Saturday, November 04, 2006

RFID: Net Neutrality

Nothing expands our commerce, education, politics or recreation as much as the Internet. True? False.

The real information mover-and-shaker is Network Neutrality. Net Neutrality is the principle that protects a free and open Internet by preserving equal access to the Internet. That's the way the Internet has always been and should always be.

However, some very familiar names in the telephone and cable industries would like to change that. Dramatically. AT&T, Verizon, Comcast and Time Warner are spending huge amounts of money lobbying Congress for legislation that would allow them to control which web sites you can access first and fastest.

Sound crazy? Yes, it does, because it is. It's also terribly real.

Their Lex Lutherian goal is to control Internet access by providing faster Internet service for companies willing to pay higher fees, and slower or nonexistent service for those who can't or won't.

If you don't think this is your problem, think about this: The Internet sans Neutrality will resemble cable TV. Network owners will have the power to choose (or at least influence) the content and applications that are available to you.

If you're a small business owner, you'd better hope that you can afford to pay the premium rate, or customers and potential customers will never see your web site.

If you're an Internet consumer (and you must be if you're reading this online blog), you'd better hope that your telephone or cable company likes the same sites that you do, or you may never have access to them again.

Congress is right now considering legislation to protect Net Neutrality, and the telecom giants are fighting hard against it. Their biggest advantage is the lack of consumer awareness.

I'll be writing more about this in the weeks ahead. For now, please educate yourself at Save the Internet.

NOTE: There is a group called "Hands Off the Internet" which is part of a telecom disinformation campaign. Don't fall for it.


At 1:40 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although there are lingering concerns by privacy advocates over the use of RFID, there's no doubt that the use of RFID tags continues to increase. According to a new report from In-Stat, over 1 billion tags were produced last year, and by 2010, that total will rise to 33 billion. Wal-Mart's requiring of their suppliers to use RFID tags are certainly one reason for the projected growth, as well as potential applications in both the industrial and retail sectors, such as the tracking of inventory.

At 4:16 AM , Anonymous boyd said...

To #1: You are clueless. Do you think that "In-stat" does anything else other than sucker the marketing guys from all the vendors of RFID tech to believe/purchase/use the statistics they site (and In-stat is quite sketchy as far as predictions go)? Get over it, WalMart will not integrate tagging at the item-level without the ability to "kill" the tags at the point-of-sale. It will not create top-line , nor bottom-line growth. Please use your head.

At 4:18 AM , Anonymous boyd said...

cite* check out transponderance for real discussions of issues for RFID.


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