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The Internet Communications The Almighty Buck Wireless Networking Youtube Your Rights Online

Look Forward To Per-Service, Per-Page Fees 400

An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Wired: "[Two] companies, Allot Communications and Openet — suppliers to large wireless companies including AT&T and Verizon — showed off a new product in a web seminar Tuesday, which included a PowerPoint presentation (1.5-MB .pdf) that was sent to Wired by a trusted source. The idea? Make it possible for your wireless provider to monitor everything you do online and charge you extra for using Facebook, Skype or Netflix. For instance, in the seventh slide of the above PowerPoint, a Vodafone user would be charged two cents per MB for using Facebook, three euros a month to use Skype and $0.50 monthly for a speed-limited version of YouTube."
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Look Forward To Per-Service, Per-Page Fees

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  • by tepples ( 727027 ) <{tepples} {at} {}> on Saturday December 18, 2010 @12:42PM (#34600184) Homepage Journal STILL redirects to []

    This has an easy fix. Create an account, activate it, log in, and subscribe to Slashdot, and it won't redirect you back to an unencrypted connection anymore.

  • by tepples ( 727027 ) <{tepples} {at} {}> on Saturday December 18, 2010 @01:01PM (#34600332) Homepage Journal

    Your entire argument falls apart when one company simply decides not to join in with the ridiculous and cumbersome practices and instead offer superior service.

    Then why did all four major U.S. cell phone carriers raise their SMS rates at the same time?

  • by postbigbang ( 761081 ) on Saturday December 18, 2010 @01:02PM (#34600348)

    Remember when the argument against deep packet inspection was that it would inject gruesome latency, and be thwarted by privacy concerns? It shows that if you wait long enough, and remain persistent, that you can do fiendish things when people are either worn down, or not looking.

    The grain of the carriers is to charge you for everything, just like it's the mantra of every hotel-- at least in the US. Is it a plot? No-- while you cite that going against the grain is a way to make money, the most efficient distribution mechanism will be rewarded, viz Walmart and Dell. The way you will pay will be by the packet, it just takes a wave of carriers to agree to go this route (pardon the pun). This is why net neutrality from end point to end point, is so critically important. Cranked-up MBAs will try to find a way to do it, make no mistake. Unless we fight it at all edges, we're going to be buying Internet by the expensive, pseudo-market-based gallon, not by the pipe size.

  • by tepples ( 727027 ) <{tepples} {at} {}> on Saturday December 18, 2010 @01:06PM (#34600374) Homepage Journal

    Then communities should build their own local ISPs and revoke the monopolies they granted

    The incumbent ISPs have sued to stop communities' efforts to provide Internet service and have succeeded in getting the courts to shut down many of these efforts with a preliminary injunction.

  • Cluetrain for you... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Burz ( 138833 ) on Saturday December 18, 2010 @01:08PM (#34600396) Homepage Journal

    Its one thing to charge per MB, quite another to be a company like AT&T and add surcharges specifically for using Skype or other competing services like video downloads.

    I wonder what kind of reaction they'd get if they proposed a surcharge for using the iTunes store.

  • Re:Money talks (Score:3, Informative)

    by swrider ( 854292 ) on Saturday December 18, 2010 @01:54PM (#34600828) Homepage
    You have it backwards. As noted by tepples, the incumbents have sued many localities to prevent them from creating their own service provider, even when the incumbent had no plans to provide service in that local. In many case, the big telcos and cable companies have lobbied state legislators to pass laws making it very difficult, if not impossible, for localities to create a service provider.

    And, it is the telcos and cable companies who want to use the city's right-of-way without paying for that use. They don't need eminent domain. Your legislature probably has already given them the ability to rip up your street and yard to run fiber and cable, and not pay a penny for that use! And, then you can try to fight them to get your street and yard put back the way it was.
  • by dogsbreath ( 730413 ) on Saturday December 18, 2010 @02:03PM (#34600904)

    Ahhhh! Don't all of you YEARN for the past? Of course you do!

    Yeah, yeah, yeah. And if you go back far enough, dinosaurs walked the earth and human beings hadn't even evolved yet.

    It's always possible to cherry pick a point in time where things were worse than they are now. That doesn't imply
    that every change going forward is necessarily for the better.

    Hey.. Not cherry picking at all! Must be my sense of humour I guess.

    Just making an obscure suggestion that this type of billing (per unit, per item, per customer, per service and all piled together) is reminiscent of the days when competition was limited and there was, perhaps, a real need for natural monopolies and heavy government regulation.

