back to article Democrats introduce net neutrality legislation in Senate and House

In a coordinated move, Congressional Democrats have introduced legislation in the Senate and House of Representatives to enshrine network neutrality principles in law until the Federal Communications Commission rules on the matter. "This bill ensures that consumers, not their Internet service provider, are in the driver's seat …

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Gold badge

Soon, you'll dream of the "à la carte Internet"

Shut up and pay, peasant!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Soon, you'll dream of the "à la carte Internet"

Yes, we already pay.

In any flat rate system it is the casual and low consumption users (eg those who do email, a bit of eBay, not much else) who subsidise the high consumption users, including the freeloaders. It is these freeloaders who want Net Neutrality the most, because they have to pay a fairer share of the costs of transmission.

It should really be called the American Freeloaders Act.

And before you downvote me, remember that there is no such thing as a free lunch, and any network is a resource constrained system. Now click away like self-righteous, indignant bunnies.

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Flame

consumer?

Okay, rant mode ON.

Dear Gubbmit and Corporations -

Please, please, please... change your mindset. People should not be treated as "consumers", but as "Customers" (by the Corps) and as "The Boss" (by Gubbmit). Jeez, can we get a little perspective?

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Re: consumer?

In relation to the internet, we are consumers. In relation to our ISPs, we are customers. The usage of consumer, phrased as it is in this case, is correct.

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Gold badge

Re: consumer?

Really? Sure of that are you? Seems to me I'm a content creator, not merely a consumer. So, um, GTFO my internet.

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Paris Hilton

Re: consumer?

consumer? customer?

no, you're the product.

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Bronze badge

Re: consumer?

I thought the being product is fair when there is free consumption.

Is the Internet served free by ISPs?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: consumer?@Trevor_Pott

I doubt anyone here's on your internet, if you have one. We're using the Internet. And I'm not impressed by the content you're creating, troll.

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Re: consumer?@Trevor_Pott

Why would you be under the illusion that I might require or desire that you be impressed?

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Re: consumer?

"Really? Sure of that are you? Seems to me I'm a content creator, not merely a consumer. So, um, GTFO my internet."

Then, as a creator, this thread of the conversation is not about you at all. Troll elsewhere.

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@Killraven

Hey douchepopsicle, one of the commenters very explicitly stated "In relation to the internet, we are consumers. In relation to our ISPs, we are customers." Thus, as someone who does things in relation to the internet, the conversation is indeed about me.

The argument that we are "consumers" of the internet is bullshit. Maybe if your forehead slopes just that little too much that's all you ever do on the net...but a significant chunk of wired humanity create content, not simply consume it. That's one of the beauties - and the horrors - of the open internet: everyone has a voice.

Don't presume I'm trolling just because you are too thick to connect the dots without me getting out the big crayon and doing it for you. I expect that the consumers of content in El Reg's comments section shouldn't have to have such things spelled out for them. I am appalled and shamed to be wrong.

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Holmes

passage

"The Republican-controlled House of Representatives is, however, highly unlikely to pass the bill as it stands."

don't worry folks, it's just another 11-dimensional chess move on the part of the Republicans to prevent the re-election of President Obama.

[i'm sure they'll pass it if it is attached to a bill that either kills the ACA (Obamacare) or one that gives either a massive tax cut to the rich or a huge subsidy to some corporations]

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Bronze badge

Re: passage

@willi0000000: "don't worry folks, it's just another 11-dimensional chess move on the part of the Republicans to prevent the re-election of President Obama."

I'm not up to scratch on US Politics, but it was my understanding that no US President is allowed to run for a third term?

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Re: passage

Perhaps he meant "the election of president Clinton?"

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Re: passage

Obama can't be reelected, he's had his two terms. These bills are typical for the Democrats, that feel the need to control every thing. If they get their way, everyone will have slow internet and investment will dry up.

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Go

Re: passage

Considering that no net neutrality means the ISPs are free to throttle content, then I am in favor of Democrat-style big government on this one.

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Re: passage

"These bills are typical for the Democrats, that feel the need to control every thing. If they get their way, everyone will have slow internet and investment will dry up."

You're funny, and terribly wrong, seeing as how not having net neutrality gives ISPs free reign to throttle your connection into oblivion and zero incentive to invest in anything. By forcing ISPs to be neutral in who their customers are connecting to, incentives to improve service are still there in order to keep the customer-base happy.

The internet is basically three components: Consumers, ISPs, and Data. The purpose of the ISP is to connect the other two, indiscriminately.

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Re: passage

The internet is basically three components: Consumers, ISPs, and Data. The purpose of the ISP is to connect the other two, indiscriminately.

