Ethan Zuckerman plays the typical “what if” game that neutrinos like so much, and enhances it in his comments with one of the biggest lies ever told:
Right now, no major ISPs give preferential treatment to one type of traffic over another.
Lippard sets him straight:
Again, not true in the backbone world–Global Crossing, Level 3, AT&T, MCI, Qwest, and others offer products that use QoS and separate MPLS VPNs for certain types of traffic (and permit customers to do the same with their own traffic). At least one of the above-mentioned bills (HR5417) will classify backbone providers as broadband providers and make these products illegal or of questionable legality, which makes no sense.
as do I:
The cable company access lines carry voice, video, and packet traffic on different channels and with different QoS. The DOCSIS protocol that carries packet traffic on this network is isochronous, and it most certainly prioritizes based on QoS. The telco lines that carry DSL carry analog voice in a different FDM domain, and apply completely different rules to it. And it’s always been legal for any ISP to prioritize traffic any way he sees fit; common carrier rules didn’t address ISP filtering and forwarding. WiFi networks also prioritize based on QoS requirements through a little feature called 802.11e.
VoIP doesn’t inherently work well on a packet network, with first-come, first-served queuing when load is reasonably high. Providing priority queuing is the most efficient way to combine VoIP with the heavy demands for bandwidth that HDTV poses. Simply throwing bandwidth at this problem doesn’t solve it, and when the bandwidth has to be bought with somebody else’s dime, your solution is a non-starter.
Every net neutrality argument I’ve seen relies on spin and misinformation, and yours is no exception.
Some of these neutrinos are simply uninformed, but others are deliberately lying.