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Actually, the vote was tied.

Washington -- The Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday rejected a network neutrality amendment, handing cable and phone broadband access providers yet another victory over a coalition that has demanded the application of strict nondiscrimination standards against entities that control access to millions of Internet users.

The panel voted 11 to 11 to defeat an amendment sponsored by Sens. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), who had backing from Google, Yahoo!, eBay, Amazon, Microsoft and other firms that deliver voice, video, and information services and applications.

Under Senate rules, a tie vote means the amendment failed.

Snowe said the amendment was necessary to protect Internet innovation and investment that she said are threatened by anti-competitive designs by cable and phone companies.

Though I haven't confirmed it yet, that probably means we kept all ten Democrats, and had Snowe's vote.

The future for the telecommunications bill is unclear, as Stevens has said he doesn't have a 60 vote margin to pass the bill and thus might not get leadership support to bring it to the floor. Sen. Wyden has vowed to put a hold on any anti-net neutrality legislation.

So while this is a discouraging impasse, we don't know how it plays out from here. The fact that Stevens says he doesn't have a filibuster proof majority means that our voices have been heard. That much is clear.

Update [2006-6-28 17:31:1 by mcjoan]: Matt has more at MyDD, confirming that we kept all 10 Democrats. Contact numbers for all of the Committee members are below the fold. Use them to applaud and chastise, as appropriate. And keep the pressure up on your Senators, because this could still go to a floor fight.

Update II by kos: Three names stand out in the list of those who voted against Net Neutrality -- Conrad Burns, John Ensign, and George Allen. These are all guys we can get rid off this November, getting us closer to a Senate that will protect a free and open internet.

Also, isn't it amazing the bedfellows Mike McCurry has made? And to think he was once worthy of respect...

You can contact the members of the Senate Commerce Committee via the main switchboard toll free at 1-888-355-3588.  Or you can contact them individually at the following phone and fax numbers:

GOP Members


  • Chairman Ted Stevens (AK): (202) 224-3004; (202) 224-2354 FAX
  • John McCain (AZ):  (202) 224-2235; Fax: (202) 228-2862
  • Conrad Burns (MT):  202-224-2644; Fax: 202-224-8594
  • Trent Lott (MS): (202) 224-6253; Fax: (202) 224-2262
  • Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX): 202-224-5922; 202-224-0776 (FAX)
  • Olympia J. Snowe (ME):  (202) 224-5344; FAX (202) 224-1946
  • Gordon H. Smith (OR):  202.224.3753; Fax: 202.228.3997
  • John Ensign (NV):  (202) 224-6244; Fax: (202) 228-2193
  • George Allen (VA):  (202) 224-4024; Fax: (202) 224-5432
  • John E. Sununu (NH):  (202) 224-2841; FAX (202) 228-4131
  • Jim DeMint (SC):  202-224-6121; Fax: 202-228-5143
  • David Vitter (LA):  (202) 224-4623; Fax: (202) 228-5061

Dem Members

  • Co-Chairman Daniel K. Inouye (HI): 202-224-3934; Fax: 202-224-6747
  • John D. Rockefeller (WV):  (202) 224-6472; (202) 224-7665 Fax
  • John F. Kerry (MA):  (202) 224-2742 - Phone; (202) 224-8525 - Fax
  • Byron L. Dorgan (ND):  202-224-2551; Fax: 202-224-1193
  • Barbara Boxer (CA): 202-224-3553
  • Bill Nelson (FL):  202-224-5274; Fax: 202-228-2183
  • Maria Cantwell (WA):  202-224-3441; 202-228-0514 - FAX
  • Frank R. Lautenberg (NJ):  (202) 224-3224; Fax: (202) 228-4054
  • E. Benjamin Nelson (NE):  Tel: (202) 224-6551; Fax: (202) 228-0012
  • Mark Pryor (AR):  (202) 224-2353; Fax: (202) 228-0908

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:22 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  a telecom bill seems unlikely (5+ / 0-)

    As other relevant committees haven't really gotten going. I know a lot of lobbyists waiting for the Finance Committee to put in a tax title to the bill. To get that done, the bill through the floor, and through committee in two months, along with the appropriations bills seems improbable.

  •  It's bad that it lost in committee (6+ / 0-)

    but excellent news that it isn't a filibuster proof majority. It's mid-year in an election year...maybe some of these Senators are actually kinda/sorta listening to the voters back home.

