FCC Open Comments on Net Neutrality: 72,000 Posts and Counting

FCC Open Comments on Net Neutrality: 72,000 Posts and Counting

...and by the time this post is published, and read by you? It's probably 73,000.

By now, there's a good chance you've seen John Oliver's rant about net neutrality, and his rallying call to get as many netizens as possible to hit the FCC's "Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet" comment page. And if you haven't watched it yet? It's embedded for your enjoyment.

So how's it been going since comments starting coming in? What kind of impact did John Oliver have with his Call to eArms?

Over 72,000 comments have been filed to the FCC as of this posting, with nearly 46,000 of those comments coming in the last 30 days.

The bonus here is that such comments are open to all to read. While I'm sure some percentage can be filed in the Troll category, there seems to be a three-day gap between filed submissions, and when they're posted, so perhaps some sort of filtering is happening to keep out unrelated comments. From some initial browsing, many comments read like this submission from Mark Nakajima of Orlando, Florida.

The internet should be open. Time Warner, Comcast and every other internet provider should not be able to charge more for providing optimal speed from different websites. All data should be treated the same. The internet and cable providers are exerting their monopolies inappropriately. I support an open internet. No to a two tiered internet.

Have you submitted a filing yet? You can file a comment here -- use the filing number 14-28 -- and let the FCC know how you feel about an Open Internet.

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Even though most websites route through American servers, we aren't allowed to comment on it. BUT!, I used the address of a place I used to work in New York (I'm Scottish). This should be a worldwide debate.

**For all those other Non-yanks google any zip code you wish and lob that in, it will be accepted as long as the state is correct.**

I really hope someone prints them all out, puts each one in its own envelope, and mails them all with cash-on-delivery right to Wheeler's doorstop so he truly gets the scope of it. It'll probably still have no effect, but it'd be a nice bit of karmic justice.

That's a really good video by Oliver. I hope his show does well. And how the fuck are cable companies still allowed to monopolize like they have? The CEO just stated they they don't compete with each other. I'm no expert but I'm pretty sure that's directly against anti-monopoly laws, right? I do hope enough people can ban together to defeat this but part of me feels like the companies are gonna get their way no matter what. If this goes down they'll just do back handed deals and keep it as quiet as possible so not enough people notice. With how many times this keeps coming back it feels like it's only a matter of time before the companies get their way. The internet has become too pivotal a part of life and ISPs have too much of a monopoly for us to boycott. For fuck's sake a former ISP lobbyist is in charge of policing them. Thanks Obama!... Never thought I'd get to use that unironically...

Rylot:
That's a really good video by Oliver. I hope his show does well. And how the fuck are cable companies still allowed to monopolize like they have? The CEO just stated they they don't compete with each other. I'm no expert but I'm pretty sure that's directly against anti-monopoly laws, right? I do hope enough people can ban together to defeat this but part of me feels like the companies are gonna get their way no matter what. If this goes down they'll just do back handed deals and keep it as quiet as possible so not enough people notice. With how many times this keeps coming back it feels like it's only a matter of time before the companies get their way. The internet has become too pivotal a part of life and ISPs have too much of a monopoly for us to boycott. For fuck's sake a former ISP lobbyist is in charge of policing them. Thanks Obama!... Never thought I'd get to use that unironically...

Anti-monopoly laws don't cover oligopolies. Its why they can get away with the crap that they do.

I wonder if this will actually have any influence given how Tom Wheeler has shown zero fucks for what the public think when his corporate masters have already told him what to do. He should get the sack for conflict of interest and someone who wasn't a lobbyist for the industry should get the position instead and actually protect consumers. Of course Comcast et al will just have to add a few zeros to the cheques they will be handing out and the FCC will happily ignore the people.

Yeah I still feel like some filtering must be going on. The comments are all too polite. The quality of writing has gone down since the video went up, but there's still none calling the FCC and Wheeler f*ckwads or anything like that.

CriticalMiss:
I wonder if this will actually have any influence given how Tom Wheeler has shown zero fucks for what the public think when his corporate masters have already told him what to do. He should get the sack for conflict of interest and someone who wasn't a lobbyist for the industry should get the position instead and actually protect consumers. Of course Comcast et al will just have to add a few zeros to the cheques they will be handing out and the FCC will happily ignore the people.

