The battle lines o n the net neutrality f ro ntier co

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Unformatted text preview: mit inno vatio n. Says Go o gle’s Vint Cerf (who is co nsidered o ne o f the “f athers o f the Internet” f o r his wo rk o n the o riginal Internet pro to co l suite) “Yo u are less likely to try things o ut. No o ne wants a surprise bill at the end o f the mo nth.”M. Jesdanun, “As the Internet Turns 40, Barriers Threaten Gro wth,” Techno lo gy Rev iew , August 31, 2009. Metered billing may limit the use o f everything f ro m iTunes to Netf lix; af ter all, if yo u have to pay f o r per-bit bandwidth co nsumptio n as well as f o r the do wnlo ad service, then it’s as if yo u’re paying twice. The co unterargument is that if f irms are restricted f ro m charging mo re f o r their investment in inf rastructure and services, then they’ll have little incentive to co ntinue to make the kinds o f multibillio n-do llar investments that inno vatio ns like 4G and f iber netwo rks require. Teleco m industry executives have railed against Go o gle, Micro so f t, Yaho o ! and o thers, calling them f ree riders who earn huge pro f its by piggybacking o f f ISP netwo rks, all while f unneling no pro f its back to the f irms that pro vide the inf rastructure. One Verizo n vice president said, “The netwo rk builders are spending a f o rtune co nstructing and maintaining the netwo rks that Go o gle intends to ride o n with no thing but cheap servers.…It is enjo ying a f ree lunch that sho uld, by any ratio nal acco unt, be the lunch o f the f acilities pro viders.”A. Mo hammed, “Verizo n Executive Calls f o r End to Go o gle’s ‘Free Lunch,’” Washingto n P o st, February 7, 2006. AT&T’s previo us CEO has suggested that Go o gle, Yaho o ! and o ther services f irms sho uld pay f o r “pref erred access” to the f irm’s custo mers. The CEO o f Spain’s Telef o nica has also said the f irm is co nsidering charging Go o gle and o ther Internet service f irms f o r netwo rk use.I. Lunden, “Bro adband Co ntent Bits: Web Drama Investment, P P L Video...
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