation. Check the comment sections on the majority of sources of this article for people living in Portugal trying to get facts straight, just like I am doing here.

    Portugal is abiding by net neutrality rules.

    November 28, 2017 at 7:59 am
    • Pew Pew Parasomnia Owns

      In support of this

      “Specifically, article 3 of EU Regulation 2015/2120 sets the basic framework for ensuring net neutrality across the entire European Union.”

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Net_neutrality_law#European_Union

      November 28, 2017 at 10:45 am
      • Parasomnia Owns Pew Pew

        Well.. my comment was flagged as spam and then deleted despite correcting the article’s obvious false information. GG INN, keep hurting the Net Neutrality cause by lying to your readers.

        November 29, 2017 at 4:36 pm
  • Testnewbie

    A poorly written article about an important topic.

    November 28, 2017 at 11:27 am
    • Alot Testnewbie

      Nah, gate camping aint that important.

      November 28, 2017 at 12:24 pm
  • CK

    Let me give those who don’t know how it works here a personal example of how screwed up internet access is in the US even with our current net neutrality laws. I live about ten miles from the edge of the third largest metropolitan area in the US. My areas wired phone, cable, and broadband infrastructure has been given to AT&T as a local monopoly. They are the only wired service provider I can contact. AT&T refuses to extend any services to the street I live on. The next block over can get Uverse after an extension was made to a small subdivision nearly a decade ago. We are less than a quarter mile from the end of that trunk line. The land around us is selling quickly to developers building 300-400 home subdivision, who get fiber service. But my road has been told by AT&T that we will not be serviced. 14 single family homes, two businesses, and a church in less than a mile is not enough for them to bother with. Keep in mind that every cell phone and landline is taxed with an infrastructure fee that is meant to extend services to residents. AT&T has been given billions in tax money to add infrastructure, but only does it for land developers that can afford to pay extra to get them to bury a line. As it stands, i pay $100 a month for a mobile hotspot with a 21gig limit. It’s $10 per gig if I go over that. My wife uses about half that every month for online classes. So, no Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, etc for us due to the bandwidth limit. Since we can’t stream tv, and there is no cable option, we pay $110 per month for satellite service. This does not include premium stuff like HBO. For $210 per month, not counting mobile phone service, we get less service than someone paying half that because internet in the US is not considered a regular utility even though we pay taxes as if it was. After next month I will pay just as much for even less service because the FCC is an appointed commission that isn’t beholden to anyone except the guy who appointed them.

    November 28, 2017 at 12:47 pm
    • Pew Pew CK

      “My areas wired phone, cable, and broadband infrastructure has been given to AT&T as a local monopoly.”

      Wouldn’t all political parties be opposed to this? Pubs on freemarket grounds and Dems because it’s just stupid? How did this get organised? Is there only corruption left to explain it?

      November 28, 2017 at 2:41 pm
      • CK Pew Pew

        It’s a legacy of breaking up Bell mixed with a grant program by the state Department of Agriculture. Since we aren’t under a municipal government service providers can get state grant money to cover an area on the map and claim they provide service. AT&T is the legacy landline phone service, which is available. With their connection to DirecTV they can offer TV service and their mobile phone service has data plans for mobile hotspots. The 4G networks are considered broadband. Technically they are offering us service under the state grant. Nothing in the grant states that the service provided has to be reasonable or affordable. The grant program is simply there to show on a map that the state has service in most areas. I can guess who helped write the grant requirements.

        November 28, 2017 at 3:31 pm
        • Kyeudo CK

          So government interference has resulted in a lack of competition and an artificial monopoly has resulted in poor treatment of customers. Why do you think more government regulation will help this? Government interference caused your problems.

          November 28, 2017 at 4:38 pm
          • CK Kyeudo

            No, not at all. The issue is that the government has trusted the telecoms to build out infrastructure to everyone without having any way to force them to do it. This has resulted in the telecoms cherry picking upgrades to maximize profits while ignoring the spirit of the law. Current Net Neutrality law is poorly written on this point. Removing the law altogether will allow the telecoms to cherry pick the continuing service to existing customers with no need to do any expansion of infrastructure to increase revenue. A premium data package that allows you access to Facebook, Youtube, and Netflix would be a windfall profit for the companies and require no more a few lines of code to fleece their customers. The US needs to wake up and call broadband internet a true utility like electricity. The electrical grid and infrastructure is more or less nationalized. In Texas at least; certain companies keep up the grid in their area, but they do it under very strict guidelines and price controls. But, anyone can set up as a service provider to sell you electricity over those power lines. The competition is very fierce to sell you the power while you never have to worry if you can get the power to your house. There is no electricity divide here. But everyday the information and opportunity divide grows bigger for smaller communities.

