Linked by David Adams on Sun 11th Jul 2010 18:54 UTC
Internet & Networking There's an article today at that looks at recent trends around net-based pay-for services and the smattering of paywalls from News Corp to the NYT that are up or threatening to be put up, and speculating that this could be the beginning of a trend. Of course, a YouTube video rental site and a few large publishers putting up paywalls will make zero difference to the "free internet" on their own. But if they're successful, it could spark emulation. But could this be a trend that could snowball enough to change the nature of the net?
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I agree with much of what you say. I don't pirate music and movies. I pay for sites I find valuable. I even go along with tiered Internet bandwidth, as long as any traffic I generate across it generally gets treated "equally".

But where I have to draw the line is where certain entities want to artificially alter the Internet landscape to further their own ends. Take the music/movie companies, for instance. Have they offered a real, attractive alternative to piracy? Not that I can tell. They (or their "resellers", like Apple) want about as much for music purchased online as on CD, when the distribution costs can't possibly be what they are for "traditional" CD sales. It's also hard to get lossless music online, or at least a wide selection of it.

Instead of offering something of value, the content providers want to use ISPs and governments as their own private police forces. God forbid they get creative and come up with a new, better business model.

I've pretty much resorted to used-CD shopping, both online and in local stores; that's the best value IMHO. [For movies, I use Redbox; I'm not in a big hurry to see most movies nowadays anyway.]

ISPs becoming content providers present another problem. Some have demonstrated that they will favor their own content on their networks. Because of infrastructure costs reducing the number of players, switching providers is often not an option.

I am OK with paying for something of value. I'm not so good with getting screwed, or having my choice limited.

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