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Business Wants a New, Profitable Internet

michael posted more than 13 years ago | from the fewer-freedoms-equals-more-profits dept.

The Internet 406

An Anonymous Coward writes: "The collapse of "dot com" promises and continuing frustration at the inability of business to harness the Internet for a profit has resulted in calls to modify the basic structure of the Internet itself so it will "obey basic economic laws". See this article in the LA Times. Time to drum out the "hippie anarchists" and put some real business sense into this mess! Or, if you can't adapt your business plan to the Internet, then change the Internet to facilitate you business plan." If you haven't read Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace, now would be a good time.

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Silly corporations (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2191384)

When will they learn their primary goal is to entertain us and share information (for free), not make a profit? And why can't they see the value in pouring their money in with no expectation of a return on investment, either directly or through their tax dollars? Their silly corporate philosophies cannot stand up to my well developed sense of entitlement.

Re:hippie anarchists (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2191390)

Not only that, but I don't think DARPA [darpa.mil] would take too kindly to being called "a bunch of hippie anarchists."

Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (3)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2191391)

basic economic laws

I fully agree.

Especially since there are no "economic laws". Hell, there aren't even real laws of physics, so how could there be economic laws?!

Hippie Anarchist: General Wastemoreland (4)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2191392)

According to this guy, the Department of Defense which built the Internet in the 1960s is the same as "hippie anarchists". This puts the whole vietnam war debate in a whole new perspective: both sides were the same!

Re:We can't make money? (2)

Wansu (846) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191399)

The Internet is a communication medium. It's like the phone system.

Yep, It sure is. And when they try to use it to make money, it commences to suck. Just like when they try to use the telephone to make money. My wife and I don't answer the phone between 5 and 8 pm becasue of telemarketers calling from boiler room operations. They are making our phone suck. The same thing is happening with all these companies cluttering up the 'net with images, popups and other slow-loading crap. One news site after another has been glitzified to the point that you don't want to go there anymore.

"Basic economic laws" (1)

jpatters (883) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191400)

"The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant.

Mr. Nolle is refering to economic theory, right? Well, it's not the internet's responsibility to conform to the theory, it's the theory that needs to be changed to conform to reality. Sheesh.

Re:Venture Capitalists are driving this (3)

Tim Macinta (1052) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191403)

Remember how the Internet started? Funny, I don't remember there being any venture capitalists swarming around DARPA. It was all too technical, too esoteric, and too geeky for them.

A few years ago, some of the VCs got the idea that this Internet thing was actually a "Good Idea" and they embraced it. They embraced it with vigor and enthusiasm.

To be fair to the VCs, there may have been other reasons why they didn't show an interest in the internet earlier - in particular, red-tape. If I remember correctly, I don't think that the internet was allowed to be used for commercial purposes before the early 1990's. This is what Al Gore was instrumental in changing in the early 1990's (and what I think he was referring to in his infamous quote which was taken as a claim to his having invented the internet).

Capitalism is like a spider (1)

spun (1352) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191404)

the web is getting tighter.
-- Boots of 'The Coup'

A free market means everything in the market, no commons, no common goods, all social costs and externalities shifted off onto those least able to defend their interests (meaning those with the least capital.)

Do we really think we have the power to stop them? We geeks may have designed the web, but we did it with ruling class money, which comes with strings, always. They are the mac daddy pimps of the whole world. They own us and they own the web.

They don't like freedom, it can't be bought and sold.

Bunch of ignorant control freaks (2)

Malc (1751) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191410)

They didn't do their research and based their businesses on something they didn't fully understand. Now they're trying to step in and take control, but what they're proposing further illustrates their ignorance and lack of understanding of the technical (and social) issues.

WWhy webcasts? (1)

richieb (3277) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191416)

Why broadcast over the Internet? Just use TV or radio? Why not broadcast over the telephone?


Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (2)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191418)

AARPNET? American Association for Retired Persons Network?

The ARPANET was _not_ intended for military purposes. Although the idea of a distributed communications network was suggested in a RAND study on the topic of war interrupting communications, the ARPANET was intended to network research facilities and help make efficient use of computer resources all around the country. (at a time when many programs could only be run on a single computer) I mean, come on. For years, the only installations on the thing were university computing centers.

Go read through the answers that the people actually involved with creating the ARPANET give to this question, and see how well the nuclear war myth holds up. Sheesh.

Laws (2)

Glytch (4881) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191426)

"The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant.

Well, I guess if they're not being followed, they're not really basic laws, eh? :)

I'll be the goat (2)

rho (6063) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191431)

Why not a commercial Net? I'll give a few reasons why it might be desirable, and I encourage others to give reasons why it isn't desirable ("Corporations suck" isn't a reason).

  • The most interesting point made in the article is the "intelligent switches" that prioritize traffic. This can be a good thing -- no more bandwidth clogging Napter/Gnutella/KaZaA users preventing "important" traffic from getting through.
  • A "closed" Net (as opposed to the "open" Net that we have now) may be more resilient to hackers, crackers, and creeps who find it funny to DoS Yahoo. If a private network operator (here I'm assuming that the commercial Net won't be controlled by single interest, vis. AOL/TimeWarner/Qwest/WorldCom/Sprint/GlofaxMegatho rp, which is probably a stupid assumption) has to guarantee bandwidth for paying customers, they will be very interested in keeping such traffic under scrutiny and out of their network (and certainly keep it from passing into another network)
  • It helps with the Ghostbusters problem (i.e. "Who ya gonna call?"), if not totally eliminate it. You can yell and scream at UUNet all you want, but unless you're an SLA-customer, you're SOL
  • It may hasten the Holy Grail -- video on demand. I'm almost completely for it for just that reason...
  • It can encourage open protocols (if the commercial Nets can't speak with each other, they become islands) -- and it may keep a single entity (MS) from dictating what the network will carry through outside influence (control of the majority of OSes)

It's not perfect, and I can think of a few reasons where the above would not be true -- but there are good reasons to move the Net this direction. I'd be interested to see reasons why it wouldn't be good.

Yes they will for the right incentive $$$$$$ (2)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191433)

the majority of the bandwidth is provided by HIGH $$ corp's. They will happily follow a trail of money to hell itself. If the corp's are willing to pay they can own the net :(

Re:This article is mostly about technical details (1)

eebly (7752) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191438)

Actually, the article seems to have missed the fact that your application will modify how you implement it.

The phone system uses a circuit-switched network: everybody gets their own, dedicated line to the other end (once the switches are thrown). On the one hand, it's inefficient, because even if you're not actively sending data, you still have the line tied up. But, your response time is near-instant, since there's no routing once the circuit is established, and there's nobody *else* using the line. This is great for the wya people converse.

It's lousy for the way computers converse. A packet switched network is vastly more efficient in terms of using the lines, but has added overhead of switching and routing, and does not have the same sort of response time. That's fine for most data applications, particularly the ones in use when the Internet was designed. It doesn't really matter if your packets arrive in-order, or quickly, for an e-mail. Just wait. It's crappy for applications that demand real-time reponse, such as a conversation. Granted, using UDP will fix some of that, but then things arrive out of order and get wierd.