    The Telco's are really feeling they can do anything - no SCOTUS to break them like the old AT&T. So it's  go for the goose with golden eggs...skip the brass ring - that's for peons!

    Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you..... Ralph Waldo Emerson

    by SallyCat on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:23:39 PM PDT

    •  Karl Rove tactic (5+ / 0-)

      Stevens is saying there is no filibuster proof majority so the telcos break out their checkbooks once again to the corrupt republicans.

      This would be a great one to force a vote on.  Make Senators from Arizona, Nevada, Missouri etc vote on this....How many voters use the Internets?

      Blue is the most popular color

      by jalapeno on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:27:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  how many people know this is going on? (6+ / 0-)

        My sister in Boston doesn't, and her husband works for Mass H of R leadership.  No one I know at work knows, and neither does the neocon who lives behind me -- he wasn't excited about the plan after I explained it to him.  I keep thinking about Margaret Mead, and know it's up to us.  But I sure wish someone could make hay of this in the media... oh.  hmmm...  I can see why not.  mofos.

        Fighting Dem Tim Walz (MN1) for Netroots Support! "Never separate the words you speak from the life you live" - Paul Wellstone

        by vome minnesota on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:35:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  We have power guys... (0+ / 0-)

          We have some (LOL - a limited number, but some) fighters in the Senate.  We have some people at Newsweek and we can get what we need in time on Air America...

          Why don't we go for it?  Hopefully we can get Dorogan on Ed Schultz and talk about it... he can tell us what to do.  We do it.

          Also, can't Markos talk about it when he does his weekly with Sam Seeder?

          We have the power... Can someone write up a Letter to the Editor for local newspapers?  Can we alert the loocal TV stations somehow?

          We can do it!

      •  Dorogan has a good fighting spirit (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SallyCat

        doesn't he?  Should we write to him and ask him to push it?  I wrote to Ed Schultz asking him to get Dorogan on his show (they're buddies) and talk about this.

    •  Of course because (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SallyCat

      ATT has rolled over for Bush on the spying... he owes them!  The silly bastards.  Why don't we get rid of this Bush guy?  God,they make me sick.

      •  And AT&T and BellSouth are now joining (0+ / 0-)
        Do all those folks in BellSouth territory know that their records will now be part of the deal?

        Somebody should tell them they are next...

        Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you..... Ralph Waldo Emerson

        by SallyCat on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 04:16:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I believe Bell South was already cooperating... (0+ / 0-)

          ...with the NSA, same as Verizon and AT&T.  The one that balked was Qwest, which, weirdly, was founded by a wingnut, although his scope of influence in the company is less now.

  •  Yeah but... (8+ / 0-)

    While there is no net neutrality statute, a  statute reversing net neutrality, the FCC has already removed common carrier status from internet providers. So without a statutory reversal of the FCC, we're still going to see the internet's central design undermined. We need Snowe-Dorgan.

    •  true (0+ / 0-)

      It's too bad we aren't running Congress, since these are just the types of provisions that get stuck in omnibus appropriations bills.

    •  Yes, we do (0+ / 0-)

      But whether it can come forward this session as stand alone legislation (or another vehicle could be found, slim possibility) is very much unclear.

      "I have a philosophy about elections. I believe issues divide and values unite."--Gov. Brian Schweitzer

      by Joan McCarter on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:30:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Even If It Could . . . (0+ / 0-)

        The concept of net neutrality (as we understand it around these precincts) is effectively a dead issue in the House, where the equivalent amendment by Edward Markey (D-MA) to COPE failed three weeks ago by a vote of 269-152.  Given those numbers, I don't see any way we can expect anything useful to come out of the 109th Congress.  Even if the Senate were to act in a positive fashion, the possibility of reconciliation with the House bill on terms of which we would approve is essentially nil.

        •  Yup (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          joanneleon

          So the best we can hope for this is that we're at a complete impasse for this Congress, nothing happens (though passing net neutrality would obviously be better) and we try again next session when we hopefully have better numbers on our side.

          "I have a philosophy about elections. I believe issues divide and values unite."--Gov. Brian Schweitzer

          by Joan McCarter on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:48:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I still think we can win even if the House (0+ / 0-)

          has caved.  We need to use the power of MS and google and get them out there.

          What about WalMart?  I didn't understand... are they with us or against us?  If they're with us they are pretty powerful, aren't they?

