[tpm] Usage Based Billing - What you should know..

arocker at Vex.Net arocker at Vex.Net
Tue Feb 1 07:43:44 PST 2011

> The last mile monopoly in Canada is certainly a problem.  However, the
> idea of usage billing is not a bad one.  It works for water, electricity
> and natural gas.

There is one difference, though between those and Internet traffic; the
cost model. All have some combination of virtually fixed infrastructure
cost and usage-related costs. Water, electricity and gas all involve the
producer in some degree of effort, related to the volume of consumption.
For bits, especially when provided by somebody other than the network
provider, the marginal cost has to be practically nil.

That argues for high access fees and little or no usage charge.

The problem is rationing access. A free good generally is in almost
infinite demand, which eventually means the system becomes clogged. Then
the argument becomes about expanding the system, (and who pays for it), or
imposing some sort of throttle on users to keep the demand within bounds.

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