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Tests reveal Comcast meddles with P2P network connections

Independent testing performed by the AP has revealed that Comcast actively interferes with peer-to-peer traffic going to and from its high-speed internet subscribers, by impersonating users’ machines and sending fake disconnect signals.
 
While traffic shaping – the act of throttling a given piece of Internet traffic based on its type, like BitTorrent or VOIP – is becoming increasingly common amongst ISPs interested in preserving quality of service, it seems that Comcast is one of the first companies that actively impersonate individual connections. Most providers will simply slow down some traffic in favor of others, or block a protocol’s port number to prevent it from functioning.
 
According to the report, Comcast’s technology affects users across many different networks, including e-Donkey, Gnutella, and BitTorrent. Robb Topolski, a former software quality engineer at Intel and Comcast subscriber, began to notice unexplainable performance problems with his P2P software. Posting to the popular forum DSLreports.com, he collected similar reports from other Comcast users around the country.
 
In the case of BitTorrent, Comcast’s technology only kicks in when a user’s client has a complete copy of the file and is uploading it to other users, and not while downloading.
 
Comcast spokesman Charlie Douglas would not comment directly on the matter, instead only saying, “Comcast does not block access to any applications, including BitTorrent.”
 
There are currently very few regulations regarding traffic shaping, and none that specifically cover Comcast’s particular use. The FCC says that while consumers are entitled to run the applications and services of their choice, they are subject to measures of “reasonable network management” by their ISPs. The closest directive governing Comcast’s behavior – which still doesn’t directly apply – would be found in AT&T’s conditions for acquiring BellSouth, where it had to agree not to manipulate traffic in any way based on its origin – not service type.
 
Comcast’s “traffic discrimination” has important ramifications for the growing number of services that are leveraging P2P as a means to distribute large files quickly and cheaply. A company like Blizzard Entertainment, who relies on BitTorrent for distributing World of Warcraft updates that often measure hundreds of megabytes in size, may have trouble reaching its players if it or they are behind a Comcast internet connection. This problem will only worsen if other ISPs decide on a similar course of action.
 
Ashwin Navin, co-founder and president of BitTorrent Inc. confirmed the AP’s findings, and noted that he has seen similar practices from several Canadian ISPs.
 
“They're using sophisticated technology to degrade service, which probably costs them a lot of money. It would be better to see them use that money to improve service,” said Navin.


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Bye bye Comcast
By ChipDude on 10/19/2007 10:25:38 PM , Rating: 5
And that is why a left to go to FIOS and directTV. Your days of holding me over a barrel are over!




RE: Bye bye Comcast
By rudy on 10/19/2007 10:30:47 PM , Rating: 2
Problem is most of us have no choice, its comcast or AT&Ts terrible DSL. Much of average US areas are not lucky as the really big cities to have many ISPs to choose from.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Dug on 10/19/2007 10:40:03 PM , Rating: 3
“They're using sophisticated technology to degrade service, which probably costs them a lot of money. It would be better to see them use that money to improve service,” said Navin.

Wait till their subscribers start dropping like flies. Then the cost will really bite them in the ass.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By JAB on 10/20/2007 12:19:57 AM , Rating: 3
Most people dont have much of a choice. For many it is the only choice for others it is them or one not so great alternative. There is no sign the federal government is going to support competition any time soon.

The over the air broadband might have some hope but if history repeats the big companys will gobble it all up and avoid loosing control.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By TomCorelis on 10/20/2007 1:54:58 AM , Rating: 4
Most people are also apathetic to the details of their internet connection. If it's web, and it's fast, they're happy.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By JAB on 10/20/2007 6:38:08 AM , Rating: 2
Uninformed or or resigned to bad serves applys to many also. When a second cable internet company entered the market people started becoming interested in the quality of their connection. Not surprisingly service on the old network improved rapidly once real competition entered the market but many switched anyway.

