Putting A Fuzzy Cap On Cable Modem Usage
from the yes,-but-what's-the-limit? dept
Something of a followup on an earlier article, as the various cable modem service providers are putting in place bandwidth usage caps - but not telling their customers what they are. Instead, they just send out letters to the heaviest users telling them they're in violation and threatening to cut them off. Of course, they don't tell them how much they need to cut back, because they refuse to admit they actually have a cap. They say it's not a cap - knowing that saying they have a cap will be bad PR and could send subscribers over to DSL providers who (for the most part) don't cap usage at all. Basically, companies like Comcast say that they, and only they, can understand what bandwidth abuse is - and if you're in violation then you'd better cut back. They just won't tell you how much. There's also an amusing quote from someone at Comcast, basically admitting that the cap is completely arbitrary and that they might change if others start using that much: "The Internet is growing, and there are more broadband applications every day. If we were to set an arbitrary number today, we could be changing it tomorrow." So, if you end up with a warning letter, you either have to cut your usage to some unknown amount - or convince everyone else in your neighborhood to start using the internet more (suggesting "new broadband applications" in use).