Chapell & Associates

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Technologists square off on Net neutrality

CNET - July 17, 2006
Two Internet pioneers dueled on Monday over whether proposed Net neutrality regulations supported by companies like Google and are the best way to prevent "abusive" behavior by broadband providers. A debate here hosted by the Center for American Progress, a nonpartisan research institute that brags of challenging "conservative thinking," pitted Google Chief Internet Evangelist
Vint Cerf, who co-developed the Internet's backbone protocols and has emerged as a leading proponent of congressional antidiscrimination mandates for network operators, against Dave Farber, a Carnegie Mellon University computer scientist widely considered to be a "grandfather" of the Internet.

The Chapell View
Seems like the whole Net Nuetrality debate is LESS about allowing broadband providers to charge more for high bandwidth internet traffic per se, and MORE about the carriers building direct relationships with Internet Users. Broadband carriers have increasingly recognized the folly of thinking like mere traffic cops, facilitating and regulating the content as it passes through their pipes. This type of thinking is what has commoditized their offering - driving down their ability to drive profit, recoup investments., Etc...

So this whole conept of Broadband carriers harming innovation by creating a two tiered system is somewhat of a red herring.

Broadband carriers have figured out that signing up new customers, and offering them additional products is only one way to grow revenues.

The REAL upside for the broadband carriers lay in their ability to leverage eyeballs. They are increasingly doing this in the mobile space, as well as the online media space. And THIS is really what's keeping the Google's and the Amazon's up at night. If the ISP's charge them more for access so what? But if they are able to develop direct relationships with internet Users, then they are positioned to take on the Internet Giants right where they live.

Remember, the broadband carriers have access to more data than anyone...
posted by Alan on Tuesday, July 18, 2006

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