[opendtv] Re: B&C: Pai: Apple Promoting Online Censorship
- From: Craig Birkmaier <brewmastercraig@xxxxxxxxxx>
- To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Thu, 07 Dec 2017 08:38:15 -0500
On Dec 6, 2017, at 1:32 PM, Manfredi, Albert E <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
"... and that the real story is that edge providers ..."
Just how stubbornly clueless is this Chairman, anyway? THAT'S NOT HIS
BUSINESS. The FCC is supposed to worry about the telecoms, not the users of
the telecoms. He has no business trying this distraction tactic, only so he
can do the bidding of three or four special interests.
Not clueless at all. He has every right to discuss the “Big Picture,” not just
the portion of the Internet that the FCC touches. This is ESPECIALLY relevant,
given the FACT that the whole “neutrality” debate is turned on its ear when
Edge Providers are allowed to block legal content that they disagree with.
If Apple is proud to work for Chinese Internet censorship, that's hardly the
FCC's business either. Apple is not under FCC jurisdiction, unless they begin
offering a telecom service, nor are Chinese telecoms. Plus, we have long
known that Apple likes walled gardens. So do the special interests he is so
busy trying to please.
Tim Cook did not say that Apple is proud to support Chinese censorship. He has
engaged China and the rest of the Internet community to debate government
efforts to protect their citizens from “speech.” This is not much different
that what is happening on U.S. college campuses.
Funny how you cannot say all kinds of things on a U.S. college campus, but you
can attack anyone, any opinion, pretty much anything via Facebook and Twitter.
The United States has turned its eye away from the treatment of citizens in
China for many decades. Despite the many human rights abuses, we have willingly
given China carte blanche to flood the U.S. with exports that would be too
expensive to manufacture here. Why?
Because the United States took responsibility for cleaning up its environment
with massive regimes of regulation, while ignoring the impact that aerosol
emissions is having on global climate. YES, there is real man made climate
change coming from Asia.
The United States has created a hostile environment for corporations who do not
play the crony capitalism game, trading favors for campaign contributions.
Massive regulation and taxation drove our jobs to China, India and other
developing Asia economies.
It is more than disingenuous to criticize corporations for dealing with the bad
behavior of politicians in the countries where they do business, while our
government has played a major role in Globalization, and has knowingly created
a hostile business environment here that forces corporations to play the crony
This is abundantly clear in what is being called Net Neutrality.
For the favored edge providers anything goes; if they can help the politicians
achieve their goals they are all in. Ditto’s for broadcasters...
Meanwhile, the ISPs - the natural evolution of a communications industry that
has suffered through a century of heavy handed government regulation - are
subjected to heavy handed FCC regulation. And the DOJ turns anti-trust
enforcement on its head.
Apparently the politicians are not content with the massive revenues they
generate from communications taxes and fees; they want to force the ISPs to
prop up a regulatory system that helps keep the establishment in power - the
lawyers, the lobbyists, and the pay-to-play crony capitalism system.
And to keep this scheme going, the politicians are more than willing to borrow
billions from the Chinese, who have the audacity to control what their citizens
can see via the Internet.
"Pai has long argued that ISPs were unfairly singled out as gatekeepers in an
internet ecosystem that included massively powerful edge players."
That's obvious. A monopolistic broadband provider has no problem behaving
like a gatekeeper, given half a chance.
They had tons of chances Bert and they did NOT behave badly.
Remember the Time Warner Full Service Network in 1994 Bert?
That was the vision of the cable industry - to grow beyond delivering TV
content to building an e-commerce platform. Why did it fail?
The Internet provided an open, neutral environment that supports exactly what
the cable industry was trying to lock their customers into. It did not take an
FCC order to change the direction of the cable industry. They evolved and
invested heavily in broadband because their customers had the freedom to
choose. And they got a huge lead in the deployment of broadband, because the
telcos were blocked and throttled by the FCC via Title II and unbundling
requirements. Only AFTER the telcos were freed from the unbundling requirements
and allowed to overbuild cable systems did they start investing in these
Since 2014 we have lived with a constant barrage of fake news - fear mongering
about what the ISPs “MIGHT DO,” that they DIDN’T DO, under the light handed
regulatory regime that allowed the Internet and cellular industries to invest
without getting approval from the FCC to go to the bathroom...
