My twitter on this: "comcast wants to charge companies for access to their captive subscribers - a little trade regulation please, government?"
This isn't about net neutrality and doesn't really have anything to do with Netflix except that they are a Level 3 customer. It's a peering disagreement between Comcast and Level 3 and it's far from clear that Comcast is in the wrong here.
My point is I am a monopoly customer--I can't get faster net with Verizon. They should be trying to get me the best deals on all services, instead of favoring their crap in my name.
Maybe we need a national telecommunications infrastructure. I would be in favor of that. Monopoly or even duopoly ISP service in many markets is a real problem. My point is just that trade regulation or net neutrality legislation is not going to fix this particular issue. Level 3 is sending a gigantic amount of data over Comcast's network for free because they have agreed to exchange equal amounts of traffic without charge (i.e., they have a peering agreement.) Comcast is pointing out that the recent levels of traffic coming from Level 3 is way more than Comcast is pushing back over Level 3's network in the opposite direction - so according to their agreement Level 3 should pay more. This is exactly what Level 3 recently did to Cogent when a similar situation arose. I think the idea now spreading through the media that Comcast is doing this primarily to freeze out Netflix and boost their own video on demand offerings is getting a little ahead of the facts (although it makes for a nice OMG! headline for newspapers). No doubt Comcast would like to boost their video on demand sales, but I think that's a minor point compared to the traffic disparity generated by Level 3s decision to sell really cheap transit to people like Netflix and then just assume other networks will carry the traffic free of charge (in a way Level 3 certainly wouldn't as evidenced by their de-peering threats against Cogent.)
Peering vs. Net Neutrality
Another Comcast issue: Comcast vs. Zoom
In determining the values of the two parties' peering ebbs and flows, I'd say Comcast has an advantage because it owns the wires to people's homes and the billing infrastructure that allows them to raise rates indiscriminately, unfairly, and often. Level 3 has businesses that use its "backbone" with whom fair market contracts must be arrived at. From where I'm sitting it should have the right to effectively charge Comcast more, because Comcast has a license to print money. (I watched my tv + internet go up in 2 and 3 dollar increments every year, while the quality of the TV went down (analog channels were gradually being taken offline over the same period). The monthly bill eventually reached $98 (from around $85) and I canceled the TV. Internet alone is $60 and I am on a Netflix trial for $7.99. So I really don't want to hear that Netflix is going up to $10 because Comcast used access to me as a bargaining chip. They steal quite enough as it is.
I agree that markets don't work with monopolies or duopolies. Without an "efficient market", basic services like water, garbage pickup and telecom should have regulatory protection for consumers and businesses which interact with monopolies.
Here's an interesting post that's pretty close to how I feel. I'm not against regulation, but we don't want regulation that gets us something worse than where we are right now. And it's hard for me to see how net neutrality regulation (the way I've heard people sketch out possible solutions) is going to work.
I hear you. For the record dave mentioned neutrality, I said trade regulation (as in antitrust). Neutrality for me is more an issue of not squelching the voiceless (as with a de facto "slow lane" for indie bloggers), as opposed to one big company's "rights" vis a vis another big company's, or my complaints about paying more for Netflix.
The other pothole to watch out for is the resentment that may build from Netflix subscribers who don't stream. More than two-thirds of the company's customers stream at least a little, but what about the other 34%?
According to the USPS, the rate hike would boost the cost of shipping most packages by 5.6 percent on average. But the increase varies depending upon what’s being shipped: The agency is proposing an eight percent increase for mailing periodicals, a 23 percent increase for standard mail parcels and a seven percent increase for media or library mail. The latter is the category that Netflix would most likely fall into.
There are some powerful forces at play technology/commerce side of things. There's a value chain from producers to consumers:
I'm happy so far to be a cable co's worst nightmare, saying goodbye to their crappy TV packages and hunting and gathering in the wild. I just watched Godard's Pierrot Le Fou on Netflix on a 1920 x 1080, 21 inch monitor, and the full deployment of the original widescreen composition was stunning.
roku will move that streaming netflix image to your biggest tv monitor. foreign art house is a rich netflix category.
nerd sp4m (?!)
I have fast internet now. Was 2.5 Mbps, now 9 Mbps, but usually tests double that. Gotta try netflix again. C*mc*ast.