And "webcasting" never made sense. The marginal cost to add a new person to a broadcast is 0. The radio waves are going to be passing through a certain space either way. Cable TV works basically the same way, but pumps frequency down a cable instead of radiating it. Still, the only real cost there is the cable itself: as long as you have enough power going in, and keep the signal from degrading, you can add as many cable customers as you want. You *can't* do that on the Internet (since multicast isn't routed), and so every time you add a viewer, you up your required bandwidth. And you run out.

People who are trying to use the Internet for phone calls or video are doing the network equivilent of using a hammer to insert a nail.

In related news... (5)

mattkime (8466) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191439)

"The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant. "The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive. But this is a business, not a government-sponsored network."

In similar news, scientists are demanding that quantum physics obey the laws of newtonian physics.

"This new science is too hard," complained one scientist. "How can we use quantum physics to make better guns when we're not even sure if schrodinger's cat is alive until we look?"

"I can't understand this stuff unless I'm as high as a kite," stated another scientist. He continued, "What am I supposed to tell people that I do? I just tell them that I play with marbles all day."

Sounds to me like misplaced expectations (1)

symbolic (11752) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191451)

Someone decided that they could attract a lot of people to a web site, make tons of money on advertising, and presto, and instant business success. Maybe businesses should stop trying to mold the internet into something it isn't and start realizing that there are some very fundamental aspects of conducting business that simply cannot be ignored. First and foremost, I'd say that assuming that one can create a web site that is in itself, a business, for the most part, won't work. There are exceptions, of course. Perhaps looking at the internet as an ADJUNCT to a more traditional business model, rather than a replacement, would be a good place to start.

Second, I've seen several traditional companies use their web sites as a way to shield themselves from their customers - with no contact information, and and hence, no way of dealing with a real person. I don't know about anyone else, but this is a REAL turn-off for me, although it seems to be more characteristic of some of the larger companies I've seen, rather than the smaller ones. The larger companies seem to gain customers by playing the numbers game, while some the smaller ones are truly interested in building communities of loyal customers.

Overall, I think there are still some real opportunities for business to flourish using the internet - but not at the expense of a solid foundation and a good understanding of how to use the internet effectively.

Re:email abuse (1)

SyniK (11922) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191452)

*Tom opens up VMWare, Opens up Netscape Messenger and sorts by Priority flag.

I have one email that is flagged highest priority by "visitalk". After I registered with them for PC to Phone calls that was their confirmation email.
(I always delete the SPAM, I'll have to check next time (give me 20 minutes...) )

Quote from article:
"By adding "intelligent" switches and other devices, they believe, the system could work faster, avoid traffic jams, distinguish between high-priority data and other material that can wait, and generally live up to its promise as a worldwide communications and entertainment medium."

It's exactly what they want to do... e-commerence is "highest priority" to some people. That's alright, but it's nice to have a level playing field.

Re:gggrrrrrr (2)

SyniK (11922) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191454)

hehehe :)
I was going to post a message just like that. :)

The problem is, what can anyone do about it? Nothing is offlimits from the grasp of greedy business men. You can say heathcare, bill of rights, etc, but that's just a load of crap. The United States still hasn't passed a universial heathcare program, and big businesses doesn't hesitate to walk on your rights when it's *profitable* to do so. I digress...

I haven't quite figured out what to do about it, but one thing that has me paranoid is an urgency flag in IPv6 (Is it in the RFC? Or am I imagining things again?). Just because some company has some e-commerence infrastructure now their packet is more important than mine? The purpose of the flag is to allow real time streaming such as surgeries and such. But it's wide open for abuse.

I don't know what can be done to protect anindividual's rights and make certain aspects of things (Non commercial Internet, Heathcare, Equal Rights, etc) offlimits to corporations while still being America... the land of the free.

I'm still working on my manifesto...

This isn't hypothetical... (4)

.@. (21735) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191478)

...it's happening now. Klensin has significantly nonzero sway within ICANN governance. ICANN itself is comprised mostly of intellectual property lawyers and executives who have espoused sentiments closely matching those in this article. Medin, though relegated to a role as figurehead within @Home, has significant influence over strategic architectual decisions within @Home (and subsequently, AT&T Broadband to an extent). AOL-TW stand on the threshhold of acquiring both @Home and Amazon. Microsoft stands ready to yet again "embrace and extend" the software model, the hardware model, and their integration both on local busses and over networks. Couple that with InfiniBand and similar bus-decoupling advances (iSCSI, 10GB Ethernet), and the future is bleak: Corporate-controlled push-only Internet, and the demise of what we now know as the "home computer".

The pieces are in place. At this point, the only thing that will effect change is massive lobbying within ICANN (instead of x00,000 /. readers/posters, how about x00,000 concerned ICANN participants?), support of groups like the EFF, and direct lobbying of local congresscritters.

Without it, by 2010, you'll be paying other people for the privilege of letting them decide what you can do with your computer. And Linux won't matter much as a movement, because the control battle isn't on the computer anymore; it's moved beyond the OS. The Open Source movement is fighting a war its already won.

Why not merge. (2)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191480)

I personally don't see why we can't merge the two networks, have two seperate networks, one smart, one dumb, have them merge at the ISP which routes both to your home though one line, and then have the smart ends (the individual computers), dictate what network the traffic is going to go through by using different addresses, which can be easily identifided as to what network they are intended for.

We can't make money? (2)

maeglin (23145) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191481)

Of course they can't make money. The Internet is a communication medium. It's like the phone system. The only people that *make* money are the phone companies. It's a tool and tools aren't there to make you money. You use them to *save* money (or, time, but we know what that's worth).

Every time someone uses a website to make a bank transaction you get closer to getting rid of a few very expensive tellers.

I don't get it. No one's ever bitched about the postal service not making them any money.

This article is mostly about technical details - (1)

Finni (23475) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191482)

This fairly well-reasoned article is about improving quality of service. The guy who was interviewed says he does not side with those people who want to blame the Internet on their business failure.

Now, I'm quite poorly-read on such things, but wouldn't better multicast support, on the backbone and for the end-user, take care of network congestion for planned webcasts? And other quality-of-service things? We're not talking about depending on VoIP for your 911 calls.

Re:How realistic is this? (1)

sys$manager (25156) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191483)

"We're Sorry, but the number you have called, The Internet, is out of service."

Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (2)

Pengo (28814) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191491)

"The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive. But this is a business, not a government-sponsored network."

The AARPNET was created to ensure communication between NORAD and the White House/Pentagon in the event of a nuclear war.

Would you like a Python based alternative to PHP/ASP/JSP?

Re:wtf? they are crazy (2)

Flower (31351) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191492)

So what we're really saying here is the guy has no access to someone experienced in reading a traceroute.

What gets me is that these people think they can avoid problems that occasionally affect the Internet. Let's see what happens when a backhoe hits a fiber optic trunk or one of their BizNet COs misconfigure a router. And how come they're not pushing to get everyone onto IPv6? Some of their concerns are addressed by that migration. Is it the answer to every one of their problems? No. But it would be more cost effective than ripping out the whole Internet and starting from scratch.

