Net neutrality non-neutrality



  • @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @dcon said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Corporations are people too.

    At least until the robot uprising, yeah.

    They'll be smart and create their own corporation.



  • @masonwheeler said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @boomzilla Robots are going to make corporations not be people?

    If robots start a corporation of their own it won't be people. Duh.



  • @boomzilla corporations have rights. Will robots have rights? What about a corporation of robots? 50% robots? 90% robots?



  • @LB_ said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Will robots have rights?

    I hope not.



  • @boomzilla so you hate foreigners, people with ADHD, and robots



  • @wharrgarbl Only future robots, foreigners and ADHD people.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @boomzilla You could use some robots in the future to keep people off your lawn…



  • @dkf but who will keep the robots off his lawn?





  • My take on net neutrality.

    The common refrain is "It undermines innovation and competition". (That's actually a quote.) I think the phrase is unweildy, so let's just use "choice", as in "free market choice."

    Now let's consider the traditional ISP. which worked like this (consumer gives $$ ISP gives access):

               +-----------+   +----------+
               |    ISP    |   | Consumer |
               |       $$ <----|          |
               |           |   |          |
    a.a.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               |           |   |          |
    b.b.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               |           |   |          |
    c.c.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               +-----------+   +----------+
    

    ISPs want the choice, first of all, to decide that the consumers not have access to b.b.com:

               +-----------+   +----------+
               |    ISP    |   | Consumer |
               |       $$ <----|          |
               |           |   |          |
    a.a.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               |           |   |          |
    b.b.com ----X          |   |          |
               |           |   |          |
               |           |   |          |
    c.c.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               +-----------+   +----------+
    

    There are generally two reasons for this, though it is usually presented as one: "b.b.com consumes too much bandwidth." This is a false argument. I am one pair of eyes, I can pretty much watch one video. Generally, one video takes X bandwidth. This is emphasized by the fact of the second reason, which is that the ISP wants to substitute its own video service for b.b.com:

               +-----------+   +----------+
               |    ISP    |   | Consumer |
               |       $$ <----|          |
               |           |   |          |
    a.a.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               |           |   |          |
    b.b.com ----X          |   |          |
               |   our.b ----->|          |
               |           |   |          |
    c.c.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               +-----------+   +----------+
    

    It is also belied by the fact that ISP's will generally unlock b.b.com if you pay more:

               +-----------+   +----------+
               |    ISP    |   | Consumer |
               |       $$ <----|          |
               |           |   |          |
    a.a.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               | $$ <----------|          |
    b.b.com ----->>----------->|          |
               |   our.b ----->|          |
               |           |   |          |
    c.c.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               +-----------+   +----------+
    

    See? Looks like bandwidth isn't much of a problem, not really.

    Then there's d.d.com. It is a new choice, a new innovation. They need clicks to succeed, but the ISP can hold them up, "You want clicks, pay us":

               +-----------+   +----------+
               |    ISP    |   | Consumer |
               |       $$ <----|          |
               |           |   |          |
    a.a.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               | $$ <----------|          |
    b.b.com ----->>----------->|          |
               |   our.b ----->|          |
               |           |   |          |
    c.c.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
    d.d.com----->$$        |   |          |
    d.d.com ----->>----------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               +-----------+   +----------+
    

    Better yet, the ISP can combine both for c.c.com:

               +-----------+   +----------+
               |    ISP    |   | Consumer |
               |       $$ <----|          |
               |           |   |          |
    a.a.com ---->------------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               | $$ <----------|          |
    b.b.com ----->>----------->|          |
               |   our.b ----->|          |
               |           |   |          |
    c.c.com ------>$$ $$<------|          |
    c.c.com ------->>->>------>|          |
               |           |   |          |
    d.d.com----->$$        |   |          |
    d.d.com ----->>----------->|          |
               |           |   |          |
               +-----------+   +----------+
    

    So, in the unregulated, non-net neutrality environment, the ISP's are in an enviable and powerful position for choice. Why does that matter? Because, using 25MBps as the standard, 50% of the people in the U.S. have access to 1 provider (access to no more than 2, 70%); and the only way the consumer can reach the services is via that ISP; and the only way the service can reach the clicks is via the same ISP.

