Guy Kicked Off Comcast For Using Too Many Cloud Services

from the why-broadband-caps-suck dept

One of the key concerns we've had about the rise of broadband caps is that they don't take into account the fact that more and more data and services are moving online. When companies put in place data caps -- such as Comcasts' 250 gigs or AT&T's 150 gigs, they always highlight how this really only impacts a tiny percentage of users. But, the truth is that as more things go online, and more data is moved to "the cloud," it's really not that hard to bump up against these caps... and apparently the penalties are harsh. Andre Vrignaud lost his Comcast account for going over 250 GB two months in a row, mainly from using various legal online services, including Pandora and Netflix. He had also switched to a new online backup service, and the initial upload used up a bunch of bandwidth. He did admit to downloading a few things via BitTorrent (a UK show not available in the US), but it seems clear that most of his internet usage was perfectly legitimate. And now he has no account, and Comcast won't let him back on for a year. They won't even let him buy a more expensive package.

Yes, his data usage may have been extreme, but these kinds of services are becoming more common, and as we start to see even more new services, there are going to be a lot more stories of people bumping up against these caps. The truth is that the ISPs could upgrade their networks to handle this traffic. And it's not even that hard to do so. But with these caps they don't have to move as fast, and can slow down improving things -- which is what Wall Street likes. It just sucks if you're someone who, you know, actually wants to use the internet for what it enables.

Filed Under: broadband cap, cloud
Companies: comcast

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  1. icon
    nasch (profile), 16 Jul 2011 @ 5:14pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Mike, how DO you reconcile your demands that

    The argument over whether policy should favor additional usage or not doesn't really apply to Comcast's decision to apply caps or not.

    Perhaps, but we don't have to limit ourselves to that topic.

    I run a home business with staff, so I pay very high punitive electric rates. Am I environmentally unfriendly? Well, I don't commute, I don't use a separate office building, I just happen to use electricity every day of the week, which ends up being more than the average home, and the punitive threshold.

    I assume that is more than offset by the fact that you don't need to lease or own a separate business. I don't think it's an important public policy goal to make sure the few people in your situation don't pay more for power than the vast majority who don't run a business in their homes.

    As for whether Internet prices should be regressive, I agree. Capped Internet overages should cost LESS than the first GBs of the month. A volume discount, as it were.

    Right on. I probably wouldn't even be too concerned about whether I went over in that case.

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