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Here are all the shady ‘consumer groups’ trying to convince you net neutrality is bad

Published Jun 6th, 2014 10:55AM EDT
Anti-Net Neutrality Groups Cable Companies

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Did you know that America has the greatest and most awesomely competitive broadband market in the world and that it will only get better if we let cable and telecom companies do whatever they want? OK, so you probably didn’t know that, likely because it’s not at all true. But that’s the message that several shady “pro-consumer” groups have started pushing lately to create a perception that the American people are just begging the government to liberate poor Comcast and Time Warner Cable from all regulatory shackles and let them charge companies more money to make sure that their traffic gets delivered faster than traffic on the standard Internet.

Vice has come out with a new report detailing the connections that many of these groups have with the cable industry and, wouldn’t you know it, they’re pretty extensive.

Take Broadband for America, for instance, the anti-net neutrality organization whose public faces are former Republican Senator John Sununu and former Democratic Congressman Harold Ford. Vice found that the National Cable and Telecom Association (NCTA) donated $2 million to the group, which accounts for well over half of its $3.5 million budget.

Similarly, the anti-net neutrality American Consumer Institute is being funded by a “foundation controlled by lobbyists from the cell phone industry, called,” while the notorious shills at the anti-net neutrality Heartland Institute have grabbed “major funds from Comcast, AT&T, and Time Warner Cable.”

And that’s not all: Vice’s investigation shows that Broadband for America is working with the DCI Group, a lobbying organization that’s made its name by creating astroturf groups that support whatever cause their corporate masters happen to be pushing for at any given moment. In other words, if you start seeing TV ads sponsored by groups with names such as “Americans United For A Free Comcast” and “Concerned Citizens For Time Warner Cable,” it’s likely coming from DCI’s lobbying meth lab.

Vice’s full report is worth reading and can be found by clicking the source link below.

Brad Reed
Brad Reed Staff Writer

Brad Reed has written about technology for over eight years at and Network World. Prior to that, he wrote freelance stories for political publications such as AlterNet and the American Prospect. He has a Master's Degree in Business and Economics Journalism from Boston University.


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