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  1. #1
    Full Member TerriFalcone's Avatar
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    Death of unlimited bandwidth
    I live in North Carolina and Time Warner/Road Runner just attempted to slip in a new rate system that would eliminate unlimited bandwidth for users. Make no mistake, while this was squashed for the moment not only TW but all cable companies are headed in this direction. I understand that heavy usage by certain people are creating a financial drain on the providers. OTOH Time Warner wasn't proposing a lower rate for low usage customers but rather having current rates be the "bottom line" and having hefty fees for heavy usage. How do you see this as affecting A. All online business B. Affiliates
    C. Purveyors of online media ?
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  2. #2
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    Here most providers charge by bandwidth (higher bandwidth = higher rate) , so what you describe is just business as usual for me.
    I'd imagine that lower bandwidth would discourage the use of video online there since the slower connections (like the one I'm used to) makes the download of a video take a long time. (One reason I really hate websites that have video as their main and only content)

    I had read that USA companies were starting to charge by total download instead of bandwidth, so I'm surprised they aren't doing that where you live now.

  3. #3
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
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    According to Free Press this action was defeated. The following is taken from an email I received from them.

    Congratulations!

    Time Warner Cable’s price-gouging scheme came crashing down yesterday.

    In a spectacular victory for Free Press and supporters like you, the company buckled under public pressure and abandoned its plan to impose Internet penalties against those who go online for more than e-mail and basic Web surfing.

    If they had gotten away with this scam, users of online innovations like Web video and radio would have been forced to pay up to $100 more per month for full broadband service.

    Time Warner Cable didn’t cave because of a sudden spurt of good conscience. They reacted to a torrent of protest from Free Press members and from Internet users across the country.

    Savor this victory, because it belongs to you. You proved -- again -- that when we pull together, we can defend our online rights against even the biggest of Big Media giants.

    But this fight isn’t over. The threat of this kind of price gouging is not going away. Big media companies like Time Warner Cable, Comcast and AT&T know that the new media landscape -- with Internet users watching video at YouTube, listening to radio at Pandora and making phone calls using applications like Skype -- is a threat to their monopoly control.

    They’ll do whatever it takes to protect their profits and limit your freedoms.

    Our victory is a lesson in what we’ll need to keep doing to stop these companies from squeezing our use of the Internet:

    • In less than a week, Free Press generated more than 16,000 letters to Congress, urging members to launch an immediate investigation of Time Warner Cable.
    • Our policy advocates are working with pro-Internet policymakers on Capitol Hill to stop these sorts of anti-competitive scams and make sure more Americans can get online.
    • Our media outreach fueled a withering barrage of negative press (including mention of our work in more than 50 prominent news stories), consumer complaints, blog postings and other opposition to Time Warner Cable's scheme.
    We’re entering a profoundly busy period for media reform issues like Net Neutrality and closing the digital divide. Your continued support today will go a long way toward strengthening our work in Washington and beyond.

    This week’s victory over Time Warner Cable proved what we can do when we pull together. Pat yourself on the back!

    And if you possibly can, help lay the groundwork for more victories in the weeks ahead by supporting Free Press right now.



    Thanks for all you do,

    Timothy Karr
    Campaign Director
    Free Press Action Fund
    http://www.freepress.net/
    http://www.savetheinternet.com/

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador VampireSkunk's Avatar
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    I remember a couple of years ago reading that Google was quietly buying up whole swathes of internet backbone - under different company names, trying to slip under the radar and avoid monopoly issues.

    A strategy that would potentially make them much more powerful than Microsoft or Apple, who are platform-dependent. If Google owns the infrastructure, all platforms run over that.

    With ever increasing usage of video and music and tv streaming there isn't enough bandwidth to go around. It means internet providers will have to go cap in hand to Google to request more bandwidth.

    Looks like providers who have been offering unlimited bandwidth to get people to sign up are beginning to realize they can't deliver.

  5. #5
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    FreePress.net is a good organization that has a lot of information on these types of issues.

    I personally don't mind metered costs as long as they make sense. For example, I think we should have metered water rates so I don't pay the same amount as my neighbor who waters his lawn and washes his car every day.

    I hope we will have a more competitive market for internet access. It is a monopoly situation right now depending on who owns the cable and phone lines, but hopefully high speed wireless access will become better and more available to break the "line" monopolies.
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  6. #6
    Analytics Dude Kevin's Avatar
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    As I had said in my post about TWC doing this in Rochester (which they've now postponed), a cable company is more than welcome to bill me by meter for internet as soon as I can pick and choose what TV stations I want, and I pay for how much TV I really watch.

    They are trying to get the best of both worlds, and they can pretty much take a flying at it.
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  7. #7
    SEO: A Specialty - Web Design: Slow or outsourced andbeyond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OICUAM2
    FreePress.net is a good organization that has a lot of information on these types of issues.

    I personally don't mind metered costs as long as they make sense. For example, I think we should have metered water rates so I don't pay the same amount as my neighbor who waters his lawn and washes his car every day.

    I hope we will have a more competitive market for internet access. It is a monopoly situation right now depending on who owns the cable and phone lines, but hopefully high speed wireless access will become better and more available to break the "line" monopolies.
    The problem is that it does not really cost anywhere near what they are charging or want to charge.

    This is from Cable providers getting into the internet business and trying to keep internet from destroying their other investment, cable.

    If you pay for internet and pay for cable they are happy. You drop cable or go down to the basic package they are very unhappy.

    But no matter what complain constantly. Comcast is trying to float a 20 gig cap in some areas right now.

  8. #8
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OICUAM2
    I personally don't mind metered costs as long as they make sense. For example, I think we should have metered water rates so I don't pay the same amount as my neighbor who waters his lawn and washes his car every day.
    Say what?

    How can you have metered water, and have to pay the same of amount as your watery neighbor?

    Are you sure you don't have some leaks on your pipes?

  9. #9
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OICUAM2
    ...I think we should have metered water rates so I don't pay the same amount as my neighbor who waters his lawn and washes his car every day...
    You don't have a water meter?
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  10. #10
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    My use of the water example was to state that I'm not opposed to metered billing in general, but I think there is more to the story in the case of the cable companies.

    The cable companies have a lot to lose when they lose their monopoly status. They will lose their monopoly profits when people can access digital content through wireless options. They also are losing their monopoly profits as people access digital content through the internet instead of just the limited channels offered through their cable tv line-up.

    I can't wait for the convergence of the internet and television. It already is happening to a certain degree, but most people still mostly watch their limited cable line-up on television. I'm sick of three music channels that never play music, history channels that rarely talk about history, and a limited amount of news on the "news" channels.

    The cable companies should go the way of the newspapers at some point in the near future. We will have no need for their physical lines and we will have no need for someone to limit what channels we can access.
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  11. #11
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andbeyond
    This is from Cable providers getting into the internet business and trying to keep internet from destroying their other investment, cable.
    Doh! I never even considered that as the motivation behind the caps, but you're spot on. Cable companies are losing market share to streaming video, and bandwidth caps are one way to slow the adoption of streaming video.
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