March 17, 2003 · Lessig
Tim Wu has a nice paper about “network neutrality.” The basic idea is familiar: the original end-to-end internet is increasingly under threat as network providers develop technologies to discriminate among network users. For many years, this fear of discrimination led many to support “open access” campaigns � requiring providers to permit competitors to use their lines. Competition would, the argument went, weaken the incentives for certain forms of discrimination.
“Open access” has worked extremely well in Japan (where you can get 100 mbs for $50 a month), but it didn�t work well here. Tim�s proposal is for a different form of regulation aimed at neutrality. I recommend it strongly, and would be eager to see any feedback.