Net Neutrality, Comcast-Netflix Edition

Two major developments have occurred since we last discussed net neutrality. First, the FCC is moving to instate rules similar to the ones that were struck down in January, but with a different basis for its authority.

The new rules would allow the FCC to promote a fair and open Internet, and equal access for all traffic. The other recent development is in the opposite direction. Comcast and Netflix have just struck a deal wherein Netflix will pay Comcast for direct access to its infrastructure, and thus its audience:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2014/02/23/comcasts-deal-with-netflix-makes-network-neutrality-obsolete/

Comcast and Netflix are both huge players in the land of the Internet, with Comcast about to buy out major competitor Time Warner’s consumer internet delivery service, and Netflix accounting for about 30 percent of all web traffic. On a technical level, it makes sense to cut out the middle.

However, this deal sets a precedent that content providers can pay to get around net neutrality.

By Sharon Campbell

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