What can ISPs do better? Removing racism out of internet
Patrick W. Gilmore
patrick at ianai.net
Mon Aug 5 20:34:13 UTC 2019
Cloudflare is not an ISP. They are a CDN. You cannot ask them for a DSL or Cable connection, or even DIA.
Not that it matters: ISPs are not “Common Carriers” in statute or Common Law. The DMCA provides some protections which are similar to Common Carrier status, but that does not mean they have all the rights and responsibilities of Common Carriers.
And just to be really meta, that doesn’t matter either. Cloudflare did nothing wrong. While in the US, anyone can sue anyone for anything, the idea 8Chan will prevail in suing Cloudflare for violation of Common Carrier responsibilities, or even for 1st amendment free speech rights, it ludicrous on its face.
I am not terribly pleased with CF’s continued support of miscreants like “Booter Services” (read “DDoS-for-Hire”), but their lawyers are not idiots. And while you may not believe Anne, I know her and trust her judgement here. Plus I know a small amount about running CDNs. So I’m going to go with the consensus on the side of “not Common Carriers”. Feel free to disagree. But if you plan to convince the people reading this thread, you will have to do better than quoting snippets of the DMCA.
> On Aug 5, 2019, at 4:19 PM, Mel Beckman <mel at beckman.org> wrote:
> You’re confusing ISPs that merely provide transport services, such as AT&T and Cloudfare, with information services like FaceBook and Twitter. The Common Carrier status for legal protection of ISPs stems from the 1998 DMCA, which long preceded the 2015 Network Neutrality act. It provides protection only for an ISP that as a “provider merely acts as a data conduit, transmitting digital information from one point on a network to another at someone else’s request.” The ISP loses that Common Carrier (in the Common Law definition) protection if it alters the transmission in any way.
> Just because an ISP isn’t a Common Carrier under FCC rules doesn’t mean that it isn’t a Common Carrier for other purposes. Trains and planes, for example, are Common Carriers, and the FCC has nothing to do with them. But they can’t exclude passengers based on their speech (yet, anyway).
>> On Aug 5, 2019, at 8:54 AM, Keith Medcalf <kmedcalf at dessus.com> wrote:
>>> On Monday, 5 August, 2019 09:16, Mel Beckman <mel at beckman.org> wrote:
>>> “Now, enough of this off-topic stuff and back to our regularly
>>> scheduled programming.”
>>> Keith, what could be more on-topic than an ISP’s status as a common
>>> carrier? Seems pretty operational to me.
>> I think that is closing the barn door after the horse already left.
>> It is my understanding that in your fabulous United States of America that "carriers" (meaning having no content serving nor content consuming customers*) may be "common carriers" or can claim to be common carriers. The rest of you who are not pure carriers are, thanks to Ijit Pai, merely Information Services and do not have common carrier status, nor can you claim to be common carriers.
>> A "common carrier" is one who must provide carriage provided the fee for carriage is paid. This is not the case for "Information Service" providers as they are not required to provide carriage to any who can pay the fee for carriage.
>> *I hate the term "content", it is somowhat lame.
>> The fact that there's a Highway to Hell but only a Stairway to Heaven says a lot about anticipated traffic volume.
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