Countervailing Power

Mere minutes after I suggested that the best way to preserve the Internet’s open innovation platform is to find powerful interests to counterbalance the telecom incumbents, an email arrived in my inbox from Dan Berninger. He forwarded a column that appeared a cable industry trade journal, arguing (pretty convincingly, I think) that network neutrality is actually in the interests of cable companies. The key point — which is relevant to the entire discussion — is that we’re really talking about neutrality in two places. One is the interface between applications and the local broadband access network (where today cable leads). The other is the interface between those local networksn and the backbone (dominated by AT&T, Verizon, and Level 3).