Private Property and Net-Neutrality

For those who may still be unsure about the whole Net – Neutrality issue or just want more information to solidify that it is a terrible thing, please click on the link below for a great article about PRIVATE PROPERTY and Government control.  It is a little long but very worth while. As a matter of fact, please forward it on to your email lists.

By Raymond C. Niles-

Net neutrality advocates such as Stanford law professor Lawrence Lessig liken the Internet to a “commons”—to “public property,” akin to state-owned highways and municipal parks. They call for the Internet to be treated as if it were “public property,” managed by the government in accordance with the “public welfare.” On these grounds, they advocate that the Internet remain a “neutral platform” where “the network owner can’t discriminate against some [data] packets while favoring others.”  Plainly stated, net neutrality is the idea that the Internet is “public property”; thus, the government must ensure that online content is delivered in a “neutral,” non-preferential fashion.

But delivered by whom? To hold that the Internet is a “commons” or “public property” is to evade its actual nature; the Internet is a network of privately owned personal computers, servers, and cable. Ignoring this fact and pretending to themselves that the Internet is “public property,” proponents of net neutrality seek government control over private property—specifically that of Internet service providers.

In order to achieve net neutrality, its advocates hold that the Internet must remain, as they put it, a “stupid network,” meaning unregulated by an intelligence that might favor the transmission of some content over other content.11 But because data is transmitted through the private property of ISPs—the expensive cables, computers, and other infrastructure that make the Internet possible—what they actually advocate is denying ISPs the right to manage their own property. The “stupid” Internet that net neutrality advocates desire is one in which ISPs must, under threat of government force, remain largely passive with regard to how data flows through their lines and over their networks. An ISP’s role, according to net neutrality advocates, is to pay for and then provide a “stupid network” of “dumb pipe” (i.e., bandwidth capacity) to customers, who can use it however they please.12 Fearing the decisions that ISPs might make with respect to their own property, net neutrality  advocates seek to impose their conception of how the Internet should work—via government force.

In essence, beneath their calls to preserve “economic innovation” and “free speech online,” net neutrality proponents advocate government control of the privately owned infrastructure that makes the Internet possible. To what types of controls will adherence to net neutrality lead, and how will these affect Internet service providers and their customers?


Click Here For Article from the Objective Standard




5 responses to “Private Property and Net-Neutrality”

  1. Sandra Wiatrowski says:

    Although I might place Lawrence Lessig under the Progressive column, this is one more example of commonality on certain issues where bipartisanship could triumph under appropriate leadership. Too bad there is little in DCvrland.

  2. James Sharp says:

    There is a great deal of information – perhaps, more accurately, misinformation – out there regarding this issue.

    Believe it or not, there are a number of pro-Second Amendment people out there that favor this “net neutrality”. I got into an online discussion on a gun forum earlier this week. One of the forum members, who claimed to be a network engineer (in other words, someone very knowledgeable regarding the inner workings of the internet), made some great points. The analogy that he used was the owner of a toll road (the service providers) regulating who can drive on the road and either banning certain drivers altogether or limiting the speed at which they can drive. I get that and I can see the point. As I understand it, the situation with Comcast blocking Netflix from their network really pushed the issue to the forefront.

    However, anyone who has witnessed this administration’s actions over the past six years with respect to just about everything, especially healthcare, HAS to be suspicious of any action of this nature. As another forum member asked (I paraphrase), has government intervention and regulation resulted in anything but an increase in cost to the consumer?

  3. Hsaive says:

    If you look at network nodes as ownership of “private property” it’s rational that these owners can lawfully and ethically allow or disallow specific types of traffic to flow through their systems.

    To what degree this slows down the internet opens opportunity for a second node operator to allow the traffic that has been denied by the first node owner.

    The economic consequences to regulating traffic(trespassers of private property) will ultimately determine winners and losers in the overall information market.

  4. Rod Gonzalez says:

    Good point Herald. The government’s involvement has only ever resulted in cronyism to the detriment of taxpayers.

    And to James- In this field The Government is certainly the #1 barrier to entry for any possible competition. Instead of trying to “guarantee” services for us (sounds good for the collectives out there) they should reduce the regs and allow our demands to be met by private industry. I know this seems so far fetched for most since we have certainly never lived in a time that true Free Market Capitalism was allowed to exist.

  5. Banzai Bill says:

    Mr. Sharp,

    A couple of things: I seriously doubt that many (if any) Second Amendment advocates “favor” any aspect of Net Neutrality (aka: government control). The people that I know “recoil” (pun intended) at the thought.

    The toll road analogy is perfect. You’re offered the options of the roads and streets paid for by the taxpayer with all it’s attendant regulations, traffic controls, the general masses, bicyclists, pedestrians, etc., or…….if you want to get to somewhere quickly, have the money and the toll road is available that allows you to do so you pay the freight and avoid the herd. It’s called “choice” and choice is the essence of freedom.

    If the government wants to take away the aspect of freedom in this instance I would love to see the owners of the referenced “private property” establish their own “contra-net”……just tell me where to sign up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *