Recently it’s been revealed that Time Warner Cable plans to start implementing bandwidth caps, and is trying this strategy in select areas of the United States. If you go over these (very low) caps, you have to pay $1 per GB. You might be thinking that oh, all you have to do is just not use bittorrent so much, but even if we factor bittorrent AND all downloaded anime out of the equation, this is still a problem for fans because of the increase in websites dedicated to streaming anime online legally and how this bandwidth capping will affect even people who want to support the shows they love.
Think of the very likely scenario that you’re watching a show, and it doesn’t load properly, so you have to refresh the page a few times. If you’re under Time Warner’s plan, you’ve just eaten up a good portion of the bandwidth you’ve been allotted that month. Of course, anime is still a niche market, but this also affects regular non-anime viewers who simply prefer to watch their shows online and not on the tv.
What we have here is an attempt by Time Warner to pull people from their computers and put them back in front of their TVs so they can buy on-demand from Time Warner directly and make you go back to viewing long commercials (provided you don’t own a Tivo). And while I understand that Time Warner does not want to lose profit, I can’t help but see this as nothing but a defensive turtling with fingers plugged into ears, ignoring the progress that is happening to visual entertainment.
I can’t believe that >_< I hope this new plan of theirs proves unsuccessful in those few states before it reaches further, like where my TWC service is in southern CA. I hardly ever watch TV and spend most of my time on the computer, which seems to be what they don’t want. Well, if it gets out of hand, I’ll just switch services or something XP I pay them enough each month, I shouldn’t have to change my daily habits for them too!
But Obama supports net neutrality, and the Supreme Court seems to have in the past as well, so I don’t see too much of a chance of this going far.
Net neutrality has nothing to do with it. Comcast already has a bandwidth cap.
Am I the only one who doesn’t have an issue with the concept of tiered pricing for internet use? As it stands, the light users are effectively subsidizing the heavy users and it’s not really fair that both types of users have to pay the same in monthly fees assuming both were using the same plan.
The problem with this particular proposal is that the low-end users don’t benefit enough and the high-end users are punished far too harshly. Fix the implementation for this and I could see this pricing model be equitable.
Yeah, but even as devilish as Comcast is, at least there cap is reasonable. In 250 GB, one download like all the shows in the Spring season and still have bandwidth to spare at the end of the month. 5 GB is criminally low.
Comcast’s cap of 250GB is at least reasonable. I don’t think I get near that, even with the fansubs I download. You’d practically have to be running some sort of server to get that much bandwidth probably.
Time Warner’s limits, however, are draconian. It would essentially eliminate viewing video online for their customers – and I’m even talking about legally available video from places like hulu. 40GB as the TOP tier is laughable. Even the bottom tier (with a 5GB cap) averages only between about 160 and 170MB a day. People probably could hit that from just everyday surfing.
zzeroparticle – I’m not necessarily against tiered pricing per se, but in Time Warner’s case, the tiers are ridiculous. Have the tiers be something like 20, 50, 150, and 250GB or something, not 5, 10, 20, and 40. Or at least offer an unlimited traffic tier, even if it is more.
I had to laugh at the thing about how the top 25% use 100 times more traffic than the bottom 25%. Well duh, that’s not surprising, and I’m almost shocked that it’s only 100 times more.
@BrendantheJedi and Josh
@ Brendanthe Jedi and Josh (and the blogger; sorry for the double post) Point taken about Time Warner’s cap levels. I wasn’t aware of how awful they are. But it’s still not a net neutrality issue. They’re not restricting what sites you can visit. Though of course it does severely limit what you can do on many of them. You can argue that this is a way of circumventing net neutrality, however, and you’d have an interesting argument.
I don’t know about them hating our anime, but they sure LOOOOVE our money…
Hence, my comment that high-end users are punished far too harshly. As you said, Comcast’s limits are more within reason. Heck, if Time Warner changes the bandwidth cap from a per month to a per-week solution, that would effectively take care of the problem.
As I said, it’s the implementation which sucks.
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