1998-04-16 - The Great Internet Bandwidth Crisis

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From: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: b0f721c758e10e952d79339e0b3745f7eeb7f22410a91f38c4051e39ac5da7ac
Message ID: <199804160919.LAA02218@basement.replay.com>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1998-04-16 09:19:55 UTC
Raw Date: Thu, 16 Apr 1998 02:19:55 -0700 (PDT)

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From: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous)
Date: Thu, 16 Apr 1998 02:19:55 -0700 (PDT)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: The Great Internet Bandwidth Crisis
Message-ID: <199804160919.LAA02218@basement.replay.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

It seems to me that the chief impediment standing in the way of the
Internet becoming a propaganda and marketing tool suitable for use
and control by a few rich and powerful business entities is the 
comparatively inexpensive and easy access of millions of users to
the same technologies available to megacorporations.

History itself leads me to suspect that the money and power moguls
will use a variety of real and imaginary issues to place greater
monetary burdens and access restrictions on many aspects of the
Internet and Web, particularly those that have commercial potential.

A current example is the attempt by various Telecos to raise the cost
of access for other businesses, citing alleged burdens placed on their
resources by ISPs at the same time that they are scrambling to enter
the same market by undercutting their competitors.
The Great Teleco Resource Crisis will undoubtedly be mirrored at some
point in the future by the Great Internet Bandwidth Crisis. I suspect
that although it will be as bogus as the Telecos' current imaginary
crisis, it will come at a time when the major players have divided up
enough of the infrastructure pie among themselves to be unanimous in
their nod-and-wink agreement as to the severity of the crisis.

Undoubtedly, this will be just one of a variety of crisis in which 
will require restrictive legislation and cost-increasing regulations
that will save bandwidth for future children and protect adult citizens
from the extreme danger of engaging in commerce with other average
adult citizens such as themselves.
It seems to me that the *only* way that the Internet can be kept from
being used as just another tool for herding the masses into larger and
more efficient feeding pens is to enable and empower the citizens to
freely and safely control their own financial and commercial destiny
in their Internet transactions.
The more accessible and widespread the control over one-to-one monetary
transactions, the more difficult it will be for a few entities to lead
the citizens around by financial rings run through their noses.

The government currently has a variety of budgetary axes held over the
heads of the citizens, such as federal funding and grants in which
money taken away from the citizens is returned to them on a statewide,
local or individual basis only upon conditions that involve giving up
rights and liberties that are due them.

In order to resist being herded by a myriad of legal, licensing and
regulatory 'axes' into increasingly global feeding pens, the citizens
will need access to tools which allow secure financial transactions with
differing levels of identity versus anonymity available to them.

The reason that major business has not yet been able to divide up the
financial pie available through the Internet is the excessive amount
of resources that they need in order to compete for the attention of
Internet users, given that average citizens are providing equal or
better information and services for free or for a low cost.
The sooner that the masses are able to engage in free commerce with
one another via the Internet--whether it be giving Grandma Jones a
dollar for her cookie recipies, or engaging a student across the
continent in private research in return for money, for goods or 
for services--then the sooner the masses will scream loud and long
when government or corporate entities threaten to take this ability
to be self-sufficient away from them.

Those who wish to circumvent the loss of privacy, liberty and freedom
that they forsee as being possible on the Internet need to realize 
that most of those who are not currently empowered to manifest those
possibilities in their individual life will little recognize or
protest the 'present' loss of those 'future' possibilities.
Unless there is a widespread dissemination of working tools accessible
to the average citizen, then the future will be controlled by those
with the funds and resources to limit financial transactions on the
Internet to a self-defined 'way things are.'

"Teach a man to buy his fish from you, and you'll feed yourself for
 a lifetime."