Are you still trying to make sense of last week's court decision, which ruled the FCC lacks authority over the Internet? There have been so many articles and so much spin, it’s hard to know what this decision means for Net Neutrality and our work to bridge the nation’s digital divide.
For some clarity, check out this Q&A between Washington Post's Cecilia Kang and Free Press policy director Ben Scott, in which they discuss the effect of last week's court decision on the future of the Internet.
ColorOfChange.org has urged its members to call on the Federal Communications Commission to protect an open Internet by passing Network Neutrality rules and re-establishing its authority to regulate the broadband industry following Tuesday’s federal court ruling.
On Tuesday, the D.C. Circuit ruled on an important Internet law case I argued for Free Press on behalf of a range of “supporting intervenors” in the case. I wanted to post a few thoughts about the decision.
Broadband networks represent the most critical communications infrastructure of our time: if these underlying transmission systems don't function effectively, the Internet cannot serve as a vibrant forum for speech, commerce, and culture.
Today’s ruling for Comcast by the DC Circuit Court could be the biggest blow to our nation’s primary communications platform, or it could be the kick in the pants our leaders need to finally protect it. Either way, the future of the Internet, the fight for Net Neutrality, and the expansion of broadband is hanging in the balance.
Clay Shirky published a thoughtful blog post called “The Collapse of Complex Business Models” where he applies the lessons of Joseph Tainter’s 1988 book, The Collapse of Complex Societies to the shifting media industry. Shirky's reflections on the challenges and opportunities that exist in times of collapse pose key questions about how we make structural change in societies, cultures and industries.
Tainter’s essential theory is that complex societies collapse not in spite of their complexity but because of it. Shirky summarizes: “Early on, the marginal value of this complexity is positive—each additional bit of complexity more than pays for itself in improved output—but over time, the law of diminishing returns reduces the marginal value, until it disappears completely. At this point, any additional complexity is pure cost.” For Shirky, this tension is at the heart of many questions about the future of media, and he suggests that paywall advocates are essentially arguing that they need to find ways to make Web users pay up because otherwise, “we will have to stop making content in the costly and complex way we have grown accustomed to making it. And we don’t know how to do that.”
Here we go again. Another Internet service provider is caught getting in the way of its users, just four days before the Federal Communications Commission closes the window for public comments in its effort to stop such meddling.
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting has announced a major journalism initiative that will increase original local reporting in seven regions around the country. Media Minutes has the story this week.