Internet Freedom

The Net Neutrality issue has been buried in in Leftist rhetoric. Almost all the coverage has been one sided. I have yet to see any major news outlet actually quote what the roll-back plan is or what the rules will be. Most coverage has been hysterical fluff and misdirection.

Today there is an article in the Wall Street Journal that does a decent job of giving the other side. You can decide how real or fake. I’ll point out most people will have a hard time figuring out the truth after the flood of propaganda they have endured.

The Internet Is Free Again (there is a pay wall) You can find summaries of the article but most are not actually dealing with the substance of the article. They just make assertions and state opinions. So, you’ll have to wade through the bias and propaganda to find the actual content. Plus there are all the #InternetFreeAgain slams from the clueless that have drunk the Koolaid.

The short version of the story is the subtitle of the article: Killing Obama-era rules will remove the FCC as political gatekeeper. The gatekeeper aspect is why I have consistently opposed Net Neutrality in the USA.

Almost all the coverage has been about how the change WILL cost you more money and restrict your access. It is how they motivate the generally apathetic that are not paying attention. Both are lies, but that gets lost in opinion and prediction neither of which can be debated. The hidden agenda that the government had taken control of the Internet to control political content was never mentioned.

Nor do they mention the always increasing cost of government regulation nor the regressive effect on low and middle-income people. The more likely factor to drive up everyone’s cost is government regulation.

So, the deed is done. The FCC has rolled the regs back freeing the Internet. Amazingly supposedly freedom loving people are screaming about that.

Now the political effort from the Left and various misinformed parties is to kill that freedom and give government regulators control over politics on the Internet. Make sure you know real facts before joining any political campaign or movement for or against NN. Way too often the campaign psychologists have figured out how to get people to act against their personal best internet.

Net Neutrality and the Gullible

Ciaran Laval responded to my criticism of his post regarding Net Neutrality in the previous article’s comments. Ciaran opposes the coming proposed Pia-change in the FCC Internet regulation. There is lots to talk about. See which of us you agree with.

The magic of unicorns

The magic of unicorns

I still am not sure Ciaran has read through the FCC document to which the media is reacting. He quotes a point from the FCC’s Myth vs Fact sheet, an accompanying document. I strongly suggest you read it. Ciaran’s one chosen ‘myth’ from 14:

Broadband providers will charge you a premium if you want to reach certain online content.

What are they saying? Is this the idea that the ISP’s will charge you more to access Netflix or Hulu? Has anyone ever seen their ISP make such an offer or place such a limit on your service? No. It has never happened.

Ciaran continues quoting from Myth vs Fact:

This didn’t happen before the Obama Administration’s 2015 heavy-handed Internet regulations, and it won’t happen after they are repealed.

Ciaran calls the last part a statement of hope. But, consider. The fact is it did not happen before Obama started trying to put the Internet under government control. But, is the ‘won’t happen’ with a return to a free market Internet just wishful thinking? Or is there something to base it on?

What we know…

There is a saying, “The only thing we learn from history is we don’t learn from history.” That is a paraphrase of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel ‘s comment, “We learn from history that we do not learn from history.” In a longer comment he said, “What experience and history teaches us is that people and governments have never learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it.”

A more telling quote of Hegel’s I like is, “To be independent of public opinion is the first formal condition of achieving anything great.

The quotes don’t mean we can’t learn from history. There are people that do learn from history. We have 6,000+ years of written history. We know what freedom, the free market, and competitive commerce generate. Humans haven’t changed in any significant way in all that time.

So, the forces that keep the Internet growing and prices dropping as speed and quality improved before 2015 will still be in place. So, the ‘hope’ is a well-founded belief and a very probable result.

We also know that government regulation drives up prices, unfairly. The ‘unfairly’ being that because rich and poor have different spending patterns government regulation will affect those groups differently.

A 2016 study of government regulation on prices by Dustin Chambers, Professor of Economics, Salisbury University, titled: How Do Federal Regulations Affect Consumer Prices? shows Poorer Households Spend More on More Heavily Regulated Goods and government regulation drives prices up. Check their methodology before you try and disagree.

More… link below.

What is Net Neutrality in 2017?

Ciaran Laval is on about Net Neutrality and the coming December 14th meeting of the FCC. Ciaran buys into to the mainstream media viewpoint things are getting worse with the pending rules change. I see it the other way. I take a long view and consider the principals that debatably created the greatest economic engine in history, the free market.

