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The “Aristechracy” Demands Users Subsidize Their Net Neutrality Free Lunch – Part 45 FCC Open Internet Order Series
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2014-05-08 18:25
The Net Neutrality movement has lost its way. It’s now perversely focused on advancing Internet companies’ economic interests at the expense of Internet user interests.
The Net neutrality movement’s main priority used to be about ensuring that Internet users have the freedom to access the legal content of their choice.
Now they have become singularly-focused on securing permanent economic subsidies for edge companies by demanding the FCC set a zero-price for all downstream Internet traffic via reclassifying broadband as a Title II common carrier service.
Essentially, what their latest net neutrality scheme would mean is that Internet users would be forced to shoulder the entire cost burden of maintaining and upgrading America’s expensive Internet infrastructure without a fair-share contribution from the top Internet companies for the infrastructure costs they cause as a result of their dominant consumption of the nation’s daily downstream bandwidth.
Simply, net neutrality has transmogrified from preserving users’ Internet freedoms to forcing all Internet users to fully subsidize all Internet companies’ bandwidth usage bill no matter if they use a particular edge companies’ services or not.
Most simply, Internet companies seek a “free lunch,” an FCC economic entitlement and wealth transfer from users via an FCC zero-price entitlement to unlimited downstream traffic for free.
America has long had an aversion to the notion of an American aristocracy, a “class of persons holding exceptional rank or privilege,” or a “group considered to be superior, as through education, ability, wealth or social prestige.”
Meet America’s entitled “aristechracy.”
Over a hundred of the top “aristechrat” companies wrote the FCC claiming that the FCC’s plan to abide by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals’ Verizon v. FCC decision, would represent a “grave threat to the Internet.” The letter effectively signaled Silicon Valley’s behind-the-scenes recommendation that the FCC should reclassify broadband as a Title II common carrier service.
Predictably, a few dozen “aristechrat” Silicon Valley venture capital investors also chimed in with their own letter urging the FCC to “consider all jurisdictional tools at its disposal in ensuring a free and open Internet.” This letter was another effective Silicon Valley recommendation for the FCC to reclassify broadband as a Title II common carrier service.
The “aristechracy” -- America’s privileged net nobility and uppermost .01% class -- has spoken.
Specifically, the 100+ “aristechratic” companies – which are valued at well over one trillion dollars in the marketplace; which have enjoyed the special privilege of an Internet tax moratorium for fifteen years; which routinely claim that the laws and regulations that apply to everyone else should not apply to them; and which expect everyone else to “share” their private data and property with them without permission – want to impose Title II common carrier regulation on the broadband industry to avoid contributing their fair share of the cost of upgrading the Internet infrastructure from which they most benefit and profit.
In a nutshell, the Internet companies which have long enjoyed by far the least government regulation, taxes, and law enforcement are now seeking additional massive special governmental advantages by de facto urging the FCC to impose the most draconian level of regulation possible on the broadband industry.
Tellingly, that would mean that the Internet companies that cause the most Internet capacity costs and profit most from the Internet, would pay the least for its use.
In sum, this current net neutrality debate is no longer about blocking or discrimination; it’s now really a debate about a massive economic entitlement via mandated FCC zero-pricing for downstream traffic.
The “aristechracy” is demanding a streaming-bandwidth free-lunch-for-life, paid in full by Internet users.
FCC Open Internet Order Series
Part 1: The Many Vulnerabilities of an Open Internet [9-24-09]
Part 2: Why FCC proposed net neutrality regs unconstitutional, NPR Online Op-ed [9-24-09]
Part 3: Takeaways from FCC's Proposed Open Internet Regs [10-22-09]
Part 4: How FCC Regulation Would Change the Internet [10-30-09]
Part 5: Is FCC Declaring 'Open Season' on Internet Freedom? [11-17-09]
Part 6: Critical Gaps in FCC's Proposed Open Internet Regulations [11-30-09]
Part 7: Takeaways from the FCC's Open Internet Further Inquiry [9-2-10]
Part 8: An FCC "Data-Driven" Double Standard? [10-27-10]
Part 9: Election Takeaways for the FCC [11-3-10]
Part 10: Irony of Little Openness in FCC Open Internet Reg-making [11-19-10]
Part 11: FCC Regulating Internet to Prevent Companies from Regulating Internet [11-22-10]
Part 12: Where is the FCC's Legitimacy? [11-22-10]
Part 13: Will FCC Preserve or Change the Internet? [12-17-10]
Part 14: FCC Internet Price Regulation & Micro-management? [12-20-10]
Part 15: FCC Open Internet Decision Take-aways [12-21-10]
Part 16: FCC Defines Broadband Service as "BIAS"-ed [12-22-10]
Part 17: Why FCC's Net Regs Need Administration/Congressional Regulatory Review [1-3-11]
Part 18: Welcome to the FCC-Centric Internet [1-25-11]
Part 19: FCC's Net Regs in Conflict with President's Pledges [1-26-11]
Part 20: Will FCC Respect President's Call for "Least Burdensome" Regulation? [2-3-11]
Part 21: FCC's In Search of Relevance in 706 Report [5-23-11]
Part 22: The FCC's public wireless network blocks lawful Internet traffic [6-13-11]
Part 23: Why FCC Net Neutrality Regs Are So Vulnerable [9-8-11]
Part 24: Why Verizon Wins Appeal of FCC's Net Regs [9-30-11]
Part 25: Supreme Court likely to leash FCC to the law [10-10-12]
Part 26: What Court Data Roaming Decision Means for FCC Open Internet Order [12-4-12]
Part 27: Oops! Crawford's Model Broadband Nation, Korea, Opposes Net Neutrality [2-26-13]
Part 28: Little Impact on FCC Open Internet Order from SCOTUS Chevron Decision [5-21-13]
Part 29: More Legal Trouble for FCC's Open Internet Order & Net Neutrality [6-2-13]
Part 30: U.S. Competition Beats EU Regulation in Broadband Race [6-21-13]
Part 31: Defending Google Fiber's Reasonable Network Management [7-30-13]
Part 32: Capricious Net Neutrality Charges [8-7-13]
Part 33: Why FCC won't pass Appeals Court's oral exam [9-2-13]
Part 34: 5 BIG Implications from Court Signals on Net Neutrality - A Special Report [9-13-13]
Part 35: Dial-up Rules for the Broadband Age? My Daily Caller Op-ed Rebutting Marvin Ammori's [11-6-13]
Part 36: Nattering Net Neutrality Nonsense Over AT&T's Sponsored Data Offering [1-6-14]
Part 37: Is Net Neutrality Trying to Mutate into an Economic Entitlement? [1-12-14]
Part 38: Why Professor Crawford Has Title II Reclassification All Wrong [1-16-14]
Part 39: Title II Reclassification Would Violate President's Executive Order [1-22-14]
Part 40: The Narrowing Net Neutrality Dispute [2-24-14]
Part 41: FCC’s Open Internet Order Do-over – Key Going Forward Takeaways [3-5-14]
Part 42: Net Neutrality is about Consumer Benefit not Corporate Welfare for Netflix [3-21-14]
Part 43: The Multi-speed Internet is Getting More Faster Speeds [4-28-14]
Part 44: Reality Check on the Electoral Politics of Net Neutrality [5-2-14]