        •  What about HR 5417 (0+ / 0-)

          The Conyers-Sensenbrenner bill HR 5417 that just addresses Net Neutrality without the larger Telecom bill? I thought that hadn't reached the floor yet.

          •  That's a Good Question (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TheSourcesAss

            H.R. 5417 was ordered to be reported by the House Committee on the Judiciary (on a vote of 20-13) a month ago, but I don't see anything either on Thomas or the House website to indicate any further activity.  The best I can come up with is a short reference to it during the floor debate on COPE:

            Mr. CONYERS:  I would like to share some of this time in opposition with the gentlewoman from California (Ms. Zoe Lofgren), but I rise against the Smith amendment because what we have here is a problem of an amendment that does not really promote the goals of net neutrality as we understand them.

              It is a horse, a beautiful horse, but it is a Trojan horse. The language is disguised as meaningful net neutrality protection, but it is actually an empty shell.

              The current law already allows for an antitrust remedy for violations of anticompetitive conduct; but when it comes to net neutrality, there are no rules, no guidelines telling the gatekeepers of the Internet what kind of conduct is allowed and what kind is not allowed.

              The telephone and cable companies have made it clear they intend to use their market power to charge companies who want to distribute their content over the Internet, thereby determining what a consumer can access.

              The Sensenbrenner-Conyers net neutrality amendment which we hoped to have made in order would have provided clear guidelines. I have five specifics that would make it very clear as opposed to what the Smith amendment does not do, and I include them for the RECORD.

            H.R. 5417 reasserts an antitrust remedy for anticompetitive conduct in which the broadband network provider: (1) fails to provide network services on reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms; (2) refuses to interconnect with the facilities of other network providers on a reasonable and nondiscriminatory basis; (3) blocks, impairs or discriminates against a user's ability to receive or offer lawful content; (4) prohibits a user from attaching a device to the network that does not damage or degrade the network; or (5) fails to disclose to users, in plain terms, the conditions of the broadband service.

            (Source: Congressional Record for June 8, 2006, pages H3575 and H3576)

            Nothing since then.

    •  Then damnit... (0+ / 0-)

      let's get it!  If MS and google are really with us, how do we get them on this bill?  Let's use our collective brains!  What about MS/google media contacts?  Gina talk to them for YK?  What about C-Span?  There is a Kossack whose wife works for C-Span books or something like that!

      Let's use the contacts we just built for YK.

  •  Sending Fax to Wyden (7+ / 0-)

    To encourage him to filibuster again if need be.  This time I'll ask him to not give up the floor, even if Reid encourages it.

  •  Question: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    David Boyle

    If dems take congress, can they pass something to reverse this fiasco next year?

  •  Help us, Obi-Wyden Kenobi... (3+ / 0-)

    ...you're our only hope!

    •  Trust in the Force (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      victoria2dc
      Obi-Ron will be with us. Our beloved Senior Senator from Oregon won't go over to the dark side. He started "The Grey Panthers" to stand up for the elderly.  He's been on the right side of most everything he's voted on. He also has a vested interest because the silicon forest in Oregon. We will work with Gordon Smith our Republican Senator but when he says he will do something he does it.  I met him several times and he has a real good vibe. Sorry if that is too hippie  for ya'all but  it still works for me.

      Everybody eats, nobody hits.

      by upperleftedge on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:40:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed (0+ / 0-)

        We need to get Smith to "get religion" on this issue because the silicon forrest is vital here. If he loses support on the other side of the west hills where Intel lives.. he is as gone as gone can be.

        Part of me hopes (from a purely political tactic) that he becomes a huge idiot on the issue, so it can be used against him in 08.

        Which reminds me.. is there any rumblings on who might run against him in 08 form our side...?

        As a Portlander, I would love to be able to finally get a crack at voting for DeFazio.

        cheers,

        Mitch Gore

        Republicans believe in training Al-Qaeda, but not in training American workers.

        by Lestatdelc on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:51:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I know I've said this 4-5 times, but (0+ / 0-)

        Obi-Ron will be with us. Our beloved Senior Senator from Oregon won't go over to the dark side. He started "The Grey Panthers" to stand up for the elderly.  He's been on the right side of most everything he's voted on. He also has a vested interest because the silicon forest in Oregon. We will work with Gordon Smith our Republican Senator but when he says he will do something he does it.  I

        Hey... lightbulb in my head:  can't you connect MS with the Oregon Senators/House people on our side?  If MS is on our side, then let's make them work for us.  If they unite with the right members of Congress, they can change the damn FCC.  You can't convince me that MS and google don't have more power than the damn telephone crooks!  Come on... how can you do that as Oregon Kossacks?

