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AT&T weighs in against Net neutrality for wireless networks - Page 2

post #41 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kavok View Post

If the FCC was really interested in empowering the consumer and promoting competition, then they should require:

1. Hardware (cell phones, etc. ) should be unlocked and freely allowed to be taken from one carrier to another. If the carriers know that their customers can leave them at any time, it would make them provide better services. This would also keep more perfectly good cell phones out of the landfills.

2. Change the contract model that the carriers are currently using to something that doesn't lock the customer in for several years. I'm not sure what would be a viable replacement but I know several people that would like iPhones and can't (won't) break their contracts because of the severe fees associated with it.

It will be interesting to see how this all pans out.

1. Except that effectively in any given place there are few companies providing service.
2. The change needed is to call that fee what it is, a loan. The company gives you a loan to buy the cell phone through them and you pay off the loan over the coarse of the contract. As such, when the balance is paid, the company should stop charging me for the phone. Of course, at the back end of this you will find manufacturers making a killing on new phone sales as a constant stream of revenue flows in off this policy. You can bet that they don't want the policy to change...because then people may stop upgrading...it would certainly slow the process.

The whole industry is a bit crooked.
post #42 of 82
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Originally Posted by fattychance View Post

1. Except that effectively in any given place there are few companies providing service.
2. The change needed is to call that fee what it is, a loan. The company gives you a loan to buy the cell phone through them and you pay off the loan over the coarse of the contract. As such, when the balance is paid, the company should stop charging me for the phone. Of course, at the back end of this you will find manufacturers making a killing on new phone sales as a constant stream of revenue flows in off this policy. You can bet that they don't want the policy to change...because then people may stop upgrading...it would certainly slow the process.

The whole industry is a bit crooked.

every carrier has a selection of "free" or almost "free" phones. in fact i found some for my inlaws a few months ago. every 2 years you can just upgrade to the "newest" free phone

of course we can price cell service like airline seats where everyone pays a different rate depending on any number of factors
post #43 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

of course we can price cell service like airline seats where everyone pays a different rate depending on any number of factors

We could also price it like public utility service where rates have to be approved by government agencies and justified. Or we could price it a thousand different ways.
post #44 of 82
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Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

It's actually "VoIP"

How long is it going to take before people who don't even know how to spell it keep mentioning it? The Horror!


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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post
AT&T is responsible for killing GV on the iPhone. Apple had little to do with it, apart from covering for AT&T. ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post
... Why do you think AT&T wanted to pull GV from the iPhone, and not other phones on its network

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

And your very first point demolishes your own argument.

lol..Thanks for a good chuckle this morning Gazoobee Even if the other guy didn't like being jabbed at his own expense, nice touch of humor there...
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post #45 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by noexpectations View Post

This would be a horrible solution. If we required every cell phone maker to ensure that every phone is compatible with every carrier, prices would SKY ROCKET! No one would be able to afford one every few years.

Also, you don't have to lock into a carrier....just buy the phone at list price. Ahhh.....you wouldn't like that would you?

I disagree with above statement, since in India, thats exactly what is happening, you have majority of legal unlocked phones being sold and people are very happy to buy them, since most people do not want to be locked in to a specific carrier.

I am sure there low-end phones that are locked to carriers, but majority of people want the freedom to choose their own plan or change if necessary. If it can work in India, why not US.

There is a form of lock in with certain carriers due to models being only with that carrier e.g. new BB 9000 model (can not remember exact model no.), but there is no contract lock in.
post #46 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

1. you can kind of do this if manufacturers would make all phones with CDMA and GSM radios and the software. some blackberries have this and they are very expensive

2. that was already tried with the original iphone at launch and it was a dismal failure. it failed so bad that Apple/AT&T had to quickly work out a subsidy agreement because only a few of the most hardcore fanboys bought the iphone when it first came out. no one in their mind wanted to pay $600 for a cell phone

saw your reply after i replied and it makes sense, since USA is so used to cell carriers supporting the cost of mobile phones, it would be hard to change. In India the cell carriers would never support such a scheme and people are used to buying the unlocked phone and getting the plan their want and changing if necessary.
post #47 of 82
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

I expect the reason the third-party GV apps were originally approved is that no one at a high level actually looked in detail at what this actually did to the platform, but that the Google GV app probably caught the attention of higher ups who realized the danger it posed.

