Tuomas Toivonen toivotuo at
Fri Aug 28 09:43:45 UTC 1998

On Fri, Aug 28, 1998 at 03:03:09AM -0500, Karl Denninger wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 28, 1998 at 10:56:01AM +0300, Tuomas Toivonen wrote:
> > On Thu, Aug 27, 1998 at 12:10:20PM -0500, Karl Denninger wrote:
> > > 
> > > CUSTa sends a TCP SYN, accepts an ACK, and transmits 40 bytes of a URL.
> > > 
> > > CUSTb responds to the SYN, accepts and ACK (3-way handshake) and transmits,
> > > in direct response to the URL request, 200KB of data back to the CUSTa.
> > > 
> > > Now, NETb has a net deficit of packets to NETa.  NETa says "pay up or else"
> > > and demands a settlement from NETb; a settlement which NETb cannot collect
> > > on, as NETb has no means of assessing CUSTa, which is the cause of the
> > > traffic so generated.
> > 
> > This is where I don't agree with you. Yes, net-b certainly can't bill cust-a
> > (the web surfer) which is why it bills its own client cust-b (the web server).
> > Cust-b gladly pays because it has agreed to provide service to cust-a and
> > has calculated that whatever it pays to its service provider, net-b, will be
> > paid back by cust-a (perhaps site subscription fees or increased sales). So
> > net-b pays its settlement fees to net-a from cust-b's pockets.
> > 
> > Point is: the web surfer is only secodary cause to any traffic generated.
> On the contrary.  The server, sitting there on its own, causes no traffic
> to be generated at all.

Putting up a server is _agreeing_ to generating future traffic. Amount of
that traffic can be reasonably estimated and transit for it bought. The
transit provider uses fees collected from the server operator to 1) buy
further transit or 2) buy "peering" with appropriate settlement fees.

> > Primary cause is the web server providing content to be browsed. Web server
> > wants its content accessed and is willing to pay. 
> Are you sure about that?  What if the server provider already thinks they
> are paying, and doesn't like having their pocket picked at the whim of the
> browser?

The web surfer's behaviour is not the cause for any possible misfortune.
Either the web server operator ot its service provider has made a
misjudgement in estimating traffic patterns from web surfing and therefore
will go out of business.

> > (Funny thing is that the
> > web surfer is also willing to pay which is why Internet economics work and
> > it is heaven for marketing purposes.) 

> If there were no alternatives you'd be right.
> But there are alternatives.

Perhaps, but I am not satisfied by the below example. ;=)

> CUSTb can, instead of displaying the content CUSTa wants, display a screen
> (in plain text, and therefore very cheap to send) saying "your provider is
> being a jerk and trying to charge us for what we think you probably believe 
> you already paid for; either enter your VISA number (in which case we'll
> send what you asked for, and you'll get billed for it) or find a new ISP 
> that believes your service agreement is worth something".

Uh, huh, this is not quite the real world. I certainly would like to see a
corporate marketing dude even considering that. If connectivity to cust-a
(surfer) sucks then cust-b will take net-b by the throat and demand
something to be done (in essence net-b will pay settlement to net-a or lose

> Now, if you wish to postulate that *ALL* providers do what NETa is doing,
> then my next question is "how did that happen?"

It is not nice, but contrary to what you claim the big net is in better
positions than the web farm when settlement fees come into discussion.

> -- 
> Karl Denninger (karl at MCS.Net)| MCSNet - Serving Chicagoland and Wisconsin
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tuomas.toivonen at               fishpool creations ltd

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