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 Post subject: Net neutrality uprising shows power of Internet
PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2006 9:30 am 
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On the verge of victory: Net neutrality uprising shows power of Internet as democratizing force

by Geov Parrish | Oct 13 2006 -

A grassroots movement that barely existed five years ago is on the verge of triumphing over one of the most powerful lobbies in Washington.

The issue is net neutrality, the concept that, as with phone service, every Internet site is equally accessible to users. Net neutrality means that Joe's blog connects just as easily for users as CNN.com.


That's the Internet system hundreds of millions of people around the world (at least) have gotten used to. But here in the U.S., where many of the major Internet providers are based and the largest number of Internet users lives, the telecommunications lobby has spent some $200 million during this Congress to change all that.

What the telecom giants want instead is a tiered system, where they can charge large-scale users like Google, Yahoo, or Amazon.com fees in exchange for faster, more reliable access to their sites. CNN.com would load much faster than Joe's blog, and for that reason alone will be far more appealing to users. And that site being run by striking AT&T workers? You might not be able to access that at all.

The stakes are enormous. Anyone producing independent media would be at a huge disadvantage under such a system. It's not just existing web sites and blogs that would be affected. The biggest stakes are still to come. Within five years, much of the audience for print, radio, and video (including TV) will be online. A decade, and it will all be the same technology, worth uncounted billions each year to whichever companies control the service.


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 Post subject: Bill Moyers: The Net at Risk
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 11:43 am 
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http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/101706U.shtml

Bill Moyers: The Net at Risk
Moyers on America
t r u t h o u t | Programming Note

Airdate: Wednesday, October 18, 2006, at 9:00 p.m. on PBS.

(Check local listings at http://www.pbs.org/moyers.)

"The Net at Risk" reports on what could happen if a few mega-media corporations get their way in Washington.

The future of the Internet is up for grabs. Big corporations are lobbying Washington to turn the gateway to the Web into a toll road. Yet the public knows little about what's happening behind closed doors where the future of democracy's newest forum is being decided. If a few mega media giants own the content and control the delivery of radio, television, telephone services and the Internet, they'll make a killing and citizens will pay for it. America's ability to compete in the global marketplace, the unfettered exchange of ideas online, and broadband services that could improve quality of life for millions are at stake. Some say the very future of democracy itself may hang in the balance. In "The Net at Risk," Bill Moyers and journalist Rick Karr report on the wannabe "lords of the Internet" and examine how promises by the big tel-co companies of a super-high speed Internet in return for deregulation and tax breaks have gone unfulfilled while the public has paid the price. After the documentary, Moyers leads a discussion on media reform to explore the real-world impact of deregulation on communities and citizen participation in democracy.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 12:27 pm 
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that Moyers thing makes me wish i had tv.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2006 7:36 am 
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Quote:
that Moyers thing makes me wish i had tv.


I haven't checked, but you might find it on the PBS site, or under 'Bill Moyers' somewhere in there.

We do have to keep hounding our Congresscritters about 'net neutrality'. Certainly the big media corporations and the telephone companies are doing a fine job of hounding them--while they pay them off.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2006 8:30 am 
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http://www.freepress.net/news/18421

Quote:
Against an Imperial Internet
The Internet has become the foremost testing ground where the forces of innovation, corporate power, the public interest and government regulation converge.

From TomPaine.com, October 17, 2006
By Bill Moyers and Scott Fogdall


Good read. Also...

http://www.savetheinternet.com/

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2007 8:05 am 
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AMY GOODMAN: Bob McChesney, Free Press participated in this negotiation. And what does it mean to say it's for two years? I mean, AT&T, BellSouth -- I don't know if it's a marriage forever -- but they are planning to make a lot of money, and they are very big. What’s two years to them?

ROBERT McCHESNEY: In merger deals, you don’t make permanent conditions, as I understand it, so it’s always time-dated, what conditions you put on it. So it’s -- two years is the condition we were able to get. That means we’ve got a two-year window now to go to Congress and force Congress to basically put this into writing, that we will not allow the big cable and telephone companies -- there are only a handful now that deliver internet access to the vast majority of Americans, pushing 99%. This is basically an effort to privatize the internet, for them to say, ‘We pick which websites you can see and which ones go on the dirt path,’ and take away its entire public character, which is responsible for its genius and its growth.

And I think that's our challenge now and one of the tasks of the Media Reform Conference here in Memphis. A lot of our energy is going to talking about the strategy to organize a popular campaign to absolutely demand Congress to pass a law making net neutrality forever the law of the land to keep the internet open and free, so to make the First Amendment a living document for everyone, not just for media owners.


As usual, excellent piece.

http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/01/12/151235

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