  •  Hope their powder is nice and dry (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SallyCat, Northstar, esquimaux

    I think I'm gonna die of old age before I ever see the Dems actually win something that counts.  Feh.

  •  Well, I called Vitter and Allen again, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ellicatt

    as a dual LA/VA constituent.  They both voted against it, and I'm guessing they don't care what we think.  I asked for policy letters, and am curious to see how they'll defend this.

    As an Iraqi-American academic born and raised in New Orleans, this voter is not pleased.

    by naltikriti on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:40:33 PM PDT

  •  I see at least three senators on the GoOper side (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jlowery, Ellicatt, victoria2dc

    who are up for re-election -- Burns, Allen (how about that...  say goodnight, Gracie), and Lott.  If my neocon neighbor thinks loss of net neutrality is a bad idea, much election year hay can be made of this.  Ideally, before then.  I'm sure rethugs like Lieberman won't mind if this site is hurt by loss of net neutrality.

    Fighting Dem Tim Walz (MN1) for Netroots Support! "Never separate the words you speak from the life you live" - Paul Wellstone

    by vome minnesota on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:41:06 PM PDT

    •  Additionally with Allen... (4+ / 0-)

      ...he's already going to lose Northern Virginia (the Silicon Valley of the East) badly.  While many network providers might employ workers in NoVa, you can bet there are thousands of tech-savvy workers who understand the importance of net neutrality there.  Webb should take a stance and make this an issue immediately.  

      If tech workers understand what this means to them (and possibly their companies) Allen could go from being crushed in NoVa to losing the election because of it.

      •  When you say.. (0+ / 0-)

        Allen could go from being crushed in NoVa to losing the election because of it.

        You mean it would resonate beyond NoVa, or that it would cause Allen to so crater in NoVa it would more than offset other parts of the state where he is strong?

        cheers,

        Mitch Gore

        Republicans believe in training Al-Qaeda, but not in training American workers.

        by Lestatdelc on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:53:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Most likely (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          joanneleon, Ellicatt

          Cratering more in NoVa.  It's been trending heavily Democratic over the last few years, and if Webb can get 60-70% of the votes up there, that will basically seal the election due to the NoVa size advantage as long as Webb performs as expected in other areas.

          Really, this is such a technical issue that I can't see it having much effect among the general electorate.  But this is exactly the sort of issue that tech people can understand well and appreciate - to the tune of either getting out to the polls or switching their votes.

          •  Here's what's frustrating (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jlowery, vome minnesota

            Making the leap from it being a techie issue to also being a consumer issue. That's the key. And I don't know how to do it.

            "I have a philosophy about elections. I believe issues divide and values unite."--Gov. Brian Schweitzer

            by Joan McCarter on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:10:12 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Google, Amazon, et al (0+ / 0-)

              should be able to help with making it a clear consumer issue.  I hope they step up their public efforts now that the amendment failed in committee.

            •  Being a techie (0+ / 0-)

              I've talked to a few friends and it took quite a while till they understood what the stakes were - and even then I'm not sure they cared that much.

              Unfortunately I don't know if it'll become a consumer issue until people get a taste of a world without neutrality, and possibly not even then.  It's quite depressing, but I've loaded this issue along with several other 'geek' issues which I think are extremely important, but most people wouldn't care about.

            •  I agree... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              vome minnesota

              Hey... more lightbulbs in my head!

              mcjoan:  Ask Jerome if he has connections from the Warner team to AOL and NoVa.  You know they have them, and if AOL is on our side, then the best thing we can do is to get them, google and MS to put the pressure.

              If Jerome can't produce, perhaps Gina has other contacts.  Warner as former governor and as the former owner of a huge tech company, has the CONNECTIONS.  Since we're friendly with him... ASK, ASK, ASK.  I don't think it can hurt the relationship.  It's building the power that already exists.  It's too small for us little people.  Only BIG TECH can beat BIG TELECOM!  

    •  Hutchison (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vome minnesota

      as well. But it's Texas, so that's probably irrelevant. Despite a decent Dem candidate.

    •  See my message on Burns... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      vome minnesota

      we need MT people to call them.  Also, let them know we want to see the logic behind WHY they voted against net neutrality and how they can explain that $162,000 PAC money!