I think the only real hope for this campaign is that it will embarrass whoever is in charge of FCC selection enough that they'll have to get rid of Wheeler.

What I imagine he's going to do is announce that he's taken on board the feedback, reiterate that he has no plans to remove net neutrality again (because it's already been removed) and then announce some nebulous plan to 'enforce' neutrality that takes effect in a year or two's time. He's trying to wait out the outrage and at least make it look like he has a glimpse of an appearance of pretending to try to do his job, if you squint, so that the politicians don't have to hound him out of office.

The ISPs have the time and the money to play the long game on this one. They've already got this far after presumably years of manoeuvring

If the FCC's website was running on something more powerful than a toaster covered in dog feces there would probably be ten times as many comments.

shintakie10:

Rylot:
-snip-

Anti-monopoly laws don't cover oligopolies. Its why they can get away with the crap that they do.

Well, the U.S.'s anti-trust legislation is supposed to cover situations like this.

Wikipedia:
Section 1 of the Sherman Act declared illegal "every contract, in the form of trust or otherwise, or conspiracy, in restraint of trade or commerce among the several States, or with foreign nations". Section 2 prohibits monopolies, or attempts and conspiracies to monopolize. Following the enactment in 1890 US court applies these principles to business and markets.

The comcast executive admitting to an agreement between Comcast and Time-Warner to stay out of each other's markets could be construed as a 'conspiracy to monopolize'.

However, I would say your comment still applies since the reason no-one has brought a case against them (I'm guessing since I'm not a legal expert) is that is has to be demonstrated that the agreement is damaging the market environment of other competitors, which is difficult given the number of cable companies and ISPs in the U.S.

Johnson McGee:
If the FCC's website was running on something more powerful than a toaster covered in dog feces there would probably be ten times as many comments.

According to TB and the rest of the co-optional podcast, the internet providers are intentionally throttling the connections to the website.

Corven:

Johnson McGee:
If the FCC's website was running on something more powerful than a toaster covered in dog feces there would probably be ten times as many comments.

According to TB and the rest of the co-optional podcast, the internet providers are intentionally throttling the connections to the website.

Pretty ballsy to throttle a government website but given the graph of Netflix's speed in the John Oliver clip not altogether surprising.

On a somewhat related note, It's nice to see that Netflix is fighting back a bit with their new slowness finger-pointing messages.

The real funny thing is that this petition is nothing more than an appeasement. "We'll take your comments into consideration." Oh I'm sure they will. It won't stop them from doing exactly what they want to do anyways, but they'll still take the comments into consideration if it makes everyone feel warm and fuzzy at night.

It's the same thing that's going on in the city I live in. The mayor wants to burn a lot of taxpayer money to tear down the airport and build a new one. The problem is, the majority of people in the city love the way our airport is right now and don't want a change. The outcry from the public against this plan was so great that the mayor decided to commission a special committee to research the options and find out what the best choice was for everyone, what would make the people of the city happy.

Surprise-surprise: the committee said "Yeah, we should go ahead and change the airport."

RJ 17:
The real funny thing is that this petition is nothing more than an appeasement. "We'll take your comments into consideration." Oh I'm sure they will. It won't stop them from doing exactly what they want to do anyways, but they'll still take the comments into consideration if it makes everyone feel warm and fuzzy at night.

It's the same thing that's going on in the city I live in. The mayor wants to burn a lot of taxpayer money to tear down the airport and build a new one. The problem is, the majority of people in the city love the way our airport is right now and don't want a change. The outcry from the public against this plan was so great that the mayor decided to commission a special committee to research the options and find out what the best choice was for everyone, what would make the people of the city happy.

Surprise-surprise: the committee said "Yeah, we should go ahead and change the airport."

this is why protesting sucks, no one does anything except complain. Fires and tossing a severed head on a pike though...

shintakie10:

Anti-monopoly laws don't cover oligopolies. Its why they can get away with the crap that they do.

Comcast and TWC had to go through review to acquire Adelphia together. They're currently petitioning for the capacity for Comcast to purchase TWC.

We have regulations that apply here. We're just shit at enforcing them.

