Members of Congress and civil rights groups are pushing the Federal Communications Commission to rein in telephone companies that, in many states, charge inmates spectacularly high rates that can force their families to choose between keeping in touch with a relative behind bars and, in some cases, putting food on the table.
Flush the TPP rally in Leesburg VA on September 9, 2012. Protesters voiced concerns over trade, labor, wage, environmental and copyright provisions of the secret international trade agreement.
Protesters at the recent TPP negotiations in Leesburg VA on September 9, 2012.
Some interns fetch coffee. Nick Miller, a 26-year-old intern at online-video startup Boxee, is busy staging a regulatory battle in Washington with the biggest media companies in the world.
Record labels have a very strong voice when it comes to arguing for their particular business model, which is in fact out of date,” he said. “The result is that laws have been created which make out as if the only problem on the internet is teenagers stealing music. The world is bigger than that. The internet is bigger than the music industry. The economic impact of the internet is bigger than the music industry.
USTR is clamping down on public participation to minimize the spread of information which challenges their hard-line IP maximalist agenda that seeks to empower corporations at the expense of public health and knowledge.
No matter how much Netflix Inc. is willing to pay for the rights, some online video remains off-limits.
Did my position on this issue evolve over the last 12 months? I am not ashamed to admit that it certainly did,” Brigner writes. “The more I became educated on the realities of these issues, the more I came to the realization that a mandated technical solution just isn’t mutually compatible with the health of the Internet.
Michael Weinberg, senior staff lawyer of Public Knowledge, a nonprofit group that advocates more transparency in the billing from telecommunications companies, goes as far as to question why smartphone customers even have to pay more to use more data. He said the carriers have not provided evidence that limiting the amount of data a person uses reduces congestion. He added that there was a disconnect between what the carriers’ advertisements say and what customers can really do with their data allowances.
But Hastings hints at an ulterior motive later in his Facebook post: “Once I get HBO Go on my Xbox, then it will be strange that streaming ‘Game of Thrones’ from the HBO Go app on my Xbox will count against my Comcast Internet cap, but when I watch those same ‘Game of Thrones’ streams through the Comcast app on Xbox, over the same Wifi connection to my Xbox, then it will not count against my cap. Hmmm…
In the meantime, however, entry into the broadband market is controlled by governments, and governments have a responsibility to prevent rent-seeking by firms granted privileged access to the market. The simplest and least intrusive way to do this is by preserving the internet’s division of labor between network providers and content providers. And the key to preserving that division is taking a few carefully considered steps now to prevent broadband consolidation — a trend that threatens the internet’s decentralized architecture, and so threatens the engine of innovation and productivity that has done so much to advance American prosperity.
The guarantee of landline telephone service at almost any address, a legal right many Americans may not even know they have, is quietly being legislated away in our U.S. state capitals.