internet charges

Bruce Halliday bruceh at ENTO.CSIRO.AU
Fri May 13 17:19:18 CDT 1994

Forwarded message follows :

>Subject: Metered Usage of the Internet: JSN
>Please forgive the mass mailing, but I feel this is a subject
>which is of great importance to anyone who benefits from the
>bountiful resources of the Internet.
>A very bad storm is brooding on the horizon.
>In the future, you might have to pay a charge for every E-mail
>message you send or receive, every Usenet article you read,
>every kilobyte of data you transfer with ftp, every hypertext
>link you follow with NCSA Mosaic or Gopher...
>Hopefully this frightens you as much as it does me.
>But it will happen, unless YOU do something about it.
>Please read the attached, fill out the requested info, and
>mail it back to mike at  It also wouldn't hurt to
>forward a copy of this to everyone you know on the Internet.
>Thanks for your support.
>Craig Smith, <bcs at cs.tamu.eduor <craig at>
>Texas A&M University, Dept. of Computer Science
>205 HRBB, 862-2084 (CPSC).   [PGP2 Public Key Available on Request]
>May 7, 1994
>-    Request for signatures for a letter to NSF opposing metered
>pricing of Internet usage
>-    Please repost this request freely
>The letter will be sent to Steve Wolff, the Director of
>Networking and Communications for NSF.  The purpose of the letter
>is to express a number of user concerns about the future of
>Internet pricing.  NSF recently announced that is awarding five
>key contracts to telephone companies to operate four Internet
>"Network Access Points" (NAPs), and an NSF funded very high speed
>backbone (vBNS).  There have been a number of indications that
>the telephone companies operating the NAPs will seek permission
>from NSF to price NAPs services according to some measure of
>Internet usage.  The vBNS is expected to act as a testbed for new
>Internet pricing and accounting schemes.  The letter expresses
>the view that metered pricing of Internet usage should be
>avoided, and that NSF should ensure that the free flow of
>information through Internet listserves and file server sites is
>preserved and enhanced.
>Jamie Love, Taxpayer Assets Project (love at; but
>unable to answer mail until May 15).  Until then, direct
>inquires to Michael Ward.
>If you are willing to sign the letter, send the following
>information to Mike Ward of the Taxpayer Assets Project
>(mike at, fax: 202/234-5176; voice: 202/387-8030;
>P.O. Box 19367, Washington, DC 20036):
>Names:    ___________________________
>Title:    ___________________________   (Optional)
>Affiliation:   ____________________________________
>(for purposes of identification only)
>Address:       ______________________________________
>City; St, Zip  ________________________________
>Email Address: _____________________________________
>Voice:         __________________________________
>for verification)
>The letter follows:
>Steve Wolff
>Division of Networking and Communications
>National Science Foundation
>1800 G Street
>Washington, DC  20550
>Dear Steve:
>It is our understanding that the National Science Foundation
>(NSF) and other federal agencies are developing a new
>architecture for the Internet that will utilize four new Network
>Access Points (NAPs), which have been described as the new
>"cloverleaves" for the Internet.  You have indicated that NSF is
>awarding contracts for four NAPs, which will be operated by
>telephone companies (Pac Bell, S.F.; Ameritech, Chicago; Sprint,
>NY; and MFS, Washington, DC).  We further understand that NSF has
>selected MCI to operate its new very high speed backbone (vBNS)
>There is broad public interest in the outcome of the negotiations
>between NSF and the companies that will operate the NAPs and
>vBNS.  We are writing to ask that NSF consider the following
>objectives in its negotiations with these five firms:
>We are concerned about the future pricing systems for Internet
>access and usage.  Many users pay fixed rates for Internet
>connections, often based upon the bandwidth of the connection,
>and do not pay for network usage, such as the transfer of data
>using email, ftp, Gopher or Mosaic.  It has been widely reported
>on certain Internet discussion groups, such as com-priv, that the
>operators of the NAPs are contemplating a system of usage based
>We are very concerned about any movement toward usage based
>pricing on the Internet, and we are particularly concerned about
>the future of the Internet Listserves, which allow broad
>democratic discourse on a wide range of issues.  We believe that
>the continued existence and enhancement of the Internet
>discussion groups and distribution lists is so important that any
>pricing scheme for the NAPs that would endanger or restrict their
>use should be rejected by the NSF.
>It is important for NSF to recognize that the Internet is more
>than a network for scientific researchers or commercial
>transactions.  It represents the most important new effort to
>expand democracy into a wide range of human endeavors.  The open
>communication and the free flow of information have make
>government and private organizations more accountable, and
