Marty Graham 4:30 p.m., Feb. 24
Jessica Percifield Henry
Qualcomm-backed bill would be "cataclysmic" for cost and quality of California Internet service, critics claimI think it could be argued that for some of us, our internet service sucks simply because State blessed monopolies exist and we have very little choice. More choice would equal greater competition, which always results in better service for the consumer and more power over what kind of service we have. That said, I find discussions over WHO should regulate and even IF regulation is necessary to be missing the mark in regards to the internet. Being a free speech and freedom of information radical, I see the downsides to both corporate monopolistic control AND government agency/commission controls or attempts to control content on the internet. I think we're all full aware that government has been known to pick the winners and losers in the market as well (Hello AIG; Goodbye Lehman Brothers). I think the question that really needs to be asked is whether these entities are ABLE to control or "regulate" the internet? Ask 10 software engineers that aren't working for the man, if they think content can be controlled by any one entity whether it be AT&T or the PUC. While crying over who should regulate, some teenager or cubicle dweller will be figuring a way around their 'controls'. The internet's organic structure makes it nearly impossible to control. This is the truth. This is why it is so revolutionary as a socio-economic/political/tech tool for innovation and change. I can get caught up in the WHO should regulate or IF there should be regulation, but the way I see it is the cat is outta the bag and running faster than any governmental or "so-called" non-governmental organization can try to keep up with... How will the world look in 10, heck even 5 years because of the internet and the res publica nature of it, no one knows, but we can see the world changing because of it every day. Sci-fi junkies call what I think is coming as a result, the singularity. Those dedicated to the open-source philosophy vs. the closed-shop IP philosophy of the past can see it coming too. The cloud/internet/world wide web/creative commons is changing everything from how we do business to how and what we buy or even why we buy. It has already set off political revolutions and created a sense of community by pulling down artificial walls/barriers and allowing people to connect globally. If this community can put Bank of America's arrogance in its place as it did this past year over debit card fees, then it would certainly put any other company that acted bigger than its britches in place as well. Just say'n. The internet has also enabled consumer activism like never before and there is a real question as to how effective such controls would be, so my opinion is that attempts to aggressively control content will be bypassed or be met with massive consumer backlash. To quote *The Big Lebowski*, "I do mind, the Dude minds. This will not stand, ya know, this agression will not stand, man." Peace out (drops mic).
— September 6, 2012 3:04 p.m.