Return to

John Oliver and Net Neutrality - Take 2

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver just aired another segment regarding Net Neutrality yesterday, just wanted to leave this here since I couldn't find anything recent about it (only the first take on it 3 years ago).


Take 1 a few years back: (one of many)


Weaponized autism you are free for take off. /s

Not a huge fan of John Oliver, but these sort of segments I can get behind.

2 Likes is certainly one of the greatest ideas I've heard in a long time.


Well yeah, some segments are rather weird. And I guess one just needs to like him.

Not really a John Oliver viewer, but this does really help promote net neutrality to the masses.

Since Jon Stewart is off the air Last Week Tonight is the closest thing and Oliver is brilliant in that role. I like that guy a lot. But more importantly his team of researchers and writers is doing an absolutely incredible job. And this segment again proves that.


So I know this is an older article but how do feel about this view point .

Techie against net neutrality


This was posted yesterday, not exactly old :slight_smile:

Which viewpoint are you referring to? On Net Neutrality? I think the general consensus is somewhat clear on this forum :slight_smile:

He is referring to the article he posted.

As for the article itself. Excuse the opinion of an non US-resident but similar dynamics can be seen everywhere. The issues that net neutrality laws are there to cope with stem exactly from the free market consolidation. Thinking that the free market we regulate itself, when it has already proven that they will not do that, that they will consolidate and divide monopolies the same way drug cartels divide territories, is naive.

The issue is that ISPs already control all infrastructure. Local municipality initiatives that are not-national and can work under social control cannot be established because of that. De-regulating such a situation will only lead to more powerful monopolies. The articles confuses freedom with the lack of rules. Freedom does not mean lack of rules. That is a jungle. Rules that work on favor of the common good and not in favor of specific interests is what freedom is. What your FCC wants to do is not reduce regulations. It removes regulations that protect the common good but regulations that favor the ISP ( like regulations that restricts the establishment of local competition for example) are left unchanged.

That link was missing when I answered him :wink: But thanks for the hint, now I can read it too.

... if it would load... I just see everything blurred, and it's not my glasses :frowning: Maybe stuff at work getting blocked again...

"You got government on my internet."

"Well... You got internet in my government!"

Hmm...Could it be?
Nah, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth when mixed.


I think that begging the money hungry government to protect you from wealthy business men is like begging the fox to defend your hen house. You won't end up with the results you wanted.

I'm surprised that anyone who values free speech would even consider begging the FCC to regulate the internet after all the regulations and restriction we deal with on TV and radio that violate free speech.

1 Like

OK I'm confused and not american. How does the FCC regulate free speech?

Also people are asking the FCC to make all traffic equal, I don't see how that impedes free speech?

It's the camel's nose entering the tent. By regulating something (internet) that they previously did not have jurisdiction over. Just like with TV and radio, future regulations will be forthcoming to further muck with things.

Of course many of those regulations may be written by the ISPs themselves as regulations often harm the little guy while the big guys can afford to get around them thus keeping out future competition. FCC history has shown this happens with everything they've regulated before. It will happen again.

Well, to keep with John Oliver and animals : the dingo ended up not eating the children after all.

For now...

I felt this was relevant.


TL;DR: Shit happened, they claim it was DDoS but can't and/or won't back up that claim.

Sooo... anything new?

I stand hard with the line in that article. There are also functional arguments against Net Neutrality, such as the Netflix argument, which I can go into detail about if people are interested.

I disagree.

Merriam-Webster defines Freedom as the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action and defines Rule as a regulation or bylaw governing procedure or controlling conduct.

By those definitions, a rule is contrary to freedom. Don't get me wrong, I know that's a simplification of the matter, but you're arguing that you get more freedom with more rules, which is absolutely wrong.

Hypothetical. There are no don't kill people laws. Meaning, you can go around killing people all you want. Are you more free? Yes, because there is no consequence for killing someone. Are you more safe? No, the likelihood of someone killing you just skyrocketed.

What @turin231 is confusing is safety from abuse and freedom to do what you want. It's an easy mistake to make, but it's a dangerous one at that.

I won't be surprised if this happens. Deregulation is really the only thing that can level the playing field. See the Netflix example.

I'd say it's less about controlling free speech as it is setting reasonable expectations of what you'll hear on a broadcast.

The FCC has rules about what can be broadcast (let's focus on TV and Radio, because it's easier to illustrate) in terms of decency. They regulate speech to a certain standard of decency on live broadcasts that reach millions because it's nearly impossible to prevent children from being exposed to it. Would you want your 12 year old child to see a sex scene on sesame street?

Calling Trump "Vladimir Putin's cocksocket" is a recent example of what I'd call indecency. Is it funny? Yes. Is it offensive? Depends on your political views. Is it something you want your 12 year old child to hear? No. I think we can all agree on that.

This is a misrepresentation of what's being offered, in my understanding. Before we can talk about if it impedes free speech, we need to fully understand the ask.

They're asking the FCC to prevent companies from doing things to improve performance of their service. Think Youtube or Netflix caching servers, private backhauls into a datacenter, that sort of thing.

While that doesn't make all traffic equal, it doesn't hurt non-backhauled or non-cached data. In fact, the way I see it, it reduces the public internet bandwidth that the ISP has to service every other server on the internet, which in effect, allows the other services better connectivity. The only time this wouldn't happen is if they don't upgrade their public infrastructure, but that's a whole other issue that won't happen for reasons that are quite complicated that I can get into later.

In essence, what I'm saying is that what they're asking the FCC to do in "not allowing fast lanes" will not obstruct freedom of speech and will not hurt anyone except companies that use a significant amount (10%+ of the ISP's backbone bandwidth) who do not want to set up fast lanes. And honestly, if you're generating 10's of tbps of bandwidth on a normal day, you're either making enough money to set up backhauls and caching servers or your business model isn't good enough and you're bound to fail anyways.

Dammit, I started out replying to one person and got carried away. This is what happens when you're frustrated about something, folks.


Ah well ok, I guess any half-assed civilized country has something similar though...

Huh what? Maybe I misunderstood this, but I don't think they are asking to get rid of cache servers... cache server's help reduce load on the overall network in that they aren't needed to be downloaded from the content provider for each view. Having cache servers is somewhat crucial in this infrastructure....

/edit which if I had continued reading you just stated...

1 Like