Defend Net Neutrality: call the Senate NOW!

The Senate Commerce Committee is currently considering several amendments to Sen. Stevens’ Telecom Act (S.2686), and the Snowe-Dorgan Net Neutrality amendment should come before the Committee by mid-to-late afternoon. If passed, this amendment would put Net Neutrality language into the Telecom Act, which is absolutely critical to maintaining a vibrant and democratic Internet.

Here is a list of senators on the committee who have not already committed themselves to supporting Internet freedom and the Snowe-Dorgan Amendment. Call them NOW!

Chairman Ted Stevens (R-AK): 202-224-3004
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ.) : 202-224-2235
Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR.) : 202-224-2353
Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL.) : 202-224-5274
Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) : 202 224 3224
Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) : 202 224-4623
Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS) : 202-224-6253
Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT) : 202-224-2644
Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) : 202-224-6551
Sen. John Ensign (R-NV) : 202-224-6244
Sen. John E. Sununu (R-NH) : 202-224-2841
Sen. Gordon Smith (R-OR) : 202-224-3753
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) : 202 224-6121
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) : 202-224-5922
Sen. George Allen (R-VA) : 202-224-4024
Sen. John D. Rockefeller (D-WV) : 202-224-6472

Phone calls absolutely do make a difference, especially when a senator is already sitting on the fence. You can also call the Capitol switchboard toll-free (1-888-355-3588) and ask to be switched to any Senate office.

Comments

  1. 1

    Mark The Redneck Kennedy spews:

    What? You mean “scientists” trying to line their pockets with taxpayer money would lie? WTF?

    And current temps really are well within historical range?

    So MTR’s superior intellect reigns triumphant again. Ahh… it’s great to be me…

  2. 2

    Puddybud Michael Kennedy spews:

    Speaking more of Captain Planet: This is downright funny.

    http://www.epw.senate.gov/pres.....;id=257909

    “…A study in the journal Science by the social scientist Nancy Oreskes claimed that a search of the ISI Web of Knowledge Database for the years 1993 to 2003 under the key words “global climate change” produced 928 articles, all of whose abstracts supported what she referred to as the consensus view. A British social scientist, Benny Peiser, checked her procedure and found that only 913 of the 928 articles had abstracts at all, and that only 13 of the remaining 913 explicitly endorsed the so-called consensus view. Several actually opposed it.”- Lindzen wrote in an op-ed in the June 26, 2006 Wall Street Journal.

    Roy Spencer, principal research scientist for the University of Alabama in Huntsville, wrote an open letter to Gore criticizing his presentation of climate science in the film:

    “…Temperature measurements in the arctic suggest that it was just as warm there in the 1930′s…before most greenhouse gas emissions. Don’t you ever wonder whether sea ice concentrations back then were low, too?”- Roy Spencer wrote in a May 25, 2006 column.

    Former University of Winnipeg climatology professor Dr. Tim Ball reacted to Gore’s claim that there has been a sharp drop-off in the thickness of the Arctic ice cap since 1970.

    “The survey that Gore cites was a single transect across one part of the Arctic basin in the month of October during the 1960s when we were in the middle of the cooling period. The 1990 runs were done in the warmer month of September, using a wholly different technology,” –Tim Ball said, according to the Canadian Free Press. ”

    Yes, but libruls ignore the truth so they can scare people into thinking their way. Golly GreenDumb, too bad on your precious 928 articles!!! Mighty cuzin MTR, you could be right about your chi^2′d analysis after all!!!

  3. 3

    Puddybud Michael Kennedy spews:

    Speaking of Captain Planet: Remember his Internet tax in the early 90s we all pay for? Did the companies really use that money to devleop rural Internet service? I thought DSl had local loop issues after 14000 feet. I wonder…

  4. 4

    Puddybud Michael Kennedy spews:

    Cuzin MTR I agree why no one has talked to Captain Planet and his band of Planeteers!!! I have to disagree with you on the cost issue. As private bidness man I am not in favor of paying high exorbitant rates for my company’s Internet connections. Nor am I happy of paying for my clients to email me for consulting gigs!

    Regarding the grabbing of Internet real estate, peeps who allowed them to do this? The city and county governments created these cable and phone monopolies. We are reaping the stupid decisions made years ago. Now who controls most city and county governments here in WA State. You guessed right!
    So Goldy did you really research this one? Or is this another canard?

  5. 5

    rhp6033 spews:

    Net Neutrality is important to us that use the internet on a regular basis and have some knowledge of the issues. But to a lot of voters, they haven’t got the foggiest idea.

