Saturday, June 24, 2006

my pointless musing on net neutrality

One thing I notice among the arguments against net neutrality is the suggestion that sites like Google or You Tube should pay for the bandwidth that they use. But, I'm guessing that they already pay. Maybe they have some super secret free internet bargain, but I'm guessing not. I'm also guessing that they do indeed have the internet at Google and that their employees don't do the work at the office and then download it at home. I pay a certain company for my share of the internet, so what I'm wondering is, why should we now all have to pay more?

I once worked in a restaurant that once had a fire in the hood vents. In addition to the fire department and the loss in time and sales, the place had to pay to have the vents cleaned out and fixed after finding the problem that caused the fire. There were problems with other equipment, as will happen in restaurants, that required repair or replacement. But when these problems were encountered, the management didn't raise the prices to pay for them. The restaurant had to find a way to take care of the problem while still providing the customer with what they expected.

It seems to me that the telcos are tired of paying their part of the deal. They can't provide their service without some amount of work, an example of which is running cable lines. The argument is, in my opinion, that the telcos want to charge people because they have to update their hardware. To keep pace with technology and the spread of the human population, they want to make extra money for doing something that is integral to their business.

If you help me pay for the fryers, I'll open a restaurant, and you can come buy food there. The big difference here is that I have options when it comes to restaurants. And once I'm in the restaurant I still have options. If the corporations want more money, maybe they should worry more about their service than what they can manage to charge and how many people will pay twice.

But that's just how I see it.

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