Net neutrality concerns have moved to the UK, where several of the largest broadband providers, are threatening to traffic shape BBC's iPlayer unless the public broadcaster pays for the cost of streaming its videos. Update: BT denies that it has expressed concern with the iPlayer.
Post Tagged with: "traffic shaping"
My weekly Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) focuses on the Rogers traffic shaping issue and the resulting impact on consumer rights, competition, and non-P2P applications. If you read my original posting and the many comments that followed, the column covers similar terrain. I therefore think it might be more useful to respond to an interesting posting from Matt Roberts on the Rogers issue. Roberts confirms the Rogers shaping (as does Mark Evans in a posting that refers to it as bandwidth management, a distinction without a difference in my view) but then takes me to task for wrapping it into the net neutrality debate.
The post raises an interesting and important question – is throttling/traffic shaping a net neutrality issue? I should note that regardless of the answer, I believe there is no question that there are problems with the current Rogers approach. The lack of transparency, the misleading service claims, and the inclusion of bandwidth caps that are rendered difficult to achieve all point to an issue that should attract the attention of regulatory agencies (and perhaps class action lawyers).
As for whether there is a net neutrality problem, that likely depends on your definition of net neutrality.
Appeared in the Toronto Star on April 16, 2007 as ISP Must Come Clean on 'Traffic Shaping' With well over a million subscribers, Rogers is universally recognized as one of Canada's leading Internet service providers. The company offers several tiers of services, including the "Extreme" package that boasts of "blistering […]