The Open Internet & the Freedom of Speech

Traffic shaping violates the United States Constitution

New applications were possible because of the large Internet capacity built out during the last tech boom.


Currently, Internet service providers are not keeping up with demand.


"U.S. telecommunications giant AT&T has claimed that, without investment, the Internet's current network architecture will reach the limits of its capacity by 2010."


The amount of "traffic shaping" that takes place is, among other things, dependent on the capacity available.


The lack of capacity is contributing to the infrastructure for censorship to be built into the system.


Australia is considering an Internet filter like the "Great Firewall of China" used by the Chinese government to restrict their citizens access to information.


Controlling what information is practical to retrieve by controlling the speed at which it can be accessed through "traffic shaping" can be abused to censor information.


In the United States, "time, place, or manner restrictions on free speech must withstand intermediate scrutiny. Note that any regulations that would force speakers to change how or what they say do not fall into this category (so the government cannot restrict one medium even if it leaves open another). Time, place, or manner restrictions must:


1. Be content neutral

2. Be narrowly tailored...

3. serve a significant governmental interest

4. Leave open ample alternative channels for communication"


Restricting free speech through "traffic shaping" violates the United States Constitution.



1 vote
Idea No. 162