Internet is free even if we are paying to access it

Often, when talking about issues such as free culture, free software, legitimacy when it comes to sharing content without the express permission of the author and others, those who stand against the "free everything" (without noticing that everything free does not means not making money from it, either by advertising or indirectly) argue that the Internet is not free. That we pay the access. And that against that we do not rebel or demand a free Internet.

Before this claim must be denied: those that promulgate the existence of free content on the Internet (whether the original author wants it or not) they also aspire to a cheaper internet connection, especially in Spain, where the cost is higher than other countries around us. And who knows: maybe the Internet connection ends up feeling totally free, like listening to the radio, because the companies that do business on the Internet will defray it.

On the other hand, the criticism "Internet is not free" part of a categorical error: What the user pays, in fact, pays the transmission infrastructure, but does not subsidize the entire network, does not keep everything that circulates on the Internet. That is, we pay to receive bits, but not for what those bits are worth. The broadcast is not free, but the content can be.

The monthly fee we pay to our Internet service provider covers the delivery of the content, but Content creation is regulated by a different economic model. At least for now.

Chris Anderson He explains it this way in his book Free:

Speaking according to common sense, this error also comes from measuring the value of a thing through erroneous units. Because of its mineral content, my little son is worth about $ 5 at a normal market price, but I'm not going to sell it. For me it is more valuable because of the way in which these minerals have been united, by all other atoms, the state of energy and the rest of the things that a child is made of. To confuse the cost of transmitting megabits with the cost of producing them, or with what they are worth to the receiver, is a consequence of not understanding where the value actually resides. That is not found in the Network. Where we transform the bits giving them a meaning is in the extremes, production and consumption.