Those of us invested in the Internet’s success – everyone who communicates – should focus on finding ways to make it better. Neither Hansen’s bill nor the Congressional Review Act resolution subverting current FCC policy is a recipe for progress.
The Internet is not simply a sandbox for network research any more, it has become the primary means of electronic communication around the world. Before long, it will be the only such means and we will all be better for it. Please allow firms that depend on networking to invest efficiently so as to maximize their incentives to innovate.
When faced with the need to either stagnate or grow, Novell chose the status quo path. Let’s hope Orem doesn’t repeat the error with UTOPIA. It might have been a great idea in 2002, but the visions many of us had of networking in those days were blind to the progress that was possible for wireless. That was a serious miscalculation.
The web’s greatest shortcoming, as well the greatest shortcoming of the Internet before the web, is the absence of tools for commerce in the plumbing. The web needs to provide each user with a persistent identity – or more, and they don’t need to be real – and a dance card for all the permissions we’ve given for data collectors to record our activities.
Net neutrality does not promote competition, it leads to monopoly. In reality, a radically neutral Internet favors companies willing to build private facilities over those that invest in open, public facilities available to all. In large part, Amazon and Netflix owe their dominance to the relative neutrality of the Internet.
So yes, 5G is over-hyped the same way that all breakthrough technologies are over-hyped. The market will ultimately shape it, and we will also find new applications that the marketing folks do not anticipate yet. So in that sense, 5G is also under-hyped, just as breakthrough technologies always are.
The disconnect between the way the Internet really is and the way neutrality advocates wish it were came into stark relief today: while some Congressmen were outside the Capitol giving speeches on the importance of net neutrality, those inside the building voted to make significant, harmful changes to Section 230, the real protector of Internet speech. And they didn’t even notice.