My long retired parents are surprisingly upset over the speed of their cable. They tried to get a second DSL so they would not have to share but couldn't. They view it the same way they viewed the 100 USD long distance phone bills that are not free- just something you have to put up with.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By euclidean on 10/22/2007 11:04:03 AM , Rating: 2
What most people don't realize also is that they have Comcast...I only wish I could get comcast instead of high-junk Charter Comm.... :(


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By abhaxus on 10/20/2007 2:22:28 AM , Rating: 2
A) You are exactly right on people not having a choice. For me (a high paying 8mb tier customer from the month they started offering it in my area) I have no choice but comcast, or 1.5mbps DSL.

B) To the reply directly above me (or below, don't know how this will turn out), not only are people apathetic, people can still leech under comcast's system. I still regularly max out my download bandwidth using either Azureus or uTorrent. Upload bandwidth only stays constant when other comcast users are leeching from me.

C) My choice was to drop from 8mbps/768kbps to their 6mbps/384kbps tier. I made sure when I disconnected the high speed tier that I told the comcast guy to make a note on my file that I was specifically disconnecting because of their fraudulent BT actions. He probably didn't, but it's the best I could do.

Sadly, on the 384kbps upload tier, even if uploading at less than half of my max available bandwidth, my DL speeds and latency go to hell, whereas with my 768 upload I could run within about 5KB/s of my max and still be fine.

It's a shame, really. I would switch to DSL in a heartbeat if they had 6mbps service where I am. I pray for the day FiOS comes to my area.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By KamiXkaze on 10/21/2007 9:11:34 PM , Rating: 2
yep when your options are limited there nothing else to, but too deal with it.

KxK


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By bravacentauri83 on 10/19/2007 10:40:46 PM , Rating: 2
I wish we got FiOS. Commiecast is the only choice for us.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Tsuwamono on 10/20/07, Rating: 0
RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Etsp on 10/20/2007 8:18:59 AM , Rating: 3
In a communist society, there is a huge lack of variety in products and services, because competition within an industry is considered a bad thing. Because of this, the product or service is often of lower quality, because there isn't competition. Comcast has no direct competitors and so they do not have a drive to improve their service, much like industry in communism.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Christopher1 on 10/20/2007 9:00:45 AM , Rating: 2
Now, that is not the problem here. Communism is not the problem, the problem is the lack of competition. South Korea has a system that is BETTER than ours in terms of the internet in their cities, and how is that? Because they made it EXCEPTIONALLY clear to the companies who were going to be doing business in their countries that they had to improve their technology year after year if they wanted to keep on doing business, something that the United States thinks is 'bad' for them to mandate.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By logaldinho on 10/20/2007 3:17:41 PM , Rating: 2
actually south korea is not communist, north korea is. south korea is as advanced as they are because of capitalistic competition. where north korea at night looks like you could be looking at an empty body of water because of the lack of development. have you seen the picture comparing both countries at night?

http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/dprk/...

guess with no electric company to compete with they figured nobody other than kim jong needed power.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Christopher1 on 10/22/2007 11:42:32 AM , Rating: 2
You are right in that South Korea is not communist, but they are more communistic than the United States is and are more willing to play hardball with companies when they are trying to 'screw the customers'.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By wingless on 10/21/2007 1:41:12 PM , Rating: 1
They are fascist pigs!


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Yawgm0th on 10/19/2007 11:25:55 PM , Rating: 2
It's Comcast, Quest, or Speakeasy here. No FIOS. Quest is absolutely horrid, and Speakeasy charges twice as much for a slower connection than Comcast does for triple play.

But Comcast took three trips and two weeks to install everything. Bittorrent is harder to use. Customer service is horrid.

