No Evidence To Support The Need For Broadband Tiers Or Caps

from the oops dept

Just as the various broadband providers are ramping up their bogus astroturf attempts to convince the world that broadband caps are necessary and good for customers, Saul Hansell has been digging deep into the numbers and can't find any justification at all for the caps. All those stories about overwhelmed networks and exponential traffic growth? Not happening. If anything, the evidence is that the opposite is happening: advances in technology means that it's become cheaper for broadband providers to meet the needs of their customers. And those needs are growing, but that growth rate has been slowing, and is quite manageable. So, basically, the broadband companies are hyping up a problem that just isn't there. There is no crunch. There aren't bandwidth shortages that require cutting off heavy users. The only reason to set up such tiers is to squeeze more money out of customers without providing any improvements in service (actually, while providing less service). And it's all possible thanks to the lack of competition in the marketplace.

Filed Under: broadband, caps, evidence, tiers


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  1. icon
    chris (profile), 22 Apr 2009 @ 7:24am

    Re: Broadband/Cable

    telco deregulation was a huge success: it recreated the bell monopoly in the form of the verizon/AT&T duopoly. it also created the time warner/comcast duopolies. it also created a wonderful debt structure that has to be passed on to consumers in order to keep these companies profitable.

    you need caps and tiers if you want to create an internet slow lane, and i think we can all agree that we need slower speeds with fewer features and higher prices. how else are these companies going to afford to buy up all of their competitors?

    you need an internet slow lane so you can force companies like netflix or vonage to pay twice for speedy delivery of their content.

    you need an internet slow lane to make telco and cable co video and phone services competitive with third party, pure play services. especially free/cheap ones like hulu and skype.

    using hulu or skype will burn up your monthly ration of transfer. you better encourage them to pay your ISP for a "partnership" so traffic to those sites don't count against your cap, or you should pay your ISP to use their voice or video service, which of course already doesn't apply to your cap.

    without tiers and caps, what other incentive is there for consumers to overpay for voice and video services?

    please won't someone think of these poor monopolies? they just want to crush innovation and competition, is that so wrong?

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