How Can Craigslist Not Be Neutral or Open, But Support Net Neutrality & an Open Internet?

December 2, 2009

Craig Newmark of Craigslist, a leading net neutrality proponent, posted another strong support of net neutrality on Huffington Post where he shared Consumer Reports definition of net neutrality.

In another tech elite case of “Do as I say, not as I do,” it is particularly ironic that Mr. Newmark is publicly championing how important it is for dominant players to not block traffic on the Internet, at the same time, Craigslist, the most dominant online classified ad site in the U.S., is blatantly blocking a new mashup called Flippity and “every single project built on Yahoo Pipes,” per TechCrunch’s post yesterday:

  • Craigslist Blocks Yahoo Pipes After Dev Shows Craig His New Mashup.”

Why is the FCC changing its current consensus net neutrality principle #4 that consumers are entitled to competition among service providers, application providers and content providers, to a non-consensus principle in the FCC’s Open Internet proposed regulations that consumers are no longer entitled to applications or content competition online?

  • Maybe Mr. Newmark is confident that neither competition nor the FCC will prevent Craigslist from acting non-neutrally or in a closed Internet fashion.

If neutrality is an important principle for competitive broadband providers, why is it not an equally important principle for dominant applications like Craigslist, Google, eBay and Amazon?

  • How can net neutrality be a true “principle” when it is applied arbitrarily and capriciously and not fairly and equally?
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