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back to article Supremes ankle AT&T DSL line-sharing suit

On AT&T's high-speed internet pipes, it's AT&T's ballgame, the US Supreme Court has ruled. AT&T logo The top court on Wednesday unanimously rejected accusations that AT&T's Pacific Bell Telephone unit was engaged in an illegal "price squeeze" designed to drive away smaller DSL internet providers using the carrier's …

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Flame

Way to give consumers less choice

Go to hell.

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Flame

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss

Ah Ma' Bell back in action. Show of hands who is surprised by this... anyone??? anyone??

/cues crickets.

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this is the big problem in the US

No real competition; no requirement to resell the last mile at a reasonable price. A running duopoly between cable and the telcos is no competition; just two parallel monopolies. Why else do we have the worst broadband availability and highest prices in the world? wankers

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What - no traffic if your are not AT&T?

So, if a website is hosted with the server connected to AT&T's pipes and the person visiting the website is not an AT&T customer and their ISP does not want to pay the wholesale price, the visitor doesn't get to see the website?

So now we have the world wide web and AT&T. I hope they are happy in their own little island.

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Boffin

Re: What - no traffic if your are not AT&T?

No, this case is about whether people with AT&T phone service should be able to get their DSL from a different provider such as earthlink.net instead of AT&T's bundled DSL, with earthlink.net using AT&T's own wires-to-the-home to compete against AT&T. Didn't BT have local-loop-unbundling in the UK, with similar price shenanigans?

Websites hosted anywhere still work.

There's already competition for basic net access from Cable, in most places at least. But the main effect of this decision is less competition for less-common setups such as static IP addresses or running servers at home, which cable does not bother to supply ($60/month instead of $30, for example, with no price pressure on this). This would be the "running duopoly" that AC 23:01 commented on.

On the flip side, it's not clear how you'd ever set an exactly fair price for unbundling, or avoid the tendency for the company to favour it's own products. I'm partly reminded of the stories of the early days of railways in the UK, where company A needed to let company B (who owned no track) use it's own tracks. Despite the legal rulings at the time, company A's train always seemed to get priority from the signalman if there was a conflict at a traffic junction, and eventually the cheapskate company B's tended to build their own infrastructure instead of reusing tracks.

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