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ISP unveils changes with its new "fair share" program

Details on the successor to Comcast’s policy of “data discrimination” have emerged, and the majority of its changes will affect the ISP’s most gratuitous users.

Rather than targeting a specific protocol like BitTorrent – a policy that riled up technologists and the FCC, despite its “surgical” precision in managing consumption – Comcast’s new form of network management will kick in when it identifies a single user “disproportionately” consuming network resources, and will move to throttle their connection for a short while.

“If in fact a person is generating enough packets that they're the ones creating that situation, we will manage that consumer for the overall good of all of our consumers,”' said Comcast senior vice president and general manager of online services Matt Bowling.

Comcast says its new “fair share” system of throttling troublesome customers has so far proven to be fairly effective, particularly when the throttling stays in effect for about 10 to 20 minutes.

Once the time limit elapses, speeds revert to normal.

It doesn’t mean a throttled internet experience will be undesirable, however, as Bowling says that users experiencing limited bandwidth will still have an experience on par with “really good” DSL service.

But if a user continues a high level of consumption, “we would have to manage them again.”

It appears that Comcast customers will still enjoy an essentially unlimited bandwidth allotment; however the company says it is mulling over the possibility of charging subscribers a higher price for heavier internet use – but, it “[hasn’t] made any decisions” yet.

Anecdotal reports from users indicate that the new throttling system is already in place in some territories – and that the old policy of “data discrimination” still appears to be in effect as well.

Comcast has made no indication of the kinds of numbers that would trigger a slowdown, nor any specifics regarding the capacity available for throttled users.

Comcast, with its 14.4 million subscribers, fell into hot water last year when internet users and an AP report discovered that the company was screwing with customers’ BitTorrent activities, by essentially cutting them off as soon as a file finished downloading – a potentially toxic condition to the health of the BitTorrent network. Accusations snowballed into an FCC investigation, with both the FCC and Comcast slinging nasty words back and forth for the better part of 2008; the exchange reached its culmination earlier this month, when FCC chairman Kevin Martin officially condemned Comcast for violating the Commissions' tenets of a fair, open internet experience.

Martin also left Comcast an ultimatum, demanding that it disclose its network management practices to the public, and submit a “compliance plan” with details on what it plans to do after it disables its BitTorrent blocking, which is set to happen sometime this year. This announcement appears to satisfy the FCC’s demands.

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By frobizzle on 8/21/2008 9:22:44 AM , Rating: 1
This is complete BS. Comcast does not want to dig into its profits to upgrade their backbone. Much easier to throttle users.
So, here's a hypothetical question to anyone wanting to answer: With these "offenders" throttled, will any of the non-offending users see an improvement in their actual bandwidth? I say no.

By Entropy42 on 8/21/2008 10:10:13 AM , Rating: 4
What incentive would comcast have to throttle offenders if it provided no improvement to any of their other users? They would just be spending money on a technology that creates unused bandwidth.

By SocrPlyr on 8/21/2008 10:22:50 AM , Rating: 2
The issue here has very little to do with comcast's backbone. The issue is the available bandwidth over the cable lines.

By Alexstarfire on 8/21/2008 11:37:25 AM , Rating: 3
That's not really the customer's problem, now is it?

By CloudFire on 8/21/2008 12:34:58 PM , Rating: 3

i paid comcast good money for my 16m line. (66$) a month, and that is a lot more compared to the majority of the population, i expect 16m line speed, for it to work at all times, and unlimited download whenever the hell i want.

all this capping/throttling crap is so stupid.

By kmmatney on 8/21/2008 2:18:39 PM , Rating: 2
I guess it depends on how this effects you. These changes will probably be a big improvement for me, and for most other users. I a change helps 99% of users, then generally its a good thing.

By mikeyD95125 on 8/21/2008 3:17:25 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly. I pay for 16Mbps of unlimited service as advertised. Because Comcast advertises this then they should be able to provide the same level of service to everyone. If they cannot provide the bandwidth I pay for and throttle me then I should get a refund for however much they throttle back my service.

By soloman02 on 8/21/2008 3:32:14 PM , Rating: 3
Lucky you. We pay $65 a month for 4Mbps from Comcast. Comcast loves to rape their customers when they are the only competition in town. Comcast is so damn cheap, they have yet to dig a new trench to put our line in. Currently it is sitting on the forest floor. Whats worse, they used the coax that is meant for INDOOR use (IE it is not as weather resistant).

The reason comcast is doing this is beacuse they are too cheap to upgrade their bandwidth on the lines and substations.

