Reply to post: Re: The Rest of the Story

Indie ISP to Netflix: Give it a rest about 'net neutrality' – and get your checkbook out


Re: The Rest of the Story

@Brett Glass:

Well put. To the best of my knowledge, you are accurate and fair in your description of the situation and your estimation of problems/solutions seems practical and otherwise sound to me.

There are broad systemic issues that should be corrected in order to arrive at a truly 'best' solution. However, that is well out of scope for a small ISP at the leaf nodes of the network. Meantime, what you propose is sane and sensible to avoid a greater evil. The larger incumbents of all stripes, NetFlix included, have done us no favors. They have proven, thus far, to be poor custodians of network infrastructure. It seems to me that smaller ISPs are more likely to accord with broad public interest than the cartels that currently hold sway.

There is, to some extent, a fundamental tension between the public good and what corporate entities do. Corporate entities are, by their nature, 'evil robots'. They cannot reasonably take into account the public good. Directors and executives have a fiduciary responsibility to work to maximize the narrow financial interests of their community of shareholders. To the extent that those interests conflict with any other community and the community at large, they cannot self-police in the public interest because their duty lies elsewhere.

It is necessary that the representatives of the people ensure that the overall value of the public good is maximized. To the extent that this conflicts with corporate interests, rules and enforcement mechanisms must be put in place to make the playing field level. There must be artificial inducements via rewards and penalties mandated from outside by the government to induce corporations to act in a way that results in maximum net benefit for the body politic.

The current status quo is contrary to public interest. It has been unduly influenced by communications cartel members and large players like MS, Google, NetFlix, facebook, etc via lobbying and improper influence on standards bodies. This has been compounded by a state apparatus that demonstrates to me that our government has become a self-interested entity unto itself; no longer capable of acting in the public interest.

A proper long-term cure for things like our network issues starts with sunlight. You have done a good job of shining a little light on things. You also have a responsibility to advocate for your company, so I take what you say with a grain of salt. However, it is pretty clear to me that your interests coincide with mine much better than the major players. As far as I can tell, you have drawn a pretty accurate picture and if nothing else, I think that your honesty should be rewarded by giving more weight to your words.

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