            November 28, 2017 at 6:17 pm
          • Kyeudo CK

            “The issue is that the government has trusted the telecoms . . .” so the issue is the government. The government should not be giving any company money to build or maintain their infrastructure. This just subsidizes the company’s bottom line and precludes a competitor.

            You also cannot be fleeced by a business unless they fail to provide the service that you pay for. It is literally impossible. You want what they are selling more than you want the money. They want the money more than what they are selling. You win, they win, and you both walk away wishing you had got a better deal.

            If they decide to offer a “basic internet” package that excludes bandwidth hogs like Facebook, YouTube, and Netflix, they will have to offer that package at a price that people who don’t use those three services will pay for. The “premium internet” upgrade will only be purchased by those that want to use those sites. All market signs point to that “premium internet” price being the price you are paying now, if not cheaper. Repealing net neutrality won’t drive up your prices – market forces don’t work that way. It will allow the ISPs more flexibility if they want it and that could mean better service, cheaper service, or both.

            November 28, 2017 at 6:48 pm
          • CK Kyeudo

            Your argument is pretty much “Let them eat cake”. Seriously, you need to look into how completely unregulated free markets eat their own. http://www.achp.org/wp-content/uploads/Diabetes_FINAL_Revised-12.7.15.pdf

            November 28, 2017 at 8:21 pm
          • Kyeudo CK

            You picked a terrible example there.
            First, the healthcare sector is incredibly over-regulated. The price of everything is higher than necessary because of all the subsidies, restrictions, excessive testing, and so on. The problem only continues to get worse.

            Second, that graphic admits to only dealing with brand-name drugs with no generic counterpart. In other words, they have an artificial monopoly, usually from a medical patent.

            Third, life-threatening conditions often don’t permit the patient to opt out of paying for some sort of care. If you need insulin, you need insulin. I haven’t heard of anyone that needs a particular brand of insulin, but I don’t study diabetes so maybe there are people who are locked into a single product. Regardless of the particular life-threating condition, however much the monopoly chooses to charge you will pay or you will die. This is most definitely not the case with internet service. No one has ever died because their ISP throttled their data and their heart stopped.

            Fourth, health insurance – another heavily regulated area – acts as a third party in the healthcare transaction, preventing the patient from bearing most of the cost in the majority of cases and distorting the normal market incentives. Once you’ve met your deductible for the year, your out of pocket costs are generally negligible regardless of the treatment, so you might as well have the best quality and the most convenience you can find. That quality and convenience have a cost, but the cost is born by the insurance company. The insurance companies can’t raise your individual rates, generally speaking, so the cost is born in generally raised rates for everyone instead.

            In short, you picked the least free, most mangled sector of the market out there and are trying to call it a good example of the free market hurting consumers.

            If you actually look at the root causes of the problem, the artificial monopoly is probably the easiest piece to attack, rather than the drug companies themselves. Instead of “No one but you can make this medicine for the next 5-10 years”, give them an automatic royalty percentage for 20 or 30 years and let any company that wants manufacture the drug. Then there is a price where other companies will willingly pay the royalty to get into the market, preventing one company from arbitrarily raising the price.

            November 28, 2017 at 8:44 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Healthcare is actually overpriced because of insurance and the hospitals themselves. Government has little to do with inflated healthcare costs. An IV bag takes maybe 3 bucks to make and deliver to where it’s needed, but it’s the hospital’s choice to charge you 70$ or more for it before they factor labor.

            November 28, 2017 at 9:10 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            You want to know why they do that? Because there are limits placed on what they can charge for any given service, but they want to turn as large a profit as possible. If those limits weren’t there, the hospital would have some general price for whatever you had, say a tonsillectomy, plus some per day room charge for recovery. Because there’s a ceiling on that tonsillectomy, they are going to bill for the procedure and for the IV and for the aspirin and every other odd bit they can separate out as its own thing and all of them are going to be billed at the maximum allowable rate.

            You, the patient, don’t care. You aren’t really spending your own money. That money is going to come out of the health insurance company’s pocket. Next year, insurance costs for everyone might go up, but that’s a small negative for the huge benefit you are getting right now. It’s the Tragedy of the Commons.