When I see articles like this.. (4)

schon (31600) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191494)

When I see crap like this, I am immediately reminded of the phrase "replace the word 'internet' with the word 'telephone', and see if it still makes sense."

What they fail to realise is that the internet is a communications medium. Just like the telephone.
The two have remarkable similarities: they are both large-scale networks, designed to facilitate information flow across large or small distances. (In fact the only real technical difference is that the telephone was designed to transmit sound, and the internet was designed to transmit data.)

When someone says "How do you make money off the internet?" - just replace that with "How do you make money off the telephone?"

Try it with this article - once you put everything in context, you'll see just how stupid the quotes are.

Re:When I see articles like this.. (2)

jmauro (32523) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191495)

One slight problem, you really can't make money off just the telephone network any more. They are now being forced to use services to make the money. You see economics has taken hold and pushed the marginal profit to zero. No one can make money off just the network now.

But I really think that this whole "movement" is just some people pining for the days of the "Information SuperHighway". The network described sounds just like the proposals back in the early 90's for it. High speed video, text, interactive TV. Remeber that? Which would be all well and good, except that the Internet already existed, the Web had just been invented, so everyone just used those instead of re-investing. (The start-up costs are lower since there was no R&D costs.) This really is just the network providers ( Mainly AT&T and its subsideraies @Home, etc ) wanting to make money on n idea that they think got unfairly buried. If the models don't fit, they really need to change their models, not the internet.

My guess is at the rate people upgrade their computers, there are so many old copies of the TCP/IP software, that getting rid of the current network is impossible. Even for needed upgrades like IPv6

I remember... damn, I'm not even old! (1)

zook (34771) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191500)

I'm not even that old, but I remember when the internet scorned commercial enterprise.

Not that I'm against commercial content on the net, but we've gone from a commercial-unfriendly environment to a commercial-friendly one. Now they want to wrest more control from the public hands?


What?! (5)

Grendel Drago (41496) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191507)

Wait... someone hosting an expensive backup system over a PUBLIC NETWORK that they AREN'T PAYING FOR is complaining that they don't control it? Spare me!

Ha! Big businesses hide behind "Free market! Invisible hand!" in meatspace, but they're sorely outmatched inside the network. So they clamor for control to be handed over to them on a silver platter. Fuckwits.

The internet is like the telephone? Uh, try keeping up a correspondence with your buds in Sweden and Germany from California on twenty bucks a month.

"neighborhood Internet service providers that may be run by high school kids with a high-powered server computer and a leased phone line" -- really? If by "run", they mean "tended by unpaid labor", then *maybe*.

If these corporations want a reliable network, they can build their own. No fucking way is control of the public net getting turned over to them for a pittance.

I'm *outraged* about this. You should be too, every one of you.

-grendel drago

hippie anarchists (2)

wiredog (43288) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191509)

Last time I saw Vint Cerf, at a meeting on software patents lasw fall (in Tysons Corner) he was wearing a nice three-piece suit.

How realistic is this? (1)

Blue Neon Head (45388) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191511)

I mean, is it really feasible to scrap the current Internet backbone and replace it with new, experimental technology? Will backbone providers be happy to do so?

This is a pretty scary notion, but (fortunately) it sounds completely impractical.

Re:basic economic laws don't really apply (2)

Buck2 (50253) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191514)

I wish people would get the facts before they
start slamming California's power struggles.

It was not "privatization" that caused the
problem ... it was movement from one shitty regulatory system to another, worse, one.

A man comes to your house..... (2)

tapiwa (52055) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191515)

A man comes to your house, which you built as a smokers den to beat the no-smoking-in-public-areas Laws.

First he tries to sell you cigarettes, and then wisens up a bit and decides to sell you a whole lot of other stuff you don't need... smoking tshirts, books on how to smoke, music to listen to while you smoke.

What he does not get is that you have tobacco growing in the garden, virtually free for all. Most importantly, with the windows of the house shut tight, there is no smoke loss.... hence smoke a cigarette once, and the secondary smoke is there for all those who come into the house to enjoy.

In frustration at not profiting from your house, he calls you a hippie in frustratino and tells you that your lifestyle does not make economic sense!

Like someone said earlier, if they can't make money, they can file for charpter whatever, and go away.

Re:Here is this guys URL and E-mail (5)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191519)

> The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant. "The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive..."

No, Mr. Nolle, the historical fact that it was devised by a bunch of military strategists (who just happened to design something that was also very useful to hippie anarchists ;-) is the reason why it fails to comply with basic economic laws.

(Plus, someone should tell him that the "laws" of economics are wholly unlike the laws of physics, and one of those "laws" says that Shit Happens when you introduce disruptive technologies into a marketplace.)

And finally, the basic economic law of supply and demand doesn't seem to have fallen by the wayside.

Take Napster (out of its misery, please ;-). When the price was zero, and the product was freely-copyable MP3 files of every artist under the sun, lots of people "bought" Napster's product. Now that external factors have raised the price, and reduced the value of the product (DRM-encumbered .nap files from a few select artists), there's less demand for Napster.

Were there costs? Sure - bandwidth costs money. But telcos' overbuilding of the backbone (combined with the failure to bring broadband to the home) was the fault of a poor business decision -- the assumption that there'd be consumer demand for the extra bandwidth.

Had there been demand for the bandwidth (incidentally, something like the old Napster would have been a great source of demand!), and had they been able to deliver that bandwidth to the home, the telcos would have made a fortune.

Don't confuse poor business decisions with the end of economics.

Same old story? (2)

SirSlud (67381) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191530)

The companies are only responsible for bringing the disinterested neophytes online. Now they want control, seeing as the model they slapped over the Internet isn't as profitable as they had hoped. But this is like a group of 'anarchistic hippies' building a fun lane for people to walk through, then having a business come in and commercialize the road, making it admittedly many times fatter and longer. Then, people stop showing up, cause now it costs money, and its plagued by people using it who don't understand it. So the businesses wave the white flag, and do everything in their power to obtain the lease to the land, including that original kick-ass lane, so they can put a parking lot on it. But fuck that .. in the case of the Internet, there's no way to keep the original lane. In other words, in the long run, we're fucked. At some point, we'll be saying "It was fun while it lasted ..." Hell, you can even say it now .. sometimes I lament that the damn web killed the kick-ass Gopher protocol!

Re:gggrrrrrr (2)

iceT (68610) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191531)

"then they can build there own damn NET! call it biznet."

The problem is that, sure, they'll be on their own private network. Of course, their CUSTOMERS won't be on that network, 'cuz they can't afford it!

Personally, I find the Internet to be about as reliable as just about anything else in my life. That includes my electricity, my phone, my car, my cable television, my Celphone (ok, it's MORE reliable than my celphone), my PC (as long as it's not running Windows)...

Nothing in life is fool-proof, and you can't control EVERY ASPECT of your life. This guy needs to realize that.

