[PLUG-TALK] Open letter to Congressmen

Michael michael at jamhome.us
Fri Aug 6 10:08:17 PDT 2010

I've been in touch with my state rep and Senator Merkley recently.  This
is what I wrote to both:

 FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski
said: "Any outcome, any deal  that doesn't preserve the freedom and
openness of the Internet for  consumers and entrepreneurs will be
 That's a great statement and a stand that I
hope you fully support.  I only wish it were true. 
a young man, he looked like a college student, knocked on my  door.  He
was representing Comcast's Xfinity broadband service.  He  hoped to get
me to sign up for their "fiber to the node" internet  service
promising 12mb/s service.   I currently have DSL service with a 
speed of 3mb/s.  After the trial period expired the Comcast offering 
would cost about half of what my DSL service does.  
great, right?
 But I didn't accept the offer.  Comcast
doesn't allow their Internet  broadband clients to host servers.  If I
were to switch my service to  Comcast I'd have to quit hosting websites for
the Oregon Brew Crew,  Oregon Randonneurs and others.  I'd have to
discontinue hosting email  discussion lists for these, and a handful, of other
 DSL providers, starting with Quest in the late 1990s
have always  provided internet connectivity with a end user agreement that 
effectively stated "don't use our connection for anything
illegal."    Comcast and other cable TV providers have always
treated their customers  as consumers of entertainment, hopefully hosted by
the cable company. 
  Chairman Genachowski's support for
"freedom and openness of the  Internet for  consumers and
entrepreneurs" describes an environment that for far too  many does not
exist today.  How can an entrepreneur start a home  business if his only
choice for an ISP does not allow hosting of  servers?  I'm fortunate to
have a DSL option provided by a truly open  ISP.  Not everyone has that
 Ideally, I'd like to see ISPs regulated like common
carrier utilities -  providing bandwidth and routing as a fundamental service,
as fundamental  as electricity, with no restrictions on services hosted by the
client.   Their valued added services of programming and content can be
added on,  but the fundamental connectivity should be bi-directionally open an
 unrestricted.   If DSL providers can do it, so can cable

     Michael Rasmussen
 Be Appropriate && Follow Your Curiosity
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