Did Internet Founders Actually Anticipate Paid, Prioritized Traffic?

Nathan Eisenberg nathan at atlasnetworks.us
Fri Sep 17 09:52:13 UTC 2010

> True net-neutrality means no provider can have a better service than another.

This statement is not true - or at least, I am not convinced of its truth.  True net neutrality means no provider will artificially de-neutralize their service by introducing destination based priority on congested links.

> This totally screws with private peering and the variety of requirements, as well
> as special services (such as akamai nodes). Many of these cases aren't about
> saturation, but better connectivity between content provider and ISP. Adding
> money or QOS to the equation is just icing on the cake.

>From a false assumption follows false conclusions.  

Why do you feel it's true that net-neutrality treads on private (or even public) peering, or content delivery platforms?  In my understanding, they are two separate topics: Net (non)-neutrality is literally about prioritizing different packets on the *same* wire based on whether the destination or source is from an ACL of IPs.  IE this link is congested, Netflix sends me a check every month, send their packets before the ones from Hulu and Youtube.  The act of sending traffic down a different link directly to a peers' network does not affect the neutrality of either party one iota - in fact, it works to solve the congested link problem (Look!  Adding capacity fixed it!).

The ethics of path distances, peering relationships and vector routing, while interesting, are out of scope in a discussion of neutrality.  An argument which makes this a larger issue encompassing peering and vector routing is, in my opinion, either a straw man or a red herring (depending on how well it's presented) attempt to generate a second technoethical issue in order to defeat the first one.


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