Maybe there's not enough competition.... (2)

iceT (68610) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191532)

If there are only two choices for back-bone providers, maybe that's just not enough competition to cause them to push the 'quality' button...

Back when I had choices of ISPs (cable modem is fairly limited on choice), if the ISP was crap, I'd bail. If enough people do that, then the supposed 'quality problem' should disappear...

laughable article (5)

selectspec (74651) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191538)

What companies are calling for the restructuring of the internet? What a bunch of crap (typical of the LA Times). The internet is driven by the same economic principles that govern our highway system. Much of the internet transport falls under the domain of a public utility. Just like the highway system. Some private ventures get special access rights to set up profit making operations, like gas stations and fast food joints on a major interstate. The analogy that the internet pipe is dumb is flawed. The pipe is not dumb. The pipe routes packets in the best possible manner. However, the pipe doesn't know what is in the packets, just like the stop light doesn't know what is in your car.

How to fail.. again. (1)

Paul Neubauer (86753) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191546)

"You" want to change the basic nature of something so it works like something else?

Let's see here...

Did anyone change the basic nature of the automobile so that it could take a saddle, be steered by reins, and respond to spurs or a whip, leg pressure, and start and stop with vocal commands?

Maybe someone did try it. A quick look around reveals that if someone did, they had no real success. But many did learn to use a steering wheel, pedals, and levers... and got along rather well with a new item with a new nature.

Congratulations guys, you're on your way to failure.. AGAIN.

"Trying to own the Internet - that's a Paddlin'" (4)

Col. Panic (90528) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191548)

But any changes in the network's basic structure will face numerous obstacles, including resistance from traditionalists who believe that the Internet is popular precisely because it cannot be controlled by big companies.

Umm - did they happen to notice the DDOS attacks on Yahoo!, Amazon, etc. that were carried out for no apparent reason? Corporations seeking to control and prioritize the Internet are just begging to be hammered by every kiddie with a script. "Traditionalists" might not mind so much, either.

Re:wtf? they are crazy (1)

hawkbug (94280) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191549)

Um, NO. When one of our clients complains our site is down, and it's not, it's not specifically our ISP or theirs. Do you even realize how many hops there are between your computer and a website?? You're probably traveling through about 15 routers, or more, along the way, through different networks depending on what site you go to. The internet isn't just some big ass straight line that an ISP just has a connection to, it's a bunch of small networks combined to form a big one, with a few larger networks holding most of them together. Yeah, if your ISP is to blame, fine. But, for the most part, a router that goes out in Kansas City can be the downfall of our website in Denver for someone who tries to access it from LA.

Re:wtf? they are crazy (1)

hawkbug (94280) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191550)

Right, that can and does often happen. I guess my point was simply that a scenario such as this often happens to us:

We get a call from a client in LA for example. "Your website is down". We check the servers, our T1, etc, all check out fine. The client claims they can get to www.ebay.com, so they know the "internet" is working, but our site isn't. What usually happens is that the single route to get from their computer to our website happens to go from their ISP, to their ISP's ISP, to another ISP (which usually is a backbone of some kind), and that's where the problem is. So, by this person calling us, and not having a clue who their ISP is or even their IP address, we can't do a damn thing to help them. We run a tax website, and we have had several clients complain because our site is down, and they can't enter their info to have their taxes done on April 14th at 11 PM. I'm sorry, but relying on the internet for important business transactions is like using the US Postal Service to send an important package that must arrive on time in one piece :)

Re:When I see articles like this.. (2)

tycage (96002) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191555)

When someone says "How do you make money off the internet?" - just replace that with "How do you make money off the telephone?"

The answer is, sadly, spam. How do you make money off the telephone? You call up random people and try to get them to buy your product. Spam is the Internet version of this. The sad part is that it works. The volume of spam (and telemarketing) shows it works. People wouldn't dump so much money into it if they weren't making a profit.


Venture Capitalists are driving this (5)

Infonaut (96956) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191559)

Remember how the Internet started? Funny, I don't remember there being any venture capitalists swarming around DARPA. It was all too technical, too esoteric, and too geeky for them.

A few years ago, some of the VCs got the idea that this Internet thing was actually a "Good Idea" and they embraced it. They embraced it with vigor and enthusiasm. The results were:

* They piled millions upon millions of dollars on startup companies that were run by inexperienced, bright-eyed, I-think-I'm-part-of-a-new-paradigm kids

* They ran up the stock market by helping to inflate valuations on these worthless companies.

* They got filthy rich before the market collapsed.

* And now that the pathetic dot-bomb companies have failed, they want to ignore the few success stories (anyone notice how eBay is bringing in "profit" - yeah, that's where you actually make more money than you spend) and tell us all that because of their own stupidity, the Internet is flawed.

Businesses are using the Internet in myriad ways to improve service, streamline production, and eliminate waste.

But the reality of "pure play" Internet companies is that most of them simply won't work. To VCs I say this: Get over it. Look for real business models that will lead to profitability. The days of 50x returns are over. You don't need another mansion in Los Altos anyway.

The Internet works for business - just not for the overhyped, underbrained, overmonied ones.

How about just obey the existing laws?! (3)

browser_war_pow (100778) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191570)

How can anyone expect dot coms to cut a profit when the few that actually sell something sell it so close to the break even point?! I would much rather buy my stuff online at the same price I could get it locally than have to deal with jerk off drivers and mallrats.

The Internet structurally doesn't need to change, it needs to change the mindset behind its commercial enterprises. The Amazon.coms will not be able to cut a profit until they set realistic prices and spend more time trying to get a reputation for excellent service than pissing off people with patents. If Bezos is so concerned about protecting his company and getting a good name for it, why didn't he sign the patent over to a not-for-profit group like the FSF or EFF?

What is being made quite apparent is that those behind the major ecommerce companies usually have no clue how to run a business. The smaller ecommerce companies have to be doing something right, because they have little venture capital and 99% of them would be out of business in the blink of an eye if they lacked business savvy. The biggest mistake the ecommerce giants made was getting their customers used to VERY low prices, prices so low that profitability would be unthinkable unless pricing policies changed.

Of Buggy Whips and Corporate Lobbyists (1)

acacia (101223) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191571)

This article is a kind of validation of all the fears, rumors, and suppositions collectively posted on this site. I love this one:

"The Internet is an important cultural
phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to
comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas
Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications
consultant. "The problem is that it was devised by
a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a
strong profit motive. But this is a business,
not a government-sponsored network."

No, Tommy boy, this is the internet. Who's economic laws are you comparing it to? You run your business as you like. We'll keep doing our own thing. :-)

I look at the apologists and execs for the dot bomb companies and wonder how they ever got hired in the first case. They don't even understand their own medium. I see all sorts of companies doing well over the internet... I can think of any number of pron sites. :-)

I see the reliability problem with the local telco's, who ironicly are credited with the five nines reliability of past. These guys, with their iron grip over the last mile, are the one's that need to be killed twice and cremated.

Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (1)

wltack (103314) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191574)

The equivalent of industrial production in cyberspace, namely coding, is doable with the same resources you need to access the Internet. This gives an essential equality to all participants. What Nolle refers to as "basic economic laws", it seems to me, is actually the sequestering of resources by a few based on their access to money and influence. If they can't play that game, then the system must be unfair, hmm? I am sick of these jerks portraying their beliefs and prejudices as rock-bottom facts.

oh, what a great idea (3)

egomaniac (105476) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191578)

Funny, but I haven't heard the common man complaining about the internet being unreliable and needing big corporations to step in and save it. I use the internet every day and very seldom (nowadays at least) have any trouble whatsoever.
The LAST THING I want is more commercial control of the internet's core infrastructure, and I imagine most of you agree. (Disclaimer: I work at a big internet company, and nobody here's been complaining about it either). Yet this article makes it sound like businesses are up in arms about it. Does anyone else out there have that experience? Is your business complaining about the anarchistic 'net?

I have a strong feeling this is just FUD being spread by telecom companies who want a bigger piece of the pie -- can you imagine more corporate control somehow bringing costs *down*?

--- egomaniac

Come On!! (2)

jgerman (106518) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191579)

Many communications executives complain, however, that as the Internet has evolved into a ubiquitous public utility, its shortcomings in service quality and reliability have lost their charm, which is evident to anyone who has waited a seeming eternity for a Web page to load or suffered through a weeklong outage in an e-mail account.

By what right do they have to complain. Ealier in the article they say that the internet is a business sponsored entity not a government sponsored one. I say bullshit. The internet was brought to the point where it was usable and free by people who wanted to share information. Business muscled it's way in and took over. It was never meant for business and never will be. How can businesses poosibly complain when they are reaching their customers through channels that were not bought and paid for by themselves? They took an established network and leverages it's reach to hit customers around the world.

The solution is simple, if they don't like the internet, then create their own network.. businet or some shit. Get off the public internet and give back the bandwidth you've stolen business, we'll be happier when you're gone.

From the Article... (1)

errxn (108621) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191580)

But [centralized telcom architecture] also reinforced the AT&T monopoly. As undisputed owner of the phone network, the company dictated how it could be used by customers, who were forbidden to connect any phone to its lines except those that AT&T manufactured and sold. The phone company decided when and how to roll out new services and how much to charge. Innovative features had to pass muster with AT&T's engineers, who often rejected those they thought would encourage competition. Among the rejects: the Arpanet, the government-funded network that evolved into the Internet, which AT&T obstructed for years.

Can you say "Hailstorm"?

Looking for cash in all the wrong places... (1)

_bug_ (112702) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191585)

I hate to give AOL credit, but they deserve it. They are one of the few major ISPs that I see doing it the way it should be, that is, if you share the opinion that the Internet needs to be reconstructed to better facilitate business. AOL, while offering a connection to the not-always-stable Internet, also has its own internal network through which customers receive data from a more reliable or stable source. When doing business over AOL, doing a web cast from an AOL server to an AOL user, you have that direct line that bypasses any of the Internet and it's unfortunate congestion. Why can't more companies do this? That is, build AROUND the Internet, or build to the side of the Internet and offer as part of their service an Internet connection. Redesigning the Intenet, besides being nearly impossible, is going to cost quite a substantial amount of money, and who is going to pay for it? The major ISPs (who will then pass it onto the customers). The point being, why pour money into a redesigning of the Internet when you can use the same resources to build your own network that can offer great service and speed and at the same time, allows for these companies to keep control of their own space without having to share it with other corporations. Administration becomes a bit easier since both the client and the server are the responsibility of a single entity, network sniffing becomes a thing of the past, and all those other evil cracker stories the media likes to propagate. Then, as several of this attached networks start to show up, companies could create partnerships between each other and interconnect themselves with some large "pipes" and allow for cross-network communication without the need of using some sort of unstable, unreliable public network. Leave the Internet to those who enjoy it. Keep it free. Just make a copy of it and package it as your own. Isn't that what companies do anyways?

Re:um ... basic economic laws?? (1)

techwatcher (112759) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191586)

Yep, you got it right. I've been saying since about '97 we're entering the post-capitalism phase since we're well into the post-industrial agel. So everyone thinks I'm crazy. And I've been writing since about '98 about how you CAN make money using society's new nervous system (the 'Net). Does anyone listen? No, why should they, I'm only a genius (very high intelligence AND very high creativity), with wide-ranging expertise and experience in fields ranging from Wall Street to statistics to human communication and other "soft" sciences. All that doesn't count, because I'm also female and 50!

um ... basic economic laws?? (5)

legLess (127550) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191594)

From the article:
"The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a [dumbshit].
I wonder if he understands what he's saying? For purposes of this discussion, there are two types of laws: prescriptive and descriptive.

Prescriptive laws are, for instance, speed limits. They don't attempt to describe the world but to govern it. These are human social constructs and subject to rapid change. They have a goal (e.g. prohibit bad behaviour), and can be adjusted depending on how well they serve that goal. If you disobey one of these laws you're likely to be punished by your peers.

Descriptive laws are, for instance, gravity. They attempt to understand and explain the world we see. They are not human constructs (unless you're a solipsist), and are not subject to human modification. They serve no goals (unless you're a deist), and do not change. There is no opportunity to disobey these laws.

So what is this guy saying? What types of laws is he talking about? If he means that the Internet is not obeying the descriptive laws of the science economics, then he's fucked: if a verified experiment conflicts with what you think is a law, then the law goes (hint: scientific method). That would mean that the Internet is an exception to economic law. Ergo, economic law is full of holes. Oops. Not much of a descriptive law, eh?

If he means that the Internet won't obey the prescribed laws of the human construct of economics, he's equally fucked: if economic laws work so well, why are we in a recession? If they work so damn well, why was the Internet a surprise to most people? Why was the dot-com hype and crash a surprise?

In short, he's full of shit. He wants economics to be a science so he can be its High Priest ("Only I can interpret the laws of the great God economics."). But he wants it to be a set of regulations that he can impose on things he doesn't understand. Typical late 20th century capitalism, eh?

"We all say so, so it must be true!"

Re:whew (5)

Rei (128717) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191596)

This article is silly. Have you ever read over the structure of IP and TCP headers? There's all sorts of neat things in there. One field, I don't remember whether it was TCP or IP, actually does this - sets various priority flags for the data - whether you're concerned about throughput, response time, etc. Near all routers ignore them. Why? Its not profitable.

You don't need to re-write the net. You need to put pressure on backbones to actually use the full potential of the current net (and, to be more swift in implementing IPv6).

-= rei =-

Hippie Anarchists? (1)

whizzird (129373) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191597)

I didn't know the internet was designed by hippie anarchists...when did the Defence Department start hiring hippies?

Re:wtf? they are crazy (1)

krogoth (134320) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191602)

ok, if another website goes down, there's nothing you can do about it. But if your connection dies, then your ISP is probably your only link to the internet, so they should know something. It may be something beyond their control (maybe one of their connections is having problems), but they are where you connect to the internet, so if your connection isn't working (and it's not a problem on your end), they should know what's happening. Maybe they can't solve the problem, but they should be able to tell you where it is (at least more accurately than you could find out yourself)

Re:The party is over (1)

krogoth (134320) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191603)

But of course - it's their god-given right to take all your money and control your life! What else would you expect from the people destined to be the true masters of the universe?