I wish we could get Fios. But the 8m connection is really 8m and then some, and the price can't be beat. It's sad.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Screwballl on 10/20/2007 12:57:12 AM , Rating: 2
The only local high speed choices for me is Cox cable or Embarq (Sprint) DSL. The DSL service is total crap so that leaves Cox. I have noticed issues with uploading relating to torrents and recently Joost since it also uses P2P. Downloads seem to work fine but even after the application is closed, I still get port requests (blocked by my firewall of course) for Joost even though its been 3 days since I last had it open. My upload speeds for torrents has stayed around 30-50kbps when most uploads previously run around 300+ kbps.
My online gaming has had an overall increase in ping lately, typically 10-50 points which can mean life or death in counter-strike (with the P2P apps closed).
The only way I may be able to get away from this is to get setup with a business line through Cox which would not have the same limitations but would also take more from my pocket.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Belegost on 10/20/2007 1:46:05 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, the last two months I've been having a similar experience with Cox, though I don't have the time to do the tests that would be necessary to prove it. However with this coming out, I'm fairly sure Cox has installed similar filters.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By kring on 10/20/2007 8:28:32 AM , Rating: 2
Is this a violation of privacy? How do they know you are uploading bit-torrent unless they are actually opening your packets and viewing the content... what if that was my SS# going to my financial institution... are they reading that content as well?

Is the bit-torrent marker in the content layer of the packet? I don't think it's in the transport layers?


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Master Kenobi (blog) on 10/20/2007 11:31:34 AM , Rating: 1
BitTorrent uses a specific packet type, its easy to figure out what its doing, they just monitor them that way.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By blwest on 10/20/2007 8:11:04 PM , Rating: 2
And what kind of mysterious packet is this?


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By darkpaw on 10/20/2007 9:20:40 PM , Rating: 1
Actually, I'm quite happy. Screw the pirates, more bandwidth for people that don't P2P everything they can get their greedy paws on.

As for blizzard, using Bit Torrent for patching was the stupidest thing ever. So much easier just to get their patches from Fileplanet.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Hase0 on 10/22/2007 11:16:52 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
As for blizzard, using Bit Torrent for patching was the stupidest thing ever. So much easier just to get their patches from Fileplanet.


That cost money and Fileplanet can be a pain in the ass sometimes, not to mention using bit torrent for distributing patches that are used by millions is a really good idea, especially when the files are so huge because the sheer amount of users allows a lot of seeders which = high download speed, and they can save a lot of money this way. They also offer direct downloads for scrubs who cant use bit torrent btw.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By totallycool on 10/22/2007 11:56:49 AM , Rating: 1
After paying 80$ for the game, and 15$ monthly for the subscription, I really dont wanna help them reduce the costs. Why would i want to share my bandwidth, so that blizz can save their money.

I really hate their torrent patcher, usually just download it thru filenet or disable p2p. (Have you noticed how the check mark says, this would degrad performance, and no where it says that it would also upload from my machine :P)


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Hase0 on 10/22/2007 3:11:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
After paying 80$ for the game, and 15$ monthly for the subscription, I really dont wanna help them reduce the costs. Why would i want to share my bandwidth, so that blizz can save their money.


The $80 is for the initial development cost's plus some profit for game, and the $15 is suppose to be for the content and updates they always do, and probably server hosting, but i do agree that $15 a month is lame. So if you don't want them to host primarily through torrents, they would probably raise your monthly subscription fee up and say we need to include the distribution now because you guys were crying too much.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By Pythias on 11/10/2007 2:02:29 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Screw the pirates, more bandwidth for people that don't P2P everything they can get their greedy paws on.


This may come as a shock to you, but there ARE legitimate uses for p2p.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By palthainon on 10/21/2007 8:00:53 AM , Rating: 2
Comcast isn't the only one doing this.

All of the ISP's i've worked with have used a bandwidth control system that works by allowing more of the available bandwidth to ports that are commonly used by the highest paying customers; businesses. These ports are something like SMTP, POP3, HTTP AND HTTPS, SSH, telnet, etc. And as the bandwidth is available it is distributed throughout the rest of the ports. The biggest hogs with the least use to businesses such as bearshare and bitorrent ports are slowed down to allow room for the rest.

Its not that they give a crap about the file sharing; they don't. File sharers pay money, too. Its just that these ports consume the most bandwidth.


