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ACA claims metered pricing is the only sustainable pricing model

Consumers continue to be outraged when cable companies try and move from flat fee models for internet access to tiered pricing plans based on usage. Early dial-up ISPs tried the pay per usage plan and found across the board that unlimited usage scenarios were much more popular with customers.

Today, broadband connections around the country for the most part are unlimited and users can download as much content as they want (in theory). The reality is that most ISPs today already attempt to throttle users who use what is deemed excessive bandwidth. At the same time, many ISPs are pushing new tired pricing plans that force users to pay significant fees for each gigabyte of data downloaded or transferred after what are typically very low monthly allotments of bandwidth.

Time Warner was the most recent large ISP to announce trials of tiered pricing that would have seen customers paying $150 per month for unlimited bandwidth as opposed to the roughly $40 per month an unlimited plan costs today. The outrage from customers and lawmakers was much stronger than Time Warner had anticipated and the company announced that it would be dropping its tiered Internet pricing plans for now.

According to the American Cable Association (ACA), metered bandwidth Internet pricing is coming and will be a necessity. According to Patrick Knorr of the ACA, his company, Sunflower Broadband, is already charging customers metered rates for internet access and has been doing so for several years.

The ACA argues that metered pricing is going to be a necessity as demand for bandwidth increases with the adoption of high-bandwidth video services. According to ACA chair Steve Friedman, the metered charges are not intended to inhibit content, but to ensure quality of service for all customers using the service. Friedman says he isn’t sure that Time Warner did a good job explaining that. That rationale is the same used by cable companies when they tried to block certain types of content with the claim that it was to prevent piracy and offer quality service to all users.

ACA President Matt Polka says that while metered internet is in early development, that outcome is certain. Polka claims that there is no limit to the build-outs that ACA members have to do to meet customer demand and with new services coming ACA member simply won't be able to support all of that at $40 per month.

Polka likens internet usage to his heating bill saying that he would like to pay the same amount year round, but in the winter when he uses more, he has to pay more. If Polka's heating company suddenly decided that he was only allowed 4 cubic feet of gas before an overage charge of $2 per cubic foot was assessed to support the need to install more gas pipelines to "ensure quality service," he might feel like the majority of Internet subscribers do.

Knorr insists that bandwidth-based billing is the only way to manage infrastructure and that it is simply a case of raw math that the infrastructure to accommodate the growth in HD downloads isn’t there at this point. He continues saying that the only way to rationalize a business model is to put some of the responsibility on the subscriber.



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Lol Wut ?
By Radnor on 4/29/2009 11:18:14 AM , Rating: 3
I just hope they start charging enough money so smaller ISPs can start.

We love good old competition.




RE: Lol Wut ?
By Bateluer on 4/29/2009 11:19:31 AM , Rating: 5
Except any small ISP that attempts to start will either need A) Money to lay their own fiber or B) use existing lines, which will carry heavy fees from the cable companies.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By StevoLincolnite on 4/29/2009 11:33:00 AM , Rating: 2
That's easy fixed, get your government to structurally separate your ISP's wholesale and Fiber Networks, expand the network so it will have more coverage, introduce P2P caching and P2P de-prioritization, set a low access price for all ISP's so that they have equal access then let competition drive down prices.

P2P caching has the benefit of reducing the cost of data for the ISP as that data wont have to be downloaded as many times by the users, hence reducing costs, P2P de-prioritization basically allows services such as FTP, HTTP services to gain priority.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By mondo1234 on 4/29/2009 12:11:50 PM , Rating: 5
Some cities are putting wireless routers on the power poles and traffic lights, the rest is handled by the municipality.
If they are going for tiered pricing, then I want to not only block pop-ups, but also flash advertising, and pop-up surveys. I should have the right to choose what comes over the wire to my browser and pay the bandwith for it.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By FITCamaro on 4/29/2009 12:40:57 PM , Rating: 5
Good point. All that crap will use up your bandwidth without you having a desire to actually see it.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By DopeFishhh on 4/30/2009 5:07:25 AM , Rating: 2
Yes and so will a lot of other things like say ping floods or windows/virus updates.

An ISP would be able to reduce their costs by caching things like updates for programs or providing internal sources for things on the net and making sure users are aware of them. That way they pay once for a download and multiply it on their end, IE proxy servers.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By inperfectdarkness on 4/29/2009 12:58:31 PM , Rating: 4
deserves a 6.

the next step is that advertisers & companies that rely on advertising are going to pitch a royal fit because their marketing is being blocked.

in the end, it's all a giant conspiracy to f#$k the consumer.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By RjBass on 4/30/2009 12:30:48 AM , Rating: 1
Good point, but I just run IPCOP and that takes care of all that. However the average home user isn't fluent enough with Linux or more advanced routing to understand how IPCOP works, so for them I would have to say that the customers need to have much better control over what they get online.

Excellent point sir, your post deserves a 6.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By greylica on 4/30/2009 10:58:13 AM , Rating: 2
Deserves 7.
Firefox have a great tool to block these poppy bandwidth eaters, then, instead of MSN, Use amsn ( without the poppy bandwidth s***k advertisers ).
ANNNND The bots, the insects that travel the net, and finnaly, those droned cookies, when I read a page, normally there are thousands of loads of dinamic.everything, advertising#$##.$%&$, truncated sites, truncated advertising, packet analysis, that advertising companies install...
Start to block them, the spammers and the virus sites and you will have 20% more bandwidth.

But to solve, reaaly solve, there is only one way:

Infrastructures...


RE: Lol Wut ?
By grandpope on 4/30/2009 11:41:05 AM , Rating: 2
OK, I gotta ask, WTF does "s***k" stand for? I have exhausted my fairly considerable index of swear words and i got nuthin.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By acase on 4/30/2009 12:10:37 PM , Rating: 2
all i got is skank, and that is hardly worth censoring


RE: Lol Wut ?
By MozeeToby on 4/29/2009 1:29:57 PM , Rating: 5
Firefox + adblock + auto updateder for the adblock list.

I haven't seen an ad on my home computer in literally years. I'm stuck with IE7 at work unfortunatly.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By therealnickdanger on 4/29/2009 2:37:01 PM , Rating: 3
Yup, all I use is a regularly updated HOSTS file and PG2 and IE8. It blocks everything unrelated to what I want to see and do.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By ZeroGuardian on 4/29/2009 5:42:30 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Firefox + adblock + auto updateder for the adblock list.


