Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

AT&T rigs net neutrality study

new study from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the University of Nevada Reno says that net neutrality is a bad idea. Of course, that's what you'd expect it to say. It was paid for by AT&T.

For years, AT&T has called for a "tiered Internet," which would abandon net neutrality in favor of a system where high-bandwidth sites like YouTube are forced to pay higher fees to ISPs like, well, AT&T. Now, the telecoms giant has commissioned a study that supports its own argument. Conducted by researchers at AT&T Labs as well as Rensselaer and Nevada Reno, the study claims that an internet where all traffic is treated equally would require much more capacity than a tiered infrastructure.

Net neutrality could be a big issue for anyone running a website or accessing the internet. While the arguements are vague and probably oft-misrepresented, I would still favor net neutrality over a non-neutral network. Why? I see LESS HARM coming from a neutral network compared to a non-neutral one.

The thing that sort of irks me with net neutrality (In the sense that ATT wants to charge Google to access ATT's customers) is that when someone pays for Internet access, they generally expect to be able to connect to any other host on the net. Consider that Google is paying (a fortune, I imagine) for access, and all of a sudden if they don't pay a company that does not provide them internet access, their customers are lost to them. I fail to see how that isn't extortion.