Cave Mushrooms

Cave Mushrooms

Ciaran sees current efforts in the FCC as something out of a “dystopian novel”. Well, if we were talking Atlas Shrugged I would agree, but we aren’t.

Quoting Ciaran,

The proposal is not consumer friendly, and consumers are letting the FCC know that. The proposal is not being welcomed by many tech companies and is a glaring example of how officials ignore consumers and fail to serve the public.

Is the proposal ‘consumer friendly’ or not? The answer depends on what you know about the proposal and the principals of the free market. On a purely personal, short-term basis the uninformed will think not. A deeper understanding of the free market gives us the clue that competition is always better for the consumer. Continue reading

Poor Facebook – More Free Speech Attacks

Zuckerberg can’t win. Unless you’re Independent or conservative that has chased down more balanced news sources you probably aren’t seeing the steady stream of news about Facebook’s bias. The real story isn’t that Facebook (URL to home page) is biased. The story is how prevalent the movement to ban free speech is. Everyone is missing that part of the story.

~unicorn centauress~

~unicorn centauress~

Facebook is a private company. It has the right within the USA to be biased. What it doesn’t have and what can verge on illegal is telling us the service it provides has no bias. There it can trip on truth in advertising laws. Breaking trust with customers, in this case ‘users’ is probably more descriptive, is always considered bad form.  Continue reading

Free Speech: FEC Taking…

Remember Obama Girl? In 2008 this way cute Obama Girl was a thing. I’m misusing her and the videos she made and making some misstatements and misrepresentations to illustrate what the FEC – Federal Elections Commission – is doing and what it means to those of us in the United States. See if you can identify them before I reveal them later in this post.

That video is from mid 2007. Obama Girl began appearing in 2007 and MSNBC named her one of the most influential women of 2007. Impressive. The video has 26+ million views.

Obama Girl is Amber Lee Ettinger iRL. Her videos are said to have helped elect President Obama. Continue reading

Net Neutrality – Sucks More

You’ll get your fill of legal issues today… Net Neutrality is back in the news, not the mainstream news for the low information people. But, in the channels of the activists where more is heard.

Failure To Thrive [ The Gray Child ]

Failure To Thrive [ The Gray Child ]

It seems T-Mobile came up with a great competitive idea. They would provide their users music. The music data download would not count against their data plan. Basically listening to music on T-Mobile was to be free, as in no data cost. Neat, huh? I know that would be really good for me as my car radio died… getting fixed someday. I use iHeart on my phone until then. Continue reading

Net Neutrality: Curbing Free Speech

Many in Second Life™ were and are pro Net Neutrality. The ideas associated with the words Net Neutrality are noble sounding but dig in and you find they are out of touch with the reality of the laws being passed and basic economics.

Bound III

Bound III by Sacha Audeburgh, on Flickr

In America we are seeing the US State Dept. making the first rules to kill free speech on the Internet and turn it into Government Approved Speech ONLY. Of course, they have chosen an emotional issue many liberals can get behind: gun control. Is it OK to ban this type of speech? I suspect many liberals will think so. They are banning hate speech, the first step and that OK with many, now gun related speech, don’t you wonder what is next? Obviously free speech is going away, if we allow this trend to continue.  Continue reading

Net Neutrality Reactions

Once a government agency releases new rules and regulations various people and groups that think they may be affected start to read the regs to see what they may have to do and begin preparing. How many people in Second Life bother? Even with our ToS?

'And tomorrow some strangers will be climbing up the stairs.....

=”‘And tomorrow some strangers will be climbing up the stairs….. by Caitlin ‘Caity’ Tobias, on Flickr

The American Action Forum dug out a jewel of information:

According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) itself at least 90 percent of the businesses that will bear the burden of the new Title II (utility-style) network neutrality regulations will be small businesses. As part of doing its business, the FCC must identify the burden of new rules on small business. As it turns out, 20,640 companies will be affected, ranging from “Broadband Internet Access Service Providers supplied over client supplied connections” (1,274), to “Wireless Telecommunications Carriers” (1,383), to “Satellite Telecommunications Providers” (570), “Cable and Other Program Distributors” (2,048), and so forth.

The site American Action Forum has a number of articles explaining the details of Net Neutrality. The short take is there will be fewer ISP’s and that always means higher prices and worse service.