Cheap SOB's...

By Alexstarfire on 8/22/2008 12:58:37 PM , Rating: 2
Might as well silently steal it for personal use then.

By soloman02 on 8/23/2008 1:32:48 PM , Rating: 2
I would, but Lee, NH is really rural. I have 3 neighbors around me. One has 150 acres of land and his house is a good 3 acres away. The other two have houses 1-2 acres away. So the only wireless signals I can pick up are from my router.

By joex444 on 8/24/2008 8:41:01 AM , Rating: 2
Acre has units of area. You can't use it to explain distance to us.

By jimbojimbo on 8/21/2008 2:53:15 PM , Rating: 2
Well, those others will see better speeds until they get capped as well. It's going to be a round robin capping so everybody has slower speeds.

By joex444 on 8/24/2008 8:50:15 AM , Rating: 2
So right now, before this "technology" is implemented, who has been unable to reach the quoted speed from Comcast on a regular basis? First, you need to be using something guaranteed to peak your connection -- a known fast web server, like nVidia's driver download, or usenet.

I've used Comcast's 6Mbps connection in 2 different towns (same state) and never had experienced any slow downs. Not even when I started using Cable (which at the time was AT&T) back in 2001.

I think this fundamentally stems from a perception amongst the uneducated that cable shares the bandwidth with all the neighbors on your node. While true, I think that the neighbors aren't using enough bandwidth or the nodes are small enough that they are infact capable of giving each customer 6Mbps on demand. Why would Comcast then bother with such a thing? Probably to frighten constant downloaders into thinking that they know what they're doing and hope they'll stop. The advantage here is that there is less bandwidth consumption, and thus Comcast's bill for Internet service from their provider is reduced. You didn't actually think backbones had no monthly fee, did you?

We wouldn't have this problem if...
By Ctsephion on 8/21/2008 9:25:22 AM , Rating: 5
If they started to actually build a network infrastructur on par to countries, say like Japan, then the user wouldn't need to be 'managed'. If bandwidth is so precious that they need to ration it out, maybe they should spend some time doing work FOR the customer, not taking away from them.

RE: We wouldn't have this problem if...
By FITCamaro on 8/21/08, Rating: 0
RE: We wouldn't have this problem if...
By threepac3 on 8/21/2008 10:17:21 AM , Rating: 1
Your making zero scene. If the infrastructure was there the problem wouldn't exist in the first place. If Comcast can't offer the advertised speeds then why are they pretending?

By JediJeb on 8/21/2008 12:27:42 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly! If Comcast wants to sell 6Mbit service then it should be able to provide that speed to every customer that buys it at any time even if every one of them is using it at once. If they can not provide that, then the need to assess what their network can handle, divide that by the number of customers they have and then sell that as the Max.

If a water company can push 100 gallons per minute through their plant, then they could not promise 10 customers 100 gallons per minute service, they would never be able to meet their contract, now if they promised 10 customers 10 gallons per minute then they could provide it. Same should be required of the ISP's by the FCC, you can only sell what you can provide, with no small print or hidden clauses, if you can't provide it the customer gets a refund, not throttled. It truely is false advertising to promote High speeds then add the disclaimer that you will only see those high speeds when essentially you are the only one using their service, if anyone else uses it you have to split it, which is in a sense what they are saying.

I wonder if anyone has ever taken Comcast to court on false advertisement claims over the bandwith issue. If they did they would probably have to prove that the majority of their customers have been able to use the stated bandwith most of the time, or they should be facing some severe penatlies over it.

RE: We wouldn't have this problem if...
By Alexstarfire on 8/21/2008 11:39:49 AM , Rating: 2
He never said anything about faster speeds, just better infrastructure. That means more bandwidth. They decide what to do with said bandwidth.

By rudolphna on 8/21/2008 10:49:08 PM , Rating: 2
exactly. Downlaod speeds are essentially controlled by your cable modem. It receives instructions from Comcast's server (or take your pick of ISP) on how fast you are allowed to download/upload Etc. I agree, they need to upgrade the infrastructure, so they can supply EVERY customer with the advertised speed, even if they are all using it at the same time.

By Regs on 8/21/2008 10:19:20 AM , Rating: 2
Didn't we dispute the differences between Japan and USA time and again? Didn't you also notice that Japan has more stingent regulations over their networks than America?

Google "Japan ISPs to Unplug File-Sharers" and how America is trying to find a better way to manage the problem.