    So in summary, the non-neutrality environment:

    • The ISP: nearly unlimited monopoly power to charge what it wants to who it wants; to pick winning and losing services. Basically, unlimited choice.
    • The consumer: most often a choice of 1 ISP and subject to its whims; must pay what it demands for the services wanted; and the ISP may choose to make some services unavailable at any price, substituting its own (inferior) choices.
    • The rest of the web: if it wants clicks, must pay the ISP what it demands and may be denied access at any price if the ISP chooses to substitute its own offering.

    So when opponents say, "net neutrality undermines innovation and competition," what they really are saying is that the ISP (and ISPs alone) would have reduced free market choice. They ignore the fact that, absent net neutrality, the ISPs restrict everyone else's free market choice: consumers and web services alike.

    Yes, ISP's need to compete--but that doesn't mean to throw around their elephant-monopoly weight. Yes they need to innovate, but that doesn't mean coming up with ever more ways to extort (yes, extort) more money from everyone else; to stifle everyone else's innovations.

    Net neutrality increases consumer free market choice and web service free market choice. Why is that bad?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Because, using 25MBps as the standard, 50% of the people in the U.S. have access to 1 provider (access to no more than 2, 70%); and the only way the consumer can reach the services is via that ISP; and the only way the service can reach the clicks is via the same ISP.

    And that's the actual problem, compounded by the way that in some places the ISPs are lobbying like hell to get local governments and state governments to erect various barriers to stop new competitors from arising. It's a similar problem to what you have with electricity supply and sewerage service: these are things that require lots of physical infrastructure, making them inclined to be local monopolies. Regulation is the only sensible way forward, since it is about restricting one part of the market's ability to gouge in order to get much greater benefits elsewhere.

    However, you also want the regulatory actions to be as minimal as possible. What we've done in the UK in this sort of situation is perhaps a way forward: the parts of the ISP that provide the basic service of connectivity are split off from the service provider parts that sit on top, and which the end customer actually deals with. That allows other providers to come in and offer service competitively without the need to do excessive build-out, and means that the highly regulated part to be not excessively tangled up in the parts you want to have lots of competition in. Is it perfect? Probably not! But it's about trying to get as free a market as possible despite the existence of natural infrastructure monopolies.



  • @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Net neutrality increases consumer free market choice and web service free market choice. Why is that bad?

    It's just a tiny minority that doesn't understand this, and logic doesn't work with them. Thinking would be "work".



  • @dkf said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    It's a similar problem to what you have with electricity supply and sewerage service

    And for some reason, I have zero problems with electricity and sewerage.





  • @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @dkf said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    It's a similar problem to what you have with electricity supply and sewerage service

    And for some reason, I have zero problems with electricity and sewerage.

    Electricity utilities don't generally have the power to choose which TV's, refrigerators, and new innovations (pop-up hot dog cookers) you can plug in and use; nor are they in the position of telling the hot dog cooker manufacturer to pony up $$$ if they want their device to work in consumer homes.

    Likewise, sewage utilities don't get to demand you use their inferior model of faucet; or make you pay extra if you want to use another model.

    ISP's do have that power, which is the main part of the problem.

    @dkf said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Because, using 25MBps as the standard, 50% of the people in the U.S. have access to 1 provider (access to no more than 2, 70%); and the only way the consumer can reach the services is via that ISP; and the only way the service can reach the clicks is via the same ISP.

    And that's the actual problem, compounded by the way that in some places the ISPs are lobbying like hell to get local governments and state governments to erect various barriers to stop new competitors from arising.

    But exclusive franchises (monopolies) are not the whole problem. Having multiple providers, none of which provides all the services you want, merely forces you into the lesser-of-evils selection process.

    Exclusive franchise is a problem, but the bigger problem is ISP ability to prevent you from connecting to services.



  • @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Likewise, sewage utilities don't get to demand you use their inferior model of faucet; or make you pay extra if you want to use another model.
    ISP's do have that power, which is the main part of the problem.

    The phone company (aka Old AT&T aka Ma Bell) used to have that power in the United States up until the Carterfone decision in 1968. Is it really a surprise that the current ISPs think they should have that? Particularly considering that New AT&T and Verizon both used to be part of Old AT&T (together, New AT&T and Verizon make up 5 of the 7 Bell Regional Holding Companies)...



  • @powerlord said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Likewise, sewage utilities don't get to demand you use their inferior model of faucet; or make you pay extra if you want to use another model.
    ISP's do have that power, which is the main part of the problem.