            There are only two ways out of the Tragedy of the Commons. The first is for a neutral third party to ration how much each party can use the commons. No one wants the government putting limits on what care we can have, so that option is out. The other way is for there to be no commons. If each individual was charged insurance individually, those who are sick the most frequently would pay the most for insurance or be dropped entirely. Alternatively, if there was no insurance, you would have to pay for care with your own money. You’d start treating your health insurance like your car insurance – something to only use when you really need it.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:18 pm
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            ……. Im frankly baffled. “You aren’t really spending your own money That money is going to come out of the health insurance company’s pocket” Health insurance premiums are based on how much you’re likely to require for medical care. In other words if you have a surgery that costs 100,000$ your insurance premium is gonna go up and in the end you’re paying for it. Insurance companies are a business after all. They exist to make a profit.

            And despite what you may think health care was affordable once. Needed stitches for a nasty cut and the local clinic would charge you a reasonable fee based on the supplies used and a livable wage for the doctor. Nowadays that’d be like say 50$ to go treat the gash your kid got when they fell on some sharp rocks. But instead we have a wildly inflated price where you’ll have to drop 250 dollars because your insurance deductible is 500. Also to note deductibles and copays are methods insurance companies use to get you to use your insurance less. After all you’re less likely to go to the hospital for those intense stomach cramps if your poor and have to pay a deductible to get some tests run.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:43 pm
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            Most people get their health insurance through their workplace as part of a group deal. My rate can’t go up independently of the rates for the entire company I work for.

            Deductibles and co-pays are the mechanisms that the insurance company uses to keep you from over-using your insurance. If healthcare was effectively free to you, you’d have no reason not to go for every ache, pain, and case of the sniffles. However, anything beyond your deductible is cash out of their pocket, not yours. I picked my current insurance plan out of those offered because despite paying more upfront, I have enough regular medical expenses that I will meet my deductible and overall save money over the course of the year, in addition to having more covered benefits than the plan that is cheaper upfront. I am a net negative for my insurance company to pay for, so their rates for other people are going to have to be higher than they otherwise would be. In essence, I am making them pay the difference for something that does them no good.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:46 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            Your lucky. You benefit from insurance companies. While most people do not. Either way everyone it at risk of being in a medical emergency where they can’t pick which hospital they go to. One hospital might charge 5,000$ for the treatment you need but the one you get shipped off to one that charges 85,000$. They are one of the few horrible types of company that are legally allowed to forcibly provide a service to you and charge you literally whatever they want. Also you better hope that the 85,000$ hospital is within your insurance network cause if it’s not your insurance company won’t pay you a dime. The whole industry is despicable and with simple regulation most people wouldn’t necessarily need medical insurance at all til a certain age.

            November 29, 2017 at 1:01 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            They get to charge you because we have told them they can’t say no to serving you. If you let them refuse you service until they know you can pay, then they’ll no longer be allowed to make you pay for services that they provide that you did not agree to.

            About 75% of Americans have some form of health insurance. The rest are usually covered under Medicare or Medicaid.

            Most insurance policies just have higher deductibles/co-pays/etc. for out-of-network care and have exceptions for emergency services rather than denying you coverage outright.

            Suggesting that more government intervention would make health insurance less necessary is like suggesting that more poison would make the pain go away. Go look up the case of Charlie Gard if you want to see what government overregulation can become.

            November 29, 2017 at 1:25 am
          • Carvj94 Kyeudo

            The case of Charlie Gard has barely anything to do with regulation. Doctors refused to do experimental treatment because the chances of success were remote at best and even if successful there’d have been severe side effects due to the child’s age.

            November 29, 2017 at 1:54 am
          • Kyeudo Carvj94

            There were doctors in America willing to perform the treatment. His parents – his legal guardians – had all the money for the transport and the treatment. No treatment meant death, so even a small chance and the possibility of side effects was better than the alternative. And the British NHS decided that one small child needed to die rather than have a chance at life.
            I know this: If healthcare was a free market in Britain, Charlie Gard’s story would not have ended with him dying in a British hospice. We’d have heard about his struggle against the disease in America, as his parents tried to give him a chance at life. He probably wouldn’t have lived, but he’d have had a roll of the dice.

            November 29, 2017 at 6:40 am
          • CK Kyeudo

            Wait, you WANT hospitals to be able to refuse patients based on their ability to pay? Seriously! I’m done. You obviously don’t have a shred of human decency in you and are beyond having a rational debate with.

            November 29, 2017 at 10:42 am
          • Kyeudo CK

            Go read what I wrote again, because you obviously didn’t understand my point.

