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Responding to SaveTheInternet's personal attack on me

Tim Karr, the campaign director of Free Press that runs much of the SaveTheInternet effort, blogged a personal attack on me today, that I responded to on his blog.

  • I include the full text of my response below in case Mr. Karr is not willing to post my comment on his blog.


It's not the first time I've been called names by people who wanted to discredit me and my analysis. Among others, you share the august company of the now-imprisoned Bernie Ebbers, who routinely derided me as the "idiot analyst" because I had his number in calling WorldCom "dead model walking" before anyone else in the country figured it out. He too was mistaken that name calling and intimidation could muzzle my views.

You obviously don't understand the irony and humor of accusing me of routinely failing "to come clean and disclose his(my) considerable 'conflicts of interest'." It was precious that your link sent people to my website at where I fully and prominently disclose who I work for -- the broadband industry! Thank you for making my point so eloquently for me.

I certainly have "interests" in this debate -- I very publicly represent the broadband industry in the net neutrality debate and I strongly espouse a free market deregulatory perspective.

If you would like to learn more about what the term "conflicts of interest" actually means, I would refer you to my written testimony before the Senate Commerce Committee 12-18-01 on the Enron Corporation, where I was the first outside expert asked to testify before Congress on the subject of "conflicts of interest" during that national crisis of confidence in the integrity of our capital markets system.

As for saying that I have changed my views -- you obviously have not been very thorough. I have a long public record of standing up to monopolies and monopoly abuses, because I am a well-known pro-competition, free market, law enforcement proponent. Why I have credibility on this issue is that I have consistently opposed monopoly and promoted competition during my career.

You should also know that I recruited the broadband industry to join NetCompetition; they did not seek out my services. I was first to organize the entire broadband industry to fight net neutrality because I saw it from the start as one of the worst and most direct assaults I have ever seen on free markets, competition and deregulation policy.

Why I am an effective advocate against net neutrality, is that I am passionate about my views and I care very much about the direction our country and the techcom sector take.

Tim, by attacking me personally and baselessly -- you only hurt Free Press' and Save the Internet's cause.

When you get easy-to-check facts dead wrong, and you obviously don't do your homework, people will wonder if your facts and information in support of net neutrality are suspect too.

Personal attacks say more about the merit and integrity of your net neutrality cause, than they illuminate about me.

Scott Cleland
Chairman of and eforum funded by broadband companies