Comcast proposes ISP Bill of Rights

By Justin Mann on April 15, 2008, 6:26 PM
The battle between Comcast and torrenting changed its dynamic rapidly in only a few short months. From idle suspicion to evidence of throttling to denial, it quickly became apparent that the ISP wasn't forthcoming regarding its actions. Eventually it went all the way to FCC hearings, and now we are seeing development on how Comcast will treat torrents and other peer to peer (P2P) in the future.

There have been talks of Comcast sponsoring development of newer P2P protocols that work better with their network, or outright partnerships with P2P companies. Most recently, there have been hints of Comcast working on a P2P Bill of Rights, that would outline both “rights” as well as “responsibilities” of ISPs and their customers when it comes to using P2P software.

Among the changes they propose there is an increase in upstream capacity and a more 'open dialog' with their customers. On the other hand, they are also speaking of identifying specific types of activity, such as illegal pirating versus legal torrenting, bandwidth caps, and other related changes. If Comcast receives a positive answer regarding this proposal, it could impact many other ISP's alignments as well.




User Comments: 12

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TheJediSlayer said:
Yep. Magnificent, isn't it? Two ISP's gone rampancy within a day or so of one another. Now, I'm just going to wait for Road Runner, my ISP, to do something utterly stupid... Seeing as how they're all for getting rid of NN, etc.
howzz1854 said:
Bill of Rights!!?? they ISP's are already doing as they wish without caring about their customers. how about the customer's bill of rights. these people need to get their heads out of their arses. !
funchords said:
Today, Comcast Corporation and Pando Networks announced that they will lead the industry to create a "P2P Bill of Rights and Responsibilities" for users and ISPs. With an FCC hearing on Comcast's anti-peer-to-peer practices scheduled for later this week, this is hardly a surprise. Once again, Comcast makes another sweetheart-sounding deal, but at the wrong time, and with the wrong sweetheart. It takes a special kind of arrogance for a company that sells Internet Access to team up with another company that sells Content Delivery and together decide what rights and responsibilities that the world's Internet users should have. As in its earlier "deal" with BitTorrent, Inc., Comcast's announcement today doesn't change any of the facts it faces: in 2006, it assured Congress that network neutrality laws were not necessary, saying it would not "deny, delay, or degrade" its customers in order to deal with traffic congestion. Within a year it was caught secretly doing exactly that! Even after a long string of deceptive and deflective statements and tactics, Comcast continues to degrade their traffic today.As was the case in the BitTorrent "deal," neither Comcast Corporation nor Pando Networks represents the millions of customers and other members of the Internet community who were impacted when Comcast secretly launched its anti-P2P attack. Today's announcement comes less than 48 hours from the US Federal Communication Committee's public hearing at Stanford University. There, the FCC is scheduled to hear from two panels of experts followed by two hours of public testimony on the Comcast incident specifically as well as similar industry practices in general. No doubt we will soon see Comcast and Pando Networking executives start to explain why today's "deal" signals that Network Neutrality regulation is not needed in the Broadband Marketplace. Robert M. "Robb" Topolski
windmill007 said:
I wish comcast customers would switch. Comcast does nothing but cause problems for everyone. Why anyone would use them when they have a choice I dont' understand.
icye said:
If people were to stop downloading illegal files that they are not entitled to in the first place, things would not reach to this point. Intellectual property is not free on the internet, there is a cost to producing it in the first place which the consumer needs to pay. All this amounts to is stealing. There are many sites that let people pay a flat rate for unlimited downloads or a small fee per song that doesn't damage one's budget.[Edited by icye on 2008-04-16 11:58:30]
TheJediSlayer said:
I agree with you icye that people shouldn't steal copyrighted material at all, but I'm also not in favor of what the ISP's are pulling off and what they still want to do later on. I firmly believe that the ISP's job is to provide a quality connection that doesn't have any sort of, "strings" attached to it. You are right that if people didn't do so much illegal downloading, etc, then things probably wouldn't be taken to this extreme. In reality, though, things are where they are.
