Net Neutrality -- In the News And On the Edge, Or Not?

Is Net Neutrality now in danger, endangered by some of its former advocates? According to Scott Nichols of PC World and Dana Blankenhorn of ZDNet, no. But other might think so, based on a recent WSJ story where the lede misleads: Google Wants Its Own Fast Track on the Web

According to Nichols,

The Wall Street Journal today posted an article claiming that Google, as well as other Net neutrality advocates, were abandoning or softening their views on Net neutrality. The Wall Street Journal specifically attacks Google's OpenEdge project as a means by which Google can have its own content given bandwidth priority over other web sites.

Nichols has a harsh assessment of the WSJ as a result:

It is a simple matter of a publication favoring fear mongering over actual news.

Ouch.  And that's not all...

As Blankenhorn explains,

The lede is false, it’s the spin of the network owners who want us all to ignore their attempts to control what we do or say online in the name of their private profit.

As David Isenberg, author of Rise of The Stupid Network, explains, all Google is proposing to do is edge caching.


Oh. Ah-ha.

So...why the brouhaha? Blankenhorn asks the same question -- and provides an insightful answer, too:

Why was this turned into an anti-network neutrality story? Probably because the Journal has long been banging the drum against neutrality, for ideological reasons and because big companies are big advertisers.


Why believe what I’m saying? Possibly because the two "experts" the reporters consulted to justify their spin, Richard Whitt of Google and attorney Larry Lessig, say their words were twisted.

Edge caching is about access, not delivery. It’s about making it easier for people to reach you, not creating a tilted playing field. It’s about competition, not monopoly.


But this story holds an important lesson. Lies can get around the world long before the truth gets its shoes on. And when those lies are backed by the credibility of a major publisher, they remain long after the truth is told.


Such forms of "spin" and less-than-honest propaganda-whoring have been all too prevalent in our society of late -- especially over the last 8 years, while reality took a holiday from the news and information services only to find itself locked out (along with the rest of us) upon its attempted return.

Go read the full articles by Nichols (here) and Blankenhorn (a href="">here), and do your own write-up and post with links; spread the truth around. Let's make it difficult for the truth to be watered down and washed away, and do our part to bring more sanity and understanding to the world by starting here, online, with the topic of Net Neutrality.


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I certainly am not up on how they've shifted recently.

A couple of years ago, however, Google hired the 'external political arm of the White House', as Allen Raymond described DCI Group in "How to Rig an Election" released last January.  

I find no record that DCI lobbied the Feds for Google so I don't really know what the master of astroturfing deception has been doing for Google but, I wasn't alone to think they made an odd couple, at the time.

In part, that's because I'm aware of DCI's long history advocating AT&T's agenda beginning at some point not long after the 1996 Telecomm Act gave the Mother of all Bells the means to leverage what has ultimately proven a substantial reassemblage of its monopoly.

But if you take a look at the 'coalition' behind "Hands Off The Internet", you'll find many competitors to Google whose interests could be vested in an agenda that once upon a time, at least, would have found WSJ to be a natural mouthpiece. 

And who's represented in that 'coaltion' is why I originally found the DCI-Google hookup a curious one since a number of the non-corporate entities are fronts, allied spinoffs, or Chamber of Commerce-affiliates who, ten years ago, hooked their wagons to the US Chamber/AT&T/Big Tobacco regulatory and judicial itinerary with DCI to get Bush 'elected'.

In commerce, the bottomline is always the bottomline, however, so DCI was a clear channel to the Bush Administration when Google was first reported to have hired them. 

I'd be interested to see if anyone has ever learned just what DCI's operation did for Google.  Maybe part of job one was to blunt the power of the "Hands Off" gang?!


"I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations which dare already to challenge our government in a trial of strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country." - Thomas Jefferson

Wouldn't surprise me if they were hedging their bets, but -- just based on some of the research I vaguely recall seeing -- it would be odd if they didn't have a secondary agenda.

I imagine that you mean Google bought insurance with access to GOP leadership and the WH through DCI Group. But I suspect you meant that DCI was probably working a second agenda simultaneously as they represented Google interests. 

Knowing of the research you're considering, their business model certainly depends upon that sort of dynamic.  I don't remember what other telecomm issues were at play except for what has always seemed a sure thing, to me. 

DCI's long relationship with AT&T and the GOP probably made them key operatives in obtaining immunity for Bush-corporate spying under FISA.

My brain's not enough of a gymnast to imagine all that's required for that picture to work out, however!

"I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations which dare already to challenge our government in a trial of strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country." - Thomas Jefferson