Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Steve Latham, Kevin Jackson, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Java IoT, Microservices Expo, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing

@CloudExpo: Article

Two Giant Economies Provide Experiment to “Free and Unfettered” Internet

On both sides of the argument and the ocean, believers state with conviction that their way is the right way

In my previous blog I contrasted the latest net neutrality developments in the EU with the situation in the U.S. Neither decision will settle the argument and the two camps will continue to debate the topic for the foreseeable future. On both sides of the argument and the ocean, believers state with conviction that their way is the right way, leading to a healthier Internet industry and benefits for all.

One camp takes the view that Internet openness and neutrality means that telecom service providers should not be restricted from managing Internet traffic and, if they feel it is appropriate, to charge more to third-party ISPs and content providers for premium service. Only in this way, it is argued, will bit-carriers be able to earn the revenues they need to invest in network growth and quality improvements that will benefit us all.

An opposing view of openness and neutrality is that users of the Internet (that is content providers and the users who access and pay for that content) should be able to expect that their traffic will be given pretty much the same treatment as other users' traffic. If you want to send (or receive) more bits, then you can expect to pay more money for bandwidth, but once en route, all bits should be given equal treatment. Only in this way, it is argued, will bit-carriers be discouraged from under-investing in the network in order to create an artificial capacity shortfall.

On each side of the argument there is a long list of other debating points, most of which signal doom for the future of civilization as we know it if the right path isn't chosen.

Generally I avoid taking sides on this topic, although I tend to have an aversion to heavy-handed regulation. I have also pointed out that prophesies of doom are perhaps overstated, missing the point that businesses and business models can adapt, sometimes in unpredictable ways. For example, enabling carriers to charge for favoring some traffic over others could have a more complex result than just increasing the revenues of the carriers and adding to the costs of the users. It changes the bit-carrying business model in such a way that it might encourage new entrants to the market, and some of those new bit-carrying entrants could potentially be those same content providers who are liable to suffer from the extra costs.

Three years ago, the European Union legislators, without much conviction, decided to swing somewhat in the direction of the bit-carriers, when they decided against introducing legislation to protect net neutrality. At that time they decided that carrier transparency might be sufficient: carriers could enter into any arrangements they like, providing they revealed what they are doing. This decision was similar to the decision of the United States Court of Appeals in January 2014.

Now three years after their initial decision, and presumably after much soul-searching deliberation, the European legislators have moved somewhat in the opposite direction by announcing in April 2014 that they plan to pass legislation that aims to preserve aspects of net neutrality.

What's changed? Well, it's not that their economic advisors have definitively established that there is one right way here. The arguments are still raging, and still just as confused. But note that there's a European election looming. Politicians may not be any more skilled than the rest of us in predicting with accuracy the effects of this legislation one way or the other, in terms of its realistic economic impact on the industry and on the public good. But they can count votes, and it was clear that the lines were being drawn between just the telcos on one side and on the other, most of the Internet content and services industry plus a host of consumer advocates. Perhaps the telcos might have been in a better lobbying position if they hadn't moved so slowly in implementing their own reforms to mobile roaming charges, which have been a gold mine for the carriers in Europe for years, and a constant source of customer complaints. But they didn't, so the legislators plan to hit the telcos with a double whammy, because at the same time they also announced their intention to eliminate international roaming fees by 2016, consistent with their aim to create a genuine single market for wireless services to replace the current fragmented and customer-hostile market.

The decisive vote on these two important matters will not take place until October 2014, so there's still time for attitudes to change. But it might be rather useful for the industry to have two giant testing grounds so we can assess the actual results that emerge from these two different approaches to a "Free and Unfettered" Internet. So far all the foretelling has been based on speculation, some better-informed than others. A period of, say, five years with two giant economies testing out these apparently contradictory philosophies in parallel would be one grand experiment, that would, at least provide us with something to measure. Not that I think it would end the debate. The opinions of politicians and lobbyists alike are substantially immune to evidence, but they are not immune to the democratic pressures of voters. However voters need and deserve more than the partial and loud arguments of those with vested interests, and so this experiment might be just what we all need, on both sides of the Atlantic.

