Yes it was. You appear to be under the impression that a 22 minute show would not work out to being a gigabyte in size. That is incorrect.
If a high definition episode of a 22 minute show DOESN'T work out to be at least 1 GB in size; even using the H.264 codec, that means it's been over-compressed and won't even be close to looking as good as the source material. And that's only 720p... 1080p requires a bitrate of at least 12 Mbps utilizing the H.264 codec before it starts approaching "good quality" territory.
An episode of 30 Rock, at 720p, should use no more than 560Mb. I guess if you are adding up the bandwidth both ways, you could call it a Gb. But the article and comment were directed just at the end user's ISP restrictions.
Not sure what your working with but I get excellent "recording" at 9.6 Mbps using H264 with little to zero macro-blocking in low-light, fast action scenes.You probably know, avchd and h264 codec struggle in low light, especially with lower bitrates, but it is the most efficient we have today when done right. I have encoded for years , on the old pc that's how long it took for one. Thank the the lord for transmuxing and mkv's. Quick and easy work now.