Google’s ‘Treat All Rich Companies the Same’ Vision of Net Neutrality

Let’s not lose sight of this: There really is a war going on between the phone companies and Google over the way Internet traffic will be priced. And both sides want their self interest to appear to be morally superior.The blogosphere has been in a tizzy all day about an article in the Wall Street Journal that suggested that a new initiative by Google meant to speed up the delivery of YouTube videos and other parts of its service represents an abandonment of the principles of “network neutrality.” draws up a plan to build broadband ‘fastlane’
It is a basic principle of the internet that all content travelling over the network is treated equally – from pirated songs to programmes made and delivered by the BBC.However, Google wants to change that by speeding up the delivery of popular content, such as YouTube videos featuring The X Factor winner Alexandra Burke, by storing content in facilities owned by internet providers.Its plans prompted concerns that Google is abandoning the principle known as “net neutrality” by treating popular content differently – a claim that the world’s dominant search engine denies. Story on Google’s Net Neutrality Stance Raises Hackles
Google is either a major supporter of net neutrality — the concept that all Web traffic from all companies should be treated the same — or is quietly working behind the scenes to set up its own Internet express lane with ISPs. The incoming Obama administration is either a big fan of net neutrality, or its celebrated technology advisers are backing off their stances that no company’s data traffic should get preferential treatment on the Web. says it still stands by Net neutrality [AP]
Google Inc. denied that it had reversed its stance on the issue of “Net neutrality” and dismissed a story in Monday’s edition of The Wall Street Journal on the subject as “confused.”Citing undisclosed sources, the newspaper reported that Google had been in talks with major cable and phone companies about getting preferential treatment for traffic to and from its sites., Microsoft Say They Still Support Net Neutrality [IDG]
Google and Microsoft said Monday that they have not backed away from their support for net neutrality principles, despite a report to the contrary.Both companies denied much of the information contained in a Wall Street Journal story, which suggested both companies have abandoned their support for network neutrality rules. The article reported that Google is trying to negotiate with broadband providers for an Internet fast lane for its content, apparently in conflict with its support for net neutrality rules prohibiting broadband providers from blocking or slowing content from some applications or companies. says plan would not threaten net neutrality
Google Inc said on Monday it is committed to principles of equal network access, after a report said it approached Internet carriers with a proposal to create a “fast lane” for its content.Google’s telecom and media counsel in Washington said in a company blog that the search powerhouse offered to place its servers within the facilities of Internet service providers, making its data closer to consumers and therefore more easily accessed.

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