    Generally speaking, the cable and phone companies ISPs(Comcast, Verizon, Qwest, etc.), who are grabbing up large market shares with high-speed internet access, are trying to put their competition ISPs out of business (AOL, Yahoo, Juno, etc.). What they want is permission to charge those other services for the priviledge of delivering e-mail to their subscribers. Of course, the other services would have to pass that cost along to their customers, so it becomes a big money tranfer of funds away from independent ISPs to the cable and phone companies. Since nobody is going to pay for basic internet service PLUS a fee for each e-mail (or its monthly equivilent charge), the independent ISPs will be out of business within a year, if this goes through.

    Of course, the big cable and phone companies say they won’t REFUSE to deliver the messages, just that they won’t give them priority – they will deliver them after “paying” customers are taken care of first. But there is no guarantee of when that will occur – the companies “estimate” it will be a few hours, or a couple of days at the most. But they could refuse to deliver them “indefinately”.

    I consider this one of the more blatant commercial attempts to grab control of a public resource since the days of the robber barons.

  6. 6

    Mark The Redneck Kennedy spews:

    Just wondering… has anyone bothered to ask the inventor of the internet what he thinks? Or is he too busy out saving the fucking planet from The Sun?

    I guess it’s not surprising that moonbats would be in favor of freebies and against market economics on the net.

  7. 7

    spews:

    Jason, it’s not true that it’s just the telecoms. Libertarians are generally opposed to it because the new regulations will be so onerous, especially considering there isn’t any demonstrated harm so far. The Communications Workers of America — a very big union — is also against it, because it will be bad for their employees. And a few minority organizations such as the National Black Chamber of Commerce are, too. Because those regulations would also make it less likely the telcos and cablecos would be able to deliver on last-mile technologies in less-wealthy areas. Also opposed are most network engineers, like Ethernet inventor Richard Bennett and U. Penn professor David Farber.

    And Yer Killin Me, don’t you think it’s worth noting that Vint Cerf works for Google? Google is probably the main mover on the pro-regulation site, and Google just wants to avoid paying its fair share.

  8. 8

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    3

    This is the way I understand the issue. I could be wrong. Please do not base any business plan or legal decision on anything I tell you, or attempt to drive or use heavy machinery while under its influence.

    Internet service providers (ISPs) are currently laying the infrastructure necessary for high-speed internet access — fiber optic cables and the like. To help subsidize this, they want to be able to charge those who would benefit the most from this upgraded access a premium rate for premium access. So for instance if you owned a Netflix-like service that provided movies on demand via the Internet, they would want to charge you extra for this.

    The problem here is that this creates a two-tiered system. Those who don’t want to or can’t pay the premium access fees would be throttled back to lower speeds, even though the technological capability is there for all content providers to use the increased speed. So if I wanted to provide a similar servie to yours but didn’t have as much seed money or didn’t want to spend it on increased access fees, I would be forced to provide a lower-bandwidth, and therefore less desirable, service.

    As I understand it, the problems with this scheme are twofold. First, the Internet has always carried everyone’s packets, to borrow a phrase, without fear or favor. An individual ISP might choose to completely block a web site or certain pages (e.g. a family-friendly web site attempting to block sites deemed inappropriate for the tiny tots), but if you let traffic through, you let it through at the same rate as all other traffic you let through. You can block al-Jazeera if you like, but if you don’t it comes through just as fast as Fox News.

    But the more insidious threat here is that the multi-tiered pricing creates a barrier to entry on the Internet, as I’ve mentioned above. If this law is implemented ISPs become de facto gatekeepers, deciding what traffic is worth promoting and what isn’t via what they charge. So for instance Goldy could wake up one morning and find that his ISP has decided that his website had to pay $10000/GB of traffic, whereas someone else using that ISP to host an unabashedly Republican web site might only pat $5/GB.

    Or more likely, suppose the next garage-based entrepreneur comes up with an application that’s potentially as big as Google or Myspace, but no one wants to use it because access to it is so slow and the poor guy is just starting out and can’t afford the high-traffic access fees.

    Again, this is how I understand the debate. Please do due diligence in researching the topic to come to your own conclusion.

  9. 10

    jason spews:

    while the issues behind it are complicated, the motivations are not. the *only* ones against net neutrality are the telecoms. besides the concerns of individuals, many large companies (microsoft, google, amazon) have come out in favor of maintaining net neutrality. it’s win-win for a senator to support the legislation

  10. 11

    ArtFart spews:

    The underlying issue here is that there are a number of business and political interests at work with the goal of turning the Internet into something more like television…basically, a one-way medium. There are some technical barriers to this. Presently, the bulk of all Internet traffic consists of static Web pages and email (the great majority of which is now spam). The media companies and telecoms want to stream high-definition audio video (I was going to say “high quality” but the actual content is likely to be crap) into your passively receptive brain, just like broadcast and cable TV. In other words, they want to bastardize the new medium to turn it into an extension of the old one that has made them so much money for the last three quarters of a century.

