katsbits.com/blog

Click to get the RSS master feed

Games Media, Cultural Critics and Partisan Duplicity on Violent Video Games

March 10, 2018, 03:24:34 PM by kat
Violent video games cause violence TODAY/violent vidoe game don't cause violence YESTERDAY

Over the last few years a cancerous zeitgeist has been slowly enveloping gaming, one that insists video games cause various forms of harm irrespective of subject, context or intent; that overt expressions of "violence" not be considered prerequisites; that obligates subjective interpretation above objective intent[1]; that perceives "violence" to mean anything the individual might deem unwanted or unwarranted; and that words and actions are equal[2].

This confluence of circumstance[3] has become particularly intractable, spread as it is through the ease by which involved parties, media and press, advocates, activists and allies, politicians, are willing and eager to conflate "cause" with "reinforce", "promote", "perpetuate", "normalise", "desensitize", often interchangeably as mood, cause or convenience dictate. In this way video games can be blamed for "sexism", "online harassment" and "abuse", "misogyny", "hatred", "Islamophobia", "bigotry" and all manner of social-ills infecting society at large including, perhaps most incredulously, the election of President Trump.

Such is the all encompassing narrative this creates discussion has become part and parcel of the broader political landscape; legislation is proposed and in some instances signed, activists, advocates and their ilk push their causes, informed by a debate they presume and position themselves to control, that { video games = violence } = { violence = harm } = { harm = violence }, propagated through highly questionable selective filtering[4].

In such an environment then, when Trump calls for a discussion on violent video games in the wake of another mass shooting, his embroilment triggers the aforementioned through shear enmity into reflexively reiterating a situationally forgotten belief, that violent video games do not in fact cause violence ("Oh I remember now" Ed.), one seemingly contrary to every position previously and currently espoused on other topics, solely because Trump made the claim, paraphrasing their talking points, deftly snatching control of the conversation from their hands; violent video games "desensitize our community to violence"[5], an assertion authoritatively propagated in other contexts as the ever expanding and multifariously unfalsifiable realms of *.isms, *.ists and *.phobias etc.

Make no mistake, game and cultural glitterati, a veritable cohort of pseudo-gonzo, self-proclaimed, self-entitled, duplicitous miscreants if there ever were, piping up when formerly busying themselves vociferously disparaging and castigating games, gaming and game culture, only do so now to wrest narrative control back into their hands, away from Trump.

Once that happens they will all be back on track eagerly asserting video games 'cause' whatever they say it does, aggressively attacking and shaming differing opinions, citing highly selective studies and problematic research to prove a irrefutable and unfalsifiable premise or point[6].

Further Reading
- Dear Mr President, video games causing violence is "fake news"
- Violent Video Games & the Dishonest Debate
- Boom Headshot, perpetuating the 'murder-simulator' narrative through bad science.
- Dumb things pop-culture critics say: video games cause violence.
- Digital Self-Harm Among Adolescents, a new phenomena.
- Men harassed online more but like, seriously, it's not about them - Pew 2017.
- Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games is Wrong.
- Kicking ass and chewing bubblegum.
- Assassination Generation: Video Games, Aggression, and the Psychology of Killing.
- Virtual Reality Assault and Developer Responsibilities.
- Normalising/desensitising violence in games. An (initial) study.
- How social context influences violence-aggression relationship.
- Violence against males in games doesn't count... another study that 'proves' it.


Footnotes:
[1] both US and UK legislative and prosecutorial services have made great effort to emphasise the subjective and interpretive nature of an individuals actions, going so far as to state that a victims subjective perception be the determining factor towards a prosecution, largely to emphasise the public's perception of, confidence in, the judiciary, and to the victims mind they are at least being "listened" to if not outright "believed" (the so called "listen and believe" policy strategy/doctrine).

[2] being wholly generous in interpreting the situation it might be possible to claim "confluence of circumstance", i.e. that the antagonistic zeitgeist towards gaming is simply the consequence of coincidence. This would be false assumption for a number of reasons, least of which because; 1) journalists understand the power news reporting has, its ability to influence and make change, fundamental rubrics journalist formally learn; 2) advocates and activists understand narrative control, how its crafting informs perceptions of their cause, which is why more 'progressive' members of these communities engage in "culture-jacking", the hijacking of broader 'cultural' narratives (e.g. memes).

