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The Effects Of Losing Net Neutrality

Listener Karl asked us about Net Neutrality

locked laptop© by Flickr

Karl asked: “Can you tell your listeners what to expect with this change in net neutrality? How will that affect free Internet porn?”


Sure Karl, short version: you may not be able to access your beloved porn sites at all without paying for the “porn package,” or they may slow down to a crawl to the point of them not being usable.

Right now, the internet is basically like your electric power at home, you want to turn on a light in the bathroom? Ok, go ahead. You want to turn on an electric oven instead? Ok, it’s your power, do whatever you want.

Without net neutrality, the internet becomes something like cable TV.

Cable TV companies can say “do you want ESPN? Ok, that’s extra. Do you want the movie channels? Ok, you have pay more for that package. In the case of internet it may be as simple as Comcast saying “we own NBC, so streaming from their website is free but if you want Netflix, or Amazon Video… well, you have to pay more for that.”

Verizon could say “we bought Yahoo, you can use them for your searches, or pay us more if you want to access Google.”

Back in 2012, both Verizon and AT&T tried to block FaceTime, that wouldn’t be allowed today, but it would be allowed without net neutrality. Any phone company could say “WhatsApp, Hangouts, and FaceTime Audio calls compete without voice service, so those are not allowed.

Getting rid of it may have effects on innovation as well, for example, early on Airbnb  wouldn’t have had the money to pay on their end to ensure that any user could access their site without having to pay to unlock it, but Hyatt would have had the money, so Airbnb likely wouldn’t exist today unless it somehow managed to secure enormous sums of money before they had any users.

Just so you know, these are not hypotheticals

Just so you know, these are not hypotheticals, besides the FaceTime block we already mentioned, a few years ago several small ISPs were redirecting searches on websites like Yahoo and Bing to PaxFire because they made a deal with them.

Verizon, Sprint, and AT&T blocked Google Wallet between 2011 and 2013 because they felt it competed with a payment system called Isis that they were developing.

In 2012, Verizon was blocking certain Android apps from showing up on Google Play searches because they allowed tethering services that they didn’t want people to install.

MetroPCS blocked every streaming video service on its network except for YouTube back in 2011, and back then they were the 5th largest 4G network in the US.

In 2013 Verizon said in court that the only thing stopping them from throttling certain sites but not others was Net Neutrality.

You can also look at other countries like Portugal where net neutrality does not exist and internet access is sold exactly the same way cable TV is: there’s a messaging package, a work package, a streaming package, etc, and they each add a little more to your monthly cost, here’s a Portuguese ISP (they don’t have Net Neutrality), if you want to see what may be in our future.


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Written by Dave Graveline

Dave Graveline is the founder, Host & Executive Producer of "Into Tomorrow" in addition to being President of the Advanced Media Network".

Dave is also a trusted and familiar voice on many national commercials & narrations in addition to being an authority in consumer tech since 1994. He is also a former Police Officer and an FBI Certified Instructor.

Dave thrives on audience participation!

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