by Jon Sayer
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
The Internet is the greatest invention in the history of the human race.
You don’t believe me? Well, what’s the capital of the Mexican state of Tabasco? If you are reading this article on WesternFrontOnline.net, then you can look it up with a few keystrokes. You will know the answer in 10 seconds flat.
If you were reading it in the dead-tree edition of this paper back in 1988, well you would have to go find a print encyclopedia, which you probably don’t have laying around in your dorm room. That’s a big hassle. You would ask your roommate and he would say, “Sauce! LOL!” Only he would have actually laughed out loud. He wouldn’t have said “el-oh-el.”
There is a bill going through Congress right now called H.R. 5997 that would protect the Internet from telecom companies. All it would do is make sure the Internet stays neutral. If you don’t believe me, you can read the full text here:
Time Warner Cable Chokes Its Customers
by Jeff Jarvis
June 03, 2008
Time Warner (TWC) is testing throttled — severely throttled — tiered pricing for internet access, putting it at odds with its customers, with the media industry, and with the future of the internet. I’d like to discuss how they could think differently about their business and customers. What if, instead of a gatekeeper, they saw themselves as platforms or technology innovators or catalysts or enablers?
The AP reports (via PaidContent) that TW will charge subscribers in Beaumont, Texas $29.95 a month for slow service at 768 kilobits per second and a 5-gigabyte monthly cap up to $54.90 per month for 15 megabits per second and a 40-gigabyte cap; going over will cost them $1 per gig. For scale, the AP points out, a standard def movie is about 1.5 gigabytes and a high-definition movie is 6 to 8 gigs.
So Time Warner could end up charging customers more for watching a movie than the service selling the movie, whether that is iTunes or Netflix. I’m sure that’s quite on purpose. It is TW’s FU to the net neutrality debate: If we can’t gouge both ends of the pipe, we’ll doubly gouge the one that is stuck with us.