RE: We wouldn't have this problem if...
By myhipsi on 8/21/2008 12:45:44 PM , Rating: 3
Well, lets do a little comparison shall we.

Japan: pop. density = 339 people per sq. km.
USA: pop. density = 31 people per sq. km.

You can't compare apples to oranges.

RE: We wouldn't have this problem if...
By jimbojimbo on 8/21/08, Rating: -1
By Alexstarfire on 8/22/2008 1:01:36 PM , Rating: 2
How is that stupid? Are you saying it's going to cost the same amount of money, or less, to lay line across 2k miles of land/space than across 500 miles? If that's the case you're trying to make then you need to go back to math class.

By joex444 on 8/24/2008 8:42:13 AM , Rating: 2
people per sq km vs people per sq km. No, I think that is a fair comparison, like meters to meters.

RE: We wouldn't have this problem if...
By kmmatney on 8/21/2008 2:15:35 PM , Rating: 2
I would not be willing to pay the higher fees for all the upgrades needed to allow a few users to run at full bandwidth 24 hours a day. Neither would most people.

By Alexstarfire on 8/22/2008 1:04:41 PM , Rating: 2
Ummm, we wouldn't pay more. Well, I should say shouldn't pay more, because this should simply eat into their profits.... and not the customers pocket. Course, they are a business, so you are essentially right.

I just had an IDEA!
By spuddyt on 8/21/2008 10:44:48 AM , Rating: 3
why don't they just sell connection speeds to their customers, only if the local infrastructure can support that connection going at maximum speed all the time without slowing down others!!!! (shocking isn't it.)

RE: I just had an IDEA!
By myhipsi on 8/21/2008 12:30:58 PM , Rating: 1
If that was the case, your 10mb connection would cost you $995.00 a month instead of $50. That's what T1 or T3 services are for. Home internet was never intended to be used 24/7.

RE: I just had an IDEA!
By CloudFire on 8/21/2008 12:38:34 PM , Rating: 2
where did any internet service say that home internet was never intended to be used 24/7?

i leave my computer on for days at times when i'm downloading things.

an internet connection is an internet connection. you pay the money for their services, you should be able to use it whenever you want. 24/7/365

RE: I just had an IDEA!
By myhipsi on 8/21/2008 12:55:37 PM , Rating: 1
I should have rephrased that to "home internet was never intended to be used at full bandwidth 24/7"

RE: I just had an IDEA!
By NickF001 on 8/21/2008 1:45:38 PM , Rating: 2
baloney, they advertise a certain connection speed, can they deliver that for all customers or can't they?

comcast is making huge profits while short changing their customers

RE: I just had an IDEA!
By Yossarian22 on 8/22/2008 12:00:21 AM , Rating: 2
No, they can't. Then again, they never promised you a connection speed. They promised you a connection which goes up to a certain speed. If they wanted, they could scale you back to dialup and still not be violation of their contract. Its not false advertising, because they tell you that your speed is not guaranteed.

RE: I just had an IDEA!
By Alexstarfire on 8/22/2008 1:12:36 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is that the vast majority of people don't see it that way. Sure, technically speaking it's not false advertising.... but that's like showing a Krystal burger taking up a whole plate on TV and saying "Product shown is not actual size." Would you then say it's fine if you went and got a Kystal burger and found out it's as big as your thumb? And no, I'm not saying it's as big as your thumb, just trying to make a point. You'd be fuming probably.

False advertising needs to be redefined so that it's what the vast majority of people believe. For instance, if people thought that getting 3 Mbps on average on an "up to" 6 Mbps line was fair, then it's acceptable. On the other hand, if they think that getting 4 Mbps on average on an "up to" 6 Mbps isn't fair.... then it shouldn't be classified as false advertising.

By icrf on 8/21/2008 9:12:24 AM , Rating: 2
"We would have to manage them again."

Apparently "manage" means "throttle" to some people.

RE: Semantics
By MrBlastman on 8/21/2008 9:41:38 AM , Rating: 4
All this throttling going on... Sounds more like a whallopin' if you'd ask me! (shouts the aussie)

"We would have to manage them again." to me sounds more like:

Comcast Executive: "Hey! Statistcally speaking 90% of the time 50% of users paying their fair monthly amount can be cut to 20% of their bandwidth giving 80% of users a 100% improvement with improving profits 200% 38.58281% of the time!"

Bastages :(

RE: Semantics
By bodar on 8/21/2008 4:12:46 PM , Rating: 2
In that case, I'd like to "manage" their necks, vigorously.

