There was a time not long ago when it was easy to believe that Google was a different kind of company -- one that considered the public good as well as the bottom line in making decisions. My, how a week changes things.
It's pathetic but hardly surprising that Congress is punting on the net neutrality issue. The big media companies are second only to big pharma in campaign largess. So their elected minions sit idly on the sidelines.
There's nothing more depressing than when a trusted friend breaks a promise. Particularly, when that friend is so massive that they have the ability to un-democratize the internet almost single-handedly.
While the news media have been obsessed by the lack of bipartisanship in Washington, one story they have missed is how corporate campaign contributions have united the parties to work against an open Internet.
Following a conference call with Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg I can now say that Google, a company that I've long admired and currently hold thousands of dollars of stock in, just "went evil."
Telecoms can't censor your phone calls because telephone service has long been held to common access standards. But Bush's FCC ruled that all new communications technologies were in a different category.
The FCC (and Google) should know that over decades, the Bell companies have had a history of not keeping the official promises they have made, and the Commission itself has not shown any inclination to enforce them.
The least Congressional shark jumpers could do is let the FCC do its job and enact the modest changes they proposed to fix the Bush-era mistakes that did away with any consumer protection and oversight.