John submitted this story about Cablevision's Optimum Online broadband internet access service sending out emails to subscribers telling them they may get in trouble for using various file sharing services. Of course, there's nothing inherently wrong with using a file sharing service (there are legitimate uses for them, after all), but it seems that the entertainment industry has gotten to Cablevision. Their reasoning is that it violates the end user agreement saying that customers can't use their connections to run a "server", and that technically these file sharing systems turn computers into servers. What Cablevision seems to be missing is that one of the bigger drivers that made people sign up with them in the first place was the ability to use file sharing systems. Blocking that just means customers are likely to look for broadband providers that are friendlier to those sorts of uses. It seems like something of a bait-and-switch to advertise all the benefits of higher speed access, and then send your customers a letter saying "yes, well, we didn't mean you could actually use all that bandwidth we're providing you...". All this does is open up the opportunity for a broadband provider who is friendly to people who want to actually use the bandwidth they're being offered.
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