laying out the flaws in the epw article on net neutrality

Rhetoric is a very power tool that is used by politicians & policy makers to set their agendas. In the recent epw article by a strategy consultant(link), the author uses the power of rhetoric to convince the users using non relevant analogies.

The author compares the internet with trucking service. There are 2 major gaps in the comparison.

  1. Firstly, trucking service is in an open market & not in an essential service category. Fuel & electricity is in the essential service category & in a controlled market as the capex required is quite large.

If everyone had access to create their own telco network with an opportunity to create their own services, by all means, open up the market. The market will stabilize by itself.

Similar to differential pricing in electricity where domestic electricity is cheaper than commercial electricity, by all means make streaming data more expensive than regular packets. Assuming there is going to be separate technological investment around streaming data. Again, it shouldn’t matter whether the streaming data is coming from company a or company b.

2. Secondly, pricing should be controlled at a good or a service level & not at a corporation level.

Imagine if the petrol bunks start charging different prices depending on whether you are using the fuel for your bike or car or truck. Further, imagine getting a subsidy 0n fuel if you are using a maruti hatchback vs a hyundai hatchback.

That is how the corporates are pitching on internet services.

I definitely expect better quality & editorial control from epw.

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