Update: Wired is reporting that Net neutrality group Free Press and MoveOn.org will lead a protest at Google’s headquarters Friday.
Orginal Article: Google has posted a lengthy article about "myths and facts" surrounding the net neutrality proposal it introduced with Verizon this week. This proposal has been controversial to say the least, and while this may not be enough to change all minds, it is certainly worth taking look at.
First off, let’s look at what Google says are "myths" about the policy. These include:
1. Google has "sold out" on network neutrality.
2. This proposal represents a step backwards for the open Internet.
3. This proposal would eliminate network neutrality over wireless.
4. This proposal will allow broadband providers to "cannibalize" the public Internet.
5. Google is working with Verizon on this because of Android.
6. Two corporations are legislating the future of the Internet.
I think most opponents of the proposal will be most interested in what Google has to say around numbers 3 and 5. The whole wireless being treated differently thing seems to be rubbing a lot of people the wrong way. That combined with the fact that Google has a growing interest in the mobile space (not to mention Verizon’s even more obvious interest) just hasn’t sat well with everybody.
First of all, as far as Android is concerned, Google says, "This is a policy proposal – not a business deal. Of course, Google has a close business relationship with Verizon, but ultimately this proposal has nothing to do with Android. Folks certainly should not be surprised by the announcement of this proposal, given our prior public policy work with Verizon on network neutrality, going back to our October 2009 blog post, our January 2010 joint FCC filing, and our April 2010 op-ed."
Google maintains that the wireless market is more competitive than the wireline market, giving consumers more choices among providers. Another factor the company brings up is that wireless networks employ airwaves, as opposed to wires, and "share constrained capacity among man users.
"In our proposal, we agreed that the best first step is for wireless providers to be fully transparent with users about how network traffic is managed to avoid congestion, or prioritized for certain applications and content," the company says. "Our proposal also asks the Federal government to monitor and report regularly on the state of the wireless broadband market. Importantly, Congress would always have the ability to step in and impose new safeguards on wireless broadband providers to protect consumers’ interests."
That’s really just the tip of the iceberg of what Google has to say on this matter. Read the whole piece here. Have they said anything to change your mind?