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Google and Verizon deny net neutrality deal

New York Times screws up
Fri Aug 06 2010, 10:16

APPLE'S FAVOURITE newspaper the New York Times appears to have wrongly stuck a knife into Google claiming that the Internet search outfit was about to betray its net neutrality stance and do a deal with Verizon.

The NYT claimed that the online advertising broker and Youtube proprietor was doing a deal with Verizon to pay large amounts of cash for high priority treatment and that would spell the end of net neutrality.

If it was true, other US telecoms firms, broadband Internet service providers and the big media companies would be rubbing their paws knowing that they had beaten their biggest opponent and could soon start charging content providers for an Internet fast track and, in effect, censor the Internet to suit corporate preferences.

However Google has posted on its Public Policy Twitter account a denial of the claims in the NYT story. It said the story was "wrong".

It denied that Google's meetings with Verizon were about paying for carriage of its traffic and said that it remained committed to an open Internet.

Verizon was also nonplussed about the story. It issued a statement denying the claims in the NYT report, calling it "mistaken".

Verizon said its goal is an Internet policy framework that ensures openness and accountability and incorporates specific FCC authority, while maintaining investment and innovation.

"To suggest this is a business arrangement between our companies is entirely incorrect," a Verizon spokesman said.

Both statements mean that net neutrality advocates can start breathing again and that everything is the same as it ever was. At least for now. µ



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