    The phone company (aka Old AT&T aka Ma Bell) used to have that power in the United States up until the Carterfone decision in 1968. Is it really a surprise that the current ISPs think they should have that? Particularly considering that New AT&T and Verizon both used to be part of Old AT&T (together, New AT&T and Verizon make up 5 of the 7 Bell Regional Holding Companies)...

    No, it's not surprising they want that power. What's surprising is that a lot of nominally bright people think we shouldn't limit their power.



  • @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    What's surprising is that a lot of nominally bright people think we shouldn't limit their power.

    To be fair, they're only bright because you lit on fire the straw from which they are made.



  • @boomzilla the largest interested parties in net neutrality are Google and Netflix.

    If they think title II helps, I believe it.



  • Today some website showed me a popup saying to install it's app, then it wouldn't count in my data usage. Fuck that shit, I'm not installing your fucking spyware.



  • @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @boomzilla the largest interested parties in net neutrality are Google and Netflix.

    If they think title II helps, I believe it.

    They'll need to convince with something other than their size. :giggity:



  • @boomzilla I don't believe you care about net neutrality. You seem to think ISP monopolies are OK. I'll just dismiss you as a nutcase.



  • @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @boomzilla I don't believe you care about net neutrality. You seem to think ISP monopolies are OK. I'll just dismiss you as a nutcase.

    I can live with that from a guy who admits to outsourcing his views and then strawman's my views.



  • I like rereading these... this past Sunday's rerun: http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20170521&mode=classic

    0_1495571740829_db337f24-9306-462d-9b2c-c06d15a7b2c1-uf009141.gif



  • @boomzilla Is there any form of net neutrality you would agree? Or you honestly not care about the likes of comcast killing Netflix to protect their cable TV?



  • @CoyneTheDup said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Because, using 25MBps as the standard

    I have access to 0 providers. Not even the ISP that advertises "SPEEDS STARTING AT 24MBPS" in my area provides speeds above 18 Mbps in my area.



  • @ben_lubar Same. Highest here is 15Mbps. And mind you, I can drive to my state's capitol building in 10-15 minutes as I live in one of one of the capital city's suburbs.



  • @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @boomzilla Is there any form of net neutrality you would agree? Or you honestly not care about the likes of comcast killing Netflix to protect their cable TV?

    I think that your narrative about killing Netflix is nonsense. Any form? I dunno, what do you have?



  • @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    I think that your narrative about killing Netflix is nonsense. Any form? I dunno, what do you have?

    The cap the providers use on my city already make it impossible to completely replace cable for Netflix. They are all between 80 and 180GB.

    There is no option for a plan with a larger cap.



  • @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Any form? I dunno, what do you have?

    Do you agree with the goal? If it could be achieved in a perfect way, would you agree with net neutrality?



  • @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    I think that your narrative about killing Netflix is nonsense. Any form? I dunno, what do you have?

    The cap the providers use on my city already make it impossible to completely replace cable for Netflix. They are all between 80 and 180GB.

    There is no option for a plan with a larger cap.

    Look, your country can do whatever harebrained stuff you can get away with. The US FCC can't stop you. You also seem to be confused and angry.

    @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Any form? I dunno, what do you have?

    Do you agree with the goal? If it could be achieved in a perfect way, would you agree with net neutrality?

    What goal? You seem like you don't know what the goal is.



  • @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Look, your country can do whatever harebrained stuff you can get away with. The US FCC can't stop you. You also seem to be confused and angry.

    You said ISP killing Netflix is nonsense, I showed you an example of ISP trying to kill Netflix. I'm not angry, I'm trying to understand why you think the way you think.

    @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    What goal? You seem like you don't know what the goal is.

    The goal is not let ISPs treat traffic differently from different sources. IMO all IP packets should be treated equally.



  • @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    You said ISP killing Netflix is nonsense, I showed you an example of ISP trying to kill Netflix.

    First off, no Brazillian ISP is going to kill Netflix. Also, your example is not what net neutrality is about. Why do the ISPs near you only offer capped service? What would net neutrality do about that? What would the effect be on the ISPs and their customers?

    @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    The goal is not let ISPs treat traffic differently from different sources. IMO all IP packets should be treated equally.

    And why do you think your example of capped service has anything to do with this?



