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Monday, December 11, 2017

Net Neutrality and the Trump FCC

Joint Comments of Internet Engineers, Pioneers, and Technologists on the Technical Flaws in the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rule-making and the Need for the Light-Touch, Bright-Line Rules from the Open Internet Order.
"The undersigned submit the following statement in opposition to the Federal Communications Commission's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking – WC Docket No. 17-108, which seeks to reclassify Broadband Internet Access Service (BIAS) providers as “information services,” as opposed to “telecommunications services.” Based on certain questions the FCC asks in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), we are concerned that the FCC (or at least Chairman Pai and the authors of the NPRM) appears to lack a fundamental understanding of what the Internet's technology promises to provide, how the Internet actually works, which entities in the Internet ecosystem provide which services, and what the similarities and differences are between the Internet and other telecommunications systems the FCC regulates as telecommunications services. Due to this fundamental misunderstanding of how the technology underlying the Internet works, we believe that if the FCC were to move forward with its NPRM as proposed, the results could be disastrous: the FCC would be making a major regulatory decision based on plainly incorrect assumptions about the underlying technology and Internet ecosystem..."
53 page heavily, credibly documented PDF. You should read all of it carefully.
V. Conclusion
"While we appreciate the FCC’s desire to accurately classify BIAS providers, the theories posed and the questions asked by the NPRM indicate a tremendous lack of technical understanding on the part of its authors. We remain concerned that any decision to reclassify based on this lack of technical understanding could have dangerous consequences, including stifling future innovation and depressing future investment in the wealth of Internet services that drive such a large part of the U.S. economy. 

Furthermore, based on the above examples, coupled with our collective knowledge and experience in designing, building, and operating various parts of the Internet ecosystem, it is clear to us that if the FCC were to reclassify BIAS providers as information services, and thereby put the bright-line, light-touch rules from the Open Internet Order in jeopardy, the result could be a disastrous decrease in the overall value of the Internet. Fortunately, the current rules that the FCC operates under will effectively prevent this worst-case scenario from occurring, so long as the NPRM is not approved. 

That is why we, the undersigned computer scientists, network engineers, and Internet professionals, based on our technical analysis and an understanding of both how the Internet was designed, and how it currently functions, respectfully encourage the FCC not to adopt the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking – WC Docket No. 17-108."

This is probably headed to court, given that the Trump FCC will likely vote to roll back current "end-to-end net neutrality" regulations. See also "The Web Began Dying in 2004 -- Here's How."


Stay tuned. See here and here. Spoiler alert: pardon my dubiety.
“…once a block is added to the blockchain, it is immutable, which results in improved data accuracy and maintenance. While blockchain has mostly seen uses in the financial space, it’s clear that such technology could potentially revolutionize other areas, such as healthcare and medical records.”
Right. What could possibly go wrong?

Tangentially, see "Bitcoin Could cost Us Our Clean-Energy Future."

More to come...

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