January 5th, 2007

Abelian Grape

A good metaphor for net neutrality...

Imagine if Exxon-Mobil, the largest retailer of gasoline, decided to a) buy up a bunch of stock in a car brand, and then b) price its gasoline based on what kind of car you're driving (i.e. charge less to people driving the cars made by the company in which it holds a stake).

Wouldn't it be particularly galling if they decided to charge less for Hummer drivers (who "purchase in bulk"), than Prius drivers? Correspondingly, the anti-net-neutrality people want to let big companies negotiate bulk-purchase agreements that won't be available to small startups.

Courtesy of Tim Wu.

I think this is a good meme to spread.
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