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The Means Of Communication

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Let's talk about that.


Regular phone lines, cable, electrical lines.....satellites, etc.........software?


Who controls these........means of communication?


Who are these people, and companies, and are they operating in our interests, or only in their companies self interests




that's my question.


They sure as hell don't work for me. Bell South and ATT are some of the biggest motherfuckers I've EVER run across, anywhere.


Who do they work for? I've been their customer, paying them out the ass, for most of my life and they don't work for me, that's all I know.

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That's easy. They work for themselves and thier stockholders.


Here's some food for thought though...


Technological changes, coupled with deregulation, may soon radically limit diversity on the Internet.


The 7,000 Internet Service Providers (ISPs) still available today are quickly dwindling to just two or three for any one locale. They are being bought out by large monopolies that also control your local phone, cable, and possibly, satellite internet.


The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Congress are currently overturning the public-interest rules that have encouraged the expansion of the Internet up until now. Much of this is due to the lobbying tactics that cable and phone industries use to mute the competition, take advantage of technological changes and push for deregulation to consolidate market control.


A policy of open access currently makes it possible for people to choose between long-distance phone providers. This open access policy has also allowed one to choose between AOL, MSN, Jimmy's Internet Shack, and thousands of other ISPs for dial-up Internet access. Phone companies would like to use their monopoly ownership of the phone wires to have total control over phone-based Internet services as well, but telecom regulations are in place that prevent them from blocking out other companies.


Unfortunately, as the general shift from dial-up to broadband Internet access gets underway, the FCC is moving in with a series of actions that threaten to shut down open access. In 2002 the FCC decided to characterize high-speed cable Internet connection largely controlled by AOL-Time Warner, AT&T Broadband, and other large corporate playersas an "information service" rather than a "telecommunications service." This designation frees cable broadband from telecom rules, giving the cable companies that own broadband lines the ability to deny smaller ISP companies access over their cable lines. Cable itself is a monopoly in most towns; so anyone who signs up for cable internet will typically have no choice other than to use the cable company's own ISP.


Such degree of market control spells trouble for freedom of information on the Internet. Cable and phone monopolies would become clearinghouses for information. Corporations and government agencies will hold tremendous power to filter and censor content. ISPs already have the capability to privilege, or block out, content traveling through their web servers. With the demise of open access regulations, Internet content will likely resemble the "monotonous diet of corporate content" that viewers now receive with cable television.


The monopoly power being handed over to the cable and phone companies will enable them to sell different levels of Internet access, much like they do with cable television. For one price, you could access only certain pre-approved sites; for a higher price, you could access a wider selection of sites; and only for the highest price could you access the entire World Wide Web. This is already the way that many wireless Internet packages operate. It's clear that "marginal" content that isn't associated with e-commerce, big business, or government would have a hard time making it into the first-tier, "basic" packages. This isn't censorship, we'll be told. It's just that there is only so much bandwidth to go around, and customers would rather see CNN, the Disney Channel, and porn, than community-based websites, such as www.indymedia.org.


All of that is per this article with thanks to Mats Olsson for bringing it up in this thread



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