Caught in the Throttle

The Ottawa Business Journal has a front page article on traffic shaping this week that highlights yet again why the lack of transparency around Canadian Internet service is a significant problem.  The story focuses on the Rogers' traffic shaping issues and includes references to three comments on the issue from the company:

  • Tom Turner, the VP and GM of Rogers High Speed Internet is quoted in the article as saying "to make sure we have optimized performance for our customers, time sensitive and immediate uses such as web surfing and e-mail are given priority. We don't traffic shape."
  • Ken Englehart, Rogers Regulatory VP, who said in the letter to the editor that Rogers is not "degrading encrypted traffic" and that "our equipment ensures network capacity is reserved for such services as email and Web surfing, and peer-to-peer traffic does not overwhelm the system."
  • Tanta Gupta, Rogers spokesperson, who told that Globe and Mail in 2006 that the company uses bandwidth shaping to slow file-sharing applications.

What is a consumer to think when the company's website says nothing about the issue but promotes its services as offering "blistering speed for sharing large files and much more", while personnel alternately say that Rogers bandwidth shapes, doesn't traffic shape, prioritizes traffic, and/or reserves space for some traffic?

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