cr> re: flat-rate pricing / “modem tax”


Richard Moore

Date: Sat, 24 Feb 1996
Sender: dave ketchum <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cr> IP: A Kick in the Flat-Fee Access by Meeks

To the extent that the phone companies have a case as to customers
hogging bandwidth, they already are in the business of measuring usage
and charging the customers who are making the calls.  IF it is
bandwidth they care about, why do they care whether I am calling my
ISP, a long-lost friend, or a pizza shop?

Taxing the ISPs would make it more difficult for them to offer the
introductory free time that helps potential new users learn what the
Internet is good for.  It would also put a new burden on ISPs such as
mine, that charge a flat rate and therefore have no present need to
measure usage time.

Finally, not only would they have to pass through to us users the
actual tax imposed, they would have to pass through the cost of the
extra equipment and bookkeeping required and of any extra audits
imposed on them.  This would destroy smaller ISPs that would have to
charge impossible fees to their few customers.

The argument that residential rates are subsidized by business rates
should cut no ice in this war - the phone companies consistently claim
that their bandwidth problems peak in the daytime, when ISP usage would
tend to come from business customers - residential ISP usage should
peak in the otherwise lightly loaded evening hours.

Side note:  It is beyond me how competition fits into the local loop.
Our proper demands are that SOMEONE be responsible for having the
equipment to provide service to all customers, and not clutter up my
street with more than one set of wires.  How do competing companies
sort out who gets stuck with expensive-to-serve customers and who is
responsible for maintaining the cable on my street - and do all this
more economically than a single company could?

>>From the original:
          To fight this, a kind of "cybercoalition" is needed, one
          that would meld the fire and passion of grass-roots users
          with the money and muscle of our newly minted Net

          I hope you're listening and that the millionaires aren't too
          busy cashing in their stock options to step into the gap.
          Your flat-fee access is riding on it.


Dave Ketchum


 Posted by Richard K. Moore  -  •••@••.•••  -  Wexford, Ireland
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