  • @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    First off, no Brazillian ISP is going to kill Netflix.

    They can, and will, prevent Netflix from growing here as much as possible.

    @boomzilla said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    And why do you think your example of capped service has anything to do with this?

    It's a workaround our current net neutrality laws.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    It's a workaround our current net neutrality laws.

    Which means that your current net neutrality laws don't really work.



  • @antiquarian said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    @wharrgarbl said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    It's a workaround our current net neutrality laws.

    Which means that your current net neutrality laws don't really work.

    I dunno...sounds like they're working just fine. Unless the ISPs are treating certain traffic differently.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @antiquarian
    Or the people advocating for Net Neutrality are being dishonest, and claiming it's about "not treating traffic differently" while it's really about "I don't want to pay extra because I use tens or hundreds of times more data than the average person on my package plan" (and the companies advocating for Net Neutrality are all about "I want to get free interconnection everywhere" instead of "I want my traffic treated by the same set of rules as all other traffic") :thinking:


  • Impossible Mission - B

    @izzion said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    "I don't want to pay extra because I use tens or hundreds of times more data than the average person on my package plan"

    This doesn't line up with the facts if you claim that it's about Netflix.

    According to Wikipedia, Netflix has "more than 50 million [subscribers] in the United States."

    According to ArcGIS, "The average household size for the U.S. in 2016 is 2.6 people per household."

    According to the US Census Bureau, the population of the USA is 325 million and change.

    According to the FCC,:

    • 39 percent of rural Americans (23 million people) lack access to 25 Mbps/3 Mbps.
    • By contrast, only 4 percent of urban Americans lack access to 25 Mbps/3 Mbps broadband.

    That 4% means (325 - 39) * 0.04, or about 11.5 million. So ~34 million Americans have no broadband at all. Which leaves 291 million with access to broadband. Not all of them have it, but just to keep things simple, let's assume they do.

    50 million Netflix subscribers in the USA. 2.6 million people per household. I'm sure there are some households that, for some bizarre reason, have more than one Netflix subscriber living under the same roof and on the same Internet connection, but that seems pointless, so just to keep things simple, let's assume that number is 0. (It'll balance out the other simplification, which errs in the opposite direction.)

    This tells us that 130 million out of 291 million eligible Americans are watching Netflix. That's 44 percent, almost half.

    In other words, a bit of back-of-the-napkin math tells us that the Netflix subscribers using lots of data are "the average person on my package plan."



  • @izzion said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Or the people advocating for Net Neutrality are being dishonest, and claiming it's about "not treating traffic differently" while it's really about "I don't want to pay extra because I use tens or hundreds of times more data than the average person on my package plan"

    They already have tiers associated with maximum speeds, that makes sense. The cap is the same for all tiers.



  • @masonwheeler said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    This doesn't line up with the facts if you@wharrgarbl claim that it's about Netflix.

    You forgot the context of the discussion.


  • Impossible Mission - B

    @boomzilla Nope. It's the net neutrality opponents floating around the (false) claim that it's really about Netflix. I'm just pointing out that even if we take that claim at face value, the math says something other than what @izzion is trying to dismissively assert.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @masonwheeler
    Yeah, I'm part of that 44%. And you know how often I get above 50% of my 300GB data cap? Never.

    And I'm an above average user - I average about 80GB a month.

    Edit for clarity: My entire data cap is 300GB, it's not the 50% mark that is 300GB.



  • I just found out that the use of caps has been forbidden here (except for mobile, that's different). Apparently our net neutrality laws work.


  • Impossible Mission - B

    @izzion Wait... you have a data cap? On your home Internet service ???

    Wow, I'm sure glad I don't live where you are! I've never had one of those. TBH I didn't even know they were a thing in the USA, outside of the cellphone market. When did that start happening? :o



  • Sometimes I think the ISPs dug this hole themselves by offering unlimited plans. What exactly did they think would happen? Of course people will use more data. My electricity's not unlimited. My water's not unlimited. My gas isn't unlimited. Ok, my phone is - but the associated taxes are still based on calls made.

    Of course, once people suck from the firehose, they wouldn't want to go back to a pay-by-usage model. To me, a usage model works perfectly with a true neutrality model. But I'm talking about reasonable tiers - not like the bend-over-while-I-suck-you-dry model of the past. Yes, I think internet access is just like a utility - and should be treated as such.



