Jun 03

Making the Internet Taste Like New Coke

Making the Internet Taste Like New Coke

by Donald Brook

In 1985, the Coca Cola Company decided to completely overhaul the formula that has been working with only minor changes since 1886. After 100 years of success, they introduced “New Coke,” and it sucked. The new recipe was so hated that after it was finally discontinued, Time magazine put a New Coke can on its cover with a giant red X over it. Time has reserved this public shaming to mark the passing of only the most despised of objects: such as, Adolph Hitler, Osama bin Laden, and disco.

Coke was not the only soft drink to make such a mistake. Pepsi made a similar blunder with Clear Pepsi. In addition to tasting bad, Pepsi made the situation worse by using Van Halen with replacement singer Sammy Hagar to advertise their new product. Van Halen with David Lee Roth and Pepsi with color are both awesome, but they had to change the formula and begin to suck.

There seems to be something about large organizations having uncontrollable urges to ruin something that is extremely popular and working just fine. On May 15, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decided to join the New Coke, Clear Pepsi Club by altering something that was working just fine, the internet. After ruining the medical industry with the Affordable Care Act (see Ice Cream Death Spiral), the federal government has decided to “improve” the internet by ending Net Neutrality.

Right now thanks to Net Neutrality all websites can be accessed at the same speed. Whether a web surfer is viewing a movie on Netflix or reading a funny New Voice For Politics’ article, content from both websites are streamed to your device at the same speed. This provides an equal playing field for both extremely successful organizations, like Netflix, and smaller operations that are just starting off.

What the FCC would like to do is discriminate against the little guy by allowing internet providers to charge more for websites that use more bandwidth. This means that the larger bandwidth utilizing companies will have to pay more money to ensure that their product loads quickly. While this sounds not so bad, it is actually the quickest way to ruin the internet.

There are several unintended consequences to charging websites based on how much bandwidth they use. The only companies that will be able to pay the higher rates will be the larger corporations (i.e. NBC, CNN, YouTube). This will result in startup companies not being able to compete with the larger companies. Less competition on the internet is like fire for Frankenstein, both bad! Less competition is horrific, because it deprives the public of new and improved products, leads to monopolies, and increases cost. The average web surfer will have to pay more for the products they like, because the major companies will pass on the increase in cost to the web surfer.

If the FCC goes through with ending Net Neutrality, internet providers (i.e. Comcast & Direct TV) will charge websites more money and grow rich, the websites of large corporations will pass on the cost to web surfers and stay rich, new websites will be more likely to fail because they can only afford cheap second rate access speeds, and the web surfer will pay more to access the services of major companies and wait longer for new websites to load on their devices. The internet will suck if the FCC ends net neutrality. Thanks a lot FCC for making the internet taste like New Coke.


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