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A ramble about good and evil, or NYT and Net Neutrality August 5, 2010 at 9:05 pm

My opinion of the New York Times hangs in the balance of the Google-Verizon [anti-]Net Neutrality clusterf**k. Maybe I’m just a Google (and Verizon, to a lesser degree) fanboy (guilty as charged, fandom is good), but after reading the NYT’s entire article it doesn’t all stack up in my mind. Again, maybe I’m just slow to condemn Google because I’m blind to it or something, but I just don’t see how the company of “Do No Evil” (and yes, I remember China) and open source and green energy and everything else, could in a matter of weeks turn completely around on an issue they themselves helped bring to the public’s attention 4 years ago (sidenote: seems they first posted that page on the EXACT SAME DAY as the famous Daily Show “series of tubes” clip, not really sure if that tells us anything (maybe Google’s words (and $4.6 BILLION?) have been empty for 4 years?)). Verizon I can totally see. I may find them to be my “favorite” cell phone carrier at this point, but that doesn’t mean I trust them any farther than I can toss my phone. That “odd couple” pairing of these supposed talks is what smells the fishiest to me. NYT also seems to have a LOT of “response” quotes they went out and found from FCC spokespeople and various advocacy groups, but that level of detailed reporting highlights, in my mind, how little information they’re reporting about what Verizon and Google are actually, you know, saying. They seem to be implying that Google is somehow the regulator of the Internet, and to abolish the practice of net neutrality on their network Verizon would somehow need permission from Google. I know Google is huge and has 90% of the search market share and all that, but with that size comes a lot of close inspection from, well, everyone, and if they did something really, really f*cking stupid (like decide to start acting as regulator of the Internet to the likes of ISPs) they would not only have a huge sh*tstorm on their ass, they’d lose millions of customers to Bing, and probably get the FCC, FTC and DoJ all suddenly looking into them. It’s only because they’re such a nice company that people put up with them being so f’ing huge and having so many fingers in so many pies.

OK, HUGE fanboy moment here, but what I can see as likely is that Google has been having talks with Verizon for “11 months” to try to convince them NOT to start charging for faster content delivery. THAT’S what the Google I know would do.

Maybe I just don’t know Google like the NY Times is implying they do. But if it turns out the NYT is wrong, I will not only be very mad at them for inciting a huge and far-reaching sh*tstorm today, I will also be very sad because I’m one of those people who’s very scared of a future devoid of real fearless journalists who aren’t driven by pageviews (something newspaper journalists of old had no concept of). But if NYT turns out to be wrong, this whole thing will have proven, to me, that all they care about is pageviews, as well.

In fact, even if they’re right I think this has proven that to me.


2 Responses to “A ramble about good and evil, or NYT and Net Neutrality”

  1. This sucks because NYT has become my main source of news, but that article smelled fishy to me, too, and after reading this I totally see your point. I might want to look into alternative news sources – or just be a defensive reader.

  2. [...] has now crossed that line in my opinion. This makes me unimaginably angry, not only because I wrote an impassioned defense of them just a few days ago, but because Google was the very best ally the Net Neutrality movement had, just dropping out of [...]

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