Where activist meets journalist the resultant activist journalist is in an incredibly power position to give disproportionate voice to their personal issues or causes, artificially inflating their prescience, making them 'political' tools to (mis)direct the public's attention and discourse away from issues that matter to the public at large on to those where they become nothing more than unwitting foot-soldiers to a "just and righteous cause".

Journalists and news media outlets know this, so too to politicians, advocacy groups and activists, they all know what narrative control is and how it effects open debate. It's why and how children and minors are pushed in front of news cameras, to sell a point of view instead of providing a picture of events as they transpire/d. It speaks volumes to those who would knowingly, intentionally, deliberately abuse the public's trust in this way, especially when there are no easy remedies or care to correct the record available to those persistently and egregiously wronged in ink.

[3] the comparative justification for violent words and violent acts being the same in the absolute (not 'similar' but 'same'), is predicated on mental harms to the individual then being manifest or expressed by victims in some way physically, an argument that supports the notion individuals can (do) suffer PTSD as a consequence of what are subjectively perceived to be 'acts of violence' towards themselves, especially where the individual is unable or unwilling to take affirmative action to prevent or stop the abuse, for example tweets and other social media content made by parties who otherwise pose no physical threat, the threat or possibility of actual harm is moot in this context, e.g. cf. "Hurtful Words: Association of Exposure to Peer Verbal Abuse With Elevated Psychiatric Symptom Scores and Corpus Callosum Abnormalities".

[4] cf.[4] Boom Headshot, perpetuating the 'murder-simulator' narrative through bad science - "Gerrymandering research is not so much cherry picking but selective filtering, data that supports a predefined conclusion is allowed though the filter even though it may not be fully supportive of the goal, whereas cherry-picking deals exclusive with selective bias. The difference between the two is that the former can give a greater appearance of veracity because conclusions aren't quite so easily refuted. In addition to this, journals giving voice to such 'soft-science' research are notorious for courting controversy for sake of notoriety or interest in their publications, often publishing controversial subjects that may or may not be backed by thorough research and/or exhibit preference towards fashionable political topics of discussion".

[5] Readout of President Donald J. Trump’s Meeting with Video Game Industry Leaders - "Today, President Trump and senior members of the Administration met with leaders in the video game industry and experts on violence to discuss violent video game exposure and its impact on our children. To date, the Administration has led many discussions about how to prevent violent behavior in our schools, with a focus on stopping those intent on committing mass murder. During today’s meeting, the group spoke with the President about the effect that violent video games have on our youth, especially young males. The President acknowledged some studies have indicated there is a correlation between video game violence and real violence. The conversation centered on whether violent video games, including games that graphically simulate killing, desensitize our community to violence.  This meeting is part of ongoing discussions with local leaders and Congress on issues concerning school and public safety and protecting America’s youth."

[6] Violence, Media Effects, and Criminology - "Overall, the lack of a consistent finding demonstrating that media exposure causes violent crime may not be particularly surprising given that studies linking media exposure, aggression, and violence suffer from a host of general criticisms. By way of explanation, social theorist David Gauntlett maintained that researchers frequently employ problematic definitions of aggression and violence, questionable methodologies, rely too much on fictional violence, neglect the social meaning of violence, and assume the third-person effect—that is, assume that other, vulnerable people are impacted by media, but “we” are not (Ferguson & Dyck, 2012; Gauntlett, 2001). (emphasis added)"

Dear Mr President, video games causing violence is "fake news"

February 26, 2018, 07:20:22 AM by kat

[images courtesy Pew Research]

TL:DR - Dear Mr. President. There is more compelling research highlighting the negative effects of *news media* on violence than for movies, games or other media. Of course "fake news" would say otherwise!.