The problem with this is that the ads and so forth still come through your connection. It is only at the local computer that all the content is filtered out. So while you don't see the ads they still use up bandwidth. Same with editing your HOSTS file. The only true way to resolve this problem is for the ISPs to either filter it out or make the ads not count towards your total bandwidth.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By tfk11 on 4/29/2009 8:19:01 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
The problem with this is that the ads and so forth still come through your connection


Not true. Each webpage is composed of many separate files referenced by the initially requested page. Both adblock and the hosts file prevent referenced files that are deemed to contain adds from being requested which does save bandwidth.

In the case of the hosts file the browser still sends the request but it is redirected to an address where the content cannot be found causing the request to fail.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By bobdelt on 4/29/09, Rating: 0
RE: Lol Wut ?
By xti on 4/30/2009 12:16:12 PM , Rating: 2
yeah people. if u gonna look at porn, be proud. dun be all 'wahn the virus took my comp before climax'.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By Oregonian2 on 4/29/2009 2:44:15 PM , Rating: 2
Portland is one of those cities, and I think one of the last to "drop out" of it. The ad driven city-wide wifi was profitable in terms of operational runtime costs, but like skype was for eBay -- it would have taken "forever" to make back the capital costs. So the company putting it in refused to finish the project unless the city ponied up money -- which they refused to do. So it came to an end. Don't know if they've removed the already installed stuff. One problem is that it wasn't 'n', and the pre-'n' wifi had limited range, particularly in terms of penetrating buildings/homes for internal antenna w/o boosters. 'N' might have worked better but STILL isn't an approved standard yet. :-)

WiMax would be perhaps a more realistic alternative in terms of putting in the infrastructure from scratch (by those with less capital like Verizon putting in FiOS). Clear.com now has my metro area covered I understand from their wimax commercials on TV.

I want to see if cable companies having the new price schedules do so in areas that have FiOS available (I'm delighted with FiOS with no urge of using Comcast that's in our area).


RE: Lol Wut ?
By Kenenniah on 5/1/2009 6:57:42 AM , Rating: 2
Actually I would say the people who are creating and making that website available to you for free should be able determine what they have on their website. Let's face it, you choose to go to that website they don't force it on you.

If blocking of all ads became widespread just what do you think would happen to all those websites you go to? Right now with relatively few people using ad blockers it's not a problem. If it ever becomes widespread though, do you think those companies are going to keep running websites and paying developers for no revenue? If ad blocking becomes widespread enough, the majority of "free" websites will disappear and we'll be left with mostly fee based subscription sites.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By Murloc on 4/29/2009 1:22:56 PM , Rating: 2
they have the money and the power, no one will do that.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By vapore0n on 4/29/2009 4:07:22 PM , Rating: 2
While P2P caching is great in concept, reality is that it's a really bad idea. If they cache illegal content, that there makes them liable. Then you would have ISPs monitoring your habits and probably reporting them regardless of what you do, just so they can wash their hands.

Need to keep net neutrality and privacy.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By dragonbif on 4/29/2009 2:14:31 PM , Rating: 2
Even if you lay your own lines down you still have to pay for the space/poles. The cost is high and the gov loves to tax the hell out of internet use just look at your last bill. About $9 of my $42 bill is tax from the local, state and federal. The more you pay the more tax you pay.
Also the ISP has to pay fees to the city/county, state, their SP, and whoever owns the land/poles that their cable goes over.
In order to lower our cost they need to lower their own costs and I just do not see that.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By marvdmartian on 4/29/2009 3:52:08 PM , Rating: 3
Then the govt steps in and does like they did with the power companies here in TX. TXU had to separate their power distribution from their power production, then offer the distribution at a fair and equitable price to any company that wanted to become a power provider. The lines are still maintained, and people have true competition, and thus, lower prices, for their power. Personally, I went from $0.18/KWhr with TXU, to $0.12/KWhr with Stream Energy, overnight. Really broke the stranglehold that TXU had on energy here.

I'd love to see them do that to all the big cable companies. Then see what sort of pricing we'd get from TWC.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By mondo1234 on 4/29/2009 12:20:26 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Polka likens internet usage to his heating bill saying that he would like to pay the same amount year round, but in the winter when he uses more, he has to pay more.

Utilities are also regulated by most states corporation commissions. They have to apply for a rate increase. In such cases with the gas company, they have to show the cost of gas went up (and will sustain the high price) to pass the increase on to the suscriber. Also, they have to ensure that all homes have access to the service and not the ones Gas Company chooses. If a city needs to set this up again, they should ensure that more than one provider can service each individual structure.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By DM0407 on 4/29/2009 2:34:19 PM , Rating: 3
And oil and gas are physical substances that will eventually run out. Bandwidth can be made near unlimited with a little effort.

Write your congressmen to stop this crap.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By Bankstatement on 4/29/2009 1:53:20 PM , Rating: 2
Just so long as I don't have to pay for all the push updates for borked software. Microsoft alone will push you out of the base tier every month.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By BailoutBenny on 4/29/2009 4:43:32 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah because Linux distros and OS X don't have updates right?


RE: Lol Wut ?
By Smilin on 4/29/2009 6:34:57 PM , Rating: 3
When Steve Jobs farts a pleasant wiff of flowers fills the air and all Macs glow briefly just before they magically update themselves.


RE: Lol Wut ?
By Screwballl on 4/30/2009 10:38:30 PM , Rating: 2
Linux is stable and works well without the updates... we wish the same could be said about Windows.
but looking at the size of updates available from MS versus Linux, you are looking at 1GB (MS) versus 100MB (Linux).

The more companies try to squeeze more money out of customers, the more customers will go elsewhere for better and cheaper service, meaning non-P2S (pay to surf) ISPs.


They dont get it....
By Proteusza on 4/29/2009 11:26:53 AM , Rating: 5
Its not metered internet usage itself that is so offensive, it was Time Warner's prices. Had their prices been in keeping with the rest of the industry, I dont think anyone would have cared. In fact, your Moms and Pops of the world would probably celebrate not having to pay for bandwidth they dont need.

Instead, TWC decided to charge double or more what the average price of broadband is, and the only reason for this is because broadband internet is starting to offer services that compete with its own cable TV offerings. And most of those are free, unlike cable TV. It had nothing to do with infrastructure investment - ArsTechnica pointed out quite well that TWC had even boasted about reducing expenses in previous years.




RE: They dont get it....
By FITCamaro on 4/29/2009 12:39:19 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly. I'm not against a bandwidth cap. I'm against an unreasonable one that stifles innovation of web based services. $55 a month for 40GB? Or even 60GB a month for $60?

They got what they wanted years ago. No competition. So they should either provide a quality service that continuously improves at the rate of the rest of the world at a good price or charge whatever they want for crappy service and lose the right to be the sole provider for an area.