RE: Bye bye Comcast
By allometry on 10/22/2007 6:20:09 PM , Rating: 2
First of all, I'm sick and tired of paying over a hundred bucks for TV and Internet. Personally, I think it's high priced and I think I'm right about this, because there's little competition against Comcast.

Now, not only was I pissed for paying a lot, I'm pissed for paying a lot and not getting, what I see to be, a complete product.

Comcast TOS limits a lot, that having 6MB down [in most areas] is nice, it's almost not worth the hassle if you like to use entities such as BitTorrent to download LEGAL content! I'm waiting for them to start limiting speeds on iTunes and other services like that, because it takes too much of a hit on their bandwidth. It's pretty apparent that the legality of any traffic is irrelevant in the eyes of Comcast. It's all about their bottom line and as a consumer, when you bring your bottom line into my product; go screw!

Turns out Speakeasy has a 6/768 line available in my area. While I believe it's also high price, Speakeasy tells me that I can do what ever I want to on that line; they don't give a damn! That's worth a hell of a lot more than Comcast product at this point.


Ive got comcast...
By tdktank59 on 10/19/2007 11:06:57 PM , Rating: 2
Ive been noticing the same things described above...

Its arfing anoing...

What really sucks is that comcast is the fastest internet in my area next fastest is 56k...




RE: Ive got comcast...
By Vertigo101 on 10/19/2007 11:30:53 PM , Rating: 2
Yep, another Comcast customer here who can vouch for this. So much for a decent ratio, and forget about sharing anything of your own. If I get an alternative, I'll jump on it, but right now I'm up a creek.


RE: Ive got comcast...
By TomCorelis on 10/20/2007 1:56:36 AM , Rating: 2
There's always transport encryption...


RE: Ive got comcast...
By abhaxus on 10/20/2007 2:25:20 AM , Rating: 2
Transport encryption has nothing to do with what they are doing. At all. The only peers not throttled under this new system are comcast peers and I'm assuming only ones who are connected to the same backbone as you. All others disconnect within 512kb.


RE: Ive got comcast...
By TomCorelis on 10/20/2007 3:39:11 AM , Rating: 2
If you run the service off an alternate port and make sure your traffic is encrypted, how can they tell you're running one of their recognized protocols? I am working off the assumption that their filters actively ID protocols before attempting to mess with it.

Correct me if I'm wrong, I'm still learning the ropes on P2P encryption.


RE: Ive got comcast...
By Christopher1 on 10/20/2007 4:14:41 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, that's true. Some people have said that they have been able to get around these things by requiring mandatory encryption on torrents.... which makes it so that the transfers don't match the protocols in Comcast's system.


RE: Ive got comcast...
By Tedtalker1 on 10/20/2007 4:38:36 PM , Rating: 3
Enable encryption to defeat ISP traffic shaping.
Instructions for multiple clients here.- http://torrentfreak.com/how-to-encrypt-BitTorrent-...


RE: Ive got comcast...
By abhaxus on 10/21/2007 9:38:49 PM , Rating: 4
The comcast system does not work the way "normal" traffic shaping does. It analyzes the traffic for users to look for connection to central servers (trackers for BT) and then analyzes peer connections and sets a RST packet to both ends of the P2P transfer, unless both ends are comcast customers. This article was the first I've read that ed2k was affected as well, I stopped using the donkey several years ago and had no idea.

Since they implemented this system, it has made no difference whether options like lazy bitfield or transport encryption were enabled on my PC. The only thing that has kept my ratio up on my private trackers has been to keep as many open torrents seeding as possible. The more torrents I have seeding (I used to max out at about 7-8 torrents in the old days, preferring to seed fewer torrents at higher speed per torrent), the more likely I am to connect to comcast users and thus keep sending them data at the normal speed. I ended up picking up a new HDD because of this, as I used to stop seeding at a ratio of 1.5-2.5 and burn the files to disc.