>allowed citizens to organize and debate the widest range of
>matters.  Federal policy should be directed at expanding public
>access to the Internet, and it should reject efforts to introduce
>pricing schemes for Internet usage that would mimic commercial
>telephone networks or expensive private network services such as
>MCI mail.
>To put this into perspective, NSF officials must consider how any
>pricing mechanisms will change the economics of hosting an
>Internet electronic mail discussion groups and distribution
>lists.  Many of these discussion groups and lists are very large,
>such as Humanist, GIS-L, CNI-Copyright, PACS-L, CPSR-Announce or
>Com-Priv.  It is not unusual for a popular Internet discussion
>group to have several thousand members, and send out more than
>100,000 email messages per day.  These discussion groups and
>distribution lists are the backbones of democratic discourse on
>the Internet, and it is doubtful that they would survive if
>metered pricing of electronic mail is introduced on the Internet.
>Usage based pricing would also introduce a wide range of problems
>regarding the use of ftp, gopher and mosaic servers, since it
>conceivable that the persons who provide "free" information on
>servers would be asked to pay the costs of "sending" data to
>persons who request data.  This would vastly increase the costs
>of operating a server site, and would likely eliminate many
>sources of data now "published" for free.
>We are also concerned about the types of  accounting mechanisms
>which may be developed or deployed to facilitate usage based
>pricing schemes., which raise a number of concerns about personal
>privacy.  Few Internet users are anxious to see a new system of
>"surveillance" that will allow the government or private data
>vendors to monitor and track individual usage of Information
>obtained from Internet listserves or fileserves.
>We are also concerned about the potential for anti-
>competitive behavior by the firms that operate the NAPs.  Since
>1991 there have been a number of criticisms of ANS pricing
>practices, and concerns about issues such as price discrimination
>or preferential treatment are likely to become more important as
>the firms operating the NAPs become competitors of firms that
>must connect to the NAPs.  We are particularly concerned about
>the announcements by PAC-Bell and Ameritech that they will enter
>the retail market for Internet services, since both firms were
>selected by NSF to operate NAPs.  It is essential that the
>contracts signed by NSF include the strongest possible measures
>to insure that the operators of the NAPs do not unfairly
>discriminate against unaffiliated companies.
>As the Internet moves from the realm of the research community to
>a more vital part of the nation's information infrastructure, the
>NSF must ensure that its decisions reflect the needs and values
>of a much larger community.
>1.   The NSF contracts with the NAPs operators will include
>clauses that determine how the NAP services will be priced.
>It is important that NSF disclose and receive comment on all
>pricing proposals before they become final.  NSF should
>create an online discussion list to facilitate public dialog
>on the pricing proposals, and NSF should identify its
>criteria for selecting a particular pricing mechanism,
>addressing the issue of how the pricing system will impact
>the Internet's role in facilitating democratic debate.
>2.   NSF should create a consumer advisory board which would
>include a broad cross section of consumer interests,
>including independent network service providers (NSPs),
>publishers of Internet discussion groups and distribution
>lists, academic networks, librarians, citizen groups and
>individual users.  This advisory board should review a
>number of policy questions related to the operation of the
>Internet, including questions such as the NAP pricing, NAP
>operator disclosure of financial, technical and operational
>data, systems of Internet accounting which are being tested
>on the vBNS and other topics.
>3.   NSF should solicit public comment, though an online
>discussion group, of the types of safeguards against
>anticompetitive behavior by the NAPs which should be
>addressed in the NSF/NAPs contracts, and on issues such as
>NAPs pricing and Internet accounting systems.
>TAP-INFO is an Internet Distribution List provided by the Taxpayer
>Assets Project (TAP).  TAP was founded by Ralph Nader to monitor the
>management of government property, including information systems and
>data, government funded R&D, spectrum allocation and other government
>assets.  TAP-INFO reports on TAP activities relating to federal
>information policy.  tap-info is archived at;
> and
>Subscription requests to tap-info to listserver at with
>the message:  subscribe tap-info your name
>Taxpayer Assets Project; P.O. Box 19367, Washington, DC  20036
>v. 202/387-8030; f. 202/234-5176; internet:  tap at
>Gary M. Throop                    THROOPG at
>Clarkson University               315-268-3814
>Department of Management          FAX: 315-268-3810
>Box 5790
>Potsdam, NY 13699

