Net Neutrality Legislative Proposal

* Seth Johnson:
> (A) Internet.— The term “Internet” means the worldwide,
> publicly accessible system of interconnected
> computer networks that transmit data by packet
> switching using the standard Internet Protocol (IP),
> some characteristics of which include:

So I put all my customers behind a NAT device (or just a stateful
packet filter). They are no longer publicly accessible, and hence not
subject to the provisions of this section.

That could be trivially addressed through a Truth in Advertising
provision. Something I've been advocating for years. Don't call it
Internet access if it isn't. This has bothered me for years at hotels
where I end up using GPRS because their stupid "Internet access" system
is some sort of web proxy that resets any connection over two minutes;
I need to have SSH! And often you can't even log in with a UNIX laptop
because they require a web browser with flash and javascript and all
sorts of other garbage...

I realize that there are some practical realities to operating large scale
customer ISP's. I know a number that use (or have used) NAT, or limit port
25, or have a per-month maximum number of gigs per connection. These
limitations are rarely disclosed to customers up front, and I believe that
to be something that ought to be corrected.

So that's already addressed by the dpsproject folks in Sec. 3(3). Which
makes me reasonably happy.

But there's a flip side to that problem. Restricting companies from
calling it "Internet access" may not have the desired effect. And this
is where network neutrality definitions also become a problem.

Let's say I'm Joe's Telephone & Telegraph - JT&T. I'm a big telco and
I want to offer my hundred million subscribers a DSL solution that will
allow me to offer IPTV and other nifty stuff, but I definitely want to
be able to treat my customers as a somewhat captive audience. I'm not
really convinced that Sec. 3 is sufficiently strong enough that I might
not be able to get away with deploying "JT&T Planetconnect", my own
IPTV/VoIP/content portal service that also includes Internet access.
My quick read of Sec. 3 makes me wonder if there isn't a loophole if
I simply don't *say* that it includes access to the Internet, don't
*charge* for access to the Internet, etc. A question for the lawyers
to puzzle out, to be sure.

Further, I wonder if the wide brush strokes in Sec. 3 (1)(B) might
actually prohibit things like BCP38.

Fixing that would probably
require companies to open up their corporate networks, which is a

I don't see why. Unless they're in the business of hauling Internet
traffic, a company's connection to the Internet is at the edge of their
network. If they want to install a content control device, bandwidth
limiter, unplug the Ethernet, whatever, beyond their Internet demarc,
that is a choice they've made and it is an internal networking choice.
It may affect the quality of their Internet experience, but it is not
being imposed by a third party, which is what net neutrality is largely

(I've wondered for quite some time if "net neutrality" implies that
Ebay or Google must carry third party traffic on their corporate
networks, by the way.)

No, why would it? (note that I may be missing something; I'm not aware
of eBay or Google selling transit or transport, and if they are, that
changes my reply.)

... JG

Joe Greco wrote:

Don't call it Internet access if it isn't. This has bothered me for
years at hotels where I end up using GPRS because their stupid
"Internet access" system is some sort of web proxy that resets any
connection over two minutes;

ISTM that GPRS operators are the first and worst offenders when it comes
to violating the principle of net neutrality. Almost always NATed,
usually they present the end-user with a bewildering array of "access
point" service options with different tariffs and filters depending upon
whether you want WAP, MMS, real IP etc etc. Eventually if you dig deep
enough past the single-OS-centric marketing fluff on their website to
get the right fiddly settings you need for raw, clear, maybe even native
IP access, it generally takes at least one further negotiation with a
call center to then get this "non-standard" option enabled :frowning:

The worrying aspect is the GSM/GPRS operators seem to be rather more
effective at making money from this model than traditional ISPs from a
neutral one, and I am sure this is not lost on the carrier side of the
NN debate...


I've been told that quite a lot of the GPRS equipment can't handle being put on the "internet" without a FW or NAT box in front of it. The background noise from scans etc takes quite a big toll on the gateways. This is of course due to manufacturers of said equipment still is ruled by people that do not understand what the internet really is.

Also, if you're a customer to these services and pay per usage, you probably do not want to pay for background noise reaching your terminal, and since it's low bw (12kilobit/s or so for GSM) you don't want it from a performance point of view either.