Re:wtf? they are crazy (1)

krogoth (134320) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191604)

>not having a clue who their ISP is
if they expect a working connection they'd better know who their ISP is. This might be a case of managers trying to do everything instead of the tech people who were trained to do it.

wtf? they are crazy (2)

krogoth (134320) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191611)

One of the people says "If something goes down, you don't even know who's accountable. The Internet is, like, 'Who ya gonna call?' "

hmm... maybe START WITH YOUR ISP!!!! It's really not that hard to figure out - they are responsible for connecting you to the internet, so when there's a problem, call them! I wish he would go compete in the darwin awards olympics. What a fucking idiot!

Sour grapes (3)

M_Talon (135587) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191612)

To quote the article:

"The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant. "The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive. But this is a business, not a government-sponsored network."

Bleh. First off the Internet is based on an idea the military came up with (ARPANet), so it wasn't devised by a bunch of "hippie anarchists". Secondly, it wasn't designed with business in mind, it was designed to propogate information. This is a grand case of a supposed expert not knowing what he's talking about.

As said before and most likely again, the issue shouldn't be changing the Internet to fit businesses, but rather changing the businesses to fit the Internet. Yes, a lot of ideas failed. That doesn't mean the Internet is useless. It simply means you have to look at what it can offer and use it for that. It's a learning process, but so many higher management types don't want to take the time to do the neccessary research. They want results, and fast, so they make the techies throw something together with a poor business model and a poor support structure. And guess who gets blamed/laid-off when the whole thing goes south?

gggrrrrrr (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191613)

the Internet for a profit has resulted in calls to modify the basic structure of the Internet itself so it will "obey basic economic laws".
then they can build there own damn NET! call it biznet. Get all that damn commercialism off the internet.
The internet was designed to allow an exchange of information, NOT an exchange of money.

Hmmm If only I had enough moderation points..... (1)

Emugamer (143719) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191619)

To mark this article down as flamebait -1. Really do you actually think there will be any sort of discussion other then "this guys an idiot" out of our group? For my opinion on the actual article please read everything that is moderated up because some moderator got pissed off and moderated everything that was anti-this-article.

Re:When I see articles like this.. (2)

Docrates (148350) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191623)

"How do you make money off the telephone?"

By using the telephone to cut deals more efficiently. Buy and Sell faster, cheaper.

Which is exactly the way you make money off the Internet. The Internet itself works perfectly. It's the lousy applications they're trying to make money off that just don't work, or they're just trying to find and excuse for the dot com craze and crash (both of them are their own creation)

Trust me, I know. I run a VERY succesful B2B digital marketplace, with ERP integration capabilities, in Panama (Central America), and I've helped big and small companies save millions of dollars with our app.

End-to-end design principle (4)

shalunov (149369) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191624)

It's fascinating how drooling journalists and business suits thoughtfully discuss Internet architecture. Somehow, these people believe they're qualified to make judgements on issues they have no clue about, such as the end-to-end design principle [reed.com] .

We cannot give these people an Internet that's good for their needs without throwing away the net as we have it now. Perhaps it's very good that Michels (whoever this guy is) says in the article: "We don't have any control over the Internet". Mr. Michels, it's by design. Even bright people don't have control over the Internet. Business suits should think about what they understand and leave engineering alone.

They just don't Get It. (1)

RedOregon (161027) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191630)

Business wants to take over and kill something that's revolutionized the world. Why am I not surprised?


When it happens, it will be already too late. (2)

Marketolog (161923) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191633)

When I see CNN talking about dot-com bubbles, floating high and blowing up, I laugh. And it is funny, actually. Like yeah, right, a company setup of three undergraduates with mom-and-dads' money setting up a business and going to succeed. Their odds are 1:100, at best. Get some experience, and try again.

Another factor is people. Not only the marketing bullshitters, not only the CEO's from hell, but also the "oh-so-clever-programmers-who-think-they-can-do-al most-anything". First think, then do.

People would use internet for purchases, in their supermarkets already had SQL servers and delivery services (like pizza). People would buy things and cars online, if the companies had a working, not a marasmatically "cool" model of presenting their merchandize.

Internet could have been the coolest entertainment medium (and still can), plus information source, but only if the companies would use their brains correctly and listen to their own engeneers instead of PR whores and consultants.

Fine, then I shall respond in kind. (1)

albamuth (166801) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191637)

If they are intent on changing the net (a decentralized, non-hierarchical system designed with intention of sharing information) then perhaps I can change the nature of business, [sourceforge.net] to a decentralized, nonhierarchical system designed with the intention of producing/distributing goods, tit-for-tat.

(yes, it is a totally shameless plug for a flundering sourceforge project)

Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (1)

Diomedes01 (173241) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191643)

All they need is to strike some sort of deal with Cisco and voila, 10 years from now we end up with exactly what this guys was asking for. I am not saying it is right or wrong, but it IS possible.
I think that any company that tried this would receive such a backlash from the technical sector that it would never go through. They would have to replace a LOT of infrastructure, and they would need our help to do it.


Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (2)

Diomedes01 (173241) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191644)

Wasn't the first ARPANET connection between UC Berkeley and somewhere on the east coast via phone lines? Or am I thinking of something else...


This is ri-goddamn-diculous (5)

Diomedes01 (173241) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191646)

"The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant. "The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive. But this is a business, not a government-sponsored network."
You're fscking kidding me, right? First of all, I can't believe that this guy can say that with a straight face. Why is the Internet expected to comply with "basic economic laws"? Nobody is twisting a business' arm and forcing them to do business on the damn Internet. If they try and fail, then obviously it's not their fault, it's the underlying technology that's to blame. This is a pathetic and whiny excuse. Yes, the original infrastructure wasn't designed to handle the load that the 'net has today, but the 'net of today isn't the same as the AARPNET of yesterday.
By adding "intelligent" switches and other devices, they believe, the system could work faster, avoid traffic jams, distinguish between high-priority data and other material that can wait, and generally live up to its promise as a worldwide communications and entertainment medium.
By saying this, they basically mean "We want hardware that gives our data priority!" Well, guess what, schmuck. This is one medium that you're going to have one hell of a time controlling. If QoS is that important to you, design and implement your own private ATM network.


Once again (1)

denshi (173594) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191647)

As David Brin asks:

"If we admire the Net, should not a burden of proof fall on those who would change the basic assumptions that brought it about in the first place?"

I was going to just write off the article as SoCal tissue, but my eye was caught at the end by this:

from the article:
"It's too big, too important, too political to be treated as something for only a band of talented engineers to preside over." -- Michael Roberts, former chair of IANA
*BOGGLE* Oh indeed; lets have those Harvard MBAs configuring Cisco 8100s, shall we? This is a former chair of IANA! He should know better!

