Since there are so many discussion about net neutrality, this triggered the question, especially since usually the proponents of blockchain and cryptocurrencies are also big proponents of net neutrality.

At least at first glance it seems true: transaction fees present in most blockchain implementations => paid prioritization => no network neutrality.

Maybe there is some economic perspective that I am missing that makes this not true, or maybe that at least it resolves all the problems usually associated with an absence of net neutrality.


To put it simple, if someone paying more to get a tx in faster goes against net neutrality, then so does ISPs charging more for faster internet.

To add to that, miners can very well add minimum tx fees because they have to at least cover their cost. If their fees are unreasonable to the market, then other miners will just pick up your valuable transactions.

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    ISP charge a price for faster internet, not for prioritization. In blockchain if everyone is paying the same fee then no one gets faster transaction speed. Isn't the argument that is made for net neutrality that without it big and rich companies can pay ISP to favor their traffic while slow down the other traffic? Is that not the same thing that can happen in the blockchain system? – dragosb Dec 2 '17 at 13:38
  • it's only prioritization because there can only be so many tx/block. If the internet was throttled to a mb up/down from city A to city B, then faster internet automatically becomes prioritization – flygoing Dec 2 '17 at 13:44
  • so you admit it is against net neutrality on how it works now, at least until a scalable blockchain solution appears... – dragosb Dec 2 '17 at 13:48
  • No, it doesn't automatically make it wrong just because current scaling is slow and expensive. If the miners artificially slowed the network then I'd say there are moral issues there's also the fact that there are far more miners than ISPs anyway. Net neutrality wouldn't be as important if I had more than 2 ISPs to choose from – flygoing Dec 2 '17 at 13:52
  • hmm I do agree that right now it is not morally wrong, but I do not see what would stop miners on going for the strategy that maximizes their profits and possibly prioritize traffic artificially in the future. – dragosb Dec 2 '17 at 14:50

Not really. It is in a way supporting Net Neutrality. Consider you are sending money from A to B where you are relying on third party, trusting it because you have to and you are paying a fees for the transfer to take place which is again set by the third party. What Blockchain does is bring this authority to your hands removing the need if a central authority. You are paying the fees for which someone has send his computation power which is quite logical and less than what you are paying to the third party today

  • I am paying what I consider a reasonable fee to use someones computation power, but if others are paying more than me then my transaction will still be left out, or maybe the miner just doesnt accept anything less than a certain fee which i think it is to much. So i dont see how you draw the conclusion that I would be paying less than to a third party. – dragosb Dec 1 '17 at 23:53

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