Network end users to pull down 2 gigabytes a day, continuously?

Alexander Harrowell a.harrowell at
Sun Jan 21 21:19:04 UTC 2007


It seems like if there's an issue here it's that different parties
have different
self-interests, and those whose interests aren't being served

> aren't passing on the costs to the decision makers.  The users'
> performance interests are served by getting the fastest downloads
> possible.  The ISP's financial interests would be served by their flat
> rate customers getting their data from somewhere close by.  If it becomes
> enough of a problem that the ISPs are motivated to deal with it, one
> approach would be to get the customers' financial interests better
> aligned with their own, with differentiated billing for local and long
> distance traffic.

That could be seen as a confiscation of a major part of the value customers
derive from ISPs.

Perth, on the West Coast of Australia, claims to be the world's most
> isolated "capitol" city (for some definition of capitol).  Next closest is
> probably Adelaide, at 1300 miles.  Jakarta and Sydney are both 2,000 miles
> away.  Getting stuff, including data, in and out is expensive.  Like
> Seattle, Perth has many of its ISPs in the same downtown sky scraper, and
> a very active exchange point in the building.  It is much cheaper for ISPs
> to hand off local traffic to each other than to hand off long distance
> traffic to their far away transit providers.  Like ISPs in a lot of
> similar places, the ISPs in Perth charge their customers different rates
> for cheap local bandwidth than for expensive long distance bandwidth.
> When I was in Perth a couple of years ago, I asked my usual questions
> about what effect this billing arrangement was having on user behavior.
> I was told about a Perth-only file sharing network.  Using the same file
> sharing networks as the rest of the world was expensive, as they would end
> up hauling lots of data over the expensive long distance links and users
> didn't want to pay for that.  Instead, they'd put together their own,
> which only allowed local users and thus guaranteed that uploads and
> downloads would happen at cheap local rates.
> Googling for more information just now, what I found were lots of stories
> about police raids, so I'm not sure if it's still operational.

Brendan Behan: There is no situation that cannot be made worse by the
presence of a policeman.

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