Provided solely for informational purposes: (1)

theedge420 (178254) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191648)

If you are a hippie anarchist and would like to let Mr. Thomas Nolle how you really feel, a little research in Google provided me with this information: Nolle is president of CIMI Corp., a technology assessment firm in Voorhees, N.J. He can be reached at (609) 753-0004 or tnolle@cimicorp.com [mailto]

internet3 (1)

hex1848 (182881) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191653)

I can see internet3 coming down the pipeline. Businesses can pay the way towards developing a 3rd network suited towards there needs. internet stays the way it is, open. internet2 [internet2.org] grows to help facilitate the worlds educational needs.

Not More Corporate Control (1)

QuantumFTL (197300) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191660)

The internet was designed to be a research tool, used by accademia. That should never be compramised to suit the needs of businesses. Businesses need to learn to use hte medium as it is. I am all for adding additional infrastructure and standards (like XML for catalogs, etc) but restructuring the internet is rediculess. If they wanna create their own protocol (Business Transfer Protocol anyone?) then I'm all for it.

Just remember where the internet came from, all you big shots out there. (And no, it wasn't Al Gore :) )

Re:When I see articles like this.. (2)

jmt(tm) (197664) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191661)

I disagree. As the article itself points out, there is a fundamental design difference: the telephone network is a virtual circuit network connecting dumb telephones. Thereby, all the control lies in the hands of the companies who own and control the infrastructure. That's why telecom is profitable.

The internet is a datagram network where end to end communication goes not over a virtual circuit, but where every package finds its way through the network. This is the core of the failure tolerance of the internet and what both white collars and political censors dislike.

Internet and telecom networks are apples and oranges.

echo $FAKEMAIL | sed s/soccer/football/ | sed s/" at "/@/

email abuse (2)

maddogsparky (202296) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191667)

...one thing that has me paranoid is an urgency flag in IPv6 ... but it's wide open for abuse.

How many people do you know who abuse the priority flag in the email they send? I can think of a few (and yes, email does get through faster that way).

basic economic laws don't really apply (4)

maddogsparky (202296) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191668)

Basic economic laws are based on supply and demand of scarce resources. This makes sense when there is a significant cost associated with duplication of an existing product. It doesn't make sense for the Internet; once something is digital, it is almost free to copy. This flattens out the traditional supply/demand vs price curve into almost a flat line.

Businesses that have traditionally been able to control their prices to maximize profit suddenly find themselve unable to do so. With near infinite supply, price controls are nearly impossible. That's why O.S. works so well and business has had such a tough time on the net. It's hard to be successful and greedy when what you're selling doesn't cost anything to reproduce.

Bandwidth is not free, and I can understand a market for that. The information on it is free to reproduce, and businesses that have grasped that have done well (barring lawsuits). Hopefully, people will realize the benefits of privatization don't apply to everything (compare with California electricity) and won't cave in to businesses whose only care is their profit, not public good.

Go play your own game! (2)

smnolde (209197) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191672)

This reminds me of some kids up the street wanting to get in on my game of (insert game here). They refuse to play by the established rules and can't adjust their style to my game. I tell them how it's played and the rules are set.

So then they get frustrated and continue to break all the rules, but no one else cares, and the game continues.

They eventually lose the game, despite having played for a tenth of the time I have, and go away crying to their mommies and daddies.

Well, if they want to win, they can make up their own game and stay outta mine.

what about I2? (1)

Pravada (217899) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191679)

What about something that supplements the existing internet, like I2? Business gets their smart fast controlled network, and we get our free (slightly) slower less accountable one. That way everyone's happy.

Re:what about I2? (1)

Pravada (217899) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191680)

Sorry, I should have made myself clear. Something on the model of I2, not I2 itself.

an open letter. (4)

saintlupus (227599) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191685)

Attention corporate whores:

I write to you as someone who's been on the Internet a fairly long time. I'm not the archetypal grungy Unix guy from the basement, but I remember cursing when my favorite gopher holes were replaced by web sites. I don't write my own device drivers or build my own hardware, but I try to learn from those who can.

That's the point of the Internet, you see. Learning.

I don't want your advertisements shoved in my face. I don't want banner ads or flash filled sites funded by this week's trendy diet cola. Hell, I don't even want graphics all that much. I want information.

The Internet has the potentiality to be the greatest repository of information in the history of the world. You're trying to turn it into the digital equivalent of the crinky paper fliers in my Sunday newspaper.

I don't want it. Very few people do.

I wake up in the morning and there's a Pepsi ad on the radio. Then there's one on the television when I watch the news. I figure I'll escape to the movies, there's one there as well. What the hell would I want to look at more ads for?

Speaking as a .org-owning netizen, you can take all of your "economic responsibility," fold it until it's all sharp corners, hold it in the palm of you manicured marketer's hand, and shove it straight up your ass.

You want streaming video ads and the like to every desktop in America? Build your own fucking network. That's not what this one is for.


This idea is inevitable (2)

fahrvergnugen (228539) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191686)

The idea of one network to meet the needs and interests of the public, the academic community, and the commercial sector doesn't really work, and is bound to provide only marginally satisfactory performance to all three.

The academic community needs a place to exchange ideas and information as freely as possible. The public needs a place from which it can get the latest music video, maybe play some Counterstrike, read some e-mail, and check the news. The business sector needs a place in which it can provide a reliable service that has 100% uptime for every person who wants to use it, while providing secure storage and protection of important corporate data.

  • Academia becomes frustrated by the arcane and circuitous security and business practices that have become commonplace in the explosion of the internet.
  • Commercial entities are frustrated by their lack of control over whom they can reach with their services, and the relative ease of information access, authorized or un-authorized.
  • The public becomes frustrated because they can't browse their favorite sites, can't reliably rely on e-mail, and even with DSL, they're still HPB's.

The academics, at least, understand this. Thus, Internet 2.

As other posters have pointed out, the whole idea of the internet is to share information. But things evolve, and change. As long as business interests are the large players in the internet, control over information flow will naturally continue to tighten. In an economy based on information, secrets become crucial, and facilitating the relatively unrestricted flow of data and information that makes up today's internet is not only counterproductive, but questionable due diligence.

So the needs of the academic and research communities will still be served, even if they have to build their own playground. The needs of business will be served because they have the money necessary to remodel our playground.

Private users will probably just have to carve out the best niche they can. I wouldn't be surprised if we see a resurgence in the Compuserve / AOL private network strategy in the coming years. While private users may make up the bulk of internet traffic, there's no real way to coordinate them to the point of building their own network in any reasonable way. Things like this cost money, and nobody's willing to pay for it.

Business is the problem, not the solution (1)

WillSeattle (239206) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191691)

One of the complaints, that of the "dumb" internet, is directly caused by business not being willing to shoulder the costs and time required to fully implement IPv6. The faults with TCP/IP are directly attributable to business resistance with rolling out the changes that we've been talking about throughout the 90s.

But what do I know, I've been on the Net ever since the early 80s.

Face it, they want the taxpayers to pay for it, even though we already paid for the Net in the first place, and they're just trying to wangle subsidies for their own nefarious schemes.