    The problem is that the bandwidth to do is on a large scale will be at least three orders of magnitude greater than the Net is presently able to handle. This means the carriers (who are already huffing and puffing from the Gigantic Cellphone Build-Out) will have build billions’ more worth of physical plant–which they’re more than happy to do, if they can charge SOMEONE enough to pay it all off.

    In the long run, how that’s going to affect people like us with our little piddly-ass emails and blog sites isn’t clear. We’re part of the “old Internet” which isn’t going to matter much in the overall scheme of things. The bits we’re slinging around won’t amount to a yellow spot in a snow drift.

    Now, the outfits like Amazon, Yahoo, Google, Ebay and MySpace, on the other hand…what they see coming has them pretty scared. The carriers and ISP’s aren’t going to make all that money by charging you and me a thousand times as much for our home connection–we’d just give up, put the computer away and read a book. We might even get together more to interact face to face, which might actually be a good thing. But the big E-commerce companies, on the other hand–they know their providers can, and will, put the squeeze on them. So THEY’re the ones screaming the loudest about “net neutrality”.

  11. 12

    Puddybud Michael Kennedy spews:

    MTR:

    Remember Goldy and his Graham Hill School? This is too funny.

    http://www.socialistworker.org.....ools.shtml

    Seattle blames union for school closings. Now ain’t them the same people Goldy continues to support year after year and their invisible hand helped close his “precious” school? Oh no the union invisible hand!!!

  12. 13

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    15

    Vinton Cerf and Robert Kahn (inventors of the TCP/IP protocol, the foundation of the Internet) and Tim Berners-Lee (inventor of the World Wide Web) have all come out as strong supporters of network neutrality.

    But then you probably know about as little about the history of the Internet as you do about anything else.

  13. 14

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    22

    So your suggestion is that Cerf’s opinion can be bought by his employer? You don’t think that his being one of the people who designed neutrality into the Net has anything to do with this stance?

    The part about Google not paying its fair share is booshwa. I could live comfortably for the rest of my life on what they pay for net access in a year.

  14. 16

    jason spews:

    nice try #22. somebody’s already taken down your disingenuous dig at google, so i’ll cover your astroturfing in the first paragraph – these are not new regulations. net neutrality has been the rule since the internet started & is a big reason for its continued success as a medium. the demonstrated harm will occur almost immediately after the regulations are repealed.

  15. 17

    rhp6033 spews:

    Yes, and their advertising on this issue is pretty deceptive. It doesn’t mention “net neutrality” at all, it just says that everyone should let their Congressman know that they support the bill because it “prevents companies from standing in the way of the next generation of the internet” and “allows companies to cut down on spam”. Of course, Comcast has plenty of opportunities to stick their adds so you can see them, regardless of the channel you select, they have an inherent advantage when most homes now use cable service for their TV.

    Good point about the e-merchants, I hadn’t thought about that one. Once the independent ISPs are pushed out of the business, I can see Comcast going to Amazon.com, and saying…

    “We’ll let you use our bandwith, for a price… how about 10% of all transactions? If not, good luck – we’ll block access to your site for all our subscribers. And for 25%, we’ll block out all your competitors, they won’t even have a chance to pay for the priviledge of competing with you….”

  16. 19

    Kyle Broflovski spews:

    While Net Neutrality is your big concern, Goldy, S.2686 is nothing more than a multi-billion dollar giveaway, and should be shelved. Unfortunately, the House version passed with lots of Democratic support (including Inslee).

    That said, you are correct about the phone calls. They do make a big difference.

  17. 21

    Libertarian spews:

    Gody,

    I apologize in advance for not knowing about this one, but would you tell me (in little words) what the issue is here? I’m gathering that corporate interests are trying to do something beneficial to themselves at somebody’s expense, but I don’t know exactly what that “something” is. Please provide some a little education for me and others.

  18. 22

    Harry Tuttle spews:

    Goldy,

    Murray and Cantwell aren’t on your call list. Does this mean they have come out in favor of NN?

    If so, that’s news, isn’t it?

  19. 25

    spews:

    Also, call Mike McGavick. He’ll work out some sort of back room deal with Sen. Ted Stevens and gang and deliver it to the Senate with a big fat bow on it.

    Call Mike!