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The Federal Communications Commission’s proposal to let Internet service providers charge Web services for a “fast lane” probably isn’t a good thing for the Internet—even the FCC said so itself in 2010 when it warned that such payments would give ISPs “incentives to allow congestion rather than invest in expanding network capacity.”
But it’s important not to exaggerate the potential effects of the proposed rule. In the past day, we’ve seen headlines such as “The FCC’s new net neutrality proposal is already ruining the Internet” and “Net neutrality ruling scaring VCs away from investing in certain startups.”
The source for these stories is a Technology Review article titled “Talk of an Internet Fast Lane Is Already Hurting Some Startups,” which quotes a venture capitalist from Union Square Ventures saying that “his firm will now ‘stay away from’ startups working on video and media businesses” because of the FCC’s proposal.
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