Starting to feel a bit Luddish. (1)

thud2000 (249529) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191696)

Is anybody else out there starting to get dangerously depressed with this ongoing assault on freedom of information? I swear, it's enough to make me want to just unplug, buy a bunch of (paper) books (while you can still get them, that is) and just take the wife and guitar and move to some island with no phone, no fiber, no DirectTV. The USA is just fscked. Realistically, I don't know that we can fight this. The Content & Control companies will end up turing the Net into "57 websites and nothin' on." Oh yeah, with individually-targeted ads and consumer monitoring through video surveillance. How long do you think we have left before even the illusion of this being a free society is abandoned?

The funny part? Two years ago I would have thought this sounded paranoid.

How typical (5)

baptiste (256004) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191701)

Time to play that time honored American game: Who you gonna blame?

Was it stupid business plans? Venture capitalists with unrealistic expectations?

I guess it was only a matter of time til failures started to blame the network that gave them the opportunity to succeed.

Let the lawsuits begin as usual. God how I wish some people would just accept responsibility for their actions and get over it!

Re:what about I2? (1)

pdiaz (262591) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191702)

That way everyone's happy.
errr, except the people who use I2 for useful things like research, right?

Blame someone else... (1)

Cutriss (262920) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191703)

After years of fruitless efforts to make money selling goods and services over the Web, many entrepreneurs and other businesspeople are starting to blame the system's fundamental design for their failures.

And those failures certainly wouldn't have been because of a poor Internet business models, now would they?

Morons. (2)

r_j_prahad (309298) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191718)

I see boom times ahead for f---edcompany.com with turds like these in charge of the economy.

So, who *does* the 'Net belong to??? (1)

phantumstranger (310589) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191719)

"The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive. But this is a business, not a government-sponsored network."

One, yes it was created by a bunch of people that wanted to give a little something to Universities and didn't really (IMHO) care all that much about monetary wealth. Two, if I'm not mistaken, wasn't the 'Net (or at least part of it) grabbed by the government for their use, thus becoming government sponsered?

So, just where is the problem? You don't see businesses using the phone as their only means of marketing. Sure, you can order products over the phone, but they don't use it for advertising. The 'Net is a great advertising tool just as television is, but if Big Business Inc. is expecting to use it soley as it's own marketing and sellign point they should really look for a more viable way.

The 'Net, right now, as a way of selling goods is a novelty, and businesses better realize that. People use it, without a doubt, but seeing as how, as a consumer shopping center, it is still in it's infancy most people are still very reluctant to use it (I would suppose it would also help if they kept the "Evil Hacker" scare tactics to a minimum, and it would probably be better if they "found" ways to keep they 'Net more secure first, wait, that sounds familiar).

Why should I wait a couple of weeks or pay extra for over-night shipping for a product as a home consumer (mmm, home's taste goooood . . . sorry) when I could run out to the store within 5 miles of my house for something. Granted this works best for people in cities or otherwise indutrialized rural areas, but whatever. When I go to pricewatch looking for deals I look for stores in my area first (I'm usually willing to pay more if I don't have to wait).

I guess Internet2 is looking to have a bright future.

When will they learn. (2)

Haxx (314221) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191722)

When will they Learn!

The Internet is for INFORMATION SHARING!

Let me say that again... The internet is for SHARING INFORMATION!

-Floating in my tin can... far far from home.

Here is this guys URL and E-mail (3)

Haxx (314221) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191723)

Look what this fool wrote.

The Internet is an important cultural phenomenon, but that doesn't excuse its failure to comply with basic economic laws," said Thomas Nolle, a New Jersey telecommunications consultant. "The problem is that it was devised by a bunch of hippie anarchists who didn't have a strong profit motive. But this is a business, not a government-sponsored network."

Why not drop him a line

(609) 753-0004

-Im standing next to a Mountain, Chop it down with the edge of my hand.

Re:Laws and rights (1)

reverse flow reactor (316530) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191727)

Since when was profit a right? I've never seem the "right to profit" in any constitution. If the corps don't like the internet, they can build their own. They can call it whatever they want, but if they want to control it, they will have yo build it from the ground up.

I reiterate - since when was profit a right? If a corporation can't make money on the internet, maybe they shouldn't be in the internet business. I know that I can't make money selling ice cream, and therefore I am not in the ice cream business. Someone else who can make money in that area will make a better go of it. But I have no right to a profitable ice-cream business.

Profit is a privilege, and not a right.

We Shouldn't Shrug this off (1)

mal0rd (323126) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191735)

Although many of the ideas may seem rediculous, that doesn't mean that it won't happen. Most corporations and the governments probably would favor getting control over the internet, and most citizens who are not technically savy would probably also favor it. There was an article in July's Popular Science where the author says that the only reason to have privacy on the Internet is so he can shop descretly. I'm pretty sure his opinions reflect the majority.

To help delay or perhaps stop this we should start taking action. The most important thing I can think of is to use Freenet [sourceforge.net] and other open source privacy tools.

Re:When I see articles like this.. (1)

mal0rd (323126) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191736)

But they already do control the telephone! In almost everywhere in the United States your local phone company is a monopoly if you want to get on the "telephone network." It is owned by large coporations who bill you exorbitant rates. The Internet is hardly as structuralized. I'm sure that if the corporations had as much control over the Internet as they do the telephone then the Internet would be quite a different place.

Re:They just don't Get It. (1)

mod you later (326902) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191745)

it sounds like the internet 2 is RIGHT down their street.

i was angry:1 with:2 my:4 friend - i told:3 4 wrath:5, 4 5 did end.

Re:This article is mostly about technical details (2)

bartle (447377) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191756)

Now, I'm quite poorly-read on such things, but wouldn't better multicast support, on the backbone and for the end-user, take care of network congestion for planned webcasts?

This is exactly what the mbone does, and it's been implemented for years. It's just that most ISPs don't want to upgrade their routers to support it. If you're lucky enough to have an ISP that supports it, I recommend you check it out. You can pull in streaming video of empty classrooms and stuff.

Stuck in the 60's (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191766)

It's cool being considered someone who is stuck in the 60's. If I'd just been alive then maybe I wouldn't have gotten stuck.

Re:This is ri-goddamn-diculous (3)

mimbleton (467957) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191780)

"!" Well, guess what, schmuck. This is one medium that you're going to have one hell of a time controlling. "

Not so fast.
Remember that vast majority of the infrastructure of the net is controlled by private companies, running on hardware almost exclusively from a single source (Cisco.)
All they need is to strike some sort of deal with Cisco and voila, 10 years from now we end up with exactly what this guys was asking for.
I am not saying it is right or wrong, but it IS possible.

Re:gggrrrrrr (1)

Mr. Disappointment (470728) | more than 13 years ago | (#2191786)

A separate network, or networks, for the corporate types is a very good idea. The divide between those who are trying to do something beneficial for the human species (the open source types) and those who are trying to do something beneficial for their own pockets is growing. An attempt to commercially control the Internet or to create a separate one is just another facet of this divide. Personally I think this growing divide is good. It's basically evolution at work.
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