Comic Talk and General Discussion *

Losing Net Neutrality and webcomics...
JillyFoo at 6:56PM, Dec. 14, 2017
(online)
posts: 629
joined: 1-2-2006
Hey let’s talk about Net Neutrality and how losing it could effect webcomics. I am planting the worry seeds, but I am also hoping for reassurance that this stuff won’t happen.

What is it?: https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/talkingtech/2017/12/14/net-neutrality-rules-dead-my-internet-bills-go-up/952839001/


So these are some sites that webcomics users and readers often use for hosting and promoting:

Hosting sites: Smackjeeves, theduck, tapas, Comicfury, personalised www.mywebcomic.com sites


Sites that could be used as hosting sites: tumblr, deviantart, patreon etc..


Mainstream social media sites: facebook, twitter etc..


From what I read speculations how bad losing NN can be:

Will you have to pay for access? What if…

You: Have to pay extra to access and post to your sites. You have to pay a lot more to maintain all your mirrors.

Your audience: Has to pay extra to access your sites or site. With many users choosing to only pay for social media sites, you will significantly lose readership.


Will you have to pay for better access? What if…

You: Have to pay extra to get a decent speed at your sites.


Your audience: Has to pay extra to get a decent speed your sites or site. If anyone remembers reading webcomics in the late 90’s early 2000’s it SUCKED waiting for each page to load. This will mean a big lose in readership and perhaps the entire webcomic sharing format will change (downloading pdfs? A return to more zines and paper sales?)


Will only the biggest sites survive?
Perhaps smaller sites like Smackjeeves, theduck, tapas, Comicfury and personal sites will go down and webcomics will be hosted at bigger picture sharing sites like deviantart or facebook?
ozoneocean at 10:03PM, Dec. 15, 2017
(online)
posts: 27,257
joined: 1-2-2004
If the Net Neutrality thing pushes us over the edge then we're done. :/

I'd honestly be all for teaming up with Comic Fury and SmackJeeves or whatever to be one big thing, but I doubt that'd help.

As things are I'll go down with the ship. Last man on board, saluting as we slip under the cold waves of the ozone ocean ^_^
That's my style.
 
Gunwallace at 1:32AM, Dec. 17, 2017
(offline)
posts: 376
joined: 10-13-2010
Well, outside the US we have all been coping without net neutrality for some time. It could be better, but it's not as bad as you think. It's a big loss, that's for sure, but in practical terms small fry, like DD, will hardly notice the difference (in my opinion). Just don;t be a new start-up trying to challenge one of the big guys.
David ‘Gunwallace’ Tulloch, www.virtuallycomics.com
ozoneocean at 6:45PM, Dec. 17, 2017
(online)
posts: 27,257
joined: 1-2-2004
Maybe Gunwallace… but most of our members and readers come from the USA. If that hose gets kinked then our ad revenue dries up and we become unsustainable.
The net might be global but the USA is the biggest source of everything in the english speaking web. They're the sun that everything revolves around.
 
Emevsa at 1:26AM, Dec. 18, 2017
(offline)
posts: 37
joined: 8-17-2017
Given the stance big companies such as Google and Facebook have on net neutrality we might see a rise in alternative ISPs by these companies. On one hand I do not believe that telecommunications companies will stand by their consumers I do not think it is as doomsday as people believe it will be. The legislation was a preemptive measure after all.

You'll probably find that there will be another piece of legislation higher than that that governs the FCC that will go on to protect the consumer.

Just my two cents. :)
last edited on Dec. 18, 2017 1:27AM
El Cid at 5:16PM, Dec. 18, 2017
(online)
posts: 1,195
joined: 5-4-2009
I think our anti trust laws would fall under that “higher legislation” category, which is why we never really needed the net neutrality laws to begin with.

Personally, I am so not losing any sleep over any of this. I didn't notice a sudden drop in my internet bill will they implemented the net neutrality laws in 2015, and I doubt my bill's just going to explode now that they've repealed it. It's not a big deal.
Amelius at 11:44AM, Dec. 20, 2017
(offline)
posts: 338
joined: 1-6-2004
Canada is pulling the same crap as well, trying to dismantle NN to pass censorship laws.