      They are willing to listen.  

      Calling all MT people willing to fight for Net Neutrality!

  •  Smith needs to be shit-hammered on this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mcjoan, oregonj

    The net is integral to the health of the silicon forrest, which in turn is a vital sector of our state (Oregon).

    cheers,

    Mitch Gore

    Republicans believe in training Al-Qaeda, but not in training American workers.

    by Lestatdelc on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:44:44 PM PDT

    •  shit hammers ready (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mcjoan, oregonj, Ellicatt
      I'll give Gordon another friendly phone call. He must  just love it when I compair him to Tom McCall the Republican who made Oregon what it is today. He saved the beaches for the people, signed the first bottle bill and started land use planning to fight urban sprawl. Gordon doesn't come off too well in the comparison but I explain he still has time to get it right. This time no more Mr. Nice guy.

      Everybody eats, nobody hits.

      by upperleftedge on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 02:57:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Gordo, Gordo, Gordo... (0+ / 0-)

      Senator Smith, I know it is hard for you to see beyond the next campaign contribution, but 2008 is just around the corner........

    •  I emailed him last night (0+ / 0-)

      My husband and I run a business building websites, based in Hillsboro, and this could directly affect our clients and therefore our bottom line.  And this state needs all the Internet based businesses it can get - wave of the future and all that.

      Didn't make any difference, obviously, but I tried!

  •  Feeling pretty pissy today (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joanneleon, Ellicatt, victoria2dc

    My email to Hutchison:

    I heard just a few moments ago that you voted against the Snowe-Dorgan amendment in today's committee meeting.

    I've called your office in Austin, but wanted to also send you an email to let you know how disgusted I am with your vote. I was hoping that perhaps you might be somewhat saner than Cornyn, as you have, very occasionally, voted somewhat moderately.

    Obviously, with re-election just around the corner, you're needing money from AT&T, so you've decided democracy and open communication are no longer relevant to our society in the United States.

    I hope that you understand how frustrating it is, living in Texas, where everything that both of my Senators do makes me sick.

    Sorry for the very strong reaction, especially since I've rarely written you, but it hardly seemed worth the effort before, since it's been pretty clear that no matter my opinion, you two would do your best at destroying the country.

    Anyway, now you know. I am out here, along with a good number of others that are disgusted and infuriated with how we're represented in Washington.

  •  Help get rid of Ensign! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    juls, joanneleon, Ellicatt, jlove1982

    Ensign consistently votes for the big Telecoms.  Jack Carter can beat him -- see my diary to hear me out!  And donate if you can!

    Sarah

  •  This won't go away and we haven't yet lost. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ellicatt

    First off, as many have mentioned, the underlying bill may not pass without it if Wyden's filibuster works.  The fact that we held all the Ds is impressive, and I think shows that they know how important the net is to their political futures.

    And, most important, the irritation will trickle down to the non-technical/legal/political types.  As things get faster on the net people expect yet faster service.  It did not used to bother me to wait five seconds for a page to load.  Now it does. Everyone who uses the net is like that.  

    So if certain pages load slowly, people are going to be frustrated.  And they'll find out why they load slowly.  And they'll be pissed.  And their congresspeople will start to be motivated.

    But it may not even reach that point, given that the Ds seem to know what side to be on, and at least some Rs (such as Snowe) are on board as well.

  •  just got back (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mcjoan, joanneleon, TheSourcesAss

    thanks mcjoan, for posting this. stevens said at the end that he wanted the next committee meeting after the recess to determine how to revise the bill to be sent to the floor so that would garner 60 votes. boxer nodded and smiled, which makes me think that net neutrality might come off the table for now.

    very disappointing, all in all.

  •  I though Freeperville would be FOR Net Neutrality (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joanneleon, TheSourcesAss

    But I just researched their site and they're AGAINST it.  WTF??  Aren't they for small business?  So I guess that explains Allen's vote.  I called that idiot, too, but for us Democrats in Virginia, we pretty much don't exist.

    Who on the Right was for Net Neutrality?  I thought the support for Net Neutrality was bipartisan.  Skimming through the Freeper site I was truly surprised by their stance.