I mean in 10 years we've barely seen any increase in broadband speeds vs. when it first rolled out. I remember reading I think last year about new modems developed in Australia that required no new investments in infrastructure but would drastically raise speeds. Whatever happened to that?

The fact is that if 100 Mbps services were offered, completely internet based high def TV service would be able to be offered by companies other than cable providers. And then cable providers would lose revenue from sales of their TV services. So they have little desire to offer internet at faster speeds.

That is why competition is needed.


RE: They dont get it....
By BailoutBenny on 4/29/2009 4:45:34 PM , Rating: 2
Well Cablevision is coming out with a 101Mbps uncapped super service for 100/mo.


RE: They dont get it....
By FITCamaro on 4/29/2009 6:41:09 PM , Rating: 2
And if I lived in an area where they were, I would get it.

But I live in SC. Belly button of the south.


RE: They dont get it....
By AntiM on 4/29/2009 12:46:29 PM , Rating: 1
250 GB per month limit = good
40 GB per month limit = bad

You're right. It's not so much metered bandwidth that everyone was upset about, it was TWC's price/GB that was the biggest issue. TWC is just plain nuts!

Since when did the ACA start running the internet anyway? We don't need cable TV companies, we need internet providers. With a 100 Mbs internet connection, I don't need cable TV.
If cable companies can't provide customers with what they want, then the cable companies should step aside.


RE: They dont get it....
By CommodoreVic20 on 4/29/2009 1:16:26 PM , Rating: 5
250 gig cap was the first step (slippery slope). It was set high(loose) so that the sheep can get accustomed to the shackle and without much complaint. Tightening of the shackle is then applied gradually and in most cases the sheep won't even notice.


RE: They dont get it....
By Alexstarfire on 4/30/2009 5:54:06 AM , Rating: 2
The only type of shackle this sheep wants to see is one he put on himself. I'm not sure if many will get that, but whatever. I really don't like being forcibly restrained/restricted and don't put up with it very much. It's one of the reasons I have an unlocked and unbranded cell phone.

I'm not totally opposed to bandwidth caps but if you're on a capped connection it needs to be MUCH cheaper. I can seriously understand how they want to stop people from basically using their connection 24/7, which is their own right. Mainly it's just because these home connections aren't meant for that kind of use, even if you can technically do it. However, a 250GB cap is too low. With an 8 Mbps connection that'd only take about 3 days of continuous use, assuming only downloads.

While I don't know the kind of usage these super high bandwidth users incur I feel that 1TB is far more bandwidth than most will ever likely use in a month and is still a deterrent for those that use it 24/7. That's over a week straight of downloading at 8 Mbps.

Well, that's my totally unorganized and unprocessed thoughts on the subject.


RE: They dont get it....
By FITCamaro on 4/30/2009 7:49:21 AM , Rating: 2
Jessica Alba can put shackles on me any time she likes.


RE: They dont get it....
By wempa on 4/29/2009 1:04:42 PM , Rating: 3
Their argument still makes no sense. They claim that it's to ensure "quality of service" for all. That's better accomplished with throttling bandwidth. As long as everybody is guaranteed a certain level of service, who cares how MUCH they download ? It's not like they have to pay more to maintain their lines because 100GB was transferred today instead of 1GB. And, I agree that most people don't have a real problem as long as the cap is high enough, such as 250GB.


RE: They dont get it....
By joex444 on 4/29/2009 2:38:36 PM , Rating: 2
This is, by far, the most intelligent comment I have seen. In fact, had it not been posted, I would have posted it.

You have to look at the way a utility fundamentally works, like the gas company example used, but I will now throw in the electric company and the heating oil services. They are providing you with a CONSUMABLE good. Once you use it, it is gone.

What we're dealing with here with ISPs is the transfer of bits, electrical signals to be sure, but fundamentally its data. What is the source of data? Can you stick a pipe in the ground and get data? Can you create steam, turn a turbine and produce data? No, you need a PC to send data. The ISP is merely a conduit through which we send data. This makes the ISP more like the gas pipe than the gas company.

So what is the limiting factor for a gas pipe? It's the flow of gas (speed, or "quality of service") -- not the sheer quantity of gas consumed. That is what the ISP doesn't understand. They do not deal with monthly sums, they are dealing with derivatives (those with Calculus understand).

Much like the gas line, your consumption (use of the service) reduces the available speed to other users -- on the same node.

What the ISPs are realizing is that they have oversold their nodes. Fundamentally they have no way of offering 12Mbps to everyone at the node at the same time. They just can't do this. They have been betting that people do not use the full bandwidth available to them, and that they don't do this at the same time. They understand that now more than ever, people use the Internet more hours per day and transfer more data.

Ultimately the way you deal with an oversold node is:
a) Reduce the load by installing more nodes (expensive, never will happen)
b) Reduce the promised speed to customers (very asshole, will lose customers)
c) Throttle those users who consistently peak their connection so that other users will not be slowed down (logical, people can deal with this)

Notice that putting a data cap on the line does NOT solve this problem. If all the nodes clients decided that they were going to peak their connections, however they choose to do that, at the same time a data cap will not prevent the users from having reduced speeds. As an example, if the node is 1Gbps and the company sells 10Mbps lines, then they should have 100 clients to the node. If its oversold, lets say theres 250 clients. Then in this case, when everyone is doing something at full bandwidth, each customer receives only 4Mbps. This is what the ISP is preventing -- complaints about slow service due to oversold nodes.


RE: They dont get it....
By Oregonian2 on 4/29/2009 3:17:52 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately you are not correct (and I hate that you make me defend them).

Your comments are mostly true in terms of the direct costs for the "last mile" connection (even ignoring local routing needs that may go up). But those aren't the total cost of service.

Has to do with where the data is going (or coming from) en masse into/outof the central office. That portion will bear an average traffic load proportional to the total traffic of all connected customers divided by some period of time. If they can get by with an OC-12 but have to increase to a OC-48 (or add additional OC-48's) that'll cost. If the backbone provider (assuming now that it's a separate entity) has to put in more cross country fiber to provide the bandwidth, they'll charge the ISPs to pay for it plus profit.

Having the last mile bandwidth usage go up doesn't increase costs for that last mile, but does in aggregate increase backbone costs for the ISP.

You argue that the ISPs should not "oversell" the lines (technically it's called "statistical multiplexing") but that notion is pragmatically impossible. Don't mean to be nasty, but really it is if you look at the numbers.

With my FiOS, I'm given 0.02 Gbps download speed. Let's assume that my metro area has 200,000 homes similarly equipped (probably double or more homes than that, but not all would be internet equipped at this rate -- but then all business bandwidths would be added to this total and I'm ignoring them).