Not giving up the fight yet though! We probably won't see change for a while, but these bastards were willing to stoop to identity fraud to file fake anti-NN comments to the FCC and they're blocking investigation into this CRIME. ISPs have spent billions lobbying for this repeal. They don't give a crap that Americans were overwhelmingly in support of Net Neutrality, and Pai's childish, cringe worthy, gloating response just goes to show the utter contempt they have for democracy, the consumer, and common decency.

I didn't notice a sudden drop in my internet bill will they implemented the net neutrality laws in 2015

Net Neutrality had nothing to do with that, and was never pitched as something that would magically lower your internet bill. It had everything to do with not letting ISPs get away with blocking, throttling and censoring websites, and dividing the internet into slow/fast lanes, charging people a premium just to get around.

Comcast and Verizon were already caught throttling-illegally, I might add. What makes anyone think they won't do worse now that there's no regulation on it whatsoever? They were already willing to break the law and let costumers get the shaft in their effort to hurt sites they didn't like.




fallopiancrusader at 2:36PM, Dec. 20, 2017
(offline)
posts: 255
joined: 12-27-2013
I'm far from an expert on the internet, but I suspect that Net neutrality wouldn't be a huge issue if the consumer could choose from a large playing field of competing ISPs. The competition of a well-regulated free market would encourage innovation, drive down prices, and give the consumer many options to choose from. Sadly, nothing of the sort exists here in the U.S. Here, we have basically two monopolies who are now at liberty to gouge and extort from the consumer at whim. At this point, I have to suspect that aggressive antitrust legislation is the only thing that will even things out.
El Cid at 4:01PM, Dec. 20, 2017
(online)
posts: 1,195
joined: 5-4-2009
Amelius wrote:
…Net Neutrality had nothing to do with that, and was never pitched as something that would magically lower your internet bill. It had everything to do with not letting ISPs get away with blocking, throttling and censoring websites, and dividing the internet into slow/fast lanes, charging people a premium just to get around…

The OP of the thread specifically referenced the menace of ISPs tagging their customers with extra fees and higher rates for decent internet speeds. That is what I was referencing there; I'm sure it was clear to everyone else.

The point there being: I keep hearing all these dystopian scenarios of what is going to happen without Net Neutrality, but I have yet to hear a very good explanation as to why none of that was the case in the decades prior to net neutrality legislation going into effect in 2015. I didn't notice any drastic changes when it was implemented, and the internet certainly wasn't this Mad Max wasteland people are describing without it. The pre-Net Neutrality internet gave us Youtube, and Netflix, and Hulu, and Facebook, and Drunk Duck. Clearly it was not an environment that stamped out innovation and competition.

The repealed net neutrality legislation reclassified ISPs as Title II “common carriers” under auspice of the FCC, rather than being primarily policed by the Federal Trade Commission. If there's an argument to be made that this somehow better fostered innovation and all that, then fine, it's a perfectly valid position to be argued. But all this doom and gloom about how going back to the pre-2015 internet is the End Of Days, and all is lost unless we Get Net Neutrality Back, give me a break already! It's really not that crucial! Like I already pointed out, we have anti-trust laws to deal with anyone tampering with the competitive apparatus of the market. I don't see where we need additional layers of bureaucracy and regulation on the internet. I'm perfectly fine with getting rid of the Open Internet Order. We never needed it.
Amelius at 6:20PM, Dec. 20, 2017
(offline)
posts: 338
joined: 1-6-2004
Yeah, I have basic reading comprehension and know what JillyFoo is talking about, which is why your dismissive comment that your internet bill didn't drop because of Net Neutrality seems disconnected from the discussion at hand.

Net Neutrality is a RESPONSE to bad practices, and not a solution looking for a problem. Up until recently Net Neutrality (in practice) was a given.

The reason those companies thrived in a pre-net neutrality environment is because they existed in a time before the dinosaurs of Old Media (cable) realized the internet (New Media) was a threat to their continued existence. Due to the overwhelming success of these startup companies, Netflix and Youtube especially were throttled by both Comcast and Verizon. Facetime and Bittorrent were outright blocked. Things like this are why Net Neutrality was proposed.

