Thursday, March 6, 2008

Excellent comments by David P Reed on Network Neutrality

[At the recent FCC hearings in Boston David Reed, a professor at MIT gave a very compelling argument in regard to Comcast's efforts to throttle BitTorrent in terms of efforts at reasonable traffic management. My personal interpretation on David's comments is that cablecos and telcos have entered into a contract with users to provide access to the "Internet". The Internet is not a product or service developed by exclusively by the cablecos or telcos for use and enjoyment by their customers, as for example traditional cell phone service. Since the Internet is a global service with its own set of engineering principles, guidelines and procedures, implicit in providing access to the Internet is, in essence, an unwritten contract to adhere to those recognized standards such as the end2end principle. No one questions the need for traffic management, spam control and other such services, but they should be done in way that is consistent within open and transparent engineering practices that are part and parcel of the contract with the user in providing access to the global Internet. -- BSA]