2 bad rulings- No gotham dancing and a divided Net

[10 April 2006]

By Jason Gross

It might not mean much to Net nerd but this is pretty important business: Republicans defeat Net neutrality proposal.  What it means that the days of a free and open Internet are slowly drawing to a close.

As the story explains:

“A Republican-controlled House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Wednesday defeated a proposal that would have levied extensive regulations on broadband providers and forcibly prevented them from offering higher-speed video services to partners or affiliates.”

... which means that the best access, the fastest speeds and the easier downloads will now go to the highest bidders.  If you don’t have the bucks to shell out, you could very well be left out of what will be called Web 3.0.  A brave new world it ain’t…

And why is this happening?

“A network of conservative and free-market groups has begun warning Congress that Net neutrality regulations are not consistent with Republican laissez-faire principles and protection of private-property rights.”

... which is cover for the fact that the phone companies have pushed more money into Congress’s coffers than their opponents (i.e. Google).  The only saving grace may be when a majority of people refuse to pay extra charges and when the paid-off sites start losing traffic and have to reconsider their strategy.

In another senseless slap down, Court floors Big Apple’s dancers.  What this means is that if you shake your butt in a venue that isn’t zoned for dancing, you and the club could be in for some serious fines.  Once again, the ancient cabaret laws of NY are dragged out to promote “quality of life” issues which help rob the city of the culture that makes it famous.  Bloomberg’s new arts council initiative is dead in the water if it has to keep fighting off challenges like this which choke off culture at its root.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/post/2_bad_rulings_no_gotham_dancing_and_a_divided_net/