We're talking about 4-Terabit backbone links from my small area (and would be in multiple directions for redundancy and for routing purposes). Now talk about the 100 Mbps that's been bantered about and we're up to 20-Terabit backbone links to our small area. Imagine large metro areas and the national/international bandwidths required. I don't recall the speeds of the current national backbone system, but I don't think it's available now to handle just our area w/o statistical multiplexing.


RE: They dont get it....
By rs1 on 4/29/2009 1:55:27 PM , Rating: 5
No. Any cap is unacceptable. If you give these companies an inch, they'll take a mile.


competition?
By TheSpaniard on 4/29/2009 11:17:17 AM , Rating: 5
Fine but then dont complain when about competitors, like municiple services cropping up




RE: competition?
By SpaceRanger on 4/29/2009 11:19:02 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly! Well said!


RE: competition?
By TheSpaniard on 4/29/2009 11:21:10 AM , Rating: 2
was that sarcasm?

I butchered that sentence glad you still got the meaning out of it :)


RE: competition?
By TheSpaniard on 4/29/2009 11:19:28 AM , Rating: 1
that made no sense...

dont complain about competitors cropping up! even municipal services (which I think that + FIOS is the only thing that can move through the government sponsored oligopoly)


RE: competition?
By BigRedNole on 4/29/2009 11:29:00 AM , Rating: 5
All of this while Time Warner is trying to get the NC Legislature to shut down the city of Wilson. TWC and Embarq were offered the opportunity to provide 100Mbps internet, VoIP, and full cable for just under $100. If the city can install the infrastructure, run the service, and provide the community with what they want, then why can't Time Warner? Because they want to screw their customers. The minute better service comes around, TWC is gone.


RE: competition?
By Oregonian2 on 4/29/2009 3:36:07 PM , Rating: 2
I agree with you 94% (which is mostly!).

Governments do have a slight advantage in terms of probably having lower capital costs (their bonds may be tax deductible, and have a lower rate) plus the obviousness of not "needing" to profit off of the investment and that they are probably can incorporate some of the overhead of billing and/or building space with existing city services.

Probably not a dramatic advantage, but perhaps enough to make competition impractical for services (not saying that it does, but it's not unreasonable that it *might*, depending upon a particular city's circumstances).


RE: competition?
By Oregonian2 on 4/29/2009 3:38:37 PM , Rating: 2
P.S. - Also cities charge ISPs (etc) fees to dig up roads, they charge yearly to allow ISPs having their lines 'be' there (I know cities here do), etc. A city may not charge itself those fees. :-)


RE: competition?
By AEvangel on 4/29/2009 6:15:39 PM , Rating: 2
Which why they cannot compete with the city fairly, but had TWC and Embarq not stifled advancement in that area and/or provided the service with out gouging the customer then the city and the community would have never have had to gone to the length they had gone to in order to get the service they were asking for at a price that was fair.

That is really the problem here it's not that I would have a problem with higher prices as long as they were justified but their not, it's just simply the cable companies gouging people for lack luster service.

Also what is to stop them from providing wireless service themselves that would eliminate allot of overhead(cables), but instead they keep stifling advancement and maximizing profits, because for them it's cheaper to buy off politicians and file law suits then to actually give the customer what they want.


Profit
By KnightBreed on 4/29/2009 1:10:23 PM , Rating: 2
I don't understand the position by the ACA. In theory the cable companies are profitable with current prices and bandwith usage, right? The concern is that growing internet services, like video on demand, will decrease the quality of service and profit for the overall network.

Well where the fuck is the profit going? Don't most healthy industries reinvest some portion of their revenue back into the company - be it for expanded infrastructure, R&D, and what-have-you.

I love how the comments basicaly warn that if they have to increase their bandwith capacity, they'll have to increase prices to cover the cost. Where is the money we're giving you NOW going?




RE: Profit
By Icelight on 4/29/2009 2:20:36 PM , Rating: 3
No need to reinvest in to your infrastructure when you have a monopoly.


RE: Profit
By HrilL on 4/29/2009 2:40:41 PM , Rating: 2
The fact of the matter Cable companies profits have continued to rise. While they do little to upgrade their networks.

These companies just want to stop all competition to their other services before it gets its foot in the door.

Some how other countries can have unlimited access charge less and still be making a healthy profit. If they can do it with real competition then our companies should be able to do it even easier since they don't need to compete with anyone else.

We got one locally owned ISP in town. They kind of suck but I'd like to see our city work with them to get fiber to everyone so we can say F**K off to COX and their throttling. Who gives them the right to say what type of traffic gets priority. Sure P2P and ftp can probably get less. But I mean I can't even use HLSW anymore. Every server pings 400+ms in it. But once you connect you'll get the normal 20-40ms.


RE: Profit
By afkrotch on 4/29/2009 2:59:56 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Where is the money we're giving you NOW going?


Hookers and blow, I reckon.


Utilities
By vgermax on 4/29/2009 11:21:09 AM , Rating: 2
It's curious that he would reference utilities in his argument. It shows a fundamental lack of understanding of how utilities function. The current push is actually for utilities to move away from consumption rates, to a fixed rate pricing scheme.




RE: Utilities
By djc208 on 4/29/2009 11:57:57 AM , Rating: 2
I don't know about the current push, but lots of utilities do offer plans to spread out the peak season costs over the entire year. I figure it has to benefit both groups since the company has a more consistent income through the year while the consumer gets a more consistent bill. The company still makes their profit, and the consumer doesn't have to deal with a bill that doubles or triples at certain times of the year.

It wouldn't bother me as much if you knew that the extra money from this scheme was actually going to improve or expand the infrastructure, but most of it will probably just go into investors pockets while we get less and less bandwith over an increasingly congested system.


RE: Utilities
By afkrotch on 4/29/2009 2:42:36 PM , Rating: 2
Sounds like German billing. I have a fixed bill for electricity. Whether I use more or less, doesn't matter. Then, at the end of the year, I am either in the positive or negative.

I hate this kind of billing. If I overpay, that means the money that could have been sitting in my bank acct, making interest, is now sitting in their bank acct, making interest. If I'm left in the hole, I could be left in a very huge hole. One to break ppl's pocketbook.

I'm usually the former. I'm paying 120 Euro a month. I would much rather they came out, checked my meter, and charged me for what I use. Then I at least have a vague understanding of how much electricity I am using and can adjust.

I don't think this option works for something like an ISP, as they aren't digging up the ground, burning coal, or whatever to get me bandwith to use. Also, I feel the same way about their profits. Odds are pretty low they wouldn't blow a lot of cash to improve/expand their infrastructure.