            He complains that hospitals are allowed to bill you for care they administer to you in an emergency, care that you did not authorize. I point out that this is because they are not allowed to make sure you can pay before treating you. There are only two functional options for policy here. Either the hospital has to treat you and you have to pay or the hospital doesn’t have to treat you and you don’t have to pay.

            There is a term for “Has to provide service and doesn’t have to be paid”. It’s called “slavery”. No doctor is going to sign up for that.

            November 29, 2017 at 4:39 pm
          • CK Kyeudo

            Insurance costs for my wife and I are $18,000 per year. We use about $3000. Deductible is $3500. Please, tell us again how everything that is great for you is great for everybody.

            November 29, 2017 at 10:39 am
          • Kyeudo CK

            Why are you paying for insurance that costs that much if you only use 3k per year? It sounds like you’d be far better off putting 15k in a savings account in case of medical emergency. Hospitals have discounts for those who pay in cash.

            I’m not in any way saying that health insurance is a good system. It distorts the market around medical care in terrible ways. If you actually read what I wrote, you’ll note that I am basically describing myself as a parasite on the insurance company and by extension my coworkers.

            November 29, 2017 at 4:35 pm
          • ArtyD Kyeudo

            Interesting…

            “The tragedy of the commons is an economic theory of a situation within a shared-resource system where individual users acting independently according to their own self-interest behave contrary to the common good of all users by depleting or spoiling that resource through their collective action.”

            The problem we have is the internet is not a limited resource. Without someone keeping everybody in line remembering that it is an unlimited resource we will get that unlimited broken into smaller chunks and charged more for. You will find you can’t afford to keep more than email and social media connections because of the cost for things as simple as gaming. Netflix and other streaming services can be “slow laned” by providers as they see fit. Your search requests can be re-routed without your permission to their own preferred website search engine with custom advertisements and blocked answers because no law exists saying they must let the information flow freely.

            What we have is not an issue with “net neutrality” but “The first amendment” instead. Thanks.

            November 28, 2017 at 11:46 pm
          • Kyeudo ArtyD

            The Tragedy of the Commons was brought up in response to medical insurance, not the internet.

            The internet is a limited resource. Servers must be paid for, powered, maintained. Wires have to be run. Bandwidths are only so large. It is also not a common resource. You can point to a definite, concrete owner for every server, every wire, and each of those owners is fully able to disconnect their equipment at any time of their choosing.

            The nightmare scenario you imagine is not something the market will put up with. The ISPs are making money now. If one ISP decides to keep their “basic internet” package the same cost as you are currently paying and then charge extra if you want to avoid being slow-laned, all their rivals have to do is keep everything the same as it has been and just watch the customers roll in. The only practical way they can use their new freedom is to improve service, not make it worse.

            The internet is private property. You don’t have a right to post whatever sign you want on my lawn, so you don’t have a right to post whatever you want on the internet unless you are the owner of that part of the internet.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:03 am
          • ArtyD Kyeudo

            “The nightmare scenario you imagine is not something the market will put up with.” The assumption is that this can be avoided when literally the first person in this thread is experiencing the exact opposite?

            “The internet is private property. You don’t have a right to post whatever sign you want on my lawn, so you don’t have a right to post whatever you want on the internet unless you are the owner of that part of the internet.” I can post whatever I want here. Nobody owns the internet. But basically you just confirmed that *remaining statement deleted due to isp request*

            November 29, 2017 at 12:11 am
          • Kyeudo ArtyD

            The first person in this thread is experiencing terrible service from a local, artificial monopoly. His problems have more to do with the monopoly rather than with greedy businesses.

            As I stated, the internet is privately owned. It is a massive routing network. That’s all it is. Each server that is part of it has an owner. This discussion forum/thread is on the Disqus servers. They can do whatever they like with whatever you post here because this is their lawn and they are paying for it. They get paid by websites to provide comments sections for articles. The servers in between you and the Disqus servers? They don’t have to let you get here. They do so because someone is paying them to let you do so. Either buy your own space on the internet, with all the costs that come with it, or put up with living by other people’s rules about what you can do with their property.

            November 29, 2017 at 12:21 am
          • Notably the FCC is not breaking up the regional monopolies held by ISPs. Why would an ISP with a monopoly not charge everyone a shitload of extra money to access “premium content” when their subscribers have no choice but to pay it to them?

