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Old 14th April 2015, 14:28   #16
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by pramodkumar View Post
what is your point? I am very confused. Have you understood net neutrality completely?

Pramod
Lets see the definition:

"the principle that Internet service providers should enable access to all content and applications regardless of the source, and without favouring or blocking particular products or websites."

The whole net neutrality debate is exploding because of airtel zero and flipkart signing up for it. By having the content provider pay for your web transaction, without in anyway blocking other transactions, doesn't make the net non neutral is what I was trying to say.
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Old 14th April 2015, 14:48   #17
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

I think it's awesome how netizens have taken the cause up. The internet is the greatest leveller of all time. Equal opportunities for those accessing information, as well as the ones providing it. There is no way telecom operators can get away with wrongly disrupting this force. Good thing is, with all the negative publicity that has been generated, no company that cares about its public image will opt in on the ridiculous programs. Look how the backlash forced Flipkart to withdraw from Airtel Zero! Imagine your browser being dominated only by big / rich / venture-capital-backed websites, while the others doing a fabulous job are denied priority.

@ Telecom operators: It's a changing world - Shape up or ship out. Old sources of revenue such as SMS are dead, and there's more to come (WhatsApp has recently started rolling out the voice calling feature in India).
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Old 14th April 2015, 15:14   #18
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by kvish View Post
Although I am in support of net neutrality, I fail to see how airtel zero is linked to net neutrality. This service is pure economics and nothing to do with internet. This is happening across all industries and part and parcel of our daily lives.
Suppose your ISP (Internet Service Provider), be it your mobile, or through your broadband, charges you Rs. 30 every month to view team-bhp website? Like that you will get a list of your favourite websites which you will be able to view only if you pay your ISP some amount. So, instead of freely browsing through internet, you will be charged for each websites you visit. Do you like that idea?

It is similar to your TV service provider. When dish antennas became popular, there was one fee and all channels were view-able depending on your TV's capacity and reception quality. That was the time when Cable TV service providers had one large dish antenna which used to beam all channels to your home.

Then came individual Dish antennas, which were available through a service provider and with a set top box. With this, you could choose which channels you needed depending on your entertainment needs and there is a charge for the package that you choose. At this point, we lost TV channel neutrality.

A similar thing is happening to the internet world. This is not a new concept. This has been debated in other countries like US and in Europe for over a decade. Last year, US started to setup a few rules around net neutrality. Though, they are not restricting a service directly, but they allow ISPs to provide better bandwidth for certain websites/services at certain additional fee. I have read that recently there has been popular and successful movement in US for removing these rules.

For e.g. if you use youtube more then any other website, the ISP can propose to offer youtube service at a better speed than your normal generic package for an extra charge.

In this setup the end consumer will have to pay the ISPs and the ISPs can also end up getting revenues from advertising. It makes pure business sense to any ISP. And that's why Airtel got interested.

So, where is the problem? It arises, IF the government decides to take over the ISPs role. Government can impose restrictions on people viewing websites. They can also impose tariff plans on ISPs, thereby restricting web usage for common people. Many popular websites or apps like whatsapp, facebook etc. can be "tariff-ed" which will reduce its effectiveness as a mass social media.
It can become an effective tool to impose restrictions on people to people communication. ISPs can block certain websites which can be perceived to threaten the social fabric of the country. There can be restrictions on what you can post or not post in your websites. If you are a small company and you have a website, you may need to register or "apply" to various ISPs to make it available to general public.

Basically, by taking away net neutrality, we are losing our rights to freely use a medium which is responsible for bringing the world closer together.

Last edited by sukhoi30 : 14th April 2015 at 15:42. Reason: grammatical corrections
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Old 14th April 2015, 15:16   #19
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by Grr7 View Post
Might be slight OT: BUt, in a parallel world, while most of the service providers are busy curtailing the net neutrality, I wish to thank Reliance CDMA to provide me with absolute free access to twitter. Don't know if Reliance stands to gain any revenue out of it, but for twitter users like me, its a blessing in disguise.
Any reliance CDMA user can have unlimited free access on twitter whether he/she subscribes for an internet pack or not.
Unfortunately buddy. This is exactly against Net neutrality. You might be getting twitter for free - so what that does is - FB, G+, and other social networks are affected by this. And as they say there is no free lunch - ever. Twitter will be paying Reliance in your place.

Now consider the same happens to say - Flipkart - you will stop shopping at Amazon. And in the future, we will never have a new startup like Flipkart come up. Coz - the new startup will not have money to pay Reliance to provide free App service to customer.
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Old 14th April 2015, 15:26   #20
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

All the voices are making a difference, atleast one player Flipkart realized the mood and makes the right U Turn They have pulled out of the Airtel Zero deal i guess and a public announcement made.

http://www.thenewsminute.com/technologies/634

Yes infra cost is going up and telecom's may not be making the best of profits, but this calls for innovation and positive tie ups. Not regressive steps that curb individual rights to access information or services over internet.
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Old 14th April 2015, 16:55   #21
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

The Internet has become a huge medium of doing business. Companies like Flipkart, Amazon, Netflix need the internet to survive. Telecom companies cannot stomach the fact these companies are generating huge revenues riding on their network and want a share of the pie.