It’s time for you to let go of the monopoly canard. There is significant, and
growing, competition in both the delivery of TV content and access to the
Internet, which is ultimately how almost all TV content will be delivered.
Are consumers suffering because of the regulatory state? Absolutely!
The so called attempt to control Cable rates in 1992 was just a massive handout
to the media congloms. They have used retransmission consent to take control of
almost all of the content we watch, while driving up the cost of “the bundle”
for two decades.
And then there is the fact that the regulatory state imposes huge taxes and
fees on the communications industries that it regulates, except for
And we are worried that China wants to have its own Edge Providers - like Baidu
rather than Google - or that is blocks Facebook?
No political system is perfect...
A user of the Internet cannot do that. Duh.
What? Users of the Internet cannot block or throttle, but they CAN AND DO pay
for higher quality ISP plans, which is in itself a form of paid prioritization
. And they DO pay for both fixed and mobile Internet access.
But they have embraced and created the monopolistic edge providers, often
imposing their own personal filters on reality. Who needs to block anything
when our country is becoming so polarized that we only listen to one side of a
story and embrace alternative facts - i.e. fake news.
That’s what the Chinese government does by filtering what its citizens can
access via the Internet.
It's astonishing how he can be so in bed with this tiny number of broadband
companies, and blind to the technical realities. His job is only to make
damned sure that the handful of service providers NOT behave like
gatekeepers, which has been their MVPD role and culture for decades past.
What technical realities Bert?
The reality that most Americans use at least three ISP services almost every
The reality that deregulation has accelerated the development of wirelsss
communications standards that will soon unleash even more competition for ISP
It is NOT the FCC’s job to regulate companies that offer competitive services
in an increasingly competitive market. You need look no further than what has
happened with wireless telephony since Congress mandated that the FCC STOP
micromanaging the wireless industry.
There is NO SUCH THING as a natural monopoly Bert. That was a fabrication a
century ago when crony capitalism was born. Yes there are markets where it
makes no economic sense to operate multiple overbuilt infrastructures, but even
here, the marketplace does a better job of managing cooperative competition
than government regulators.
The cellular companies, freed to compete, now routinely work together to deal
with shared infrastructure and spectrum - no FCC gerrymandering required.
The same will happen with electric power if the states get it of the way and
allow consumers to buy power from any generation company.
"He reiterated his theory of why edge providers like Google and Amazon
generally support net neutrality regs. 'Saddling internet service providers
with tougher regulations than apply to themselves helps them cement their
dominance over the internet economy.'"
That borders on plain stupidity.
No Bert it is reality. It is the reason that Obama told Wheeler to impose Title
II on the ISPs. It is why the Democrats get so much money from Hollywood and
Silicon Valley, and the big edge providers operate with a culture of blocking
some points of view, while enabling and promoting others.
But most important, as discussed in the National Review article I just posted,
this is all driven by something very simple - the profit motive!
Thus we need heavy handed FCC regulation to prevent so-called monopoly ISPs
from maximizing revenues, but Edge Providers can operate on the global playing
field - except China - and maximize revenues from any source, even as they
exhibit non-neutral behavior.
Funny how extremist yahoos end up sounding dumber and dumber and dumber
still, as they dig in.
This is a PERFECT description of YOUR behavior Bert.
You have already dug a hole half way to China for yourself.
Any business which uses the telecoms DEPENDS on telecom neutrality. No one
has to use Google or Amazon, if they don't want to. So tell me this,
Chairman. Would you prefer to allow my only broadband company to block Google
or to block Amazon, just to "show them"?
Obviously Pai correctly believes that no ISP is going to start blocking Google
or Amazon; there is no evidence of this kind of past behavior, or any
indication that it will start after the next FCC order is published.
Will competitors to Facebook , Twitter and Google emerge?
They already exist, but have little traction, as consumers seem more interested
in “likes” and “followers,” than neutrality.
He needs to step down, sooner rather than later. Like other stubborn,
clueless people, the more he digs in, the more he is becoming incoherent.
You need to “step down” Bert.
We all know your positions and love for the regulatory state.
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