Unplugging the Internet
posted: November 3, 2009
"Is this the party to whom I am speaking?"...
The telecoms are fighting hard to preserve their ability to control the flow of traffic on the Internet. But many people and tech companies are afraid that the local telephone companies, which own almost all the wire that connects homes and business to the Internet, will begin to throttle or even pull the plug on traffic they don't want -- traffic like streaming music and movies, or internet phone systems, or peer-to-peer file sharing. They could impose tiered services, in which they could sell companies that need the Internet better service than those who cannot or will not pay. And they could simply block the traffic of competitors, or anyone else.

The FCC is considering  "net neutrality" rules to prevent that sort of thing and to make sure that all web content is available to everyone on equal terms. 

Of course the phone companies deny any intention to do evil, but then why are they so up in arms and lobbying with all their might to block the regulation? Enter Ernestine's replacement, operator "One Ringy Dingy" McCain.

McCain, who admitted to not knowing the difference between a Mac and PC and doesn't even use email, is happy to help the telecoms pull any plug they want. On Oct 22nd he introduced legislation to give telecoms the right to decide how you access information. Or don't access it.

Battling net neutrality (and pulling plugs) comes with a price, it would appear, since McCain is the single biggest recipient of campaign donations from the telecom industry, having gotten $894, far.