Google’s quest for a free ride on the Internet is finally ending with a whimper, not a bang, Holman Jenkins writes, as the company’s executives begin to realize that Net Neutrality doesn’t work in the real world.
Historians, if any are interested, will conclude that the unraveling of the net neutrality movement began when the iPhone appeared, instigating a tsunami of demand for mobile Web access.
They will conclude that an ancillary role was played when carriers (even some non-wireless) began talking about metered pricing to meet the deluge of Internet video.
Suddenly, those net neut advocates who live in the real world (e.g., Google) had to face where their advocacy was leading—to usage-based pricing for mobile Web users, a dagger aimed at the heart of their own business models. After all, who would click on a banner ad if it meant paying to do so?
The bottom line: A lot of professional Washington activists on the Left will collect up to 99 weeks of unemployment benefits until they find a new, well-funded cause. Perhaps they’ll have a new Republican Congress to protest?