    In the Telco/Cable industry there are many who would like to see a return to that level of power and control. This type of billing model appeals to that mindset, and why not? They are in it to make money and the telco industry has had to invest huge sums in technology for limited returns. eg: the company I work for spent over $1 billion last year upgrading DSL equipment while the per month per customer revenue dropped. This just kept us competitive. No tears necessary; its a cost of doing business. However, profitability is not guaranteed from year to year; it is definitely 'swim or die'.

    Problem is that these type of billing plans are predicated on sucking some money off of the services that someone else created. The thing that really sticks in the craw of a telco CEO is that the telco carries all of the data that others get rich off of. This is seen as an unfair burden, hence the desire to act like a vampire and drink from the flow. So the telco adds nothing to the equation and wants to be paid for it. Understand that they are already being paid by their subscribers for the "bandwidth".

    From a telco/cable view, the subscriber has only paid for connectivity and not for the data. This is definitely old school.

    There is no recognition that this train left the station a long time ago and that they need to do something positive/imaginative/creative for the subscriber in order to generate more revenue. Telcos do NOT do positive/imaginative/creative. Telcos are run by CPAs and lawyers; they are not technology/service driven.

    Sigh, I thought I was being funny and creative but obviously not. I have worked in telecoms for too long.

  • by postbigbang ( 761081 ) on Saturday December 18, 2010 @02:23PM (#34601060)

    No, we should not help them out with that.

    We should demand common carrier status for the wires we use, service neutral. Pay by pipe size per period. The telcos provide wires, not content. I should not be held captive to their content dreams (are you listening, Comcast?) and if I want content, it's abstracted from the rest of the neutral services I provide.

    There's a job waiting for you in PR at Verizon. You're good.

  • Re:Populist Revolt (Score:5, Informative)

    by Jerry ( 6400 ) on Saturday December 18, 2010 @02:54PM (#34601322)

    Your comment demonstrates an obvious lack of historical knowledge. Read The $200 Billion Rip-Off [] by Cringely, to get a brief introduction to what you were too young to understand or over looked.

    Fifteen years ago my community, after their repeated requests to the cable and telcos to build a Fiber Optic cable system to bring affordable HIGH BANDWIDTH to every citizen were rebuffed, decided to begin building it themselves as a public utility. (Our electricity is owned by city and we pay 6 cents/kwh). I watched as they trenched their way through my yard and buried FO cable. The cable and telcos lobbied Congress whining about "unfair" competition. Congress agreed and passed a low preventing local and state governments from "competing" against the cable and telcos. Cringely explains the rest, but failed to mention that while Congress FUNDED the cable and telcos to complete the FO project, they did NOT put performance clauses in the bill, so the cable and telcos took the money and stuffed it into their greedy pockets. To help the cable and telcos extract even more profits from their ancient Copper wire technology Congress REDEFINED "high" bandwidth to include any connection that was 200Kb/s or faster.

    So now, in France, a citizen can pay $30/month and receive a 40Mb/s HIGH bandwidth Internet connection which includes 24/7/365 phone calls to anyone in France (and economical rates to other countries), and 200 channel TV.

    I pay $72/mon for a 12Mb/s Internet connection, thankfully uncapped, but no phone nor TV. I do use Skype to talk for free to other VOIP users, and 2 cents/min to any cellphones or land lines in most of the Free World, and I can watch expried TV shows on HULU for $8/mon, but 12Mb/s is no where near 40Mb/s.

    Now, the ISPs want to charge extra for Skype and Netflix bytes. IF you think it will end there you have a brick for a brain. Greed knows NO bounds. They'll find ways to justify charging for other types of data streams: VPN connections, encrypted data, cloud database data, etc..., then they'll tier the stream types to ratchet up the profit margins even higher, and all of it on ANCIENT Copper Wire technology. In the background their OWN data pipes are being converted to Fiber Optic, but the stuff streaming out to you will have a Copper segment. They need that bottle-neck to justify their robbery.

    You elected your Congressmen to serve you. In the past they formed "watch dog" agencies to keep an eye on the corporations. Now, the corporations bribe the Congressmen to pass laws favorable to their profits, and the FCC, FDA, and DOJ are now instruments of enforcing corporate policy.

    Didn't you ever wonder how President Obama, elected by a LARGE majority to fulfill his promise to clean up Health Insurance and the medical industry, was stymied by his OWN Democrat party members, the majority of whom took bribes from the health insurance industry and the pharmaceutical industry to maintain the status quo, to say nothing of insuring their own re-election so their own ride on the Federal gravy train wouldn't come to an end.

    Welcome to the Corporate State. And you though you were living in a Republic or a Democracy, where your vote counted and the Constituion meant something. Silly you.


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