Net Neutrality, A Very Personal Intangible Asset!

Internet users in the U.S., and their ‘intangible’ expectations of being in control of each online experience, well, that may be about to change…that is, whether the U.S. segment of the worldwide web (internet) will remain a relatively ‘neutral’ environment where (a.) speed, and (b.) at will access…

  • to desired content will remain unrelated to
  • who a subscriber is, and/or
  • how much they are able-willing to pay for the privilege.

Whether realized or not…net neutrality is a powerful and personal intangible expectation and differentiator presumed to belong to, at least, U.S.-based internet users.

More specifically, a citizen’s ability to ‘go online’ at will…through their-an ISP (Internet Service Provider) that is not, and currently cannot, prevent, impede, or otherwise control their expected access, and the speed which they expect to access and view the expected content. This produces powerful and personal expectations, ala intangibles for U.S. internet users.

The basic principle-tenant of ‘net neutrality’ is…that ISP’s, be they large or small, are prohibited from speeding up, slowing down, or otherwise impeding (blocking) user’s at will access to content, applications, or websites which they may wish to connect. In short, ‘net neutrality’ is often characterized as the guiding principle of (a.) internet use, and (b.) ISP conduct.

That is, ISP’s should not interfere with…the content a user wishes to view or post online. Obviously, some restrictions have been dutifully imposed on the inevitable unscrupulous content, i.e., child pornography, gambling, etc.

U.S. citizens have become accustom to the sense (intangibles)…which the principles of ‘net neutrality’ provide individually and collectively. Those intangibles exist and become embedded expectations on a personal level. They do so, oftentimes, irrespective of whether a U.S. internet user…

  • is operationally familiar with the term net neutrality, or
  • recognizes its current manifestations, or
  • understands (agrees – disagrees) how proposed changes to existing net neutrality principles by the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) and relevant legislative committees in the U.S. House and Senate, will
  • affect the intangibles of access, content, and communication!

Proponents – advocates for retaining the existing principles of ‘net neutrality’ generally agree that…

  • should it be carved up, wholly abandoned-dismantled, unenforced, re-interpreted, or some variation thereof.
  • ISP’s could and likely will segregate the internet into distinct lanes of speed and accessibility linked to – predicated on some construct of willingness-ability to pay for access
  • large – converged ISP’s will create ‘tiers of service’ for Internet use. These tiers, as noted, will likely be predicated on some basis of preferential treatment and/or ability to pay.
  • should such ‘tier scenarios’ emerge, they will likely be characterized and promoted as predicates to increases in market competitiveness and investment in new platforms-venues.

It’s certainly not inconceivable that…should the existing principles of net neutrality realize substantial revisions as speculated above, the now embedded personal intangibles stemming from user expectations of speed and at will access to desired content may change in ways, which, at minimum, undermine the value we attach to them.

Respectfully, for those not familiar with this perspective, should it occur…it’s probably not a good thing, especially if there are political – financial agendas lying in wait.

On the other hand…sustainable personalized intangibles produced by user expectations of speed and at will access to desired internet content, are democratic assets, which are good things.

Michael D. Moberly November 21, 2017 St. Louis [email protected] ‘The Business Intangible Asset Blog’ since May 2006 ‘where one’s attention span, intangible assets, and solutions converge’!

Readers are invited to explore other blog posts, papers, and books I have published at

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