On ‘Saving the Internet’

Everyone will be linking to Save the Internet.

The potential commercial censorship problem is real. The potential commercial prioritization of traffic is also worrying. So I agree with the cause. (Although I hate the name.)

I’m concerned about strategy. Because (as I’ve noted previously) I believe the whole “net neutrality” problem is due to a competitive failure, the existence of a legacy telco DSL/cable duopoly (at best) in most the broadband market. The source of that failure is a totally misguided regulation by the Bush administration which killed off competition in the DSL market; I think the solution is NOT some more regulations trying to undo the ill effects of the original rule, but rather the repeal of the rule that caused the problem, and return to the previous rule which made legacy telcos share some of the lines. The telcos hated this of course, and the Bush people li$tened.

It’s not clear to me how “Save the Internet” will come down on this. Regulating ISPs as to how they prioritize and deliver content is I think deeply second-best to true competition in the broadband services market for all sorts of reasons.

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