As a consequence of recent events network and cable TV news, politicians, advocates and activists are busying themselves doing what they do best, demonisation. For now its violent video games, because it serves as leverage towards a related goal, citing them if not as a cause, certainly as significant contributing factor to this latest atrocity (despite nothing yet indicating this) that requires immediate remedial action as a result.

Taking this assertion at face value then, that violent video-games, violent movies and violent media in general cause violent behaviour[1], that killers kill as a direct consequence of their consumption and exposure to violence, the claim must contend with the fact that violent crime rates have been down-trending for the past 30 years or so since a peak around 1993, which coincides interestingly with similar moral outrage accompanying the release of Doom (1993) and more crucially the US Senate hearings on video-game violence and bloodshed also in (late) 1993, the so-called 'Mortal Combat' hearings.

This is not to say "correlation = causation", rather it's to highlight the fundamental contradiction between any truth the claim made hold, that violent games cause/lead to violent behaviour, and the evidenced data suggesting the opposite; given the available facts for the claim to be correct, the only conclusion one might then reasonably and perhaps generously make is that violent media consumption has arrested the significance, speed or severity of the decline over time - causing violence in this context might mediate or moderate the decline, making it slower overall, whereas to contradict or correct, the influence would have to be strong enough to counteract the downward trend, requiring further input to push the trend into the 'positive' in a way that would bolster the argument and make it 'true'. In this setting it would not be too hyperbolic to suggest that degree of violence being indicative of absolute chaos on the streets, The Purge 24/7 as it were, not what is empirically observed, making the claim, set as it is against a backdrop of significantly reducing rates of violent crime over time, false at face value.

With that said, it is possible to consider violent video-games, movies and other violent media causative of violent behaviour in one sense; the public's perception of violence, which is almost to the inverse of the published data[2], or it did reflect the data until late 2001 early 2002, a transformation that appears to coincides with 9/11 and concerns over terrorism.

This naturally means asking questions about the origin of this perception, where exactly does the public get this false impression that violence and violent behaviour is more significant that it actually is. Its rhetorical of course because the public's perception of issues affecting the public and society at large is formed almost exclusively by local and national news, more so than the relatively irregular consumption of movies, games or other media.

The research on this topic, the effects of news reporting[3], seems to indicate news is more informative and influential than other forms of media due to its persistence, prevalence and the viewers connection to it - news is seen as 'real' insomuch as it reflects events, people and places the public might recognise or be familiar or intimate with, especially where local news reporting is concerned, whereas movies et al are largely understood as being 'fake' or 'fiction', the viewer knows they are stories told to entertain. Again however, 'coverage' and 'consumption' do not equate to 'cause' in this instance either, at least not superficially.

With that said there are certain instances where it might be considered causative, particularly in the persuasive sense of encouraging individuals down paths not otherwise contemplated, something readily apparent with reportage on suicides, terrorism and other headline grabbing violence, acts often referred to colloquially as consequences of "the copycat effect"[4]. Again this does not specifically indicate a causative relationship, it again simply highlights that rather reductive argument, that "'X' causes 'Y'", and heavy use of emotional motifs and language, is unhelpful in understanding the breadth and depth of exactly what's going on.

Further Reading
- Violent Video Games & the Dishonest Debate
- Boom Headshot, perpetuating the 'murder-simulator' narrative through bad science.
- Dumb things pop-culture critics say: video games cause violence.
- Digital Self-Harm Among Adolescents, a new phenomena.
- Men harassed online more but like, seriously, it's not about them - Pew 2017.
- Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games is Wrong.
- Kicking ass and chewing bubblegum.
- Assassination Generation: Video Games, Aggression, and the Psychology of Killing.
- Virtual Reality Assault and Developer Responsibilities.
- Normalising/desensitising violence in games. An (initial) study.
- How social context influences violence-aggression relationship.
- Violence against males in games doesn't count... another study that 'proves' it.


