Netflix Believes There’s a Misconception About Internet Fast Lanes

Netflix has issued a strong statement on its stance regarding “fast lanes” on the Internet.

Fast lanes—where data can get priority on a user-by-user basis, like a toll road versus a traffic-logged free road—would be the bane of web consumers and net neutrality, the streaming company believes.

The existence if fast lanes creates “two fundamental problems,” according to Ken Florance, vice president of content delivery at Netflix.

“Allowing fast lanes gives ISPs a perverse incentive to boost revenues by allowing their networks to congest,” he writes. “It also gives them outsize power to pick winners and losers on the Internet. Those who can’t pay for fast lanes will suffer, entrenching incumbents while undermining the innovative power of the Internet.”

Right now, there are no paid fast lanes on the Internet, Florance says, and he believes that’s a good thing.

“A large part of the debate about net neutrality is focused on ensuring it stays that way,” he writes. “If ISPs are allowed to sell fast lanes, competition for various Internet sites and services will become less about the value of what’s offered and more about who can pay the most to deliver it faster. It would be the very opposite environment than the one the Internet created.”


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