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Comcast Seeks P2P “Bill of Rights and Responsibilities”
Good idea or just a way to control customers?
by KathrynV 09:25AM Wednesday Apr 16 2008
Trying to find a way to control filesharing without getting into trouble for throttling, Comcast has announced that it seeks to develop a “Bill of Rights and Responsibilities” which would lay the ground rules for all Internet providers to deal with all people who share files. Comcast says this is a way to clearly outline what constitutes legal and illegal filesharing and to define who has control over what actions.
" ‘By having this framework in place, we will help P2P companies, ISPs and content owners find common ground to support consumers who want to use P2P applications to deliver legal content,’ said Tony Werner, Comcast's chief technology officer."
Comcast points to these efforts as an example of their willingness to work in harmony with the industry. Others in the industry disagree, saying that it’s just another way for Comcast to exert control over what customers are doing online. The fact that consumer advocacy groups are not part of the bill-drafting process highlights this argument. Pando Networks, a company which is working to speed up P2P sharing, has come out in support of Comcast’s idea.

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Kitchener, ON

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reply to jonnyb

Re: Dont think so

said by jonnyb:

Its there responsibility to filter packets when it affects there network.
That is the biggest load of Bull I've ever heard.

ISP [Internet Service Provider] RULES:
1- provide a connection to Internet
2- provide speeds a customer pays for
3- provide services customer pays for and that are available anywhere on the Internet
4- protect "their own" network from attacks [user responsible for their own security]
5- provide the best quality of service at best prices

TCP/IP has it's own checks and sums and there is NO need what-so-ever to throttle, TCP is self controlling already and takes care of any congestion on it's own!

Anything that Comcast or any other ISP freaks about is actually about digging into privacy of users. This whole subject of throttling is really about preventing users from posting information on big corporations and their illegal activities, which they consider as copyright protected. Hence we must push for Net Neutrality in all areas!

Use everything encrypted or be persecuted
See »wikileaks.org

Senior Network & Systems Analyst
Fight for your rights or loose them!

Huntsville, AL

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reply to newview

Re: The question is . . .

How this is implemented will determine if this is good or bad. As much as we would all like it, comcast is not going to keep adding bandwidth to support more use of p2p apps, unless they also raise the rates. Cables limited upload capacity is a bottleneck, and heavy p2p use on a node can cause congestion. "Just upgrading" does not solve the issue since p2p apps by design will generally consume whatever upload is available. Something as simple getting users to configure their p2p apps to;
1)Slow down a bit during peak hours.
2)Cap the upload used to something less than the entire available upload of the user.
would go a long way to solving the issue. Is this beyond reason?
Sure we can all take the stance that "hey I paid for my upload, I am going to use it 24x7". but your connection will be useless once more than about 10% of the users on your node do the same thing.
So comcast should just upgrade all the nodes right? Sure they will, with the corresponding doubling of rates.
The upload demands of p2p are a problem for the ISPs, but they do not have to be. A little education and responsibility on the part of the users would go a long way to getting p2p apps to play nice on the network.
Registered Bandwidth Offender #40812

Ex .. Ex .. Exactly
Parsonsburg, MD

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Can we trust Comcast to protect our online freedoms without enforceable, independent consumer safeguards?
I think we've all seen where Comcast's interests lie . . . and it's NOT with with it's subscribers, except if you count extracting as much money as possible for all it's customers.

We cannot trust Comcast, period.

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Saint Louis, MO

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Dont think so

How about you ISPs just concentrate on giving everyone a fast and reliable connection. That alone seems to be a pretty big task for you. Just concentrate on that. It's not your job to filter packets.