net-neutrality off money and control on

Hey guys, I have some bad news. The Internet could be on the threshold of coming to an end. Why's that? It's because the government has killed net neutrality, meaning the government can do anything they want with the internet now. This is because the U.S. Appeals Court just invalidated the FCC's net neutrality rules that would've made it illegal for telecom companies to favor certain types of traffic over others. I found this out in this video from AlphaOmegaSin.

Here are some articles with more info:
http://gizmodo.com/federal-court-invalidates-net-neutrality-rules-sides-w-1501028467
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2014/01/court-kills-net-neutrality/

Here's some petitions you can sign to save the internet:
http://act.demandprogress.org/sign/fcc_net_neutrality/?akid=2440.47207.HTRF6t&rd=1&t=1
https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/restore-net-neutrality-directing-fcc-classify-internet-providers-common-carriers/5CWS1M4P
http://www.savetheinternet.com/sti-home

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The Internet will never end.

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NiTROACTiVE said:

It's because the government has killed net neutrality, meaning the government can do anything they want with the internet now.

It's not so much a matter of killing the Internet as having done a lousy job when drafting the Open Internet Order, creating the loophole Verizon exploited in court.

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I imagine verizon are about to have a very interesting few weeks, security wise.

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I didn't know we had a thread about this before I made mine. Silly me. Anyways, I sure hope that we can bring back net-neutrality with the power of protest, otherwise the internet is screwed.

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fraggle said:

*nightmare*

GET.
IT.
AWAY.


*gouges own eyes*

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Luckily, I do not use any of these commercial providers who suck so hard.

Sadly the internet is not only about me and the servers, but also about other users who contribute to the servers or upload torrents, etc.. , so this is still bad for me..

What is the deal anyway? Is it not like the goverment can always make new laws and do a better job at protecting the neutrality of the internet? They are the ones who are in power and have a final word, right?

Ah, wait.. your goverment is made of corrupt assholes who won't change anything... nevermind.

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Hope the companies responsible lose millions of customers, go bankrupt and the execs decide to find the nearest open window to swandive from.

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NiTROACTiVE said:
Hey guys, I have some bad news. The Internet could be on the threshold of coming to an end. Why's that? It's because the government has killed net neutrality, meaning the government can do anything they want with the internet now. This is because the U.S. Appeals Court just invalidated the FCC's net neutrality rules that would've made it illegal for telecom companies to favor certain types of traffic over others.

Your facts and links contradict your interpretation. The reality is closer to the government (specifically the Judicial power) handing the Internet over to the private sector so it can do whatever it wants with you as a user, as now you're bereft of regulations (government intervention) that used to guarantee you certain freedom to access the net.

Reagan, Bush and Clinton privatized half your Government functionality, Dubya privatized your military, Merkel and friends privatized Europe and we all become global tools to huge corporations and their main shareholders, who have their assets and concerns spread around the world in a net of fiscal paradises and banking cities.

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myk said:

The reality is closer to the government handing the Internet over to the private sector so it can do whatever it wants with you as a user, as now you're bereft of regulations (government intervention) that used to guarantee you certain freedom to access the net.


Huh? My understanding is that the Internet was actually always closer to the private sector, or, in general, to people detached from mainstream politics and government (this includes most academic circles), and that governments in general were behind the curve when it came to understanding and exploiting the new medium. To a certain extent this also applied to copyright holders and legislative authorities, as the well known (and ongoing) copyright issues prove. In general, the Internet -so far- was designed and operated (at a service level) by people having something akin to the romantic passion that fueled scientists in old novels -doing it only for knowledge- or simple machinists, and this always tended to lead them to collusion with authorities, one way or the other.

At most, governments initially treated it as yet another communication medium, and if things got ugly they applied the mighty censorship hammer over any and all "Internets" (or so they thought, most of the time). The only country ATM having a fully controlled nation-wide and isolated TCP/IP based network is North Korea.

That doesn't preclude that something like what Fraggle showed won't be possible: it's already happening with "walled garden" models for apps, services etc. whose main goal is primarily restricting the way the Average Joe Sixpack interacts with the Internet, thinking it's all about touchscreen apps and streamable (after you pay or watch ads) content.

Wanting "full access" to the Internet, with all of its obscure protocols, IP addresses, ports, sockets and stuff will be regarded as "geeky" and even kinda suspicious (perhaps proof that one works e.g. as a sysadmin will be required), and "unrestricted" Internet users might one day be regarded as daring and pioneering as the hardcore UNIX-using "old farts" back in the pre-www days, or even as characters out of a cyberpunk novel.