Footnotes:
[1] in this context "violent behaviour" is understood to be an behaviour or conduct society general condemns, i.e. acts or expressions of outward aggression or violence towards others. The two main information sources for crime in the USA are defined by the FBI and BJS. In the Uniform Crime Reports the Federal Bureau of Investigation describes crime as "...murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, arson, and human trafficking. Law enforcement agencies report arrest data for 22 additional crime categories". Similarly the Bureau of Justice Statistics in the National Crime Victimization Survey defines crime as; "...rape and other sexual assault, robbery, aggravated and simple assault, personal larceny, household burglary, motor vehicle theft, and other theft"
- The UK's Office for National Statistics in its Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) similarly describes and divides violent acts in terms of those reported to the Police and those reported through Citizen survey, ostensibly crime is largely "...against the population of England and Wales resident in households, and crimes against those households ... primarily [(including)] ... the offences of wounding, assault with minor injury, and violence without injury".

[2] Americans' Trust in Mass Media Sinks to New Low - "Americans' trust and confidence in the mass media "to report the news fully, accurately and fairly" has dropped to its lowest level in Gallup polling history".

[3] Oxford Research Encyclopedias - "Conflicting interpretations of research findings inform and shape public debate around media effects. Although there seems to be a consensus among scholars that exposure to media violence impacts aggression, there is less agreement around its potential impact on violence and criminal behavior.".
- Violence: Comparing Reporting and Reality - "The least common types of homicides received the most news coverage in Los Angeles County from 1990-1994. Specifically, homicides of women, children, and the elderly, and homicides involving multiple victims were reported more often than homicides involving one young or middle-aged adult. Actual crime rates showed that the majority of homicide victims were males between the ages of 15-34 with only one victim involved. Furthermore, gender, age, socioeconomic status, and relationship biases were found in homicide coverage (Sorenson, Manz, & Berk, 1998).".
- Canadian Resource Centre for Victims of Crime "The media does not just decide what stories get that kind of attention, but what stories do not get that kind of attention. The murder of a homeless man is not likely to get as much media attention as the murder of a teenage girl from a middle class family. The media can focus on a story, thereby making it headline news, or ignore a different story, and the public will never know.".
- Understanding Media Coverage of Crime - Three explanations or models; 1. Market model (media gives public what they are interested in and what is in the public interest); 2. Manipulative model (media acts in direct in the interests of owners (Marxist theory)); 3. Production model (extent/nature of crime news function of how news is collected).
- What makes crime 'news'? - "... in fact all crime news stories that are published fit one of more of four classic forms of moral problematics. These categories should be understood as necessary but not sufficient conditions for publication. The argument is that candidate crimes stories for publication in daily newspapers must be shaped alone one or more of these four categories before they will be treated as newsworthy".

[4] Recommendations for Reporting on Suicide - "More than 50 research studies worldwide have found that certain types of news coverage can increase the likelihood of suicide in vulnerable individuals. The magnitude of the increase is related to the amount, duration, and prominence of coverage.".
- Increase in suicides the months after the death of Robin Williams in the US - "Although we cannot determine with certainty that the excess suicides were attributable to news media reports on Williams’ death, Williams’ death might have provided the necessary stimulus for high-risk segments of the U.S. population (e.g., middle-aged men in despair) to move from suicidal ideation to attempt. Therefore, the media industry can positively or negatively influence imitation suicides."
- The effect of media attention on terrorism - "Analyzing 61,132 attack days in 201 countries produces evidence that increased New York Times coverage encourages further attacks in the same country... If terrorists do not receive media attention, they will attack less.".
- Oxford Research Encyclopedias: Copycat Crime - "At this time, copycat effects are felt to be relatively rare and are most likely to appear in at-risk individuals predisposed to crime and in preexisting criminal populations. The effect of the media is thought to be more qualitative (affecting criminal behavior) than quantitative (affecting the number of criminals).".
- International Center for Journalists: mass shootings, media and the copycat effect - "...most journalists were in favor of perpetrator coverage and did not acknowledge a copycat effect ... But given research findings supporting a copycat effect, journalists should be aware that their perceptions of their work don’t always match the work’s actual impact.".
- CDC: Suicide Contagion and the Reporting of Suicide: Recommendations from a National Workshop - "One risk factor that has emerged from this research is suicide "contagion," ... Evidence suggests ... nonfictional newspaper and television coverage of suicide has been associated with a statistically significant excess of suicides.".