I don't ever understand why they don't. If you provide me with excellent service and support, I'm more inclined to look at your other offerings. Provide me with crap, I leave and never come back.


RE: Utilities
By mcnabney on 4/30/2009 10:52:29 AM , Rating: 2
Your meter will display a counter of KW/h. Just read your own meter and do the math. I don't know how much electricity costs in your area, but it usually ranges from $0.08 to $0.15 per KW/h.


This is pointless
By KeithP on 4/29/2009 1:10:08 PM , Rating: 2
Talking about metered pricing and bandwidth caps is pointless. As others have pointed out, cable companies see the writing on the wall, as more people get high speed internet and as more television content becomes available online, people will not need cableco's video services anymore. THAT, is what they are trying to stop. The bandwidth argument is a red herring.

I canceled my cable box a few months ago. Between OTA broadcasts and what is available online, I see no need to pay the TWC for what I can get for free. I subscribe to Netflix for my premium content.

I use my cell phone as my primary phone and I have a MagicJack for VOIP. No need for traditional phone service or overpriced VOIP service from the cable company.

The way things are going, the cablecos only revenue will be from high speed internet access and they are very afraid of that. Well guess what cablecos, times they are a changing. Your business model is about to get crushed. Deal with it.

-KeithP




RE: This is pointless
By Boze on 4/29/2009 6:06:33 PM , Rating: 2
Keith, you've posted exactly what I intended to say...

What really pisses me off, and what should piss off every other customer who uses cable services, is that way back in the 90s, the federal government earmarked and distributed over $300 million to cable companies in order for them to increase their infrastructure for what, at the time, government officials believed would be the coming surge in Internet usage amongst the general populace.

Well... the "coming time" is here now, and guess what? Around $17 million of that $300 million was directly used for upgrading the existing infrastructure. One simply has to ask, "Where did the other $283 million go??"

I'll switch to DSL or even cut back on some premium monthly services and get a T1 line before I pay Comcast, Time-Warner Cable, or Cox Communications (or anyone for that matter) anything more than I'm paying them right now.

The leadership of these companies completely blow my mind. I remember hearing about MP3s when I was 13 years old (this was 15 years ago, mind you), thinking to myself, "This is amazing... this is going to revolutionize the music industry!" Sure enough, it did. You'd think the cable companies would have looked at music pirating combined with the entire global shift to digital technology, and would have held meetings in the boardroom to the effect of, "Hey guys, look... its happening to the music industry, its only a matter of time until it happens to us as well, we need to come up with a plan and a new business model so we can be ready."

Funny thing is, I bet some erstwhile young executive in some cable company did exactly that, and got shot down. I hope he sits at his desk everyday smirking to himself.


RE: This is pointless
By myhipsi on 4/30/2009 11:16:31 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'll switch to DSL or even cut back on some premium monthly services and get a T1 line before I pay Comcast, Time-Warner Cable, or Cox Communications (or anyone for that matter) anything more than I'm paying them right now.


Isn't that like cutting off your nose to spite your face? So you'd rather spend $500+ a month for a 1.5mb T1 connection than pay 40 or 50 bucks a month for a 8mb connection from a leading cable company?

Here in Canada I currently pay $55 per month for a 10mb connection capped at 95 GB. If I go over my allotted monthly cap, it'll cost me $2 per additional GB up to a maximum charge of $25. So technically I have unlimited downloads if I am willing to pay $80. I consider this pretty reasonable if it means I'm always guarenteed my 10mb of bandwidth.

Let's face it, bandwidth is a limited resource, and the demand for it is growing faster than the infrastructure is. The reality is, you have to pay for it one way or the other. We may complain about caps, bandwidth, etc. But I remember getting my first cable internet connection back in '98 and paying $40 a month for 750kb of bandwidth and I thought it was great, at least compared with what I had prior to that, a 56k modem dialup connection.

All in all, while I agree that cable companies should provide a fair service and do what they can to improve customer satisfaction, I don't think there's some big conspiracy by cable companies to gouge their customers. I think if you asked any executive that worked for a major cable company, they would tell you that their profit margins are no different than any other company.

FYI, I don't work for a cable company, just trying to balance the argument.


RE: This is pointless
By lordatreus on 5/1/2009 2:11:34 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Isn't that like cutting off your nose to spite your face? So you'd rather spend $500+ a month for a 1.5mb T1 connection than pay 40 or 50 bucks a month for a 8mb connection from a leading cable company?

Here in Canada I currently pay $55 per month for a 10mb connection capped at 95 GB. If I go over my allotted monthly cap, it'll cost me $2 per additional GB up to a maximum charge of $25. So technically I have unlimited downloads if I am willing to pay $80. I consider this pretty reasonable if it means I'm always guarenteed my 10mb of bandwidth.

Let's face it, bandwidth is a limited resource, and the demand for it is growing faster than the infrastructure is. The reality is, you have to pay for it one way or the other. We may complain about caps, bandwidth, etc. But I remember getting my first cable internet connection back in '98 and paying $40 a month for 750kb of bandwidth and I thought it was great, at least compared with what I had prior to that, a 56k modem dialup connection.

All in all, while I agree that cable companies should provide a fair service and do what they can to improve customer satisfaction, I don't think there's some big conspiracy by cable companies to gouge their customers. I think if you asked any executive that worked for a major cable company, they would tell you that their profit margins are no different than any other company.

FYI, I don't work for a cable company, just trying to balance the argument.


I live in Canada too and I just had to step in on this comment.
You are obviously talking about Rogers and I hate people with your mentality as it's bad enough we already have practically no choice when it comes to high speed providers as it is but when consumers like you don't see when a company is playing the boil the lobster slowly game you don't realize it.
Cable and DSL prices have increased over time and they increase depending on the speed of your access already.
Why do you think you are paying increased prices over time if not for the equipment and lines they are upgrading to keep up with the speed offering to you?
If you were a customer of High speed DSL or Roger's for a long period of time you would remember somehow they used to be able to offer you lower speeds for obviously a smaller price.
Speeds available rose because of the technology and we could purchase higher speeds at higher prices.
And then silently they introduced bandwith pricing structures and made them as easy to stomach so the sheep wouldn't realize they were being led into the barn.
So the customers accepted it and now it has stuck and the precedent has been set.
Do you really think that $2 per additional GB will stay the same or do you think they will raise it to say... $3 saying it's more expensive blah blah.
And then of course eventually they will remove the maximum charge.
Our Canadian companies are only more sensible from a business standpoint on how to get the money out of us than the Time Warner grab they are just as money hungry and you will see prices slowly increase just as you might have noticed they keep doing.

