Should the Government Run the Internet?
On Tuesday, a federal court ruled that Comcast had the right to limit its users access to certain types of content. At issue was users access to a file sharing service called BitTorrent, which uses a high amount of bandwidth, slowing the speed at which other users access other content. While the ruling can be seen as fair, allows a company to determine how to use its resources, it can also be seen as the first step toward complete private control of the Internet. Such control could allow some companies, say Amazon.com, to cut a deal allowing faster access to its content, while a smaller independent bookseller would be left with slower access and at a business disadvantage.
From the New York Times
U.S. Court Curbs F.C.C. Authority on Web Traffic
WASHINGTON — A federal appeals court ruled on Tuesday that regulators had limited power over Web traffic under current law. The decision will allow Internet service companies to block or slow specific sites and charge video sites like YouTube to deliver their content faster to users.
The court decision was a setback to efforts by the Federal Communications Commission to require companies to give Web users equal access to all content, even if some of that content is clogging the network.
So, the question is, who should run the Internet? Should Congress step in and make the online world a regulated one, such as with the telephone utitilites, or should it stay private leaving individual corporations the ability to decide who surfs at what speed? Personally, I vote for FCC control, but that's just me; other people may have differing opinions.