On Sun, 8 Sep 1996, Michael Chui wrote:

> [log in to unmask] writes:
> >Remember when ARPANet and IBM provided academic institutions with free
> >Internet access?  When exactly did the e-highway become a commercial
> >venture?
> 	Actually, it's always been a kind of commercial venture.  It
> used to be that the National Science Foundation paid for the creation
> and maintenance of a national backbone (the NSFNET) that connected
> various regional networks.  The national backbone was operated by a
> partnership consisting of Merit, MCI, IBM, and the State of Michigan.
> Later, the NSFNET backbone was operated by a corporation called
> Advanced Network & Services (ANS).  The regional networks were
> financially supported by both federal funds and fees paid by member
> universities.
> 	Since then, NSF phased out direct federal funding for both
> backbone and regional networks, acknowledging that a marketplace for
> these services had developed.  TANSTAAFL.

  Marketplace governance of the Net did not just develop, it was imposed
by a hostile mega-industry takeover, engineered by MCI who was one of the
main beneficiaries, and others, with the direct assistance of the Clinton
Administration [Fins-II-06,26]. 

  Perhaps, Michael Chui, will disclose what his professional role in these
matters has been, and his relationship to MCI, so that readers are fully
informed of his conflict of interest. 

Vigdor Schreibman - FINS <[log in to unmask]>