More Stories By Esmeralda Swartz

Esmeralda Swartz is VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud, BUSS. She has spent 15 years as a marketing, product management, and business development technology executive bringing disruptive technologies and companies to market. Esmeralda was CMO of MetraTech, now part of Ericsson. At MetraTech, Esmeralda was responsible for go-to-market strategy and execution for enterprise and SaaS products, product management, business development and partner programs. Prior to MetraTech, Esmeralda was co-founder, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development at Lightwolf Technologies, a big data management startup. She was previously co-founder and Senior Vice President of Marketing and Business Development of Soapstone Networks, a developer of resource and service control software, now part of Extreme Networks.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Infranics will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Since 2000, Infranics has developed SysMaster Suite, which is required for the stable and efficient management of ICT infrastructure. The ICT management solution developed and provided by Infranics continues to add intelligence to the ICT infrastructure through the IMC (Infra Management Cycle) based on mathemat...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudistics, an on-premises cloud computing company, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudistics delivers a complete public cloud experience with composable on-premises infrastructures to medium and large enterprises. Its software-defined technology natively converges network, storage, compute, virtualization, and management into a ...
Deep learning has been very successful in social sciences and specially areas where there is a lot of data. Trading is another field that can be viewed as social science with a lot of data. With the advent of Deep Learning and Big Data technologies for efficient computation, we are finally able to use the same methods in investment management as we would in face recognition or in making chat-bots. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Gaurav Chakravorty, co-founder and Head of Strategy Development ...
Now that the world has connected “things,” we need to build these devices as truly intelligent in order to create instantaneous and precise results. This means you have to do as much of the processing at the point of entry as you can: at the edge. The killer use cases for IoT are becoming manifest through AI engines on edge devices. An autonomous car has this dual edge/cloud analytics model, producing precise, real-time results. In his session at @ThingsExpo, John Crupi, Vice President and Eng...
What if you could build a web application that could support true web-scale traffic without having to ever provision or manage a single server? Sounds magical, and it is! In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Munns, Senior Developer Advocate for Serverless Applications at Amazon Web Services, will show how to build a serverless website that scales automatically using services like AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, and Amazon S3. We will review several frameworks that can help you build serverle...
In the enterprise today, connected IoT devices are everywhere – both inside and outside corporate environments. The need to identify, manage, control and secure a quickly growing web of connections and outside devices is making the already challenging task of security even more important, and onerous. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Rich Boyer, CISO and Chief Architect for Security at NTT i3, will discuss new ways of thinking and the approaches needed to address the emerging challenges of securit...
The taxi industry never saw Uber coming. Startups are a threat to incumbents like never before, and a major enabler for startups is that they are instantly “cloud ready.” If innovation moves at the pace of IT, then your company is in trouble. Why? Because your data center will not keep up with frenetic pace AWS, Microsoft and Google are rolling out new capabilities In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Don Browning, VP of Cloud Architecture at Turner, will posit that disruption is inevitable for c...
There are 66 million network cameras capturing terabytes of data. How did factories in Japan improve physical security at the facilities and improve employee productivity? Edge Computing reduces possible kilobytes of data collected per second to only a few kilobytes of data transmitted to the public cloud every day. Data is aggregated and analyzed close to sensors so only intelligent results need to be transmitted to the cloud. Non-essential data is recycled to optimize storage.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Loom Systems will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Founded in 2015, Loom Systems delivers an advanced AI solution to predict and prevent problems in the digital business. Loom stands alone in the industry as an AI analysis platform requiring no prior math knowledge from operators, leveraging the existing staff to succeed in the digital era. With offices in S...
As businesses adopt functionalities in cloud computing, it’s imperative that IT operations consistently ensure cloud systems work correctly – all of the time, and to their best capabilities. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Bernd Harzog, CEO and founder of OpsDataStore, will present an industry answer to the common question, “Are you running IT operations as efficiently and as cost effectively as you need to?” He will expound on the industry issues he frequently came up against as an analyst, and...
In his General Session at 16th Cloud Expo, David Shacochis, host of The Hybrid IT Files podcast and Vice President at CenturyLink, investigated three key trends of the “gigabit economy" though the story of a Fortune 500 communications company in transformation. Narrating how multi-modal hybrid IT, service automation, and agile delivery all intersect, he will cover the role of storytelling and empathy in achieving strategic alignment between the enterprise and its information technology.
"I think that everyone recognizes that for IoT to really realize its full potential and value that it is about creating ecosystems and marketplaces and that no single vendor is able to support what is required," explained Esmeralda Swartz, VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud at Ericsson, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Microservices are a very exciting architectural approach that many organizations are looking to as a way to accelerate innovation. Microservices promise to allow teams to move away from monolithic "ball of mud" systems, but the reality is that, in the vast majority of organizations, different projects and technologies will continue to be developed at different speeds. How to handle the dependencies between these disparate systems with different iteration cycles? Consider the "canoncial problem" ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that HTBase will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. HTBase (Gartner 2016 Cool Vendor) delivers a Composable IT infrastructure solution architected for agility and increased efficiency. It turns compute, storage, and fabric into fluid pools of resources that are easily composed and re-composed to meet each application’s needs. With HTBase, companies can quickly prov...
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor - all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
China Unicom exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which took place at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, in November 2016. China United Network Communications Group Co. Ltd ("China Unicom") was officially established in 2009 on the basis of the merger of former China Netcom and former China Unicom. China Unicom mainly operates a full range of telecommunications services including mobile broadband (GSM, WCDMA, LTE FDD, TD-LTE), fixed-line broadband, ICT, data communica...
In their Live Hack” presentation at 17th Cloud Expo, Stephen Coty and Paul Fletcher, Chief Security Evangelists at Alert Logic, provided the audience with a chance to see a live demonstration of the common tools cyber attackers use to attack cloud and traditional IT systems. This “Live Hack” used open source attack tools that are free and available for download by anybody. Attendees learned where to find and how to operate these tools for the purpose of testing their own IT infrastructure. The...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CA Technologies has been named “Platinum Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business – from apparel to energy – is being rewritten by software. From ...