Luckily, one of my private trackers gives bonus points for seeding even if you aren't actually uploading, so my main ratio hasn't declined much. But I download less. In the end, I can't complain too much because my use of bittorrent isn't exactly legitimate. However, my use of their $52.95/month 8mb/768 tier is no longer necessary as I can't use my full upload anyway. As said in another post, I made sure to let their people know when I disconnected that upgrade that I was already waiting on a new internet provider. I may be going satellite HDTV as well, even though the quality is lower, simply because this method of shaping is ridiculous to me. I wouldn't mind bandwidth shaping, but stopping all seeding crosses the line to me.


Just testing
By SunAngel on 10/19/2007 10:31:40 PM , Rating: 2
My uneducated guess is Comcast is testing how their filters will react once pay-per-usage fees are in favor of unlimited service. Assuming BT become popular to the point of commonman using it to download Vongo, MovieLink and what-nots this would be an effect way to ensure constant and fair traffic for all.

However, if there are 50+ subscribers on the same bus and everyone is online at 7PM grabbing yesterday's HDTV CSI episode, it makes sense Comcast should limit certain MACs if other MACs can't reach their destinations or retrieve their information. What do you think? Holler back.




RE: Just testing
By ted61 on 10/19/2007 10:48:46 PM , Rating: 5
That is the reason I use a slow dsl connection. I do not like Comcast limiting my bandwidth for any reason. If they sell me X amount of bandwidth for X amount of money, they should supply what they sell. If they sell you unlimited upload at 3mbps they should deliver 3mbps for the whole month with no caps. Unlimited means unlimited.


RE: Just testing
By Spivonious on 10/22/2007 9:13:00 AM , Rating: 2
They don't sell you that though.

quote:
Actual speeds may vary and are not guaranteed. Many factors affect download speed.
- taken from
Comcast's website.


RE: Just testing
By Christopher1 on 10/22/2007 11:46:00 AM , Rating: 3
Actually, they do sell you that. That means that OTHER factors outside of Comcast's control will affect downloading speeds...... NOT things Comcast themselves are doing.


RE: Just testing
By mindless1 on 10/20/2007 2:40:33 AM , Rating: 2
What we all think is Comcast is spending money to reduce full use of the subscriber's accounts instead of spending that money towards the bandwidth the system needs if a lot of users were to d/l CSI at once.

There is no evidence of this though, that it's only being done when their lines are saturated. On the contrary if this were the case people would be reporting overall problematic usage not just bt failures.


RE: Just testing
By TomCorelis on 10/20/2007 3:41:45 AM , Rating: 1
If BT is working right and preferentially selecting peers based on ping (does it do that?), a lot of that download traffic wouldn't leave Comcast's network or even the neighborhood, as all the neighborhood peers would hopefully help each other out.


So theoretically...
By xphile on 10/20/2007 3:24:32 AM , Rating: 2
Every ISP could follow suit, and then in that situation, while everyone can download just fine, nobody can upload, so there is nothing to download. What a great solution it must have seemed to the Comcast suits.

I honestly dont see this practice lasting for three big reasons:

Firstly once made public it could play havoc with a customer base as soon as any kind of real alternative was offered. And any kind of problem that so many will want to be rid of opens up huge opportunities to someone else prepared to solve it. Comcast wont want the risk to their customer share by opening the doors to allow that to happen.

Then there are two very interesting legal points here. I don't know about there in the US, but here in New Zealand Id bet pretty strongly that this practice would be legally challenged into oblivion:

A Comcast customer can say: You promised me a service, which you are capable of delivering and you are WILLFULLY degrading it and deviating from the contract made between us WITHOUT either my permission or even my knowledge - I am taking you to court and suing your ass off in a class action.

Lastly, and it gets worse, based on the information so far, a Comcast customer can say: You are IMPERSONATING ME!. Along with identity theft and invasion of privacy issues, there are all kinds of potential violations that this one brings.

