Verizon: Evil Google has a "chokehold" on the Internet

Verizon, desperate to fend off net neutrality legislation, now has a new bogeyman: Google. It claims that Google has a "chokehold" on the Internet, and makes the bizarre claim that the reason Google backs net neutrality is that "Google doesn't want to compete."

So notes David Isenberg in a blog about a speech recently given by Verizon’s general counsel, William Barr.

Isenberg quotes Barr as saying that "Google doesn't want to compete," and that "Google is the gateway on the Internet, because it stands between you and the stuff you want to find. It has more of a choke hold than Verizon."

All this is the usual bluster and lies we've come to expect from telcos, who want to extort money from big Web sites if those sites want adequate bandwidth. Google has no chokehold, of course. People use it because it's the best search engine. If at any point a different one is better, people will flock to it.

The Verizon attack presents a new tactic --- try to portray Google and other sites as evil behemoths who need to be held in check, and the telcos as on the side of consumers.

As Paul Kaputska notes in his blog, "Expect to hear a whole lot more about how bad ol’ Google just wants to make money off the Internet without paying for it."

But the tactic won't work; very few people listen to telco lies these days. And even though net neutrality may face a tough time in Congress, the Democrats in control are a lot more likely to take action than did the Republicans.

Copyright © 2007 IDG Communications, Inc.

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