            November 29, 2017 at 5:56 am
          • Kyeudo Ganthrithor

            Because people retain the option to do without high-speed internet. They probably already have the price as high as maximizes their effort for profit calculation. If they take prices any higher, people will go to slower forms of internet such as satellite or dialup rather than pay for high-speed and it will lower their profits. Even a monopoly has to bow to its customers somewhat when their service is not essential to life.

            November 29, 2017 at 6:16 am
          • DO YOU NOT SEE HOW THAT IS TERRIBLE FOR THE COUNTRY?

            Fuck this is like that college polisci class you took where all the fucking libertarian retards come out of the woodwork to talk about how really roads and firefighting should be privatized because taxation is rape and I wanna be able to opt out of every possible service because MY MONEY IS THE FRUIT OF MY LABOR OK? YOU CANT TELL ME WHAT TO DO MOM! Parenthetically, when I vape too much and get popcorn lung I’ma show up at the hospital with no money and expect someone to save my life.

            Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck this rock is full of idiots, how do I get off of it?

            Private companies have consistently done a shit job providing network access in the US. Why do you think we have insanely high costs for broadband, yet our idea of a blazing-fast connection is one that hits 60mbit sometimes. In real countries, people’s fukkin cell connectivity is faster than a lot of our “broadband.” It’s absurd that a country this rich has such horrific fucking infrastructure. Much like with healthcare, we pay some of the highest costs and we receive some of the lowest value for our money. That’s what privatization of public goods buys you: a lot of corporate profits, crony capitalism, and customers paying ridiculous sums of money for substandard services.

            November 30, 2017 at 7:47 pm
          • Kyeudo Ganthrithor

            I totally see how artificial monopolies are terrible for the country. That’s why I want the government to stop creating them.

            Taxation isn’t rape. Taxation for things beyond the legitimate scope of government is theft. The IRS agents would have to be literally bending you over for taxation to be rape. Libertarians are correct that privatized roads can work – they are apparently quite common in some parts of the country. Firefighting is about the third worst thing to privatize, after the military and the justice system. If you go full anarcho-capitalist, don’t expect a privately owned hospital to treat you when you can’t pay.

            You call it a poor job, but 94% of the country has two or more options for internet. 99% of the country has at least one. Sounds like a pretty decent job to me. Sure not all of it is “broadband”, but tons of people don’t need broadband. I think my parents have broadband only because I visit so frequently and they got used to no lag while browsing the web on their phones. They don’t actually game or stream anything, so they could go with a lot less and hardly notice.

            Our healthcare is generally speaking better than anything you’ll find elsewhere. It’s more expensive, but that’s what happens when you want the best and you’ve got health insurance company footing most of the bill. I’d rather get seriously ill here in America than Canada.

            Corporate profits are a good thing, crony capitalism is a problem of government interfering where they should not, and you can’t pay ridiculous sums for substandard services – things are worth what you are willing to pay to acquire them.

            November 30, 2017 at 10:11 pm
          • Gina Kyeudo

            The last few years, whenever i read about American politics and infrastructure, im becoming more and more convinced its actually a 3rd world country.. like wtf are you guys even doing if these are actual true stories, rest of the western world are pointing and laughing at you at this point, and for good reason might i add!

            Arguing like two single children who’s family merged when parents remarried.. just pathetic. But now at least you have a orange clown to make things great again? Gl with that.

            December 2, 2017 at 11:10 am
      • Carvj94 Pew Pew

        It’s a money rules all situation going on really. Since internet will always be a luxury. Companies can freely be shitty and dodge rules to ruin things for the people who live where they live. In this case since laying cables does take a decent amount of capital so the companies that are strictly ISPs are bowing out because AT&T as a phone company would beat them out unless they invest a lot. Otherwise they’d lose business cause a decent amount of his town can only use AT&T so they’d get a lot more word of mouth advertisement that’ll always be present. Not worth their time to compete with a company that delivers internet without cables essentially.

        November 28, 2017 at 10:15 pm
    • Freelancer117 CK

      Shit son I feel for you, hope you have redbox near you for them Pron videos.

      November 30, 2017 at 10:46 am
  • Carvj94

    Ok regarding your second paragraph.You gotta realize that companies will pay to have other companies sensored and legally the ISPs will be able to do that. Even if they have to mask their bribes as “Advertising costs” they will. If Google pays to have better connection quality they WILL get more customers and every other streaming service will suffer. Your not gonna keep your Vrv subscription if it keeps buffering every 10 seconds right?

    November 28, 2017 at 10:23 pm