ISPs Speak out on new Slowdowns
The biggest broadband providers in the Uk have released statements on how exactly they slow down certain parts of their networks in order to maintain their service. BT, Virgin Media and Sky are all looking to do “traffice management” in the near future, with this statement designed to negate some of the negative criticism the move has garnered. Net neutrality is something that most regular users want to push, but bigger companies want to be able to control it; with many suggesting that they will prioritise those that pay more.
“There is a core of consumers who understand this stuff quite well, but it’s not something that most people are aware of at this stage,” said Anthony Walker, chief executive of the Broadband Stakeholder Group.
However, while many would agree that some form of traffic throttling is necessary, most people don’t want it to the extent that the ISPs do.
“We recognize that there are certain types of traffic shaping that need to occur in order to maintain the integrity of the network,” said Jeff Lynn from the Coalition for a Digital Economy (Coadec).
“But we see that as very different from developing business models in which a particular ISP takes money from 4 on Demand [for example] and makes it easier to download 4oD videos than it does BBC videos,” said Mr Lynn.
“Go and ask someone on an ISP that doesn’t use traffic management,” said Andrew Ferguson, editor of the independent website Thinkbroadband.com.
“When congestion kicks in on a Friday night, they are the people who can’t go and play on their Xbox Live, they can’t play PlayStation online, because latency [network delay] has gone through the roof.