Letter to the Editor: Net Neutrality Has Many Facets, Some of Them Known

Letter to the Editor: Net Neutrality Has Many Facets, Some of Them Known

September 30, 2009
Originally published in The Wall Street Journal

Mr. Jenkins suggests that Google would likely "shriek" if a startup were to mount its servers inside the network of a telecom provider. Google already does just that. It is called "edge caching," and it is employed by many content companies to keep costs down.

It is puzzling, then, why Google continues to support net neutrality. As long as Google produces content that consumers value, they will demand an unfettered Internet pipe. Political battles aside, content and infrastructure companies have an inherently symbiotic relationship.

Fears that Internet providers will, absent new rules, stifle user access to content are overblown. If a provider were to, say, block or degrade YouTube videos, its customers would likely revolt and go elsewhere. Or they would adopt encrypted network tunnels, which route around Internet roadblocks.

Not every market dispute warrants a government response. Battling giants like Google and AT&T can resolve network tensions by themselves.

Ryan Radia

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Washington