    •  Very misleading commericals are (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geotpf, beachmom, TheSourcesAss

      inundating the airwaves here in Maryland.  Everyday I see a commerical for FREEDOM TV.  They slant the message to make people believe Google is this almighty power player who is going to limit their access to the internet.  Am I missing something here?  Google has nothing to do with net neutrality.  It's the telecommunications lobbyists and they are pouring millions into these deceiving commericals.  Where are the commercials to set the record straight?  I haven't seen one yet.

      I loathe greed and that is what is killing our country. -6.25 -5.85

      by pmob5977 on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 03:23:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And no doubt, Allen is loaded up with (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joanneleon, TheSourcesAss

        dough from Telecoms, am I right?  

        I didn't see any commercials, except when I saw a story on NOW on PBS about it.  That's really bad.  This thing is going to hurt small business and innovative new dot com companies.  It's terrible and high tech needs to start pooling their money together and FIGHT this thing.

      •  Yup and unfortunately (0+ / 0-)

        The blogs - even the liberal blogs - were carrying ads that went to an extremely deceptive Flash movie. This is a confusing issue for many as it is. Those ads made it alot more difficult. I don't know how much time I had to take to explain Net Neutrality even to people with their own websites that make their livelihood online; and they'll likely be the hardest hit without the protections.

        The Religious Right/Christian Coalition supports Net Neutrality. But as for the freepers, my guess is they were against it just because we were for it. ;)

  •  Anyone here from Montana? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Northstar

    http://mydd.com/...

    I want you to call Senator Burns' office.  I really had this girl listeneing to me, but she kept asking me for a MT address and I evaded.  She kept pushing and I told her I wouldn't put my address on the Internet or on the  phone because "I don't trust the government!"   LOL...

    Anyway, she told me a long story about how they've had 4 people working nights and overtime on this bill... and that the Senator *was protecting the little people" becasue big guys like google.com and microsoft.com were trying to get involved, etc. etc.  I told her I don't think the Senator gets it because his vote today went with the BIG telecoms and that his vote screwed us little guys.

    If you can call there and give the same type of little BS, she seemed willing to listen and pass the word on.  This may (ugh - I don't know but it's worth a try) get us somewhere.  Oh yeah, I told her that he took Conrad Burns: $162,600 from the telecom pacs and individuals (via the MyDD site) and he needs to explain that to us little people in MT who are trying to earn a living and make money using the Internet. She gave me all kinds of crap back saying he used to be a small businessman, etc.  

    It ended that she couldn't help me unless I gave her a physical address in MT.

    Also, I called McCain and Allen too.  I mentioned the pac money, but pretended that I didn't know how they voted. They said they'd "look into it" for me!  Ha... they don't give a damn... they're both running for President!

    Anyway, question mcjoan:  if google and MS are on our side, let's get them out there writing checks! Are they? Are they really on our side?  Do they stand to pay more for video content, etc?  Do we have a coalition of bloggers and google/ms, etc.?  Let them outpay Verizon and those other criminals!

    Let's not let this go to the full Senate guys!

  •  What exactly is this about? (0+ / 0-)

    I'm still confused as to what the bill is.  What is going to change?  It's hard to fight for something that you don't understand.  Maybe if someone can boil this down to two or three sentences, more people (including me) will understand.

    In an insane society, the sane man would appear insane

    by TampaCPA on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 04:18:39 PM PDT

    •  Got a few hours? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geotpf, OffTheHill

      It's a complex issue, which is why it's so difficult to explain. The changes will come if the bill is NOT passed.

      This is my way of explaining it:

      Very simply put, Net Neutrality is an anti-trust protection with  implications that go far beyond anti-trust issues to freedom of  speech and access.  The FCC used to regulate Telecoms to prevent them from controlling access to internet content but that protection recently expired. I won't go into the Tiered access stuff because it's confusing  and IMO it's not the only part of this that presents a danger. But what it all boils down to is that Telecoms would be able to throttle content so as to make it inaccessible, and even redirect users to force them to shop through their own portals, etc.

    •  the bill is broader, though (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TheSourcesAss

      The focus here is on net neutrality, but the committee is acting on a larger reform of the 1996 Telecommunications Act. Lots of super-wonky stuff in it, I've got to take a deeper look at some point.

      •  Yeah I (0+ / 0-)

        ... just realized I needed to make a clarification on that. I know that's one of the things that has people so confused - differences between bill, amendment to a bill, etc.

      •  BTW - (0+ / 0-)

        Lots of super-wonky stuff in it, I've got to take a deeper look at some point.

