When a court ruling struck down down federal net-neutrality regulations, it was widely seen as horrible news for Netflix, the type of high-bandwidth website that service providers such as Comcast or Verizon would likely target for millions of dollars worth of fees.
Instead, it’s Netflix that is firing the first shot.
CEO Reed Hastings on Wednesday warned providers that it will rally its customers against them should they threaten to charge the site more or slow down its traffic.
Until the ruling last week by the D.C. Circuit Court, Internet providers were legally required to treat all traffic equally, neither prioritizing traffic from one website or another nor charging websites extra for using lots of bandwidth. But now that those “Open Internet” rules have been thrown out, many saw Netflix as a likely candidate for new charges. Not only is the streaming website a major hog of Internet road space, its content also competes directly with Internet service providers’ cable offerings.
But Netflix says it is ready.
“Were this draconian scenario to unfold with some [Internet service providers], we would vigorously protest and encourage our members to demand the open Internet they are paying their ISP to deliver,” Hastings wrote in the note on Wednesday, which accompanied the company’s quarterly earnings report.
With a presence in one in four U.S. households, Netflix is a considerable force, but Hastings says he doesn’t expect to have to resort to a public battle with the Internet providers.
“ISPs are generally aware of the broad public support for net neutrality and don’t want to galvanize government action,” he wrote.
Broadband Internet is an extremely profitable business, Hastings noted, and the providers want to ensure their customers have access to high-quality video sites. He also said he hopes the providers will adhere to a “meaningful voluntary code of conduct,” but warned that if they start degrading Internet traffic, Netflix will lobby for tougher regulation.
What We're Following See More »
At the end of the debate, moderator Lester Holt asked Donald Trump if he stands by his statement that Hillary Clinton didn't have the look of a president. Trump responded by saying Holt misquoted him, instead saying that Clinton "doesn't have the stamina." Clinton responded by saying that when Trump visits 112 countries as secretary of state, he can talk to her about stamina.
Donald Trump, when pressed by Lester Holt on why he finally admitted that President Obama was born in America, repeated his widely debunked claim that it was started by Hillary Clinton.
Hillary Clinton went point by point on how race can so often determine the treatment that people receive, mentioning recent shootings in Tulsa and Charlotte, calling for restored trust between communities and police, and demanding criminal justice reform. Trump responded by calling for law and order and touting his endorsements from police unions. He then said that “African Americans are living in hell,” saying they are just walking down the street and getting “shot ... being decimated by crime."
Just as Hillary Clinton was inviting debate viewers to visit her site for real-time fact checking, there appeared to be a problem with Donald Trump's own campaign website. For about a 15-minute period, a blank page or an error message appeared when we tried to load the Trump site.
Donald Trump has come out in the first segment of this debate raring to go. Trump has interrupted nearly every answer being given by Hillary Clinton, talking over her time and again. Clinton is sticking to her guns, smiling while Trump speaks and then calling on people to go to her website and see the fact checking being done.