Forgot your password?
Network The Internet Verizon

How 'Fast Lanes' Will Change the Internet 192

Posted by Soulskill
from the my-data-is-first-among-equals dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Net neutrality has been looking pretty shaky in recent months. Netflix has started paying Comcast and Verizon directly and the FCC is saying that's perfectly fine. We may be witnessing a fundamental change in the nature of the internet. Timothy B. Lee at Vox explains how all of this works, and what it means for the future of the web. Quoting: '[S]ome of the largest ISPs now seem to view declining network performance not as a technical problem to be solved so much as a source of leverage in business negotiations. Another reason is that regulating interconnection is much more complex than a "classic" network neutrality rule. When all of an ISP's traffic comes through one cable, it's not too hard to write a rule requiring that the packets in that cable be treated equally. But it's harder to write a rule governing when and how ISPs must interconnect. Someone needs to pay for the cost of these connections, and the fairest way to split the costs depends on many subtle factors, including geography, traffic patterns, and the relative size of the interconnecting networks. A poorly written interconnection rule could create a lot of work for lawyers without actually preventing abusive practices.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

How 'Fast Lanes' Will Change the Internet

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 02, 2014 @03:26PM (#46902019)

    Reasons like this is why I'm so glad the Netherlands chose to enshrine net neutrality in law.

    Otherwise we'd have to put up with shit like this: []

    USA, enjoy your tiered priced internet service, your net neutrality is no more.

  • by Bengie (1121981) on Friday May 02, 2014 @03:33PM (#46902115)
    As long as the "slow lane" still allows me my full bandwidth, I see no issues. The only difference is latency, but closeness to reduce latency comes at a price of the party that needs it. A game server may be willing to pay a premium to be closer and have fewer hops, but Netflix may not care about latency as long as their bandwidth is unfettered.

    If the "slow lane" starts affecting my bandwidth, then the ISP is not holding up their end of the bargin. They must provide me uncongested access to all of their interconnects. Once the packet leaves my ISP's network, my ISP has no more control and therefore, cannot be directly responsible anymore. Although, they could be indirectly responsible, like making sure they use a quality transit provider or not using overloaded peers to get cheaper routes.
  • by nimbius (983462) on Friday May 02, 2014 @03:43PM (#46902211) Homepage
    Call me the neckbeard prime but traffic shaping doesnt bother me much as its based on the notion that internet = future of infotainment.
    movies: check them out, free, from my local library these days. And much better quality too (you get more independent films with better plot and writing than the crap hollyoaks delivers.)
    music: If i like a song and can support the artist, Ill buy it from their site. I dont scrape along with a jolly roger screwing over every artist I see. Again, the library is your friend for some stuff.
    e-books: never bought into this racket. Ill check it out from the library, read it at my own leisure, and not worry about the risk that my rented copy will be reposessed wirelessly without notice. Books i enjoy will be bought used from the local bookstore.

    I use IRC, and my firefox is so incapable of showing advertisements its like a time machine to 1989. Hell, my hosts file wont even route most of it.
    Also from most of the slashdot community: fuck your social networks.
  • Re:Finally (Score:4, Interesting)

    by smartr (1035324) on Friday May 02, 2014 @03:47PM (#46902261)

    Netflix is a perfectly good example to look at. There's no reason Netflix's media should be getting privilege over Amazon media, AT&T media, Google media, Comcast media, or some guy in Delaware's media. If I want to use a less popular service or run things over a corporate network linked through the internet, it should not be throttled so that Netflix gets priority. The two main problems seem to be:
    1. The internet service providers don't want to upgrade their infrastructure.
    2. The internet service providers are unwilling to meter the activities that would actually make them upgrade their network because they can make more money degrading service, not upgrading the network, and not fixing their peering arrangements. ...
    How do you "meter" Netflix? ICANN has the root addresses to blocks in networks that can very easily be used to calculate an abstract "distance". If a customer exceeds a certain amount, say X gigabytes from a "long distance" provider, you need to "meter" it and bill them more. This would be neutral and a way of fairly charging customers for their usage. Shady backroom deals with Comcast and Verizon are no way to do honest business when the wires have a right of way through my property.

  • by XopherMV (575514) on Friday May 02, 2014 @04:05PM (#46902449) Journal
    The ISPs aren't creating "slow lanes." They're simply refusing to widen the freeway until they're paid to do so.

    Funny. Customers pay their ISPs for an advertised bandwidth. Content providers also pay ISPs for advertised bandwidth. Yet, ISPs are still able to turn up the speed if content providers pay them extra. It sounds like ISPs are purposefully not living up to their advertising in order to extort money from people who aren't their customers.