They (telecos) see companies like Google. The search results that you see on the first page is not 'neutral'. There are paid results (ads) that top everything else. So if Flipkart is allowed to pay Airtel to block out or slow down competition, it works out very well for both these companies. Without net neutrality, businesses will become monopolistic and restrictive, which is bad news for the consumer. The MRTP Act exists just for this reason. Govt. has to enact laws to protect net neutrality, no question about it.
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Old 14th April 2015, 17:02   #22
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by kvish View Post
Although I am in support of net neutrality, I fail to see how airtel zero is linked to net neutrality. This service is pure economics and nothing to do with internet. This is happening across all industries and part and parcel of our daily lives. Let me give you examples:
1. I receive a free subscription of a Times of India newspaper because I am a subscriber of deccan herald. Is there a problem? Will deccan herald sue times of India as not being neutral? Times of India is paying the newspaper vendor to deliver the same to my doorstep too! Newspaper delivery channels didnt stop my deccan herald newspaper either. Can you ban newspaper delivery agents?.
2. Ebay offered me 2000 cash back on a refrigerator that I bought from a seller. Should we close ebay because other vendors cannot offer cashback?
3. If you take an ola cab ride, there was an offer for free talk time. Would you shut down ola for it?
4. Tollfree numbers, etc etc list goes on.

Its simple, as long as companies have resources to manage their advertizing spends, they will do it. As long as airtel is not preventing access to other websites, I cant see how this can be related to net neutrality.
I don't think offering service or products for free is an issue here.
The issue is about alternatives. Free choice. Which is the whole concept behind free market, competitive capitalism.

In case of telecom, it is licensed. Therefore no free competition here.
Once you gain license you are in monopoly. Since there are 2-3 license holders in a circle, we are in an oligopoly. No new competitor can enter and upset the party.

In case of newspapers and retail shops we have a plethora of alternatives.
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Old 14th April 2015, 17:23   #23
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

Informative article by Firstpost on the costs incurred by ISP's/telecom operators
http://www.firstpost.com/business/ne...e-2195984.html
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Old 14th April 2015, 17:58   #24
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
All the voices are making a difference, atleast one player Flipkart realized the mood and makes the right U Turn They have pulled out of the Airtel Zero deal i guess and a public announcement made.

http://www.thenewsminute.com/technologies/634

Yes infra cost is going up and telecom's may not be making the best of profits, but this calls for innovation and positive tie ups. Not regressive steps that curb individual rights to access information or services over internet.
I guess in the future Telecom operators will be reduced to ISP , since most of us may shift to internet based calling like Skype and so on.

Quote:
Mobile Internet revenues for Airtel in India, grew by 74.3% year-on-year (YoY) to Rs 2114 crore for the quarter. Sequentially, the revenues grew 17.1% from Rs 1805 crore. The segment accounted for 16.2% of its total India revenues for the quarter, as compared to 14.5% in the previous quarter and 10.3% in the same quarter last year.
The telecos will earn a lot of money from internet usage.
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Old 14th April 2015, 18:28   #25
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

ISPs are Internet Service Providers. Their duty is just to connect the user to the one global internet, and charge them for the bandwidth consumed. That is the service they give. They have no business in choosing the content for the user or enforcing usage standards. They only have to push data through the pipe to the user, irrespective of the kind of data the user is consuming. Their whining about voice call/sms shortage is irrelevant here, coz both are already on the grave run. Tech grows fast, & the ones who won't innovatively catch up will be left out. Simple.

Last edited by SandyX : 14th April 2015 at 18:29.
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Old 14th April 2015, 20:26   #26
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

Coming from the field of Computer Engineering, this net neutrality debate was something we did during our engineering days in Networking sessions (2008-09). Wasn't knowing this would come so fast in India !

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the founder of Internet strongly opposed to this idea saying that internet service is similar to other service like water supply or electricity. What we need is better infrastructure from these ISPs, for that they need money but getting revenue from big companies like FB, twitter, flipkart etc at the cost of customer experience is certainly not done. This is a serious issue which can create complex problems later on.

It is sad to see only a few newspapers highlighting this problem. Some local language newspapers (atleast in Pune) didn't even bother to print what is going on. Add to that, TRAI website with that link to the pdf is hilarious. How can something so serious be reduced to a small link with the smallest font ? That too with a deadline of only one month ?
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Old 14th April 2015, 20:32   #27
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

Hello Everyone,

This post is more geared towards the general concept of net neutrality rather than Airtel's zero plan (of which I'm not a 100% sure).