The only UPSIDE to this is that if the RIAA go you for file sharing, since Comcast want to be you so badly they are impersonating you, then when the RIAA come knocking on your door you can point them down the hall to Comcast and ask them to prove it wasn't them not you that was even "making available" the offending data.

Comcast I bet you never ever thought of that when you thought up this brilliant plan.




RE: So theoretically...
By TomCorelis on 10/20/2007 3:52:02 AM , Rating: 3
Comcast's contracts most likely include a mandatory arbitration clause, which would make a lawsuit much more difficult to pursue. (I haven't seen Comcast's contracts so I don't know for sure.)

Second, most of the public, right now, doesn't care enough to pack up their cable TV and internet service and switch to another provider because the house downloader suddenly can't upload. I doubt most people would fully understand the concept if it were explained to them clearly. Now, if services based off BitTorrent take off, and suddenly grandma Helga has to make a nasty phone call to LegalVideoMovieDownloadoramaSoft Inc HQ so that she can finish downloading the content she paid for, THEN maybe the public will notice and/or care.

Until then, Comcast pretty has the legal ability to have their way with you.


RE: So theoretically...
By Lord 666 on 10/20/2007 9:16:45 AM , Rating: 2
The big issue is the impersonating the customer when it really is Comcast. While that might skew a RIAA investigation, more than likely Comcast can identify with logs what connections were real vs. artificials.

Similarly speaking, it also puts a reason of doubt on identify management. Taking to the next level, this might skew FBI investigations. With the reason of doubt now, it could be a method of evading prosecution for pedophiles, terrorists, and other bad guys.

Could be a reason to push for IP6.


Usenet?
By vailr on 10/20/2007 12:28:16 AM , Rating: 2
Does Comcast throttle downloads from usenet news servers, at all?
Might be an option for those wishing to do P2P file sharing, and finding problems with Comcast.




RE: Usenet?
By mindless1 on 10/20/2007 2:42:43 AM , Rating: 2
Often usenet server bandwidth is a function of the server bottlenecks. I don't know about Comcast but many larger ISPs don't even have much if anything to d/l from binary newsgroups, they just don't carry or filter that out.


RE: Usenet?
By Christopher1 on 10/20/2007 4:11:05 AM , Rating: 2
They don't throttle downloads from news servers, however if you are using THEIR newsservers they do have a maximum amount of usage that you can do: about 2GB a month, a little more or a little less if you had used more than 2 or less than 2 the month before.


"...from several Canadian ISPs."
By Le Québécois on 10/20/2007 12:52:55 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Ashwin Navin, co-founder and president of BitTorrent Inc. confirmed the AP’s findings, and noted that he has seen similar practices from several Canadian ISPs.


By any chance, is there anyone that might know who are those Canadian ISPs?

I've done some research and so far I've only been able to find some "hint" that point towards "Roger".




By AlexandertheBlue on 10/20/2007 11:03:37 AM , Rating: 2
Rogers has done it to me when I was with them


RE: "...from several Canadian ISPs."
By Hase0 on 10/22/2007 11:27:37 AM , Rating: 2
http://www.azureuswiki.com/index.php/Bad_ISPs

Has a list of bad ISP's categorized by country


...but it's FAST
By kyleb2112 on 10/19/2007 11:20:39 PM , Rating: 4
The ISPs should have to start listing their restrictions in their commercials. I'm so tired about hearing how FAST FAST FAST their service is without mention of the restrictions like bandwidth caps and now this.




Is this not common knowledge?
By chsh1ca on 10/19/2007 11:22:49 PM , Rating: 2
I would have thought technologies such as those from Sandvine were becoming more common at ISPs. I know mine has recently begun using similar technology.




RE: Is this not common knowledge?
By knowom on 10/19/2007 11:59:34 PM , Rating: 2
I'd assume all the broadband companies are doing it or something else similar while most have upped the maximum transfer speeds over the last decade slightly over time unfortunately they don't seem to be very sustainable and are throttled back majorly when downloading gigs and gigs of data and or as well as doing a lot of uploading data. For some reason upload speeds are heinous at best for broadband from what I can tell. I know my time warner road runner service appears to throttle bandwidth a lot whenever using bit torrent and p2p programs and has really terrible upload bandwidth compared to its download bandwidth.


