There is a slow but quiet reversal of free internet in the works! Major telecom companies, stung by the reversed fortunes as telephone of the past gives way to modern-day VoIP, are moving in with new “business models”!
The nation’s largest telephone and cable companies are crafting an alarming set of strategies that would transform the free, open and nondiscriminatory Internet of today to a privately run and branded service that would charge a fee for virtually everything we do online.
Verizon, Comcast, Bell South and other communications giants are developing strategies that would track and store information on our every move in cyberspace in a vast data-collection and marketing system, the scope of which could rival the National Security Agency. According to white papers now being circulated in the cable, telephone and telecommunications industries, those with the deepest pockets–corporations, special-interest groups and major advertisers–would get preferred treatment. Content from these providers would have first priority on our computer and television screens, while information seen as undesirable, such as peer-to-peer communications, could be relegated to a slow lane or simply shut out. link
This spells disaster for the innovation and creativity to prosper in this country!!
It is amazing that everyone, from China – the closed country with an open exports policy – and US – the bastion of free trade – are BOTH in the process of putting clamps on the Internet!
What if, a consortium of the rest of the Asia-Pac and European countries form an alliance for free disbursal of internet information and data? Would that severely and irreversibly stunt the growth of Innovation and thus, the economy in US and China?
Unless the laying of the “pipes” is undertaken by the Government or at a subsidy provided by it, guys like this will be there to ruin the creative climate in the country:
As Ed Whitacre, chairman and CEO of AT&T, told Business Week in November, “Why should they be allowed to use my pipes? The Internet can’t be free in that sense, because we and the cable companies have made an investment, and for a Google or Yahoo! or Vonage or anybody to expect to use these pipes [for] free is nuts!”
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