I see both sides of this debate. Consider in a company of 10 employees, 9 eat up the entire bandwidth watching YouTube and the 1 person who wants to attend a web conference, can't. That's not fair. Using the same analogy, if 90% of an ISP/Telecom's customer base watches video streaming, no amount of technology/investment can support this surge in network traffic. That's exactly what happens when the student population at my university overwhelm our 1Gig connection with Netflix traffic. We have to keep upgrading our bandwidth and technology to manage that bandwidth.

Now on the other hand, an ISP can potentially get YouTube to pay extra and give them higher priority over a new startup video service company, killing it right away, essentially enabling a monopoly. Such unfair practices should be penalized. And if I read it right, this is where Airtel zero is flawed.
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Old 14th April 2015, 20:52   #28
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by kvish View Post
Although I am in support of net neutrality, I fail to see how airtel zero is linked to net neutrality. This service is pure economics and nothing to do with internet. This is happening across all industries and part and parcel of our daily lives.
Imagine this situation which is not uncommon in India - It is election time and you have the big, rich parties like Congress/BJP pitted against a small party like AAP. Congress/BJP workers go door to door and offer free transport to voters to go to the polling booth. Imagine a system that colludes with the big parties and provides the voter that has availed of free transport with only two options – vote for the party that provided him transport or vote for None of the Above (NOTA). Unfortunately, AAP is a small party and doesn’t have as much money. Do you think this situation is fair to all parties?

If you don’t, then voice your support for Net Neutrality – Airtel Zero and similar plans support companies with piles of cash and makes the internet an unfair marketplace killing small companies and stifling innovation.
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Old 14th April 2015, 21:48   #29
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I'm going to drop my 8 year old Airtel number.
My question is, how dare they? I'm ashamed that it's an Indian firm who decided to try out an approach which actually has been banned by multiple nations, developed nations, who, is news is anything to go by, we're hoping to emulate.
"OK, it didn't go through in X European nation. So what? India hai, the citizens are dogs and starving. We'll stuff enough pockets, no-one can do a thing. After all, we're Indians too, we know! "

I mean, mittal ain't stupid( at least in the true sense) , and he'd have done his research. He must have met lobbyists, gotten feedback to push for it. Unfortunately, the powers that be who would have told him to go ahead, they'd take care of legislation, they're even more detached from the real India than mittal seems to be. And now, everyone is backtracking in 5th gear. Fk must have also discussed, thinking "ye accha tareeka hai"(this is a good way to corner the market).

Let's make Flipkart and Airtel pay for thinking this could have even been dreamed up.


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Originally Posted by kvish View Post
The whole net neutrality debate is exploding because of airtel zero and flipkart signing up for it. By having the content provider pay for your web transaction, without in anyway blocking other transactions, doesn't make the net non neutral is what I was trying to say.
Sorry, but if all was hunky dory, what prompted Fk to withdraw from the service.
As a recent entrant in the portal business, I can tell you this. When I'm trying to build my traffic, every user who doesn't come to my site because he's OK with the free inclusion of, let's say, quikr, with his mobile, it will kill my business. If something like this happens, you will be able read the obituary to my business in the near future.

Last edited by mayankk : 14th April 2015 at 21:57.
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Old 14th April 2015, 21:51   #30
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Default Re: The fight for net neutrality is on! Time to reclaim the internet

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Originally Posted by anandm78 View Post
Imagine this situation which is not uncommon in India - It is election time and you have the big, rich parties like Congress/BJP pitted against a small party like AAP. Congress/BJP workers go door to door and offer free transport to voters to go to the polling booth. Imagine a system that colludes with the big parties and provides the voter that has availed of free transport with only two options – vote for the party that provided him transport or vote for None of the Above (NOTA). Unfortunately, AAP is a small party and doesn’t have as much money. Do you think this situation is fair to all parties?

If you don’t, then voice your support for Net Neutrality – Airtel Zero and similar plans support companies with piles of cash and makes the internet an unfair marketplace killing small companies and stifling innovation.
Fair point. But the politics example takes a different ball game. If I were AAP supporter, I would take the free ride and vote for AAP But thats for a different discussion.

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Originally Posted by sukhoi30 View Post
Suppose your ISP (Internet Service Provider), be it your mobile, or through your broadband, charges you Rs. 30 every month to view team-bhp website? Like that you will get a list of your favourite websites which you will be able to view only if you pay your ISP some amount. So, instead of freely browsing through internet, you will be charged for each websites you visit. Do you like that idea?

Basically, by taking away net neutrality, we are losing our rights to freely use a medium which is responsible for bringing the world closer together.
Cant agree more and I have already pitched in my support to net neutrality. My reservations are purely on drawing the lines between an marketing gimmicks versus restrictive gameplay.
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