Johnson McGee:

Pretty ballsy to throttle a government website but given the graph of Netflix's speed in the John Oliver clip not altogether surprising.

Not particularly ballsy considering the head of the government program in question is their guy and they are one of the biggest political supporters financially.

I suppose the folk at the FCC are having a nice laugh right now. Can't wait to read up on all the messes that they are going to create.

Devin Connors:

Have you submitted a filing yet? You can file a comment here

no, i cant. why? because the website still does not load like it did not when this started.

Eiv:
Even though most websites route through American servers, we aren't allowed to comment on it. BUT!, I used the address of a place I used to work in New York (I'm Scottish). This should be a worldwide debate.

sometimes i secretly wish that FCC would go through with its plan, it would backfire and everyone would route internet through europe instead. maybe then they would realize the mistake once it hits thier pockets. but then US already has it bad enough with internet, no need to make it worse.

BrotherRool:

I think the only real hope for this campaign is that it will embarrass whoever is in charge of FCC selection enough that they'll have to get rid of Wheeler.

Obama himself appointed Wheeler. I dont think you can shame him like that.

Corven:

Johnson McGee:
If the FCC's website was running on something more powerful than a toaster covered in dog feces there would probably be ten times as many comments.

According to TB and the rest of the co-optional podcast, the internet providers are intentionally throttling the connections to the website.

i call bull. im in europe and ISPs cannot, and would get in legal trouble quickly if they try, trottle website traffic. and the site still doesnt load.

Strazdas:

BrotherRool:

I think the only real hope for this campaign is that it will embarrass whoever is in charge of FCC selection enough that they'll have to get rid of Wheeler.

Obama himself appointed Wheeler. I dont think you can shame him like that.

Politicians are literally the most susceptible people in the world to shame. No-one backtracks faster than an elected official who sees a scandal brewing. It works all the time in convincing our Prime Ministers to fire people who actually didn't do anything wrong and are good at their jobs. It would work for Wheeler to. No matter how much money your promise it's not as valuable as 'legacy' or 'reelection'.

He parried it off the first time by saying that the FCC are an 'independent body' and he's not meant to interfere with their heads. But the fact he made an excuse means he's weak

Well, that didn't take long. D'you know what people hate about net connections? Waiting, even a little while, or ANY inconvenience. Doesn't surprise me to say they don't have the logistical power to rule over this. Fighting a world? Pffft, as if.

BrotherRool:

Strazdas:

BrotherRool:

I think the only real hope for this campaign is that it will embarrass whoever is in charge of FCC selection enough that they'll have to get rid of Wheeler.

Obama himself appointed Wheeler. I dont think you can shame him like that.

Politicians are literally the most susceptible people in the world to shame. No-one backtracks faster than an elected official who sees a scandal brewing. It works all the time in convincing our Prime Ministers to fire people who actually didn't do anything wrong and are good at their jobs. It would work for Wheeler to. No matter how much money your promise it's not as valuable as 'legacy' or 'reelection'.

He parried it off the first time by saying that the FCC are an 'independent body' and he's not meant to interfere with their heads. But the fact he made an excuse means he's weak

Obama is in its second term. reelection isnt an option for him. As far as Legacy goes, hes going to be known far more for things like RomneyCare (because you know, Romney was the original author of that one) than Wheeler. heck, most people dont even know that the two are connected.

Strazdas:

Obama is in its second term. reelection isnt an option for him. As far as Legacy goes, hes going to be known far more for things like RomneyCare (because you know, Romney was the original author of that one) than Wheeler. heck, most people dont even know that the two are connected.

There's still plenty of ways his party can screw him over, and they have no desire to piss off the public. You just have to get it to the point where they don't think its a flash in the pan

BrotherRool:

Strazdas:

Obama is in its second term. reelection isnt an option for him. As far as Legacy goes, hes going to be known far more for things like RomneyCare (because you know, Romney was the original author of that one) than Wheeler. heck, most people dont even know that the two are connected.

There's still plenty of ways his party can screw him over, and they have no desire to piss off the public. You just have to get it to the point where they don't think its a flash in the pan

your requersting cooperation of the nation that is not possible. occupy wallstreet didnt do squat, some internet comments wont either. rich people have too much to loose to actually force government decisions.

 

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