ISPs which in the past had historically improved in Netflix performance
because of faster speeds, are now finding themselves falling in Netflix's new monthly streaming ISP rankings
because they're not signing up for Netflix's CDN network. As noted recently
, Netflix stated they'd start offering users "Super HD" and 3D streams -- if
their ISP signed up for Netflix's new Open Connect Content Delivery Network.
As expected many bigger ISPs, most of whom have had neutrality fights with Netflix previously, have not agreed to Netflix's demand for special CDN treatment (AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, Time Warner Cable, Cox, Charter, Brighthouse, etc) and are suddenly dropping in Netflix ratings.
ISPs who agreed to sign up (Cablevision and Suddenlink) are suddenly and miraculously seeing huge gains.
Carriers like Time Warner Cable have complained
that Netflix is closing off access to content for their own benefit, hoping you'll ignore that this has been a cable industry business practice for years
across numerous fronts. Netflix has countered by insisting that signing up for the Netflix CDN is free, and ISPs like Sonic.net have told me
the process is relatively simple.
Whether you buy Netflix's claims is likely driven by where you've fallen on previous network neutrality debates. Some will argue that Netflix is simply trying to cut down on transit costs and are offering a free service that will benefit everyone -- while reducing costs for all sides. Others are going to charge that Netflix is engaged in the same kind of underhanded tactics ISPs have employed for years.
Either way, users in our forums are of course questioning the usefulness of the rankings moving forward
, since a company like Suddenlink can so quickly jump to the top of the rankings above faster services like Verizon FiOS.