Incidentally I work for a Telecom and I happen to know from a Canadian backbone standpoint between Roger's , Telus, Videotron, Allstream, Bell, the consumer markets are not even close to saturating what is in place.
And while a new 10 Gig access card on a GSR, Optera or what have you usually costs in the tens of thousands you buy these things once and trust me you make the money back.

Charging for bandwidth is the company reaching into your pocket because you don't know how they are set up period.
We have no choice though so I pay like everyone else but I damn well dont approve of it.


B.S.
By corduroygt on 4/29/2009 11:19:11 AM , Rating: 2
That's like saying computers are getting more expensive as they are getting faster due to technological progress.

If I lived in an area where his POS cable service operated, I'd switch to DSL. Boycott his two-bit cable company!




RE: B.S.
By Reclaimer77 on 4/29/2009 11:21:41 AM , Rating: 3
Yeah exactly. Who is SUnflower Broadband again ? And why do we care what this jackass thinks ?


RE: B.S.
By cessation on 4/30/2009 12:20:40 AM , Rating: 2
http://www.sunflowerbroadband.com/internet/

Yeah some company that doesn't even cover much area. Glad I'm not stuck with their crappy service though. That's about as bad as TWC new plan.

Anyone that knows about bandwidth providers understands that they charge for the speed you're connection is at such as 10mbps, 100mbps. Hell for business class timewarner themselves will still be doing exactly that.

It's obvious they are just trying to make more cash from doing nothing but scamming their customers. Charging people $40+ a month for 7mbps (my twc local plan) is making them plenty. You can get a server at a host for $60 that has a unlimited 10mbps line. That comes with a dedicated server, some support, and they pay for the server to be on 24/7. Yet It's going to be necessary for cable companies to meter bandwidth? BS!

I can't wait for the day new ISPs use wireless or some other method to cover whole cities. These jackass cable companies won't stand a chance with their current way of doing things.


Cap?
By rvw83 on 4/29/2009 1:25:33 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think metered bandwith is the only solution, ACA + WC could opt for capped bandwith at least.

Reference : http://www.p1.com.my/wimax/packages_ref.aspx

Just an opinion, what do you think?




RE: Cap?
By rvw83 on 4/29/2009 1:30:23 PM , Rating: 2
+Addition+

If user reaches for ex. 40GB threshold, the their upload/download speed will be cut in half. And you will have to wait for 1st of next month to regain your full upload/download speed. I think it's fair. Anyway i'll let all you decide.

Thanks

rvw


RE: Cap?
By afkrotch on 4/29/2009 2:46:49 PM , Rating: 2
If you use the term "unlimited" I expect unlimited.

If the ISPs want to pull these kind of things, that's fine. All cities have some kind of competition. Usually DSL vs Cable. I find that DSL providers are more than willing to give you unlimited bandwith and talk you into getting IPTV.


Damn right I'm pissed
By amanojaku on 4/29/2009 11:28:45 AM , Rating: 2
I'm certain the majority of Internet subscribers, including the non-technical folk, know their Internet access is not "unlimited." There are practical limits to everything. Thing is, if I was sold a 10Mbit/sec pipe I expect to get 10Mbit/sec continuously. If the cable companies said "We can only support 1Mbit/sec continuously, but we'll give you burstable bandwidth when available" I'd take that, too. I have no problem moving to a service that guarantees my bandwidth at a reasonable price without metering. If I want a faster connection I'm willing to pay the price. Metering is only desirable if the end user gets a DISCOUNT.




By StevoLincolnite on 4/29/2009 11:39:08 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm certain the majority of Internet subscribers, including the non-technical folk, know their Internet access is not "unlimited." There are practical limits to everything. Thing is, if I was sold a 10Mbit/sec pipe I expect to get 10Mbit/sec continuously. If the cable companies said "We can only support 1Mbit/sec continuously, but we'll give you burstable bandwidth when available" I'd take that, too. I have no problem moving to a service that guarantees my bandwidth at a reasonable price without metering. If I want a faster connection I'm willing to pay the price. Metering is only desirable if the end user gets a DISCOUNT.


Don't forget the TOS that most ISP's give you before you join up, for instance most ISP's here will tell you your minimum speed on an ADSL 2+ service will be 1.5mbps, and how much per megabyte/gigabyte it costs you once you exceed your limit, and a little tidbit that goes along the lines of "We allow the right to change the Terms and Conditions at anytime without notifying the customer". :P


ACA = TWC frontman?
By SurreDeth on 4/29/2009 1:31:33 PM , Rating: 2
So is this the beginning of TWC's new metering propaganda? Some group that is absolutely meaningless validates TWC's agenda to screw over end users and we're suppose to buy their word as gospel? To heck with that, I'd rather go without cable TV, VOIP, and broadband internet than pay TWC's proposed overages. I imagine its a matter of days before TWC cuts off my internet seeing how my average monthly usage is around 300GB.




RE: ACA = TWC frontman?
By Integral9 on 4/30/2009 8:30:50 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, they just got their lobby's to go "pundant" and start talking BS about how their model is "the only model". It's "the only model" 'cause it's the best one for TW, not the consumer. Here's a news flash, the current model *is* the best model for the consumer.

I was checking out their website and they claim to be the champion of small and medium sized cable providers and networks. But then their list of associates includes comanies like Fox, TBN, Jones, Comcast, NBC Universal, and Cisco. Hardly small to medium sized...

Nice try TW, you jackass.


Ok Fine
By MrBungle123 on 4/29/2009 12:14:02 PM , Rating: 3
Charge me by the MB but give me the fastest possible connection.




ACA - TWC - go screw yourselves!
By Belard on 4/29/2009 12:25:43 PM , Rating: 1
ACA - TWC - go screw yourselves seriously. You guys are a rip-off. You do make profits.

I do agree there is a problem with some people DLing tons of crap off the net, most likely illegal. They are easy to spot and cap it fine.

But the AVG user shouldn't be a problem. And if YOU METER high-speed internet...

THEN WHY THE FUCK DO WE NEED HIGH SPEED INTERNET FOR?!

Download a service pack, watch Youtube and play some online games and BAM - the person is over their $40 basic service plan.

"I have 15mbps download... but I can only use it 16 days out of the month". Gee thats useful. You have plenty of bandwith to send VOD/PPV and 500 channels of crap. Most of it is crap.

And of course you creeps CRY FOUL when a city sets up their OWN highspeed internet, offers better service, lower rates. Again, go screw yourselves.

Compared to the likes of some other countries, the USA's high-speed internet is rather crappy service. Some pay less (others more) for more speed.

