Net Neutrality and National Security

Susan Crawford sees dark forces of conspiracy at work in a report by the Center fir Advanced Studies on National Preparedness and neutrality. If you don’t understand how the Internet works, it’s easy to become paranoid and confused as you learn more.

She is soundly rebutted in a comment by Tony
Rutkowski, former head of the Internet Society:

Since the inception of public communication systems, because they are critical to societal and governmental functioning, mechanisms have been instituted to control traffic flows based on priortization. You can find related provisions in the very first international agreements such as the Dresden Treaty of 1850. These capabilities are especially critical during times of national emergency or network restoration.

Today, as public communication infrastructures worldwide increasingly become reliant entirely on TCP/IP protocols, means are necessary to control access and provide varying quality of service on a service and user basis. Much of this work has already been accomplished over the past several years in the context of IMS and NGN work. You should also review the work of the NSTAC – which has existed since the early 80s after the AT&T breakup – in treating this subject.

What Kay is pointing out is that some of the NetNeutrality provisions being bandied about in legislation are antithetical to long-standing concerns about our critical national communications infrastructure. Those are concerns we should all share.

The net neutrality hysteria is fueled by misinformation and ignorance, the only cure is education.