Reply to post: Re: Please explain: why do we NEED this so-called "net neutrality" again?

FCC: Oh no, deary me. What a shame. Too bad, so sad we can't do net neutrality appeal during the US govt shutdown

Alan Brown Silver badge

Re: Please explain: why do we NEED this so-called "net neutrality" again?

> a supposedly "free market"

That depends on your interpretation of the term.

To most of us that means "free and fair competiton, where cartel and monopoly behaviour is illegal"

To others it means "free to win, by any and all means available"

There are an awful lot of people who like to pretend that the Sherman Act never existed and a lot of laws have been passed at state and district levels to nullify its intent and effects - which is why the mess that exists, exists now.

AT&T had legislated local monpolies as part of the 1930s antitrust settlements with the FCC which lasted right up to 1982 (the breakup of Ma Bell), but what that breakup actually achieved was the reformation of AT&T to a size which the FCC couldn't intervene with (2 companies, east and west of the Mississippi), without that pesky "universal service" obligation, thanks to backdoor agreements and legislation changes with state PUCs. The same thing happened with cable TV companies, which started as local monopolies and then joined up in the same way that AT&T expanded at the end of the 19th century (and which led to the 1930s antitrust trials in the first place)

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