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#1184663 - Fri Dec 15 2017 07:43 PM Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
Creedy Offline
Prolific

Registered: Tue Aug 03 2010
Posts: 1220
Loc: Coffs Harbour NSW Australia
Will these new internet guidelines/restrictions/whatever I see on the news impact on how we access Fun Trivia??? crazy

Or is that only applicable in the United States?
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#1184682 - Fri Dec 15 2017 09:17 PM Re: Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
MrNobody97 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Sun Dec 28 2014
Posts: 388
Loc: Illinois USA
Are you referring to the recent change regarding so-called "net neutrality" that the U.S. FCC voted to change / scale back?

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#1184687 - Fri Dec 15 2017 09:26 PM Re: Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
kyleisalive Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Mon Mar 07 2005
Posts: 7955
Loc: Toronto, Canada, eh!
If you're in Australia, no. Your country supports net neutrality.

The U.S. may see changes in the next couple of years. For now, nothing. If there's still no net neutrality in the next couple of years, FT likely won't change, but how Americans access it will. Perhaps their ISP will throttle their internet when accessing the site or they'll need to buy into some package to access it for a certain amount of time. Either way, U.S. internet users are probably going to feel the burn paying for what's considered a basic service in most other regions of the world, and if that affects their access to FT, then that's kind of what they bought into.

That said, there will be may opportunities to fight for net neutrality in the next little while, and in my opinion, hopefully things remain neutral.

FT is still here. smile
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#1184722 - Sat Dec 16 2017 02:14 AM Re: Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
Creedy Offline
Prolific

Registered: Tue Aug 03 2010
Posts: 1220
Loc: Coffs Harbour NSW Australia
Thanks. That's what I was talking about smile

To the balustrades!
_________________________
"And the sunlight clasps the earth, And the moonbeams kiss the sea: What is all this sweet work worth - If thou kiss not me?"...P.B.Shelley

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#1184749 - Sat Dec 16 2017 10:01 AM Re: Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
flopsymopsy Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat May 17 2008
Posts: 4448
Loc: Northampton England UK
There was quite a good video on the BBC News site which explained net neutrality in layman's terms - it's here. I hope you can view this outside the UK.

I wouldn't be as sure as Kyle is that the US decision won't affect other countries. For example, in the UK internet delivery is protected under EU law but when we leave the EU? Who knows. We already have a bit of "preferential treatment" in the mobile phone market where some packages include more/faster streaming for a higher price but our main ISP services are protected not just by law but by the fact that the UK is one of the world's most competitive ISP markets. If a provider started to introduce higher pricing to access some sites over others there's enough competition to attract consumers elsewhere. Plus our laws regarding the physical provision of services, ie the phone wires and cabling, are both complex and competitive. So we have some leeway and probably a margin of advantage over countries where the basic provision isn't as protected, either by law or by market forces or both.

The USA isn't as protected by competition. It may seem strange but the country that regards itself as the bastion of free enterprise isn't really anything of the sort, not in this area anyway. A tiny number of media companies in the USA provide internet connectivity and they have carved up the market so that in many places consumers don't have much, if any, choice. As a result, if and when they decide to increase prices or to offer services such as Netflix or YouTube if and only if the consumer pays an additional fee then the consumer will have little choice there either. Net neutrality isn't just about sending all web traffic at the same speed, it's about doing that for the same toll-fee - which hitherto has been free.

I think there are potential problems in Australia, which doesn't have net neutrality laws and which has very little competition when it comes to service providers. If you live in a small town in Oz with only one telecoms company which can act as your ISP you already have very little choice, and because of the infrastructure the actual provision you get may be very poor; if they start strangling your streaming options for, say, video unless you pay more then you can choose to pay or not. But if ISP X decides to allow access only to Service A but not B and C because A is paying them megabucks to keep B and C out of the market, then you won't get any choice if ISP X is the only service provider in town.

I don't know where this leaves sites like FT although my guess is that it won't be affected much if at all. FT doesn't have a large footprint - it is almost entirely text-based with very few images and no video. I don't think it's the sort of site that the ISPs will expect to generate revenue for them and it would probably cost too much for them to try - in other words, the revenues they'd get wouldn't be worth the cost of billing.
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#1189747 - Tue Feb 13 2018 12:56 AM Re: Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
HairyBear Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Fri Sep 01 2006
Posts: 627
Loc: Florida USA
Well described, flopsy. My own feeling, as a defender of the free market, is that if American internet providers start trying to squeeze their customers for extra fees for faster internet, startup ISP's that offer the same speed for a flat rate will spring up in abundance. Remember that anytime someone is trying to gouge the market, that creates an opportunity for someone else to come in and undercut the attempted monopolist's price. I agree about Australia, though, because the frontier towns are so sparsely populated, getting competition out there is problematic. There is/are the satellites overhead, of course.

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#1189775 - Tue Feb 13 2018 10:01 AM Re: Eeek! New Internet Guidelines
agony Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 14826
Loc: Western Canada
Yeah, the "invisible hand" doesn't work that well in sparsely populated places - don't get me started on bus service in rural Alberta!

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