I wish this didn’t have to happen, but the Telcos and cable companies have been total dicks about this. They’ve created bandwidth scarcity where this is none. They’ve colluded and they’ve conspired to have it both ways — money from customers and money from content providers — all the while with plenty of profit to make our internet the fastest on the planet for half the money. Instead, they bought themselves new houses in Telluride and Teslas to take them there. Fuck ’em. I’m all for free enterprise, but bad boys need to get spanked. Hard.
Reason contributor and Clemson University economic historian Thomas W. Hazlett defines Net Neutrality as “a set of rules…regulating the business model of your local ISP.” The definition gets to the heart of the matter. There are specific interests who are doing well by the current system—Netflix, for instance—and they want to maintain the status quo. That’s understandable but the idea that the government will do a good job of regulating the Internet whether by blanket decrees or on a case-by-case basis is unconvincing, to say the least. The most likely outcome is that regulators will freeze in place today’s business models, thereby slowing innovation and change.