  • @masonwheeler There are actually plans to make corporations out of blockchains and bots.


  • Impossible Mission - B

    @dcon said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Sometimes I think the ISPs dug this hole themselves by offering unlimited plans. What exactly did they think would happen? Of course people will use more data. My electricity's not unlimited. My water's not unlimited. My gas isn't unlimited. Ok, my phone is - but the associated taxes are still based on calls made.

    Of course, once people suck from the firehose, they wouldn't want to go back to a pay-by-usage model. To me, a usage model works perfectly with a true neutrality model. But I'm talking about reasonable tiers - not like the bend-over-while-I-suck-you-dry model of the past. Yes, I think internet access is just like a utility - and should be treated as such.

    I agree. I'd be just fine with a pay-for-how-much-you-use metered Internet plan, as long as it is implemented reasonably and fairly, like utilities. It's when they start charging based on what I use rather than how much, and pretending to be something more than just a dumb pipe to carry information between my computer and the Internet, that we start having real problems.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @masonwheeler
    Several of the major providers (AT&T UVerse, Comcast, Time Warner, Cox) have been rolling out home service data caps starting with "test markets" and going national over the past two years. In general, 150-300GB seems to be the range they've settled on for standard coaxial cable (cable modem) service. Where they have fiber offerings (which are generally more expensive to the consumer on a $/Mbps basis), those offerings generally have a higher cap.

    Many small local providers have had data caps in place for a long time, with excess traffic getting throttled (ala the current Cellular "unlimited" plans) or billed.

    @dcon said in Net neutrality non-neutrality:

    Sometimes I think the ISPs dug this hole themselves by offering unlimited plans. What exactly did they think would happen?

    This is true. At the time that broadband ISPs (by the original definition, which was not-dialup) started popping up, there wasn't streaming video or any of that. So they looked at the model of oversubscription they could manage with dial-up service, swagged it for their pricing on the new plans, and said "we'll assume 10:1 oversubscription for residential service, and about 2:1 for business service, and price accordingly"

    Well, then Netflix (and later YouTube and Twitch) happened. And now the actual oversubscription rate for residential service is in the 2:1 to 4:1 range. So they can either belly up to the bar and price all the residential service the same as business service (hey, I'd just love to go home from work and pay $200/mo for 75/5 service!) or they go the way the mobile providers did and undo "unlimited" service, so that the people who are on the 2:1 contention end (aka cord cutters) of the scale pay more than people who are still using in a pattern that fits the original 10:1 model (aka Facebook/email users).

    On the flip side, there are a few major providers who have spoken out that they don't think the data caps are necessary for their business model (most notably Frontier). Their service base is much more tilted to FiOS and its higher $/Mbps (compared to cable) though, so that's a large part of why their economics are different.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @izzion
    And to expand on the numerology of this a little more, and what the typical "data cap" for home service in the US looks like:

    • Streaming video requires about 2.5Mbps (megabits per second) for 720p, or about 4Mbps for 1080p
    • This translates to 18.75MB (megabytes) per minute, or 1,125 MB = 1.1 GB per hour of 720p (aka an episode of House of Cards)
    • A typical data-capped cable Internet service plan from one of the major monopolists will include 300GB of data per month, which would be 273 hours of 720p streaming video a month, or around 9 hours a day.

    So you could have 1 Netflix stream running in 720p for every waking hour you're home from work on weekdays (24 hours - 8 hours of sleep - 9 hours at work and lunch break - 1 hour commute = 6 hours a day) plus for 16 hours a day on the weekend, and still not exceed your data cap. Though you might get in trouble once Windows wants to download updates :smirk:

    Using 1080p instead would use 50% more data per time (up to 1.7GB per hour) and thus cut your available play time by 33% (to 182 hours per month, or an average of 6 hours per day).

    More realistically, assuming 2.6 concurrent 720p streams per household, and 20% of the cap being allocated to "other" traffic, that's still room for 84 hours of Netflix per stream per month, or an average of 2.8 hours per day per person. Which makes things tight if you are really cutting the cord and are really all watching different Netflix or YouTube or Twitch streams constantly while you're home. But I think I'm a little beyond my point of suspended disbelief with that scenario, personally :shrug:

    Edit: Fixed my bad math, I used the 720p numbers for my initial calculations and claimed 1080p streams. My apologies for the oversight.



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