Actually, Phil Schiller himself approved the third-party Google Voice apps, then they got pulled a few months later when Google decides to release its own Voice app. Now you're telling me that the higher-ups decided it was both worthy of approval, yet unworthy of approval? There's nothing here that suggests that Apple could be at fault if they approved the apps to begin with. It's more likely that the Google Voice app caught the auspicious eye of AT&T, who then hinted to Apple that they should reject it (sending a reject letter to Google) and then when the FCC investigates, go into damage control mode and say it was not rejected, but still "studied" for somehow modifying the interface. All of these reasons are BS that Apple gives during the FCC investigation, it's simply lawyer-speak for saying something else instead of actually saying AT&T was involved in the influencing the decision.
post #48 of 82
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Originally Posted by bartfat View Post

Actually, Phil Schiller himself approved the third-party Google Voice apps

And we know this how? (Maybe I just missed it, but I don't recall reading this anywhere.)
post #49 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by souliisoul View Post

saw your reply after i replied and it makes sense, since USA is so used to cell carriers supporting the cost of mobile phones, it would be hard to change. In India the cell carriers would never support such a scheme and people are used to buying the unlocked phone and getting the plan their want and changing if necessary.

i had an unlocked phone in italy in 1999. i paid $250 or so for the cheapest and crappiest phone with no contract and i had a choice of 2-5 different carriers i could buy calling cards from. at the same time i saw people buy cell phones for $500 and up there because there was no subsidy and the experience was exactly the same

I prefer the US system of subsidized phones
post #50 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

i had an unlocked phone in italy in 1999. i paid $250 or so for the cheapest and crappiest phone with no contract and i had a choice of 2-5 different carriers i could buy calling cards from. at the same time i saw people buy cell phones for $500 and up there because there was no subsidy and the experience was exactly the same

I prefer the US system of subsidized phones

There is no necessary tie between subsidization and locking. As others have pointed out, nothing would stop carriers from offering subsidized phones with contracts and bring your own phone monthly plans at different rates. The only reason that phones are locked is to try to prevent the consumer from going elsewhere once the contract is over, and it doesn't figure into the subsidy price.
post #51 of 82
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Originally Posted by bartfat View Post

Actually, Phil Schiller himself approved the third-party Google Voice apps, then they got pulled a few months later when Google decides to release its own Voice app. Now you're telling me that the higher-ups decided it was both worthy of approval, yet unworthy of approval? There's nothing here that suggests that Apple could be at fault if they approved the apps to begin with. It's more likely that the Google Voice app caught the auspicious eye of AT&T, who then hinted to Apple that they should reject it (sending a reject letter to Google) and then when the FCC investigates, go into damage control mode and say it was not rejected, but still "studied" for somehow modifying the interface. All of these reasons are BS that Apple gives during the FCC investigation, it's simply lawyer-speak for saying something else instead of actually saying AT&T was involved in the influencing the decision.

Google Voice is a call forwarding app where consumers still have to pay AT&T voice minutes.
post #52 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by souliisoul View Post

saw your reply after i replied and it makes sense, since USA is so used to cell carriers supporting the cost of mobile phones, it would be hard to change. In India the cell carriers would never support such a scheme and people are used to buying the unlocked phone and getting the plan their want and changing if necessary.

That's because of:

(1) India is a third world country where people are poor, there aren't much job security and there aren't many ways for ordinary people to obtain credit
(2) the massive market of grey goods because these 3rd world countries often impose huge import duty taxes on actual legitimately imported goods.
(3) most of the grey goods cell phone imports came from first world like UK where they were box-broken --- most of them are originally simlocked subsidized phones that were illegally unlocked.