Of course they didn't stamp out innovation and competition, they weren't feeling threatened by it yet! And now that they are, they have started trying to undermine it.

Trying to say it was all hunky-dory before NN is disingenuous and misleading at best. These companies have been repeatedly caught red-handed doing dirty business, and that's what led to the lowest bar possible compromise to protect consumers.










El Cid at 10:42PM, Dec. 20, 2017
(online)
posts: 1,195
joined: 5-4-2009
It's not a response to anything; the government has been trying to turn broadband access into a public utility since at least 1999. It was a bad idea then, as well.

All the potential abuses you listed can be addressed through antitrust measures, whether already on the books or new legislation. Because that's what this is: an antitrust matter. Just because it's not being addressed through your preferred avenue, doesn't mean it's not being addressed at all.
bravo1102 at 12:43AM, Dec. 21, 2017
(offline)
posts: 5,098
joined: 1-21-2008
It was my understanding that BitTorrent and YouTube were throttled because of the flagrant violation of copy right laws. Users were posting all kinds of things just because they could without recognition of the ownership of that intellectual property. Some of us got emails from our service providers about it. Some even got prosecuted.

And the cable companies are all about ownership. There are plenty of pending cases against them as well as ones just filed about Net Neutrality. Don't count the states out yet either. They also have kinds of regulations about offered content in the name of freedom of the airwaves and fostering competition. The wheels of anti-trust regulation are moving. But that doesn't appear on most people's radar or computer screen.

Instead people catastrophize. They create and promote Worst case scenarios with little or no evidence. This behavior also has a part in creating mass hysteria over otherwise insignificant things.

And I know we'll survive and small business will continue. And my state's utility company wants a new tax to pay for their billion dollar boondoggle that is the biggest pile of waste, fraud, and nepotism and that's big for the most corrupt state in the US.
last edited on Dec. 21, 2017 3:17AM
ozoneocean at 3:16AM, Dec. 21, 2017
(online)
posts: 27,257
joined: 1-2-2004
Amelius wrote:
Comcast and Verizon were already caught throttling-illegally, I might add. What makes anyone think they won't do worse now that there's no regulation on it whatsoever? They were already willing to break the law and let costumers get the shaft in their effort to hurt sites they didn't like.

Exactly. Without laws and regulations in place it happens and has happened already.

The attitude of some here reminds me of people who are dismissive of things like vaccinations or fire regulations:
“ AH we don't need it, it just gets in the way and causes extra expense! It'll never happen, it's an insignificant problem! We've never had a fire/outbreak so why bother? We have firefighters/doctors to deal with this stuff already anyway!”

-_-
 
bravo1102 at 3:21AM, Dec. 21, 2017
(offline)
posts: 5,098
joined: 1-21-2008
But in the US there are regulations and legislation in place already. And the state's are hurrying to put more in place.

This reminds me of various media created panics like “recovered memories” And Y2K and devil worship and every odd smell in a school.
last edited on Dec. 21, 2017 3:24AM
ozoneocean at 4:18AM, Dec. 21, 2017
(online)
posts: 27,257
joined: 1-2-2004
Y2K and “media created panics” were perhaps not problems precisely because they were dealt with in time. Like Bird flu and swine flu for example.
The laws that are already in place are evident ly and patently inadequate since violations already took place and it was only through last action by the FCC and the net neutrality rules that these things did not become problems.

I do understand the position though: things don't seem like a big issue if you don't understand them properly or can't imagine what it's like to be affected.
When members report bugs with the site I feel that: I'm not experiencing it, why are you having an issue, it works for for me… But I realise I have to think what it's like for them.
 
bravo1102 at 4:53AM, Dec. 21, 2017
(offline)
posts: 5,098
joined: 1-21-2008
It's more like gun laws. The mass shootings wouldn't have happened if existing laws were enforced. You see for legal problems like this, you need ENFORCEMENT of EXISTING regulation. That's what the term VIOLATION means. It means the laws and regulations are in place, the violations are noted and enforced and appropriate punishment given.

