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"Tolls could dot the Internet highway"

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CNN: NEW YORK (AP) -- On the Internet, the traffic cops are blind -- they don't look at the data they're directing, and they don't give preferential treatment.


The carriers have stoked those fears with some hard-line rhetoric. John Thorne, Verizon Communications Inc.'s senior vice president and deputy general counsel, was quoted by The Washington Post as telling a conference that Google "is enjoying a free lunch that should, by any rational account, be the lunch of the facilities providers."

Ed Whitacre, AT&T's chief executive, has raised eyebrows with similar statements to the effect that Google and Yahoo Inc. are freeloading on the Internet, a remarkable assertion considering both companies pay millions of dollars in Internet access fees, and their visitors pay for Internet access as well.


U.S. carriers are careful to point out that they don't intend to block anyone's Internet access or degrade service.

Well we shall see. If business history is anything to go by, I don't believe a word of that statement.

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