RE: Semantics
By rudolphna on 8/21/2008 10:51:11 PM , Rating: 1
And what else would it mean? dumbass.

Spammers and viruses
By Screwballl on 8/21/2008 10:34:28 AM , Rating: 5
They need to go after the "botnet" spammers and viruses... stop most spammers and 75% of the internet bandwidth is opened up. Stop the botnet virus spreading and clear up another 20%... then if you have a 10Mbit connection, you can actually see full speed, plus legitimate email will go through in a matter of seconds and not minutes, hours or days (or get returned to sender).
I work for a small ISP that covers much of North America and 90% of our bandwidth is due to spam.

By Roy2001 on 8/21/2008 11:44:29 AM , Rating: 2
I would use dial up if there is no other choice except Comcast. Comcast sucks. I dumped them 5 years ago and would never go back!

By dgingeri on 8/21/2008 12:23:48 PM , Rating: 2
They're better than Qwest, which is my only alternative.

Going a step further
By saen on 8/22/2008 5:36:22 PM , Rating: 2
Comcast should go a step further, and if someone complains about throttling of their Torrent usage, send their connection information straight to the MPAA and RIAA.

Torrents usage, lags the network, causing other customers on the network to receive a worse experience. The majority of Torrent usage is Illegal, so Comcast curbing illegal network usage that is adversely impacting its other customers seems down right smart. If you are the other customer you just benefited.

Those trying to defend the Torrent system, and P2P in general, I suspect are all using it illegally. As the system is slow, and the vast majority of legal content can be gotten through a much nicer FTP download.

Why should I suffer bad ping while I am playing online, and slow download speeds, so someone can download dvds,music,software illegally?

Kudos to Comcast.

RE: Going a step further
By snyper256 on 8/23/2008 7:40:19 AM , Rating: 2
Blizzard uses BitTorrent to distribute content including games from their online store, large trailers, and WoW patches.

A lot of people download Linux images (yes, they actually do ).

The protocol is often used legally. I'm not saying that's the majority of the usage, but it's significant.

I find it hard to believe that using FTP to send this information to tens of thousands (WoW patch days for example) of people at a time would be more cost-effective or faster than distributed connections for the organizations making data available.

This should void my contract...
By bpurkapi on 8/21/2008 1:43:11 PM , Rating: 3
Comcast advertises speeds up to 6 MB/S. That doesn't matter, cause they can technically give you 3 MB/S and not be a liar. Now the part that is up for discussion is their statement that says you get "unlimited" access. This is the real problem I have with throttling. When I sign up for unlimited service I should get unlimited service. If Comcast instead said 95 gigabytes a month and after that point you would get throttled then I can understand. I think Comcast needs to upgrade their services or network in order to guarantee unlimited service, or simply begin charging for more bandwidth. Comcast should not be able to throttle their network without a customer specifically agreeing to it.

By JonnyBlaze on 8/21/2008 9:22:24 AM , Rating: 2
I should get a refund of the $10 I pay for faster speeds if they slow me down right?

In other words...
By amanojaku on 8/21/2008 10:30:21 AM , Rating: 2
Comcast built an onramp (curb to house) with more lanes (customers) than the highway (network backbone,) so now everyone has to drive at 5 mph when they expected to drive at 100 mph. Thank you very much, Comcast!

Charge more?
By kextyn on 8/21/2008 11:00:02 AM , Rating: 2
These guys really are greedy bastards. Why would they need to charge people more for using a lot of bandwidth? They are already paying more for the faster connection.

This has everything to do with Comcast not wanting to spend the money to upgrade their infrastructure. We need more competition in the high speed internet market...well any competition at all.

By NickF001 on 8/21/2008 1:42:34 PM , Rating: 2
not use it???

By jimbojimbo on 8/21/2008 2:56:43 PM , Rating: 2
If you're streaming say Netflix, you'll get to enjoy the first several minutes of the movie just fine until cap time! Then Netflix will do the little "detecting new speed" business and wind up feeding you a crappy lower res feed. Then once you're done watching your movie it's back to normal. Basically you'll NEVER get an uninterrupted feed again because every time you start one it'll run fine until that cap goes into effect.

The other thing this policy will do is give you really good bandwidth tests since they're so short.

All in all very shady business practice. I'm just glad I'm not with them - and never will be for anything.

