Here’s a hypothetical. You are one of two firms in a duopoly for a critical service. You are accused of abusing your position to give your firm a competitive advantage by making it selectively harder for competing products to work across the Internet. You are given an opportunity to explain yourself in a public forum. Do you:
- Show up and explain your case, and let the chips fall where they may.
- Pack the deck by putting butts in the seats who are paid to cheer for your position. And keep people out who might question it.
Guess which one Comcast did? If you guessed #2, you’re right. I was getting ready to give Comcast credit for even showing up in this forum, and starting to shed a little light into the black box that is Comcast’s network management. But this admission of their astroturfing practices have completely erased that benefit.