UPDATE: Google/Verizon plan falls short on network neutrality.
FCC needs to get tough on network neutrality
San Francisco Chronicle
August 8, 2010
There's no way to put a positive spin on the latest news about network neutrality. The Federal Communications Commission has given up its attempt to broker a deal between telephone, cable and Internet companies that would preserve the freedom of the Internet...
The goal is to keep dominant carriers from overcharging for online access. Google and Verizon insist that what they're working on is not a backroom deal for their own benefit but instead a legislative proposal about how Internet content should be managed. All of this may be true - but it still doesn't look right.
Public interest and consumer groups didn't feel like they had much of a say in the commission's discussions, and they surely won't feel like they had much of a say in whatever proposal Google and Verizon bring to the table. This is a huge problem - the future of the Internet belongs to the public, not just a few companies.
The ideal solution would be for Congress to step in and provide a framework for net neutrality - preferably one that keeps the public interest at heart, not the demands of dominant Internet companies and carriers.