The first world carriers are subsidizing Indians on their cell phones.
post #53 of 82
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Because it's not in the public interest to allow the wireless carriers to use their position of control of a public resource to stifle competition and innovation. They're making plenty of money on the pipes, but, if they find it not profitable enough, they can always return their spectrum to the FCC. I doubt we see that happening even if strict wireless net neutrality is enforced for them.

This is exactly right. It really is OUR spectrum, at&t and every one else it just leasing it. The FCC has the right to make sure that it is used in a manor to benefit the public. I hear at&t winning about how they didn't know this going into the last auction. If they don't like it, return the spectrum, some one else will buy it and make money off it with these new rules. AT&T has one goal, make as much money as they can. So they are going to fight this tooth and nail. The FCC has to grow some big ones and not back down to them.
post #54 of 82
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Originally Posted by peteo View Post

This is exactly right. It really is OUR spectrum, at&t and every one else it just leasing it. The FCC has the right to make sure that it is used in a manor to benefit the public. I hear at&t winning about how they didn't know this going into the last auction. If they don't like it, return the spectrum, some one else will buy it and make money off it with these new rules. AT&T has one goal, make as much money as they can. So they are going to fight this tooth and nail. The FCC has to grow some big ones and not back down to them.

AT&T didn't whined about it.

And it was Verizon Wireless that bought the 700 MHz spectrum that came with the "open" policy attached.

Guess what --- Google never had any intention to bid to win that spectrum auction.
post #55 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

AT&T didn't whined about it.

Well, they are whining now.

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And it was Verizon Wireless that bought the 700 MHz spectrum that came with the "open" policy attached.

That doesn't mean that AT&T's spectrum cannot be regulated as necessary to serve the public interest.

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Guess what --- Google never had any intention to bid to win that spectrum auction.

You're probably right about that.
post #56 of 82
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

That doesn't mean that AT&T's spectrum cannot be regulated as necessary to serve the public interest.

What public interest is that? Google's interest doesn't necessarily mean it's the public's interest.

AT&T Wireless offers the largest regular priced iphone data allowance in the world, the second cheapest iphone plans in the G7 countries and the third fastest 3G iphone speed in the world.

The worldwide launch of the iphone is the best thing that has happened in terms of understanding the rest of the world's telecom regulatory frameworks. Before the iphone was launched --- everybody had the wrong impression that the grass is greener on the other side.
post #57 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

What public interest is that? Google's interest doesn't necessarily mean it's the public's interest.

I know that everyone has gone gaga for Google, but network neutrality isn't about Google, even though they would benefit from it. It's about consumers being able to freely choose what services they want to access over the network and being able to do so.
post #58 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

I know that everyone has gone gaga for Google, but network neutrality isn't about Google, even though they would benefit from it. It's about consumers being able to freely choose what services they want to access over the network and being able to do so.

I fail to see any consumer benefit if the carriers start using the rest of the world's iphone data model. You can do whatever you want, as long as you pay $800 for the iphone and then pay expensive monthly fees to have the option of tethering --- but we will give you 100 MB or 250 MB a month.
post #59 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

I fail to see any consumer benefit if the carriers start using the rest of the world's iphone data model. You can do whatever you want, as long as you pay $800 for the iphone and then pay expensive monthly fees to have the option of tethering --- but we will give you 100 MB or 250 MB a month.

I don't know what you are talking about but I don't think it has anything to do with network neutrality.
post #60 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

There is no necessary tie between subsidization and locking. As others have pointed out, nothing would stop carriers from offering subsidized phones with contracts and bring your own phone monthly plans at different rates. The only reason that phones are locked is to try to prevent the consumer from going elsewhere once the contract is over, and it doesn't figure into the subsidy price.