People don't understand how the law works if it doesn't apply to them either. Some of us are involved with people who WROTE the proposed legislation and work with business. Some of us might understand this on a whole other level from you folks looking in from the other side. Don't you think big business has problems with web providers and trying to get regulation that provides for competitive pricing and access? Nah, I just get people calling me ignorant who only read blogs of internet geeks as opposed to the people involved in the regulatory and legislative process.
last edited on Dec. 21, 2017 4:54AM
El Cid at 7:54AM, Dec. 21, 2017
(online)
posts: 1,195
joined: 5-4-2009
I'm definitely not under the impression that people who are in favor of the repeal are so because they “don't understand properly” what's going on. If anything, I think that would more accurately describe the hordes of people who've been panicking because they've been propagandized (“If You Like The Internet, You MUST Help Save Net Neutrality!”) or maybe saw some totally bullshit snapshot of how non-net neutral Portugal is already carving up their internet (Portugal is net neutral BTW; they're part of the EU).

Again, the question is not and never has been “to regulate or not to regulate;” the question is, how best to regulate. Are neutrality issues best policed by the FCC or the FTC? That is an empirical question, and if someone has a case to make that nationalizing broadband and policing it through the FCC is the better option, then they need to make that case. I haven't heard a good argument for it yet.

It's also worth pointing out that nationalizing did not prohibit all network throttling; it only (in theory) banned the ISPs from doing so. Netflix was free to throttle Netflix subscribers who accessed content via AT&T or Verizon, which they did. Intermediate internet transit providers still had alternate slow and fast lanes for clients. So the internet was only “neutral” for ISPs, meaning not neutral at all. Everyone else was free to violate, and the ability of the FTB to prosecute offenders was muddied by the fact that they were technically under the authority of the FCC. It's really quite perverse when you look into it.

Likewise, while in theory ISPs were banned from throttling, in practice they still could and did, by a number of means, such as not upgrading connections for higher volumes or universal metering schemes like Verizon used to continue legally throttling Netflix and Youtube traffic after the law was passed. Again, any ability to prosecute was muddied by the fact that the new law explicitly permitted the behavior.

Also, not that it matters, but I've seen it mentioned vaguely that Comcast was illegally throttling customers. I'm assuming this is in reference to the claims that Comcast was degrading access to Netflix for Comcast users at one point. That almost certainly is not true. Netflix's connection to Comcast was degraded by their internet transit provider Cogent, because they were prioritizing resale traffic over wholesale clients, leading to sluggish service. Netflix CEO Reed Hastings was well aware of this when he went and cried for new regulations, because he wasn't happy with how negotiations were going with Comcast to bypass the ITP services altogether. For Netflix, and Google, and Youtube, nationalization is a boon because it limits internet service providers' flexibility and therefore limits their negotiating power.

I've written way too much on this subject, so I'm going to stop now. But I'll just reiterate my point that if anyone is concerned about internet service providers stamping out competitors, that is an antitrust issue and the best way to combat that is with antitrust measures, not by nationalizing the internet. That never made any sense to me.
last edited on Dec. 21, 2017 8:37AM
Hawk at 11:27PM, Dec. 21, 2017
(online)
posts: 2,792
joined: 1-2-2006
Losing net neutrality is bad, but I don't think we're going to hit the worst-case scenarios that a lot of people are worried about. Most Americans still have a choice in who provides their internet (yes I know not all of them do) so when ISPs start messing with our bandwidth, I think they're going to be very careful about it.

Thankfully one of the conditions we got with losing net neutrality is that ISPs must be transparent about what access they limit. I believe in the near future separate parties will create ways to test ISPs on this, the same way you test your internet speed from a browser.

What do I think our worst-case scenario is? I don't think ISPs will cut off access to things we like, but we may see smaller sites struggle because they can't pay ISPs to be faster and more prominent like the big sites can. Netflix and Hulu costs would go up to pay for this. Of course Comcast could possibly cut off access to competing ISP websites, or even networks that are competitors to NBC, but that's like the “nuke” option in my opinion. I think they know they would lose too many customers.

EDIT: Also, I should mention, I don't think we'll be without Net Neutrality for long. People are already working to bring it back, and if they don't it will likely become an election talking point for years to come. But I hope we just get it back soon before anything wild happens.
 
last edited on Dec. 21, 2017 11:30PM

Forgot Password
©2011 WOWIO, Inc. All Rights Reserved Google+