By nismotigerwvu on 8/21/2008 8:27:46 PM , Rating: 2
Comcast wants to have their cake and eat it too.
They want to be able to advertise everywhere that they have the fastest service on the face of the earth.
The bad part of this is that they are far too cheap to maintain an infrastructure that can actually provide these speed.
Instead of saving money by not running so many commercials, or only promising the far less impressive speeds they can actually support, they choose to pay people to come up with ways to punish the people who are writing them checks.
Anyone notice just how much this sounds like AOL.
Can anyone tell me if AOL even exists anymore?
So what's Verizon's 800 number again?

Im all for it
By Regs on 8/21/08, Rating: -1
RE: Im all for it
By FITCamaro on 8/21/08, Rating: -1
RE: Im all for it
By MrBlastman on 8/21/2008 10:13:20 AM , Rating: 5
They shouldn't advertise it as unlimited internet access then. That is the problem.

Sure, I think it is lame some users might hog the system and bring down the fun for everyone else - but - they should advertise it differently and not as unlimited if they want to do that.

Besides, if only a few users can slow down the whole Comcast pond, I'd say Comcast has much bigger issues with their network infrastructure as a whole than figuring out who to throttle next. They're a major ISP. If we are talking about one user within a local node pipe - well, that is slightly different, but, often a recognized issue with Cable.

RE: Im all for it
By SocrPlyr on 8/21/2008 10:19:59 AM , Rating: 2
This isn't just a cable problem for comcasts. This shows up all over the place on the internet. The issue is that the protocols treat all TCP connections as if they were coming from different computers. Peer to peer protocols game the system by creating lots of TCP connections and thus are able to take up a larger fraction of the bandwidth available, which does happen to show up more on the bandwidth limited cable plants. DSL providers have the same problem as well, but it shows up between the CO and the rest of the web. It is easier to get more capacity in the few areas needed by the phone company than it is on the cable plant.

RE: Im all for it
By DM0407 on 8/21/2008 10:56:47 AM , Rating: 5
They shouldn't offer 5/15Mbps if they can't provide it at all times. That's false advertising...

You would be pretty pissed if you bought car that says it gets 35mpg only to find out that if you got over 50 miles a day the mileage drops to 15mpg. (and dont give me the "if drive 100mph your mileage would drop" analogy, its not relevant)

Cable companies have limited competition so they don't need to take care of their customers. I for one cannot wait for Fios to get in my area, at least Verizon is spending the capital to build a decent infrastructure.

Also, how is this at all transparent to the customer? Where does it say what the cutoff limit is? What happens if someone is teleconferencing? Will they just get a choppy connection for 15min?

RE: Im all for it
By koenshaku on 8/21/2008 11:56:43 AM , Rating: 5
I agree, that is false advertisement and it just changed my decision to go switch AT&T DSL though I hate AT&T getting porn downloads capped is an unbearable thought... No seriously Comcast download rates I thought were always too inconsistent now that they're doing stuff like this I can now see why... AT&T are lying fiber in my area and I think they're offering a 12mbps download rates at competitive prices.

RE: Im all for it
By dgingeri on 8/21/2008 12:22:07 PM , Rating: 2
by DM0407 on August 21, 2008 at 10:56 AM

They shouldn't offer 5/15Mbps if they can't provide it at all times. That's false advertising...

They don't advertise it that way. In every single ISP add I've ever seen, it's been advertised as "Up to" such and such.

RE: Im all for it
By dgingeri on 8/21/2008 12:19:18 PM , Rating: 2
by MrBlastman on August 21, 2008 at 10:13 AM

They shouldn't advertise it as unlimited internet access then. That is the problem.

Sure, I think it is lame some users might hog the system and bring down the fun for everyone else - but - they should advertise it differently and not as unlimited if they want to do that.

Besides, if only a few users can slow down the whole Comcast pond, I'd say Comcast has much bigger issues with their network infrastructure as a whole than figuring out who to throttle next. They're a major ISP. If we are talking about one user within a local node pipe - well, that is slightly different, but, often a recognized issue with Cable.

My problem with this mentality is that highways are 3-5 lanes, but you obviously don't want someone driving down the highway taking up all the lanes and going 30 miles an hour.

RE: Im all for it
By kmmatney on 8/21/2008 2:11:41 PM , Rating: 2
To all you whiners:

They don't advertise "unlimited internet access". They just advertise high speed access. You can see the advertised features here:

No mention of "unlimited internet access". If you don't like the policy, then don't buy the service.

