Tech and the Myth of Net Neutrality
Posted at 8:00h, 03 Oct 2017 in Advice by Bonnie Halper No Comments 135 Likes Share

Mention ‘Net Neutrality’ and the tech uberlords are quick to whip the masses into a frenzy.

Merriam Webster defines Net Neutrality as “the idea, principle, or requirement that Internet service providers should or must treat all Internet data as the same regardless of its kind, source, or destination … a philosophical contest that’s being fought under the banner of “net neutrality,” a slogan that inspires rhetorical devotion but eludes precise definition. Broadly, it means everything on the Internet should be equally accessible—that the Internet should be a place where great ideas compete on equal terms with big money.—Sarah Rabil

For the tech uberlords, the demise of Net Neutrality means that their content will be sidelined or more costly to access, with preference going to the content provided by the big pipe owners: namely, the Comcasts and Spectrums (formerly Time Warner) of the world.

The New ‘Big Business’

A Start-Up Slump Is a Drag on the Economy. Big Business May Be to Blame, said the New York Times, and before we draw conclusions about who exactly is Big Business, especially when it comes to Net Neutrality, when the tech oligarchs whip up the masses against the Big Bad Comcasts and Spectrums, let’s look at the cap tables of a few of the players, as per Yahoo!

  • Facebook market cap 496.24B for Sept. 29, 2017
  • Google market cap 664.55B for Sept. 29, 2017
  • Comcast market cap 181.37B for Sept. 29, 2017

Online right fumes after YouTube ad crackdown, writes The Hill and note to self, “the crackdown hasn’t just been limited to conservative and right-wing voices. Non-political content is also being demonetized, creating another political headache for YouTube as it tries to convince advertisers that its platform is safe for their brands….Earlier in the year, YouTube sparked controversy among of its creators when its filtering tools flagged a video of two women exchanging wedding vows.”

The Facebooks and Googles of the world are far from neutral and have long been monitoring – and skewing – the conversation.

Mark Zuckerberg’s fashion code might not have changed much since the launch of Facebook, but there’s no question that he’s several tax brackets north of where he started. These are no longer the young upstarts of Silicon Valley, but they’re certainly pirates, and time for them to abide by the same rules and regulations as the industries that came before them, including radio, television, transportation and all of the other sectors that they’ve also collectively appropriated.

Raising Eyebrows

Notes the National Review: “Both liberals and conservatives are just beginning to ask why Internet communications cannot be subject to the same rules applied to radio and television.

“Why can’t Silicon Valley monopolies be busted up in the same manner as the Bell Telephone octopus or the old Standard Oil trust?

“Why are high-tech profits hidden in offshore accounts?

“Why is production outsourced to impoverished countries, sometimes in workplaces that are deplorable and cruel?

“Why does texting while driving not earn a product-liability suit?

There’s no doubt that they’re huge proponents of the ISPs treating Internet data as the same regardless of its kind, source, or destination – rules they do not themselves abide by. They’ve made themselves undisputed gatekeepers, and they’d like it to stay that way. And with video streaming and listening in via voice activation, what to speak of watching through those cameras on your various devices, they’ve got a lot to lose, were so called Net Neutrality to change.

And in case you’re interested, here’s How to stop your devices from listening to (and saving) what you say.

As for the tech oligarchs decrying net neutrality and the ISPs prioritizing their own traffic, let’s not forget the $2.7B fine the EU recently levied against Google for anti-trust violations. Ever try to block YouTube? Here’s a good read for you.

Net Neutrality Redefined

Forest through the trees: it may be time to expand the definition of Net Neutrality to address their skewed vision of what is and what is not permissible on their platforms, addressing concerns, of course, such as content that can potentially cause bodily harm or is a threat to national security.

If there’s any doubt presently as to their former commitment to not be evil, Google ‘free speech is…’ as we’ve reported before. As American Thinker points out, Orwell called it “reality control.”

And head’s up: Google, Facebook may have to reveal deepest secrets

“For years, high-tech grandees dressed all in hip black while prancing around the stage, enthralling stockholders as if they were rock stars performing with wireless mics. Some wore jeans, sneakers, and T-shirts, making it seem that being worth $50 billion was hipster cool,” said the National Review and in case you missed it, the employees outnumbered the buyers when the latest iPhone went on sale last week. While the tech press asserted that buyers are waiting for the iPhone X, we’re personally not buying it. And we’d wager that we’re not alone. Not with Apple releasing kludgy products like the latest problematic Apple Watch that they seem to be testing in the wild, leaving little doubt as to whom the actual product is. People seem to be realizing that there is a difference between being sold a product and a bill of goods. So you don’t see the lines at the Apple store and you don’t see the hue and cry backing the Googles and Facebooks et al of the world in their battle against so-called net neutrality. Wait – the battle is not over.

Gone are the days of the digital dimwits and if Apple’s latest i-offering sales are any indication, heads up, Silicon Valley: we’re just not buying what you’re selling anymore. Onward and forward.