>From hartel at MCZ.HARVARD.EDU Fri May 13 11:33:09 1994
Dr. R. B. Halliday
Principal Research Scientist (Acarology)    International Fax 61-6-2464000
CSIRO Division of Entomology                Local Fax (06) 2464000
GPO Box 1700                                Telephone 2464085
Canberra ACT 2601                           Internet bruceh at
Date: Fri, 13 May 1994 11:33:09 
Reply-To:     Karsten Hartel <hartel at MCZ.HARVARD.EDU>
Sender:       Biological Systematics Discussion List <TAXACOM at HARVARDA.BITNET>
From:         Karsten Hartel <hartel at MCZ.HARVARD.EDU>
Subject:      CAS Newsletter of Systematic Ichthyology

As outlined below the California Academy of Sciences' 1993 Newsletter of
Systematic Ichthyology is now available via GOPHER.  The Newsletter is a
annotated directory of world-wide systematic ichthyologists that may be
serached by name, country, taxa of interest, publications, or any
word in the text.

It is available  via a pointer through the Biodiversity and Biological
Collections Gopher at Harvard ( port 70) <Biodiversity
Journals and Newsletters>  OR directly from CAS ( port
70) <CAS Information Resources> <Ichthyology Department>.



This is an electronic version of the fifteenth issue of
the annual Newsletter.  Its purpose is to increase
communication between persons engaged in systematic
studies of fishes.  It is informal and not a publication.
Forms are distributed in September.  Participants provide
a synopsis of their current research activities and
bibliography of recent publications and manuscripts in
press.  Announcements of general interest are included.

The next issue will be around December 1994.  All who
participated in 1993 (or in the last three years) will
receive a form for the  1994 issue.  Anyone new wishing
to participate should send their name and address to:
Newsletter, Dept. of Ichthyology, California Academy of
Sciences, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA 94118.
Tel. 415-750-7047; Fa 415-750-7346; E-mail
tiwamoto at

Cost:  $3 donation at time of submission (cash or check
made out to California Academy of Sciences) for
participants.  Overseas participants please send checks
drawn in U.S. dollars; if that is inconvenient, we will
subsidize your participation.  Non-participants may
purchase copies at $4.00/copy at the address below.

Production of the Newsletter is by staff and volunteers
of the Department of Ichthyology:  Dave Catania, William
Eschmeyer, Carl Ferraris, Jon Fong, Diana Gay-Catania,
Antony Harold, Mysi Dang Hoang, Tomio Iwamoto, Michael
Pope, and Pearl Sonoda.  Production of the Newsletter is
funded by donations from: participants, the California
Academy of Sciences, the American Society of
Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, and other external

California Academy of Sciences
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, California 94118


Karsten E. Hartel
  Curatorial Associate, Fishes
  hartel at

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