At least i can be sure if I buy a phone that it has been tested by the carrier to work on their network. If it's bring your own phone it's a support nightmare where carriers will have to support all kinds of phones and it's going to be their fault if something doesn't work. Just like the wifi issue with the 3gs

I had to work with some telecom equipment one time and it was a nightmare. It took me a week to figure out that it was some setting on our backbone network and the way the t1 was configured.
post #61 of 82
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

I don't know what you are talking about but I don't think it has anything to do with network neutrality.

All the regulations in the world don't prevent carriers to charge whatever they want.
post #62 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

At least i can be sure if I buy a phone that it has been tested by the carrier to work on their network. If it's bring your own phone it's a support nightmare where carriers will have to support all kinds of phones and it's going to be their fault if something doesn't work. Just like the wifi issue with the 3gs.

That still doesn't have anything to do with locking. But it does point to why multiple different incompatable networks is a huge mess.
post #63 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

That still doesn't have anything to do with locking. But it does point to why multiple different incompatable networks is a huge mess.

Except that even in Europe where there is a single standard, they are advocating that European carriers should copy what Verizon Wireless do --- impose their own additional certification system.

http://www.mobiletoday.co.uk/Report_...igorously.aspx
post #64 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

Except that even in Europe where there is a single standard, they are advocating that European carriers should copy what Verizon Wireless do --- impose their own additional certification system.

http://www.mobiletoday.co.uk/Report_...igorously.aspx

Certification also has nothing to do with locking. The only purpose of locking is to prevent a customer being able to leave a carrier at the end of a contract. It's an indefensible practice that should simply be explicitly outlawed.
post #65 of 82
It's also meant to stop subsidised phone's from being resold in places like India.

There's a reason why unlocked phone's usually cost more than locked one's.

Handset locking is not only confined to the US.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Certification also has nothing to do with locking. The only purpose of locking is to prevent a customer being able to leave a carrier at the end of a contract. It's an indefensible practice that should simply be explicitly outlawed.
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post #66 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Certification also has nothing to do with locking. The only purpose of locking is to prevent a customer being able to leave a carrier at the end of a contract. It's an indefensible practice that should simply be explicitly outlawed.

what exactly is the point of keeping a cell phone more than 2 years? every carrier has free or almost free phones that you can get. and the price points are about the same for the premium phones
post #67 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

what exactly is the point of keeping a cell phone more than 2 years? every carrier has free or almost free phones that you can get. and the price points are about the same for the premium phones

What exactly is the point of locking it then?
post #68 of 82
i believe AT&T unlocks most of their phones after the contract expires. I think it's an apple policy not to unlock the iphone because SJ is concerned about the experience and how it may confuse people if they had a choice
post #69 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

i believe AT&T unlocks most of their phones after the contract expires. I think it's an apple policy not to unlock the iphone because SJ is concerned about the experience and how it may confuse people if they had a choice

Again, this is irrelevant in regards to whether it should be allowed.

All the arguments for locking phones amount to nothing more than FUD. All the arguments against network neutrality amount to nothing more than FUD. Just like all the arguments against number portability were nothing but FUD.
post #70 of 82
apple locks down their hardware and software so that it's very hard to install OS X on anything other than Apple branded hardware. maybe there should be a law that says i should be able to install OS X on any hardware that i want? not like the hardware between Apple branded hardware and Dell/HP is any different?
post #71 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

apple locks down their hardware and software so that it's very hard to install OS X on anything other than Apple branded hardware. maybe there should be a law that says i should be able to install OS X on any hardware that i want? not like the hardware between Apple branded hardware and Dell/HP is any different?

Invalid analogy. Your copy of OS X can be used on any ISP's network, thus, it supports network neutrality.
post #72 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Certification also has nothing to do with locking. The only purpose of locking is to prevent a customer being able to leave a carrier at the end of a contract. It's an indefensible practice that should simply be explicitly outlawed.

