Similar stories with Verizon and other ISPs.
Of course, Hulu doesn't have to pay those fees because they're backed by the cable companies.
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What do you mean unrealized? Netflix already got ransomed, and they paid the ransom. The whole fast lane proposal they were trying to get through the FCC was so they could do more of that more easily. The only part unrealized is the part where they charge you specifically more for Netflix access - which they deemed unnecessary because it was easier to just raise your monthly rate, set bandwidth caps fairly low, and then upsell you on an even more expensive plan, but the double charge of you and the website - that's realized.
AOL sucked, but they were totally legit. They competed fairly and went down fairly. They didn't sneakily throttle your service, sue competitors, get laws passed to block competition, nor ransom high-bandwidth websites that were supposed to be part of your monthly service. Today's big ISPs are a totally different story, and most people didn't really paid attention until they asked for fast lines.
I think you are confusing regulating greed with eliminating greed.
Systems like communism that rely on eliminating greed don't work. Systems like capitalism that regulate greed by allowing smart greedy work to rewarded within the confines of the system (and update the rules of the system when necessary) work just fine.
A lot has changed since 1998. Just look at yourself - you're reading news on the Internet instead of a print newspaper or TV. The amount that people communicate on the Internet and the amount of content they watch is on a whole different level than it was back then. Smartphones are a big part of this change. If there's a community w/o Internet, people worry about how that community is getting behind.
Well, the Republicans have voiced their support to overturn it, so if they keep control of both chambers of Congress and grab the presidency, that could very well happen.
Well, Comcast sued in the past too when FCC directed them not to mess w/ traffic, so they can't really blame Verizon. However, the Open Internet rules that Verizon was challenging is one that Comcast agreed to abide by for 7 years from the time of the MSNBC merger, so they probably just didn't want their competitors to get the jump on them.
Actually, in Google's letter to the FCC, one of the reasons they support classifying ISPs as an utility is because it gives them equal access to utility poles to run their lines. Although hundreds of ISPs doesn't make sense, there is certainly space for more similar to the cellular space, if the rules weren't so bent in favor of the near monopolies. So like you, I support the decision, but the way I view it differs a little.
Last year, Softcard bribed me - cash, Amazon gift cards, etc. to use their service.
This year, they stopped, and I went back to swiping my credit card.
The problem is that Softcard payment requires more steps than you think:
1) Unlock phone
2) Open app
3) Type in 4-digit pin (why can't I use my fingerprint?)
Also, the tap is not as easy as you think. The first time you do it like the video, it probably won't work. On my S5, the sweet spot is actually in the middle of the phone horizontally across middle of NFC reader, and once I figured that out, I usually succeeded on the first try. However, some card readers just suck and will frequently require multiple tries. Rite Aid card readers, before they stopped accepting it, were the most likely to have this problem (and it was always the same ones at particular registers that gave me trouble).
The way it SHOULD work is that I put my phone over the NFC reader, it asks me for fingerprint, and done. Reality bites.
Radio Shack has historically aggressively sued anyone who uses "Shack" in their name, incl. AutoZone, which used to be Auto Shack. Most companies don't want to spend the money to fight them and just change their name.
Where's my drone delivery?
There are local computer shops that sell barebones kits (assembly included) that do pretty well too. I agree that Radio Shack just sort of straddled the line and ended up doing nothing well.
Sears/Kmart and JCPenney can have a race.
That said, those are the go-to places for deals right now. JCPenney has reverted to mailing $10 off $10 coupons, and Sears just recently reined in many of their out-of-control coupons.
So I take it their Superbowl commercial last year didn't save them?
Chinese official face their biggest challenge yet: too big to pay bribes.