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Maes said:
Huh? My understanding is that the Internet was actually always closer to the private sector, or, in general, to people detached from mainstream politics and government (this includes most academic circles), and that governments in general were behind the curve when it came to understanding and exploiting the new medium.

Not sure what that has to do with my statement and it's a half truth at best because the internet was initially a military experiment and is continually augmented with a lot of public funding on research, but if laws and regulations that were protecting your rights as a customer to access information with relative equality are shot down for the benefit of companies being able to restrict access by payment means, to save costs on "the dregs" and concentrate their better services on relative elites, the State is doing their job instead of checking their power to defend millions of relatively vulnerable people who will be left half in the dark.

You also can't detach the current and historical nature of the internet from what I said in the post above because it was developed in the political mandates (with the corresponding ideology) I mentioned.

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Well, it's finally happened. Canada and the rest of the western world will soon follow. It's going to be like how China and Saudi Arabia monitor their internet. Only instead of the government dictating the internet it'll be a private cooperation dictating to the government how to dictate the internet.

Isn't that the American way?

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DooMAD said:

Hope the companies responsible lose millions of customers, go bankrupt and the execs decide to find the nearest open window to swandive from.


In most cases, most people only realistically only have one option for provider in any given area. This is what the IPs are banking on with net neutrality being struck down, especially considering the federally approved non-competition agreements already in place.

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DooMAD said:

Hope the companies responsible lose millions of customers, go bankrupt and the execs decide to find the nearest open window to swandive from.

On the contrary, it allows them to make more money and become more profitable. If they can convince major websites to sign up and pay to be included in a tiered service model, then they can reduce the prices they charge to customers and be more competitive (as Internet from them will cost less than other providers).

Consider if the mock screenshot in my previous post was a reality. Instead of an open network, the Internet becomes something more akin to cable TV: the only websites available are those who have paid for the privilege. The majority of people don't care because their "watered-down" Internet is cheap and covers all the websites they want to see: Facebook, Fox News, etc. Any small independent ISPs trying to provide a traditional service go bust because they can't compete against giants like Verizon and Comcast. Maybe if you pay more you can still access all sites but access is strictly controlled by content filters put in place to "protect children" - and prevent piracy of course (have a look at what's happening in the UK right now).

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Nomad said:

especially considering the federally approved non-competition agreements already in place.

I sure love that free market.

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fraggle said:

Instead of an open network, the Internet becomes something more akin to cable TV: the only websites available are those who have paid for the privilege. The majority of people don't care because their "watered-down" Internet is cheap and covers all the websites they want to see: Facebook, Fox News, etc.

If/when that happens I'll most likely unplug my modem and drop it in the rubbish bin.

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Net neutrality has a damn attractive name, but it's bullshit.

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myk said:

Not sure what that has to do with my statement and it's a half truth at best because the internet was initially a military experiment and is continually augmented with a lot of public funding on research


No deny about that, everybody knows about the DARPA story and stuff. However initially the only institutions using the Internet on any large/visible scale were research centers and universities, as well as telcos, and international links were done on "bona fide" deals. The people operating them were also largerly bred from the early years of hackerdom, and don't forget how wild places like Usenet and BBSes got, with their alt.sex.* discussion groups and their philes ;-)

Especially during those first years (we're talking about a period spawning nearly two decades though, from the days of PDP-11 minicomputers and early hackerdom to the early days of the www, where the Internet truly went mainstream) government supervision, regulation and involvement of discographic majors was nearly non-existent.

Now, if control is indeed made stricter, then alternative protocols and ways uf using the TCP/IP infrastructure will be found. The problem with trying to "control the Internet" is that it's just like trying to prevent bits from being copyable: the Internet is designed to be just as unrestrictable as bits are designed to be copyable/transferable with the least possible ambiguity.

Sure, you can destroy DNS servers, you can order webpages to shut down, you can apply traditional censorship laws etc. but these are all half-measures that only scratch the surface.

The only way for gov and gov-approved media/service providers to regain some semblance of control without resorting to building another, parallel, entirely new kind of network (think of e.g. Minitel services in France), would be to start a sort of "gentrification" operation on existing infrastructure, by starting to provide content only over some new, encrypted form of gov- and corp- approved "darknet", only accessible with special cryptomodems.