Just look at all the other countries that claim that they have some sort of simlocking laws --- the iphone conclusively has shown that these laws either don't exist at all (in the imagination of geeks who got their information wrong --- like in UK) or that these laws aren't very effectively at all.

It's indefensible practice for the Brits to buy a simlocked 3G iphone, can't unlock it, can't even upgrade to the new 3Gs iphone unless they paid off the rest of their previous 3G iphone contract.

You should get down on your knees and thank god that Americans can get out of contract by paying pro-rated ETF's.
post #73 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Again, this is irrelevant in regards to whether it should be allowed.

All the arguments for locking phones amount to nothing more than FUD. All the arguments against network neutrality amount to nothing more than FUD. Just like all the arguments against number portability were nothing but FUD.

Except that you are living in an imaginary world.

The countries that explicitly spell out when and how unlocking codes should be given out --- also permit their carriers to charge for the unlocking codes. For the ordinary average citizens, the American way is better because they can get their unlocking codes for free from AT&T and T-Mobile.

There is no such thing as network neutrality --- it's basically a Google invention to screw the other companies. Many countries around the world explicitly censor internet traffic (like China), explicitly block VoIP traffic (Middle East countries), explicitly allows carriers to block VoIP traffic (many countries in Europe). The internet hasn't imploded with all these limitations.

The only country in the world that explicit disallow simlocking on their phones (Singapore) is also the last country to allow number portablity on cell phones in June 2008. Kind of ironic that their government misplaced their priorities on unlocked GSM phones.
post #74 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

Just look at all the other countries that claim that they have some sort of simlocking laws --- the iphone conclusively has shown that these laws either don't exist at all (in the imagination of geeks who got their information wrong --- like in UK) or that these laws aren't very effectively at all.

It's indefensible practice for the Brits to buy a simlocked 3G iphone, can't unlock it, can't even upgrade to the new 3Gs iphone unless they paid off the rest of their previous 3G iphone contract.

You should get down on your knees and thank god that Americans can get out of contract by paying pro-rated ETF's.

Again, although quite melodramatic (thank you Jesus! thank you AT&T!), this says nothing about why Congress and the FCC should not prohibit locking phones in this country. If you and Al are going to argue that locking is good, then, please list the actual benefits that come to consumers from locked phones.

Oh, right, there aren't any. It's just a way for carriers to retain customers after the contract expires and to make it harder for them to leave before it does. I guess that's why none of your posts do anything but spread FUD and give the very strong impression that you're being paid to make them.
post #75 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

Except that you are living in an imaginary world.

The countries that explicitly spell out when and how unlocking codes should be given out --- also permit their carriers to charge for the unlocking codes. For the ordinary average citizens, the American way is better because they can get their unlocking codes for free from AT&T and T-Mobile.

There is no such thing as network neutrality --- it's basically a Google invention to screw the other companies. Many countries around the world explicitly censor internet traffic (like China), explicitly block VoIP traffic (Middle East countries), explicitly allows carriers to block VoIP traffic (many countries in Europe). The internet hasn't imploded with all these limitations.

The only country in the world that explicit disallow simlocking on their phones (Singapore) is also the last country to allow number portablity on cell phones in June 2008. Kind of ironic that their government misplaced their priorities on unlocked GSM phones.

Oh, well, thanks for the "state of the industry roundup" there samab. Other than pointing out the mistakes Congress and the FCC should avoid making when this becomes law in this country, this is relevant how?

And, no, network neutrality is not a Google invention. In fact, many people, like myself, who are highly critical of Google, believe strongly in network neutrality.

Let's review: Network Neutrality is the idea that I can access whatever I want over the network and that my ISP can't control that and force me to only get the content they allow me to get -- i.e., the content that makes them the most money, or supports their point of view. Not only does this prevent ISPs from engaging in quasi-legal racketeering, but it's also vital to the health of a democracy that citizens have free access to information.
post #76 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Again, although quite melodramatic (thank you Jesus! thank you AT&T!), this says nothing about why Congress and the FCC should not prohibit locking phones in this country. If you and Al are going to argue that locking is good, then, please list the actual benefits that come to consumers from locked phones.