We're not impressed. And as long as there is some form of competition, I hope when TWC, etc whatever does metered, they go to FIOS or DSL. Because I'd take an unlimited DSL 3mb down unlimited over 6~9mb down metered anyday. EAT IT TWC.

Of course, if/when all you guys get together and decide to meter as a group - we're all screwed. This is why WE ALL need to SHUT you down now. I'm surprised MS and SONY aren't in this fight... especially MS. VOD for the xbox360 and online gaming will become VERY expensive to their customers.




By Roy2001 on 4/29/2009 2:40:34 PM , Rating: 2
ACA-TWC shoud go f**k themselves. They are just pieces of sh! T.


I can cut my cable off then?
By sapiens74 on 4/29/2009 2:18:24 PM , Rating: 3
Raise the prices and I will cut my VOIP phone then my HD DVR.

Ill just pay the 100 unlimited internet and Torrent away instead of paying for your services




Well.. Yeah...
By SpaceRanger on 4/29/2009 11:18:01 AM , Rating: 2
Of course the ACA is gonna support a model where MORE money goes into the Cable Companies pockets. If they can get away with charging more for a service they will.




Neccesary?
By icrf on 4/29/2009 11:19:06 AM , Rating: 2
Sustainable my butt
By Bateluer on 4/29/2009 11:20:56 AM , Rating: 2
Wonder how we've managed so far with flat fee pricing. This is about maintaining a monopoly, nothing more.




End of the Internets
By King of Heroes on 4/29/2009 11:24:40 AM , Rating: 2
Wow, this is almost exactly like how someone else put it in another thread:

"If we don't adopt metered pricing it'll be the END OF THE INTERNET AS WE KNOW IT!"

Bleh. I've never used cable, always DSL (currently using U-verse). Looks like that won't be changing anytime soon.




Content Providers
By Fat32 on 4/29/2009 11:33:21 AM , Rating: 2
On surface it might seem that ACA worries about fair use and that plenty of bandwidth goes around. Makes me wonder though if in reality they also want to limit competition from content providers to internet boxes like Roku or simply streaming HD content via HTPC from the likes of NBC.com or Hulu. These guys would add additional layer of integration to their monopoly: Content.




talking in circles
By crleap on 4/29/2009 11:38:13 AM , Rating: 2
Seems to me that they will be hurting themselves more than not. They keep trying to reassure us with bandwidth caps and things by saying that it's only the top few percent of users that are degrading service. But the vast majority of their subscribers are not using the service as aggressively as the few, and this will only cut their revenues when all those people jump to low-use tiers. Sure, they will try to recover it by charging those of us with high usage $200/mo, but I don't think we'll stay long. It would be nice to see them using that excess subscription fees from grannies and low-use people to actually UPGRADE THE @)#(*% INFRASTRUCTURE.




metered huh?
By Wolfcaller on 4/29/2009 11:46:14 AM , Rating: 2
funny but I always regarded all you can eat internet as a very small justice versus having to pay higher taxes because of all the people that have a large family, so I have to pay higher taxes so I am the one footing the bill for these kids getting an education droping out, & getting on assistance that yet once again I foot the bill for. Now because I have more time to be on the internet to watch movies , blog, etc. they want me to pay the lions share again???

ID10TS

~Wolfcaller




Mr. Polka
By aftlizard on 4/29/2009 11:52:48 AM , Rating: 2
My gas company allows me to pay a flat rate based off of average usage through out the year so I don't get rammed in the winter. Perhaps Mr. Polka should look into that with his gas company. After all as far as I am concerned that is exactly what a fixed pricing is doing anyways, you pay the same through out the year whether you are using it heavily or not.




the problem
By LumbergTech on 4/29/2009 12:22:05 PM , Rating: 2
the problem, as i see it at least, i that the cable companies shouldn't be ISPs. I want an ISP only that isn't trying to keep the quality of service down in an attempt to keep their old shitty services selling




By ancient46 on 4/29/2009 12:25:19 PM , Rating: 2
Like utilities, actual meter reading will be too expensive to do every month, so they will begin to use estimated billing. This figure will always be much more than the actual usage, to grab a profit from the interest on the money they do not deserve. For example my water bill runs $95 a month. However I am billed for $45 when the meter is read and $150 the next month when it is estimated. Complaints to the Utility Commission receive a legalese response saying it is OK.




What if gas companies worked this way?
By Kary on 4/29/2009 1:00:19 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Polka likens internet usage to his heating bill saying that he would like to pay the same amount year round, but in the winter when he uses more, he has to pay more. If Polka's heating company suddenly decided that he was only allowed 4 cubic feet of gas before an overage charge of $2 per cubic foot was assessed to support the need to install more gas pipelines to "ensure quality service," he might feel like the majority of Internet subscribers do.


Ok, lets say Polka did have a gas company that charged him the same year round for a gas line that would deliver gas to him only so fast. Now, lets say that it is capable of supplying him enough gas to keep him warm even on the coldest nights and that they offer cheaper rates that wouldn't warm him and more expensive ones that would be over kill.

What Polka says would be fair is if he paid for a pipe that provided him enough gas to heat his home properly, but the gas company wanted to charge him extra for using the amount of gas THEY AGREED TO PROVIDE HIM ALREADY.

"Oh, sir...you are using 25% of the capacity you pay for in your gas line. Most people only use 1% so we think you should have to pay us more...hmmm... 5 gallons of gas cost $10... yeh, you went 5 gallons over this month, that'll be $2,000 in overage charges.....what...send you a warning before the first time we charge you...LOL, your so funny."

I dread my overage bills for watching more TV than the average consumer...or would if I watched the crappy picture I get from my cable company




A step backward?
By bongsi21 on 4/29/2009 2:25:18 PM , Rating: 2
This is a step backward for the advancement of human technology. why? if they implement meter pricing there are various concerns that will be affected such as how can they handle internet ads. that flows in webpages and for instance such technology like high definition may be prevented to ever becoming fully mainstream.

*They should be prepared for a major public outcry if this is implemented!!.
quote:
The inventions of technology is for the benefit of society, not for power money hungry moguls!




lol
By hypocrisyforever on 4/29/2009 2:30:58 PM , Rating: 2
"At the same time, many ISPs are pushing new tired pricing plans"

lol, yeah, I agree, they are tired.




By Shadowself on 4/29/2009 2:38:37 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Polka likens internet usage to his heating bill saying that he would like to pay the same amount year round, but in the winter when he uses more, he has to pay more.


This analogy has no basis in reality. His gas company buys the gas from the wells on a unit basis (scf or such). The gas company does not buy it by capacity (pipe size). Therefore it sells it to him on a unit basis too.