Alaska Communications Service doing same thing
By chuck10 on 10/21/2007 3:07:39 AM , Rating: 2
ACS here in Alaska doing the same thing here cutting out bittorrent & p2p traffic !




By ethana2 on 10/22/2007 4:23:18 AM , Rating: 2
Clearwire in Anchorage- torrents work, but seem to be throttled or reset occasionally. I don't trust them.

Copowi, help us, please. Do so via WiMax if possible. A neutral wireless net will be the end of radio, tv, and phones. I can /not/ wait to see it happen. I want my communications simplified. One tablet pc. Hard to get simpler than that.

*who else gets confused by anything more complex than a garage door opener? point and click FTW!*


The Comcast Deathstar
By TexVindictive on 10/20/2007 12:28:20 PM , Rating: 2
I live in Philly. Comcast is building a skyscraper that will be the largest building between NYC and Chicago. We call it the Comcast Deathstar. I hate seeing a $100 bill every month for basic cable and high speed internet. I love to game and I just don't see the value for $100 a month and I get bad pings to friends I game with. I can't wait for Fios to get in my neighborhood. Then again, will I be paying $130 a month for that better speed.




To hell with comcast
By psychotix11 on 10/22/2007 9:49:08 AM , Rating: 2
This is why I left them to go with Verizon DSL. Sure it's not as fast, but I ping better in game, and can DL what I want at full speed.

I will be getting FIOS as soon as they set it up in my building




Amazing Part
By mindless1 on 10/23/2007 5:42:28 AM , Rating: 2
[rant]

The really amazing part is that this has been reported by Comcast subscribers for a long time, but idiots who said to themselves that "I am so darn knowledgeable that anything which might misalign with my preconceived ideals must not be true", continually argued that it couldn't be happening despite clear reports that it was.

How stupid these people must feel right now. They know it all, therefore direct observation of it happening must be wrong.

Let this be a lesson to those who pretend they are intelligent, that intelligence depends not on assumption or on theory but rather on learning based on evidence. You can't "think" your way through dismissing something, rather you are ignorant if not collecting evidence, testing your theory comprehensively.

[/rant]

We knew this was bound to happen, tech geeks like to control things, and those in power always play on a careful balance of public perception vs. whittling away at the bottom line. Comcast has done as expected, trying to play down the significance of their decision while obfuscating what they have decided.

That's dishonest. When asked, they should have just come clean about it. Simple straight facts. This is the same as what happened with questions about their policy regarding download limits in the past, that they are deliberately vague to the point of being deceitful. If they choose not to divulge their policies, they should be honest and just say "we refuse to tell you" instead of uttering gibberish instead.

If you can ditch Comcast, do it, there is no clearer message than ceasing to pay them. The mighty dollar is your only real weapon against this. If only they had been honest and clear then a customer could decide for themselves, but reserving an arbitrary vagueness is unacceptible when it's a matter of contractual obligations for a service you're paying for.




Canadian ISP's are horrid.
By Protozero on 10/21/2007 2:24:02 PM , Rating: 1
I'm geussing Sympatico bell would do so. Sounds like a thing they would do. I can't tell if my Sympatico DSL is bottlenecked in p2p. It's so crap and unreliable. They won't offer me there better 3MB DSL because somehow my local neighbourhood can't handle the capacity!? I live in Montreal...my friend 10 minutes away on Montreal can get it. It's complete crap, I'm stuck with getting 30KB's up/down if I'm lucky and 80-100 ping on good CS servers. Along with a nice little 2GB bandwitdh limit which if I blow is another $30 a month. So I'm paying more then if I would if I had there highspeed...but with much shittier speeds and a tendency to randomly disconnect.




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