Oh, right, there aren't any. It's just a way for carriers to retain customers after the contract expires and to make it harder for them to leave before it does. I guess that's why none of your posts do anything but spread FUD and give the very strong impression that you're being paid to make them.

No, I am just looking at the practical aspect of these regulations.

The worldwide launch of the iphone is the best thing that has happened for mobile geeks to actually learn about other countries' regulatory regimes. 30-40 countries around the world have tried dozens and dozens of different regulations on these things --- and none of them work.

So instead of spending valuable political capital on trying to get this unworkable solution to work, the FCC should work on other issues that actually helps ordinary Americans --- like national uniform ETF rules, national uniform deposit returning rules, national uniform contract renewal rules (i.e. can't automatically renew someone's mobile contract if a customer phones up AT&T to change a minor feature)... These things may be BORING for you geeks, but they are actually very good for ordinary Americans.
post #77 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Oh, well, thanks for the "state of the industry roundup" there samab. Other than pointing out the mistakes Congress and the FCC should avoid making when this becomes law in this country, this is relevant how?

And, no, network neutrality is not a Google invention. In fact, many people, like myself, who are highly critical of Google, believe strongly in network neutrality.

Let's review: Network Neutrality is the idea that I can access whatever I want over the network and that my ISP can't control that and force me to only get the content they allow me to get -- i.e., the content that makes them the most money, or supports their point of view. Not only does this prevent ISPs from engaging in quasi-legal racketeering, but it's also vital to the health of a democracy that citizens have free access to information.

This isn't a communist country --- you can't disallow carriers from charging fees to release the unlocking code. Dozens and dozens of countries have tried dozens and dozens of different regulations --- and Apple managed to pretty much dismantle these idiotic regulations.

It's called the internet, not Americanet. The rest of the world doesn't have network neutrality --- and the internet hasn't imploded. You can't access whatever you want right now --- because you can't access pro-democracy websites stationed in China because they were either blocked or shut down by the Chinese government. You can't do a VoIP phone call to the middle east from your home in the US because the middle eastern countries block voip traffic.
post #78 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

No, I am just looking at the practical aspect of these regulations.

So instead of spending valuable political capital on trying to get this unworkable solution to work, the FCC should work on other issues that actually helps ordinary Americans --- like national uniform ETF rules, national uniform deposit returning rules, national uniform contract renewal rules (i.e. can't automatically renew someone's mobile contract if a customer phones up AT&T to change a minor feature)... These things may be BORING for you geeks, but they are actually very good for ordinary Americans.

Well, while those other things may be good, you haven't presented any evidence that prohibiting locking is unworkable or impractical.
post #79 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

This isn't a communist country --- you can't disallow carriers from charging fees to release the unlocking code. Dozens and dozens of countries have tried dozens and dozens of different regulations --- and Apple managed to pretty much dismantle these idiotic regulations.

It's called the internet, not Americanet. The rest of the world doesn't have network neutrality --- and the internet hasn't imploded. You can't access whatever you want right now --- because you can't access pro-democracy websites stationed in China because they were either blocked or shut down by the Chinese government. You can't do a VoIP phone call to the middle east from your home in the US because the middle eastern countries block voip traffic.

So, invoking a "red scare" and arguing that we would be fine operating just like China?
post #80 of 82
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Well, while those other things may be good, you haven't presented any evidence that prohibiting locking is unworkable or impractical.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

So, invoking a "red scare" and arguing that we would be fine operating just like China?

No, you haven't provided any evidence that it is workable at all. Not a single country in the world has created a workable simlocking regulatory regime --- under British common law systems, under French civil law systems, or in countries where rules of law ain't that important at all.

I simply state the current state of affairs. My internet includes the rest of the world and the rest of the world doesn't have network neutrality.
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