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Google Ramps up Naming & Shaming ISPs for Video Congestion
by Karl Bode 12:08PM Monday Jul 07 2014
Back in January you might recall that Google started heavily promoting a video quality report for YouTube that tracked YouTube streaming performance by ISP. The effort appears to be an attempt to educate users on the numerous steps between YouTube servers and your PC, and, like Netflix's ISP streaming rankings, highlight how some ISPs perform worse than others.

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Ultimately, Google says they'll tag ISPs with good YouTube streaming performance as "HD verified." Heading over to Google's video quality website will show you your ISPs local performance while educating users on video delivery issues.

The effort is pretty clearly, like Netflix's effort, an attempt to "name and shame" certain ISPs that provide sub-standard streaming performance, either incidentally or intentionally as part of the new ISP effort to kill settlement-free peering and create a new revenue stream.

Like Netflix's recent effort to specifically point the finger at ISPs via their buffering warnings, Quartz notices that Google has now added a more subtle message to YouTube streams. The message simply asks "experiencing interruptions?" and directs users to Google's new ISP performance website.

“You may be prompted to view the report if you’re experiencing poor playback on your computer (such as frequent rebuffering or fuzzy video),” Google states in a new page added to their YouTube help website.

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travelguy

join:1999-09-03
Santa Fe, NM

Saw That Last Night

For the first time I got that banner last night after a particularly jerky attempt at watching a few HD videos. Strange though - as I am on Comcast, I thought Google had cut a deal to deliver video to Comcast directly.

PapaMidnight

join:2009-01-13
Baltimore, MD

Re: Saw That Last Night

I run a Hurricane Electric IPv6 tunnel. As Google's services all support IPv6, YouTube video is delivered to me via the tunnel. I recognize that Comcast offers native IPv6 support. However, by approaching IPv6 connectivity in this manner, I subvert Comcast's routing entirely. It generally results in a much better experience when using YouTube.
elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA

4 recommendations

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

Youtube worked on *any* less-than-stellar connection, regardless of congestion levels, before Google disabled pre-buffering.

But now, its the ISPs who are to blame.

Riiiiight.
travelguy

join:1999-09-03
Santa Fe, NM

Re: Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

That's very true. Would far prefer to wait a few seconds up front than deal with the stalled connections.

Goliath2k
Premium
join:2013-12-28
united state
This. A thousand times this.

More and more I've been using add-ons that download YouTube videos just so I can play them without buffering.

I remember reading that supposedly there's a Firefox hack or Greasemonkey script that can re-enable pre-buffering but I never bothered to look into it further.

David
I start new work on
Premium,VIP
join:2002-05-30
Granite City, IL
kudos:101

Re: Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

+1 I also use an addon for google chrome as well as atube watcher. I get full speeds when using either one of those.

Goliath2k
Premium
join:2013-12-28
united state

Re: Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

Oh? Which addon do you use? Might actually be worth installing Google Chrome just for that.

The Firefox addon I use (Video Download Helper) has been acting up more and more lately...

Plus One

@50.182.54.x
said by elray:

Youtube worked on *any* less-than-stellar connection, regardless of congestion levels, before Google disabled pre-buffering.

But now, its the ISPs who are to blame.

Riiiiight.

+1
Google is moving YouTube from short term videos to 1/2 hr to full length movies streaming. Pre-buffering is not as efficient on lengthy streaming videos, so Google is sticking it to ISPs now to improve their negotiating stance over interconnection cost sharing by giving ISPs a PR black eye.
existenz

join:2014-02-12
kudos:2

Re: Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

Disabling pre-buffering may benefit ISPs more than not. If you pre-buffer a long video that isn't completely watched, it wastes bandwidth. Buffering up to a few minutes makes sense though.

If ISPs don't keep network up to handle certain Internet services, then they are basically selecting what people can use the internet for. They all need to work together and come up with optimal solution, not expect just one side to handle the problem.

Goliath2k
Premium
join:2013-12-28
united state

Re: Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...

said by existenz:

buffering may benefit ISPs more than not. If you pre-buffer a long video that isn't completely watched, it wastes bandwidth. Buffering up to a few minutes makes sense though.

Fair enough, but in my experiences it doesn't do a few minutes, but more like a few seconds. When I click the pause button to let it buffer, for some reason YouTube takes that as its cue to pause as well.

Heck these days it seems like even Hulu and Netflix buffer more than YouTube.

David
I start new work on
Premium,VIP
join:2002-05-30
Granite City, IL
kudos:101
Reviews:
·DIRECTV
·AT&T Midwest
·magicjack.com
·Google Voice
I use SmartVideo for Youtube... fantastic app and atube catcher is a good program. Just watch the installer as they try to interest you in other offered titles. Not hard to click or uncheck things you are not interested in, still not a bad program for downloading and watching something later.
--
02/24/14- My hours recently changed. I work 11:30 A.M. to 10 P.M. central time. I am not in the office on friday, saturday, or sunday. Thanks-David
lothar2003

join:2003-11-16
Queens Village, NY

1 recommendation

YouTube performance

Forget Cablevision on Long Island if you like to watch YouTube videos. Click on video link, go get a coffee, watch YouTube, go get a cookie, watch YouTube, go get something else... Forget about video and move on.

Using a proxy the video starts immediately, no buffering issue. The issue is with the ISP. Fios in NYC is usually better.

Lothar
firedrakes

join:2009-01-29
Arcadia, FL

Re: YouTube performance

right.. seeing that i had to add a . add on so you tube would stay at 720p. seeing it choose the lowest res. every time and my connection is solid as hell
andrewc2

join:2011-06-05
Matamoras, PA
I have zero issues with watching Youtube videos on Optimum even 1080p, maybe you should contact support and have them look into the issue.
Walter Dnes

join:2008-01-27
Thornhill, ON

Is there a way to automatically specify resolution?

A couple of years ago, there used to be a parameter to specify resolution. I have 7/1 ADSL that Speedtest.net shows as 7.07 megabps net download and 0.68 megabps upload. It's on a Stinker ^H^H^H^H^H^H Stinger node, so can't do anything about upload, but the download is nice. Anyhow, I can easily handle 1080P, but streams seem to default to 360 or 480 resolution. I hate having to stop videos and tweak the settings.

shakazulu

join:2001-06-20
99999

Re: Is there a way to automatically specify resolution?

said by Walter Dnes:

A couple of years ago, there used to be a parameter to specify resolution. I have 7/1 ADSL that Speedtest.net shows as 7.07 megabps net download and 0.68 megabps upload. It's on a Stinker ^H^H^H^H^H^H Stinger node, so can't do anything about upload, but the download is nice. Anyhow, I can easily handle 1080P, but streams seem to default to 360 or 480 resolution. I hate having to stop videos and tweak the settings.

If you are using firefox browser , you could choose an addon like YouTube High Definition 9.4, automatically defaults to highest resolution available for that video. An equivalent version for chrome is Auto HD For YouTube™ 6.3.2

Goliath2k
Premium
join:2013-12-28
united state

1 recommendation

Re: Is there a way to automatically specify resolution?

Interesting...but what I'd like to know is there one that does that in reverse?

I want one that automatically loads the lowest quality video. I usually watch things on YouTube at 144p or 240p, unless I'm trying to read text on there or whatever, in which case I could manually just dial it up.
Walter Dnes

join:2008-01-27
Thornhill, ON
said by shakazulu:

If you are using firefox browser , you could choose an addon like YouTube High Definition 9.4, automatically defaults to highest resolution available for that video. An equivalent version for chrome is Auto HD For YouTube™ 6.3.2

Thanks very much for the pointer. It does the job for me.