Google and Verizon Digital Double-deal-making or Net Neutrality:”Get Lost!”

Neither Google or Verizon should be privately negotiating the future of the Internet by private, closed-door, dealmaking.  Both companies have a tremendous conflict of interest–because they are involved in distributing multimedia content and collecting user data to target consumers across the Internet, mobile and digital TV platforms.  To exempt wireless from any safeguards is a good example of how self-serving this deal is–everyone knows that mobile will operate the same way the wired Internet does–in terms of behavioral targeting, for example.  That’s why the “deal” announced has loopholes that will benefit their special interests over others online.  What’s needed are strong federal safeguards that keep the Internet open and free from under the influence of the most powerful online giants…This deal was written with purposeful “digital” loopholes so companies like Verizon and Google, and other well-endowed players,  can dominate the future of the Internet.  It potentially would enable them to create the kind of special first class web distribution service that undermines the goals of network neutrality.  Instead of the Internet, we have a special interest web.

Author: jeff

Jeff Chester is executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. A former journalist and filmmaker, Jeff's book on U.S. electronic media politics, entitled "Digital Destiny: New Media and the Future of Democracy" was published by The New Press in January 2007. He is now working on a new book about interactive advertising and the public interest.