Violent Video Games & the Dishonest Debate

February 19, 2018, 03:07:04 PM by kat


So of course this discussion has to be had again despite it not yet being entirely clear if gaming, never mind violent ones, played much of a role informing this latest tragedy. And again this means looking at data that demonstrates violent videos games do not cause the type of behaviour society might nominally understand as violent[1]. This is so unequivocal it's astonishing it constantly needs to be said, the fact that it does reveals a lot about the "debate".

With that said it must be acknowledge the data does tend to indicate what might be better understood as describing predispositional traits or even telltale markers that could be used as diagnostic tools that create a picture of a given individuals mindset or attitudes towards a particular subject[2]. There is a caveat of course; this type of result is often consequential to highly conditional evaluation, that when individuals are tested under certain conditions using particular methodologies, apparent changes in attitude and behaviors can be observed.

And it's at this point the broader conversation about violence and violent video games disintegrates.

The problem is not the fact that something can be seen to occur, rather that as data points stripped of meaning and broader context, the objective results enable and embolden activist researchers, advocacy groups, politicians and politically motivated individuals pushing their own agendas, to subjectively and willfully disingenuously conflate conclusions with cause and effect; that any measured difference is somehow the gotcha that irrefutably evidences violent games cause violence behaviours when nothing could be further from the truth and nothing of the sort is being described[3]. But this seems not to have ever mattered.

Worse yet, this wanton politicisation further obscures the fact that source materials, the tests, surveys and studies, the foundation of the raw data, are as far as is possible to determine without compromising participant privacy and anonymity, nearly all conducted on mentally, physically and emotionally stable individuals, not 'at risk' groups, those who almost universally appear to suffer the kinds of mental impairment that would benefit from the research[4].

And this calls forth the biggest elephant in the room, the way mental health should be informing the debate but is not, or cannot, because activists and advocates are provided broader platforms to vociferously and aggressively push their obfuscating narratives as an intentional consequence of media networks, already culpable in pre-selecting and pre-filter their programming, being further fiscally compromised by Healthcare and Medical Ad dollars, by institutions whose practices might otherwise come under fire, be harshly criticised or subject to scrutiny[5]. Are these the conditions to facilitate an "honest debate" or merely the illusion of one, more a controlled conversation.

So too Governments and Politicians similarly lobbied not so insignificantly by the same politicised interests who are able to spend disproportionately more money lining the pockets of power-brokers than other parties to the conversation[6]. The fact this occurs is not allowed to be mention lest the person saying it be shouted down or shamed into silence. Are the political classes hearing all that needs to be heard, then able to make the decisions that need to be made.

Whether its acknowledged or dismissed as a conspiracy theory, the reality is there are significant economic incentives behind why the violent video game debate tends to form around and focus predominantly upon singular aspects and not others as a whole, there is simply too much money at stake from groups that have little, if anything, to actually do with video games[7].

This is not a debate about violence and violent attitudes or behaviours in media and entertainment, it never has been. Its a deliberately artificial polemic, an intentionally self-serving monologue easily dominated through the manipulation of emotion. Where different opinions, public discussion of certain topics are verboten for sake of being shunned and ostracised, or risk loosing advertising dollars, being sued for negatively effecting stock prices. Not exactly the sort of environment to have the necessary 'honest debate'.

In the meantime incidents will continue to happen and meaningful answers, of being able to develop a toolkit that helps spot or highlight individuals that might be at risk, will continue to be evasive all the whilst its pursuit politicised[8].

Further Reading
- Boom Headshot, perpetuating the 'murder-simulator' narrative through bad science.
- Dumb things pop-culture critics say: video games cause violence.
- Digital Self-Harm Among Adolescents, a new phenomena.
- Men harassed online more but like, seriously, it's not about them - Pew 2017.
- Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games is Wrong.
- Kicking ass and chewing bubblegum.
- Assassination Generation: Video Games, Aggression, and the Psychology of Killing.
- Virtual Reality Assault and Developer Responsibilities.
- Normalising/desensitising violence in games. An (initial) study.
- How social context influences violence-aggression relationship.
- Violence against males in games doesn't count... another study that 'proves' it.


