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Perhaps. I'd prefer it not to--I'd rather have an ecosystem with private and public competition, and one with net neutrality regulation. But it seems to me the discussion is generally really lopsided, with little to no acknowledgment of what ISPs get from the public. If the ISPs really want unfettered competition, then I say fine--but I think, as you say, if we really took competition seriously the consequences would be far more dire for them than I think people realize. The problem is the scope of what real competition would entail is often obscured, because what they get from the public is just sort of assumed to be a given and off the table.



Private public doesnt work, its even worse then a market economy. Only public providers will bring internet to people further and further away from main cities, while private companies will focus on the densest areas of the biggest cities.

We have all of that in Germany already. It doesnt work, laying fiberglass or even copper outside of major cities is just not a reasonable thing to do in a market economy. Same as its not worth while to send a postmen every day, or even every week, to a small village. This is something that needs to be financed through a shared burden, otherwise you have the situation, that large part of your country dont have DSL yet. With private companies siphoning of easily provided customers, the public is stuck with a gigantic burden to provide the absolut minimum to people.


Agreed, we do give a lot to private companies in order to get the benefits of their products, and they're constantly pushing for more. I just feel that the internet as a utility is still too new for us to know exactly what the right regulator regime is or the optimal role of government in actually providing internet services.

Ideally regulation would be more reactive than proactive. Rather than defining explicitly the terms and services that ISPs must provide, we'd let them compete with each other and try different products and business models. The government would only step in when they do something that turns out to be harmful. The trick would be to actually step in where needed and not just let anything go.




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