Consumers would be give special modems with the decryption/encryption keys (even better: encryption could even be personalized per consumer, so packets would be always identifiable, but asymmetrically unlockable by the service providers), and would only communicate successfully with special receivers on the other side. Services and content would migrate on this new, parallel network over time, to the point where using "wild and free" internet would be of little interest to the average consumer, as it would be turned into a wasteland suitable only for hackers, subversives and deviants, while law-abiding citizens would only use whatever services are available on the "official" network.

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Maes said:

The only way for gov and gov-approved media/service providers to regain some semblance of control without resorting to building another, parallel, entirely new kind of network (think of e.g. Minitel services in France), would be to start a sort of "gentrification" operation on existing infrastructure, by starting to provide content only over some new, encrypted form of gov- and corp- approved "darknet", only accessible with special cryptomodems.

Just like the successors of land-based radio and land-based TV open-air broadcasts are both encrypted satellite signals that you pay out the ass for.

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The FCC could still appeal to a higher court; the Supreme Court. This case is not over by a long shot.

the article said:

In a statement released Tuesday, Wheeler said he agreed instead with a previous ruling that the FCC has "authority to enact measures encouraging the deployment of broadband infrastructure" and that the agency would "consider all available options, including those for appeal, to ensure that these networks on which the Internet depends continue to provide a free and open platform for innovation and expression, and operate in the interest of all Americans.”

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AndrewB said:

Net neutrality has a damn attractive name, but it's bullshit.

Everybody shush - the Libertarian is about to tell us how the Glorious Free Market will make the internet better from now on.

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Maes said:
Now, if control is indeed made stricter, then alternative protocols and ways uf using the TCP/IP infrastructure will be found.

Strict control in what way? What you need is laws that restrict market (subscription) participation in areas and in general, and consolidated companies can't resort to tactics to weigh down on competitors and buy them out, because they simply can't do it legally. Only competitors that are growing can do some of that. You also use information-access laws to limit payment restrictions on traffic.

If competition is broken, you either fix it through the legislature, find the right (existing) laws to restore it, or will have to resort to a government controlled service which itself may at most partner with private companies for investment purposes.

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myk said:

Strict control in what way?


Stricter control over what content people can access, starting from the very protocols/MIME types that are being streamed. E.g.:

  • Only "clean" HTTP, Javascript and POST requests may enter/leave the user's browser. Anything else will be suspect of piracy.
  • Downloads of binaries or streaming video/audio will be only possible through specialized apps, which will form "quantum" encrypted connections on a per-user basis, and of course subject to very strict DRM and payment checking. Even free services will be ad-ridden and it will be illegal to circumvent ad delivery.
  • Any "strange" looking traffic like torrents, P2P packets, onion routing, distributed hashes etc. will be blocked by default, since it will certainly be used for illegal activities/piracy
  • In order to use certain services like traditional e-mail, FTP etc. a sort of license/permit will be needed (e.g. proving that you're a web administrator, software developer etc.), otherwise you'll be required to use "sanitized" alternatives through approved apps. Again, just to curtail piracy
Of course, in order to implement some of the above stuff, a "collaborationist" OS would be required, which would cripple the user to the level of a mere ham-fisted app-consumer....oh wait, isn't that EXACTLY the model behind e.g. mobile apps? 99% of them are website surrogates that allow their creator to have more control over traffic and user interaction with their service.

Imagine if on the desktop, there were no HTTP websites but you had to download a separate application/EXE for each service/website you'd like to use. Paradoxically, after all this struggle to bring "rich internet applications" to nearly the same level as desktop apps, the industry may find solace in revisiting (and rehauling) the older ways.

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Bucket said:

Everybody shush - the Libertarian is about to tell us how the Glorious Free Market will make the internet better from now on.

No, I was done talking.

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Maes said:
Stricter control over what content people can access, starting from the very protocols/MIME types that are being streamed.

But we were talking about net neutrality and empowering users with access to information on the net through democratic policy, not a neoliberal government forcing people to depend predominantly on dominant private companies that decide when and how much they can see according to profit, while it censors or obfuscates media through copyright and national security concerns.

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AndrewB said:

Net neutrality has a damn attractive name, but it's bullshit.

Care to provide any examples of how it's bullshit?

doomgargoyle said:

That's why we need rogue sattelite based net access. Or kim dotcom's encrypted web.

I'm sure the powers-that-be would regulate it out of existence once it advances enough to become a viable alternative.

I wonder if an RF encrypted darknet would be viable. Those that want to shut it down could just blast it out with powerful noise on the right frequencies. I don't think trying to subvert controlling measures on privately owned copper or fiber networks would really be worth it, since they can just choose which data to allow past, and possibly sort it out from custom definitions.

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