Footnotes:
[1] it's important to understand there is a difference between outward expressions of violence society would normally consider to be "acts of", versus inward or internalised expressions or the same, i.e. attitudes, thoughts, mindset and so on the individual might have. This is not to say one is more of an issue than the other, rather than the former has the greater potential to affect others in day-to-day life, whilst the latter might lead to incidents that happened in Florida. With that said, the two do not specifically correlate.

[2] the general purpose of the research into violent games is the development of a diagnostic tool, if a such a set of traits or markers can be recognised effectively it means then being able to assess an individuals predisposition with respect to violent attitudes or thoughts, not specifically outward behaviours - someone might be tested as expressing negative attitudes or thoughts but not specifically outward behaviours, which would likely result in a diagnostic prognosis that would likely result in treatment or therapy of some kind. With that said research only appears to indicate temporal change in the immediate and short-term.

[3] although changes may be noted it is not entirely clear whether they are as a consequence of the novelty effect, the "meh factor" as it were, of literally thinking "not this image again" being registered as a negative, rather than a response specifically consequential to stimuli - typically using highly emotive or sensitive subject matter individuals may already have strong feelings about i.e., "sexism", "misogyny", "violence towards " etc., etc.

[4] it needs to acknowledge its no coincidences many violent acts are carried out by individuals who are mentally and/or emotionally impaired or traumatised in some way, and are or were on medication or treatment for such

[5] in 2016/2017 Ad dollars from Healthcare and Medical industries overall was to the tune of $9,000,000,000, that's nine BILLION Dollars

[6] the various Healthcare industry lobbies spent some $500,000,000 (2017) buying influence whilst comparative figures for the firearms lobby amounts to c.$10,000,000 (2017) (although is was c.$50,000,000 (2016))

[7] the figures for both 'industries' are difficult to determine exactly because both include federal spending. This being the case the general economic impact of the firearms and weapons industries amounts to c.$51,000,000,000 dollars on its own (fifty-one BILLION), including Federal spending some c.$650,000,000,000 Billion (close to $800 Billion accounting for 2018 budget request). Healthcare and medical on the other hand has revenues of c.$2,000,000,000,000 (two TRILLION), and including the Federal budget some $3,000,000,000,000 (three TRILLION)
.

[8] what is the debate about exactly, cause of death, or something else. If its the former then looking at broader statistics we find that firearms usage killed c.40,000 (2016); the number of vehicular deaths c.30,000 (2016); workplace deaths c.5,000 (2016); whereas medical deaths are estimated to account for some c.250,000 deaths (2016).

Digital Self-Harm Among Adolescents, a new phenomena

January 01, 2018, 09:03:48 AM by kat
In a digital age, Internet users, minors in particular, are finding new ways to 'self-harm'. Interestingly, despite the research pointing to boys being more prone to "digital self-harm", the issue, like other coverage, is given the appearance of something particular to girls ("societies progress as a whole is assessed only by its treatment of a part, that of women and girls").
Quote
Purpose
Despite increased media and scholarly attention to digital forms of aggression directed toward adolescents by their peers (e.g., cyberbullying), very little research has explored digital aggression directed toward oneself. “Digital self-harm” is the anonymous online posting, sending, or otherwise sharing of hurtful content about oneself. The current study examined the extent of digital self-harm among adolescents.

Results
About 6% of students have anonymously posted something online about themselves that was mean. Males were significantly more likely to report participation (7.1% compared to 5.3%). Several statistically significant correlates of involvement in digital self-harm were identified, including sexual orientation, experience with school bullying and cyberbullying, drug use, participation in various forms of adolescent deviance, and depressive symptoms.
[source]

Further Reading
- Men harassed online more but like, seriously, it's not about them - Pew 2017.
- Virtual Reality Assault and Developer Responsibilities.
- Normalising/desensitising violence in games. An (initial) study.
- Harassment of women now a "hate crime".
- CPS Guidelines on Prosecuting Social Media 'crimes'.
- Keeping kids safe; do more....
- Violence against males in games doesn't count... another study that 'proves' it.
- Cyber Violence Against Women and Girls - A World-Wide Wake-Up Call.