RE: Im all for it
By myhipsi on 8/21/2008 12:17:29 PM , Rating: 1
I would have to agree as well, but they should just do what Canadian ISPs are starting to do. It's simple and effective; Capping. I currently have a 10 mb "High Speed Extreme" connection through my ISP, Rogers, which is capped at 95 Gigs per month. If I go over, which I rarely do, I'm charged $1.50 per gig up to a maximum of $25. I'm all for this as long as I get my 10mb of bandwidth which, since the cap, has been very consistant. Also, if I want to download 10 or 20 GB in one day, I can without my connection being throttled. It's a tiered something like this:

Extreme = 10mb with 95GB/month @ 54.95 + 1.50/GB
Express = 7mb with 60GB/month @ 44.95 + 2.00/GB
Lite = 1mb with 25GB/month @ 34.95 + ?/GB
UltraLite = 500kb with 2GB/month @ 24.95 + ?/GB

RE: Im all for it
By TomCorelis on 8/21/2008 2:54:15 PM , Rating: 2
Those bandwidth limits are way too low. 95gb for one month?

RE: Im all for it
By myhipsi on 8/22/2008 8:54:14 AM , Rating: 2
Sure, you can always use more Gigs, but I'd rather that than throttling. Also, for an extra $25 charge a month, or $80.00 total, I have unlimited Gigs if I choose.

RE: Im all for it
By Icelight on 8/21/2008 4:27:34 PM , Rating: 2
Capping with per-gigabyte overage fees is one of the worst possible thing to do. North American ISPs are slowly but surely bringing us back in time because they're too damn cheap to upgrade their aging infrastructure.

North American ISPs: Bringing the world of yesterday to you. Today.

RE: Im all for it
By zolo111 on 8/21/2008 4:53:22 PM , Rating: 2
I think this's the last thing comcast want to do since alot of people who don't even know what a GB is will just switch to the lower plan with 5 or 10GB monthly. Comcast will lose $$ this way..

So instead, they charge everyone $50~$60 ( unless you wait for a good deal; as good as $24 for a year), then they start whining. But where do you draw the line though? this year the monthly cap is 150GB for example, with more people singing up for thier service ( and thier infrastructure remains the same), and more bandwith consumed; they will lower the that cap...etc

RE: Im all for it
By rs1 on 8/21/2008 1:47:44 PM , Rating: 3
Um, no. How about, if I pay for what my ISP advertises as a 10 Mbps connection with "unlimited access", then I get to use up to the full 10 Mbps as much as I want, as often as I want, regardless of what I am using it for. That's what I'm paying for, after all.

And if my ISP doesn't have sufficient network resources to actually support all of their users fully utilizing their connections 100% of the time, then that is their problem, and they should either be working to add capacity until they can properly support their users, or they should stop misrepresenting their capacity by offering 10 Mbps links to users when they really only have 512 kbps per user to go around.

Everyone's connection shouldn't suffer because an ISP exaggerated their capacity in order to get more subscribers by promising a higher per-user bandwidth than what they can really deliver. Punishing users isn't the answer, ISP's need to be held accountable for delivering the bandwidth that they promise to each user, regardless of what other users happen to be doing . And if they can't, then you punish the ISP until they get their act together.

RE: Im all for it
By kmmatney on 8/21/2008 2:13:47 PM , Rating: 2
You are paying for the features shown here:

there is no mention of "unlimited access" anywhere...

RE: Im all for it
By lifeblood on 8/21/2008 4:49:42 PM , Rating: 2
Their is also no mention of limited access. The only variable is in the actual connection speed.

RE: Im all for it
By davekozy on 8/21/2008 7:03:47 PM , Rating: 2
You have unlimited access. They only periodically limit your bandwidth. Kind of like rolling blackouts (maybe brownouts in this case) when there isn't enough power for everyone at the same time. The important line in the fine print is "Actual speeds may vary and are not guaranteed." Not so different from other misleading numbers like maximum bandwidth on wired or wireless network cards that never come close to their claimed speeds. Or my 500 GB HD that's really 465 GB after formatting.

RE: Im all for it
By rudolphna on 8/21/2008 10:55:41 PM , Rating: 1
you make absolutely no sense at ALL. You cannot say "unlimited bandwith" and "throttle if you are using it to capacity" Duh. Its not the consumer fault. You are supposed to get "unlimited bandwith" Thats what its advertsed as. That means, that you should be able to download at your max connection speed all month long, without any penalites. Its not the consumers fault that comcrap cannot keep up with network load.

RE: Im all for it
By Regs on 8/22/2008 10:19:09 AM , Rating: 2
Apparently ISP's have been screwing over enough people with unreliable connections and slow speeds, that they created enough anger to bend logic and business sense. I can agree to this at least.

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer

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