        That had to be by design. I watched the House Net Neutrality debate on CSPAN and I'm convinced most of those opposing it didn't have a CLUE what it was.

        •  One of the wonky things that's not in the bill (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TheSourcesAss

          is mandated à la carte service. In other words, we are still going to be stuck with large and expensive packages when we subscribe to cable. No picking and choosing. Myself, I only want 2 or 3 networks, yet I  have to pay for 60 of them in order to get the 3 I want. This is a monopolistic practice that this bill will not change. Not to mention that I have to pay for Pat Robertson's network just to get HBO. Frankly, I think that a major source of Robertson's wealth and influence come from this one method of price gouging.

          •  oooh that's very interesting because (0+ / 0-)

            I think many  people thought that's what the TV Freedom commercials were about.

            I've been on a personal boycott of Comcast since '89 so I have DirectTV, it's cheaper for the same levels of service, but I still pay for alot of things I'd rather not. I'm ambivalent on a la carte though because I get progressive programming - Link TV for instance - that I know  wouldn't be able to survive with  an ala carte business model.

    •  This bill involves more than just net netrality. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geotpf, TheSourcesAss

      It is a major rewrite of telecommunications law in the U.S. First, this bill will cause cable TV, phone, and internet rates to go up, because it removes local regulation of cable and internet access. It is a deregulation bill. Secondly, cable and telephone companies will be able under this law to legally disable sites that do not pay them large fees. Google, for example, may be forced to pay a large fee to Comcast for access to the Comcast network. This cost will get passed onto you somehow, perhaps as a user fee. Imagine having to pay for every Google search you make ....imagine if Google Becomes Pay-to-Play.

    •  The Basics of Net Neutrality (0+ / 0-)

      Right now, internet providers give you a pipe to the internet and don't discriminate between content you receive - much the way your phone works.  No matter what content you access, you get it at the same speed.  This makes the internet a true meritocracy - those with the best ideas will get the most traffic and viewers, and the ISPs don't have a voice in the matter.

      If net neutrality isn't there, then providers can discriminate based on content.  Basically, they can make a deal with certain companies so that their data travels faster over the cables.  Those who don't pay up travel slower.  Have a new great idea for a search engine or news site?  It's not getting off the ground unless you pay up to the service providers, as your service isn't going to run as fast as your existing competitors who've made the deal.

      It gets even worse when you factor in that ISPs could prioritize based on their own interests, causing those they are allied with or own to run faster.  Verizon or AT&T get to have a hand in who comes out on top in internet competition.

  •  Didn't McCain go against us? (0+ / 0-)

    I called his office playing stupid and they said he hadn't announced yet!

  •  So why can't Olympia Snowe get (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geotpf, Ari Mistral

    her head out of her ass on practically every other issue.

    Bravo to Sen. Snowe on trying to preserve freedom on the net, but why can't she stop being such a tool when it comes to George.

  •  For crying out loud... (0+ / 0-)
    Sen Ted Stevens memes most common teleco talking point...

    Alaska's Ted Stevens, the committee chairman, accused his colleagues of "imposing a heavy-handed regulation before there's a demonstrated need."

    Right.  Someone ought'a remind them same thing was said about Enron in Ca.: took 'em 2 years after the damage was done to admit what was obvious from the beginning.  Wasn't that one sufficiently "demonstrated" for you Ted?

    Remind me... what exactly did this republican congress do when that little debacle surfaced?  Did I miss the congressional stampede response to that $32b ripoff?  

    And raiding/underfunding retirement accounts, made possible by repubs in the name of "free market" de-regulation reforms... what exactly have these johnny on the spot sleuths done about that one?

    Thing about all this stuff AFAIC, it's gotten to the point where danger warnings written on the wall for conservative adventures is in flashing neon these days, and the warning's impact: Big Fat zeeeero.  

    Amazing.  Just amazing.  

    "My theory of evolution is that Darwin was adopted." -- Steven Wright

    by jdmckay on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 05:07:47 PM PDT

  •  Let's threaten the telecoms with a boycott (0+ / 0-)

    If they're gonna turn the net into cable tv, we should pre empt that with a boycott of their services.   If thousands of us quit buying their service, wouldn't that send a message?
    You can't just rely on Congress to win this.  You need multiple measures.

    So, who is in charge of the boycott of Verizon and ATT?

    "In a system of immense power, small differences can translate into large outcomes." Chomsky

    by formernadervoter on Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 09:21:24 PM PDT

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