The major ISPs (including cable companies) buy from the major backbones (or are themselves installing the major backbones) on a capacity basis. You buy (or install) an OC-48 or an OC-192 or such. You don't buy (or install) petabytes per month.

If the large ISPs (and even the smaller ones) and cable companies don't buy it by the byte don't charge me by the byte!!!




Round 2
By clovell on 4/29/2009 2:39:48 PM , Rating: 2
So in the first round, the consumers managed to beat Time Warner. Now we get to deal with the corporate lobbying groups.

Time to take the gloves off.




5 Letters
By Cobra Commander on 4/29/2009 3:00:50 PM , Rating: 2
F D ACA




Gas company is an absurd analogy
By Donovan on 4/29/2009 3:16:47 PM , Rating: 2
ISPs don't sell bytes, they transfer them. The gas company gets paid for the natural gas they put in their end of the pipe as well as for delivering it to me. I imagine the obvious analogy of a phone company was avoided because most of them have been offering unlimited long distance in the US and Canada for a long time.

Even with an unlimited plan most people use very little, and those who use a lot are ultimately limited by their bandwidth. We obviously reached the point where that total usage was acceptable because they started selling unlimited plans...if there is a problem now it is because they are trying to make more money selling the highest bandwidth their system can manage without regard to whether it can be sustained.




By Hakuryu on 4/29/2009 3:18:12 PM , Rating: 2
I can understand their argument for tiered pricing - for $50 a month you can have a huge difference between two users on how much bandwith they use. The guy streaming multiple movies every night and downloading games from services like Steam regularly is getting a much better deal than the customer who surfs a bit, checks email and perhaps streams a movie now and then.

The unfair part of their pricing plan is sticking the lower bandwith user with the same price he currently pays. If all you do is surf, check email and download an occasional movie, then I can't see why $15-$25 a month woulnd't be a fair price, while the guy using a ton of bandwith maybe has to pay $75.

This 'Fair Pricing' is how they should be looking at it, instead of sticking the casual users with the same old high price as a starting point. As it stands now, casual users are paying for those that use alot more bandwith through the high starting prices.




Still Waiting
By descendency on 4/29/2009 4:42:03 PM , Rating: 2
Have they ever bothered to show that increased use by consumers increases their cost?

The lines are laid, the services are up 24/7. How are they losing more money if the line is used 24/7 versus used 1 hour a week?




This has all been said before.
By Smilin on 4/29/2009 6:26:35 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Consumers continue to be outraged when cable companies try and move from flat fee models for internet access to tiered pricing plans based on usage.


And THAT is why this is all a crock of sh*t.




malware
By defdog99 on 4/29/2009 7:21:40 PM , Rating: 2
The problem with this theory, is that malware may be sending gigabytes behind the scenes...

Nor does software list how much data it transmits...
or if it does it efficiently.

Now if we could get a bug free version of Windows, and have software list "100 watts / hour" like a lightbulb... maybe you can...

Until then, the easiest way to solve bandwidth is to speed it up from the pathetic 6Mbps most people get.





They better re-think
By RandallMoore on 4/29/2009 9:24:51 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Metered Bandwidth Internet Pricing is Coming Says ACA


quote:
Go ahead and see what happens, says consumers




By Schrag4 on 4/30/2009 10:47:13 AM , Rating: 2
So, my grandma who literally uses her internet connection once per day to check email (and then shuts her computer off) will get charged 32 cents per month for her 'metered' connection. Riiiigggghhhtt........




By kilkennycat on 5/1/2009 1:44:20 PM , Rating: 2
... with FIOS there is no meaningful bandwidth limit related to increased build-out costs... the claim made by the cable-companies for charging for data-usage. Time for Comcast and cronies to fully invest in fibre to the home.... Oops Verizon has already done that in many localities. Seems as if all the cable-companies that were laughing at Verizon's huge investment are not laughing any longer....




Shareholders vs Customers
By SL4P on 5/2/2009 6:44:03 PM , Rating: 2
You all ask where the $$ Million$ have gone, and why do the charges ratchet up every couple of years despite efficiency gains...

While the technicalities of bandwidth, capping and throttling are all valid tools to >execute< your business model, they are not the business model.

Remember back in the early 70's corporations talked about customer value, return customers and so-on. (Younger viewers are forgiven for not recognising these concepts)

Since the mid-70s - all we have ever heard from these companies is the need to sustain growth, share price and shareholder value. Guess what - I'm not a shareholder in your company and likely I won't be a customer much longer with that attitude prevaling.

LONG TERM: Shareholders are a finite resource, customers aren't. Do the math guys.




Funny...
By Hieyeck on 5/4/2009 8:21:45 AM , Rating: 2
Curious how no one has yet brought up China - where FTTH is a norm and is cheap in major cities. To think, only 40 years ago, they were practically 3rd-world. How did America let a 3rd-world country with serious human rights issues (to this day) get ahead?




newsworth?
By iregulate on 4/29/2009 11:41:34 AM , Rating: 1
How is this news? It sounds like a position statement from the ACA.




In theory....
By Whaaambulance on 4/29/09, Rating: -1
RE: In theory....
By MozeeToby on 4/29/2009 12:17:58 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly, every time a city tries to take over a service that should be private it all goes to hell.
</sarcasm>

Ok, seriously now. Look at all the cities that have city run trash collection, water, sewer, power, and gas. Thousands of cities in the US run these utilities as well or better than private enterprise could.

Then there's a whole group of services that could (in theory) be privitized that no one argues for. Police, fire department, and roads come to mind. No reason they couldn't be performed by private enterprises, except for the fact that the city can do it better.


RE: In theory....
By BailoutBenny on 4/29/2009 4:56:57 PM , Rating: 1
How about we actually try privatizing that stuff to see what would happen, then we could make the claim that the city could do it better. The fact is we would have to completely deregulate everything and have a true free market in this country to pull that off. The big companies don't want that because they like the suppressed competition. Regulation BENEFITS industry, despite what the companies would like you to believe. They moan that it will hurt their business with competition and cost so much but they will pass the cost on to their customers and in reality it prevents competition.

The government won't give up control of whatever they control now because they want you dependent on them. Dependency = money and power. If people started realizing that they didn't need the government, all those politicians with money and power would start to feel threatened. Being a politician is extremely lucrative and much like anyone else who feels threatened that their money and power will be taken from them, they will fight back to keep it.

For the free market to work it has to be free. Free from ALL regulation and other government intervention. It requires well defined and enforced private property rights and well defined and strictly enforced contract law, neither of which we have in the US.


RE: In theory....
By FITCamaro on 4/29/2009 12:29:32 PM , Rating: 4
I don't see how communism applies here.


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