Bit of a simplification, don't you think? Sure, the ISP exists to connect the consumer to the data, but the data is not local to the ISP. The ISP has to have outbound connections to the data providers, and different data providers will need different connections, which may have differing costs.

The ISP has to determine which of those connections are necessary, and what speed to run it at. Your ISP may prefer to spend a lot of money on a fat pipe to the BBC if that is where the demand is, that does not mean they have to provide an equivalently fast connection to BobsBargainAmmo.com - they have to discriminate based upon destination.

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Trollface

Re: passage

@Neoc

Erm, that was the joke, you see. And why at least 11-dimensions were needed.

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Re: passage

Physics dictates that some connections will be faster than others. Under net neutrality, the scenario where comcast invests in a fat pipe connection to the BBC is actually encouraged. As it stands now, comcast is motivated to instead throttle the connection speed at their server to Bobsammo.com, so that more of their available bandwidth can be dedicated to BBC. I So, yes, it is more complicated, but it is that complexity that demands the simple solution of net neutrality.

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Devil

How about?

How about the Dems introducing this bill *knowing* that it is DOA in the House, and if it should miraculously pass will be killed in the Senate. Do remember that Hollywood and other industry groups count on Democratic support far more than the useful idiots in the Republican party. [They back old-media friendly trade deals like TTIP et al.]

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Bronze badge

Consumer v creator

Actually, the consumer/creator dichotomy Trevor points out is quite relevant - contrary to the wishes of big media, ISPs are NOT just there for passively downloading web pages: there's peer-to-peer, content uploads, hosting our own servers.

Neutrality is particularly relevant now, with the battle over Netflix traffic - Comcast refusing to upgrade their peering with Level3 to handle the level of traffic they get, unless they get paid extra for it. Why, it's almost as if Comcast were an ISP who also had a commercial interest in some sort of rival video distribution service...

There's a different problem ahead though, with ISP port blocking, "carrier grade" NAT and other obstructions forcing end-users down to the lowest common denominator. Will ISPs be allowed to hand out RFC1918 IP addresses so users can't even receive incoming connections?

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Peasants versus Corps

As said, the consumer pays.

Anyway, corporations fell out of love with net neutrality when the iPad came along.

The Democrats are fighting a losing battle.

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Gumbit or Gambit Markey's Opening Gambit Will Work as Intended

Preserving net neutrality for up to two years. If it passes both House and Senate it works and in the mean time, ISPs can do no harm. If they, do the storm of voter protests will mobilize a challenge to their reelection. Even gerrymanderred districts can tell if they are being ilserved by their current office holder.

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Unhappy

A 2 page law which is explicit about what it wants. It's not THE PATRIOT Act is it?

As in people can actually understandwhat this law does.

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Re: A 2 page law which is explicit about what it wants. It's not THE PATRIOT Act is it?

That's actually a problem, it's the OIP Act. They should have contrived the title a bit so it could be the 'DIGITAL LIBERTY Act' or better yet 'THE AMERICAN WAY Act'.

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Flame

Re: A 2 page law which is explicit about what it wants. It's not THE PATRIOT Act is it?

Well, at least the Republicons can't use that as an argument against it, now can they? So it will be interesting how they mealymouth-mumblefuck an excuse to be against it. (Remember, the truth -- "I can't vote for this because the black guy want's it" or "I can't vote for this because my Corporate HandlersTM want yet another mechanism to soak the public, thereby inflating their profits and enlarging my political slush-fund warchest" -- won't play very well...not even in Peoria.)

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Bronze badge

From the outside looking in, this looks like wedge politics - the Democrats aren't interested in net neutrality so much as they want to put the Republicans on the 'wrong' side of the issue, and make them look bad (to their Republican constituents) when they defeat this bill.

'Net neutrality is about you having freedom to read what you like, and about the American Dream of some little guy making a web page and becoming the next Zuckerberg.'

^ That's what they want to make the Republicans argue against.

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Well, the republicans should turn the tables and pass net neutrality! That'd really make those democrats the laughing stick of America!

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@Neoc

Many US politicians also confuse 'politics' with 'law.'

While I'm pretty sure my Congresscritter knows of the 22nd Amendment, I would not be at all surprised if sometime prior to the 2016 elections he blubbered something along the lines of 'we can't afford another four years of Obama' or took steps designed to prevent Obama from being re-elected. Sadly, the people who keep electing the ijit would see both as worthwhile endeavors.

POST COMMENT House rules

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"The free and open Internet has been a pillar of our country's growing economy, "

No. The "pay-for, access restricted to authorized sites and services" internet has been that pillar.

These idiots are our "leaders".

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