"Net Neutrality" has been hoodwinked, yet again!

December 26, 2017, 08:36:11 AM by kat
It appears with the FCC's recent announcement the "Net Neutrality" discussion has been hoodwinked, again. This time by "muh evil corporations"[1], specifically of the Cable & Broadband Service Provider variety, who, it is said, will take advantage of the situation to out-price and over-charge their customers for access. Such is the concern about this 'infringement' the likes of Google, Facebook and other Information Service Providers have jumped on the bandwagon in support of "a free and open Internet".

And no-one stops to ask "why?". Is it any wonder so busy are the social media catastrophists in threatening self-harm, or engaging themselves in Munchhausen level insanity or Category 5 hysterics, ginned up as always it seems these days by a Main Stream News narrative laying claim the World is to end because their Internet is being taken away! (by the same Corporations that own them and the network providers). Just why would all these 'media' and 'information' Corporations and Entities be so concerned about the individuals remonstrating #FirstWorldProblems so furiously?. As customers of ComCast or any number cable/network service providers, what is the individuals ability to access content to them? After all they have their own networks over which their content is distributed into which cable/broadband companies essentially plug - cable/broadband service providers are not the Internet, they are simply consumer conduits or gateways into the broader network of systems.

The question answers itself in a way. Of course media and information providers have joined the fight for "a free internet" because they benefit directly from their data being freely available ("free" as in "accessible" not "free" as in "from cost"), except when they are the ones asking consumers cough up increased subscriptions for 4k, special or exclusive content, their content.

And this is not speaking to Google, Facebook et al setting up their own "differentiated networks"[2], of the light infrastructural footprint of Mobile & Wireless providers, over which "Net Neutrality" regulations have (little to) no impact.

This makes the actual "Net Neutrality" debate one of Corporate funded astro-turfed anti-competitive sabotage; hinder the competition, who are tied to massive physical infrastructure overheads, with regulations that only apply to them, de-facto burdened BY LAW with providing minimal service whilst the late-comers to the game get the upper hand, being free to invest in new technologies and regions instead of up-keeping old crumbling infrastructure.

Any way one cares (dares) to cut it, that's not "Net Neutrality", not by a long shot.

Further Reading
- President Obama's Plan for a Free and Open Internet.
- FCC Open Commission Meeting (Feb 2015).
- Two tier Internet - Net Neutrality has been hoodwinked.
- Net Neutrality - EU abolishes mobile roaming charges.


Footnotes:
[1] Today's Victory on Net Neutrality - "'Net neutrality' has been built into the fabric of the internet since its creation -- but it is also a principle that we cannot take for granted. We cannot allow internet service providers to restrict the best access or to pick winners and losers in the online marketplace for services and ideas." - except the very nature of the supply and demand market forces that BUILT the Internet have ALWAYS "pick[ed] winners and losers", it's never been "neutral" in that respect.

[2] The likes of Google (Google Fibre), Facebook (Internet.org infrastructure initiative) and other global information services being involved in the "Net Neutrality" debate motivated by developing new and more profitable markets for their products... whilst Facebook, though Internet.org, pushes the 'humanitarian' angle with their outreach, the ONLY reason for doing so is to coerce the remaining 50% or so of the Worlds population without Internet into using Facebook based services ('internet access' being the carrot to dangle)... the United States, and much of Europe for that matter, have reached the top of the bell-curve where increasingly disproportionate investment is needed to push reach beyond the 80+ percent it currently is, resources that used elsewhere will garner much greater profits and Government influence, often in poorer countries with much weaker currency valuations, making the US$ stretch even further (buyers remorse not having set in as is the case in the the USA/EU/AU where users are increasingly finding themselves subject to depression and other anxiety related disorders as a consequence of unfettered Internet use).
KatsBits Web
Search KatsBits using StartPage
Hottest item in Store right now!
Hot Product in Store
Visit the Store Now
^