howzz1854 said:
it's the buttom line, IPS' could care less about intellectual property. so long as the net traffic increase, it equals to more cost to infrustructure. so to say that ISP's fight for the artist rights is a bull of crap. it's just a coprporation like every other corporation, it's all about the bottom line. they wanna minimize the cost and maximize profit, and that means whatever means necessary to get a bigger share of the pie. most if not many consumers have lack of options where they reside, like me for instance. i only have one service provider where i live. i have to endure TimeWarner's constant price hike without even caring to notify me first. they hike whenever they see fit. good thing i am movint out of here. my 2cents
icye said:
The most likely line of reasoning is that ISPs don't want to be sued along with illegal file sharers for not doing anything to stop them. What about a person's privacy? People have a right to privacy but that right goes away when they start engaging in questionable behavior. Downloading music, movies, computer programs that they didn't pay for amounts to stealing. Last time I checked, stealing is still a criminal offense. What about lawyers who say to contact them where their privacy has been comprised? Lawyers who take on the side of illegal file sharers, care little about their clients, they just gouge them with ridiculously high lawyer fees.
TheJediSlayer said:
Well, money talks...
howzz1854 said:
[b]Originally posted by icye:[/b][quote]The most likely line of reasoning is that ISPs don't want to be sued along with illegal file sharers for not doing anything to stop them. What about a person's privacy? People have a right to privacy but that right goes away when they start engaging in questionable behavior. Downloading music, movies, computer programs that they didn't pay for amounts to stealing. Last time I checked, stealing is still a criminal offense. What about lawyers who say to contact them where their privacy has been comprised? Lawyers who take on the side of illegal file sharers, care little about their clients, they just gouge them with ridiculously high lawyer fees.[/quote]i seriously doubt that anyone is as noble as you would put it. in a perfect world maybe. but human nature dictates that if you have no intention of traveling to Paris, but were given a free ticket to Paris, would you take it? most of us would.. but what if instead the ticket wasn't free. in that case most of us wouldn't even bother. it's the same scenario with P2P. that is not to say the model is perfect, but there definitely needs to be a balance between file sharing and reasonable profit.
mccartercar said:
*TV turns on* GET SUPER HIGH SPEED INTERNET AND DOWNLOAD MOVIES, MUSIC, AND MORE!! spouts the savvy ComCash commercial. "Wow Bob thinks....I'm getting that right away!".."There you go Mr.Average, you now have SUPER HIGH SPEED INTERNET have fun", says the technician as he finishes setting up Bob's connection and leaves. Bob sits down and thinks wow.......MOVIES,MUSIC, and MORE, all at my fingertips at lightning speed..WOOHOO! Bob quickly navigates the pages and finds some free content thats rather large. Bob thinks,"Ha, 500MBs thats nothing with my SUPER FAST HIGH SPEED connection. "Just fire up my trusty totally legal and legit software to help me obtain this great new Demo,Trailer, or other LEGAL LEGIT software." Oh but wait.... Why cant I access my content thats !FREE!. "Oh this article says this ISP doesn't like my mode of downloading....that wasn't in the commercial." Bob slumps a little as he feels his bottom start to hurt from the banging he just took...........:(
pmarion said:
SO, does this mean also that Comca$t will be refunding the difference between the capped data rate and the data rate we pay for?Re: Comca$t not wanting "want to be sued along with illegal file sharers for not doing anything to stop them. "If this were the case, they would BLOCK by content, rather than capping speed on all traffic. Furthermore, if this was a concern, why are they only capping UPLOAD speed? Wouldn't they cap both up AND down??When I want to download the Ubunto DVD for example, LEGALLY, I am capped as well. Download speed is directly impacted by upload speed. Still, it is higher than the upload cap.Comca$t is stealing from those of us who are using P2P legally, and paying for higher bandwidth rates. Hopefully, there will be a VOLUNTARY refund without having to resort to a class action suit, but we all know that is unlikely at best.
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