Did Internet Founders Actually Anticipate Paid, Prioritized Traffic?

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Tue Sep 14 17:08:32 UTC 2010

On Sep 14, 2010, at 8:47 AM, Dave Sparro wrote:

> On 9/13/2010 12:05 PM, William Herrin wrote:
>> It's a question of double-billing. I've already paid you to send and
>> receive packets on my behalf. Detuning my packets because a second
>> party hasn't also paid you is cheating, maybe fraudulent.
> Would you object to an ISP model where a content provider could pay to get an ISP subscriber's package upgraded on a dynamic basis?
Yes... Because the reality is that it wouldn't be an upgrade. It would be a euphemism for downgrading the subscriber's experience with other content providers.

> It would look something like my Road Runner PowerBoost(tm) service, only it never cuts off when the consumer is accessing a particular content provider's service.
Except that PowerBoost(tm) provides a burstable service where the capacity is already available and using it would not negatively impact other subscribers. This, on the other had, would create an SLA requiring your ISP to either build out quite a bit of additional capacity (not so likely) or to negatively impact their other subscribers in order to deliver content to the subscriber using this enhanced service.

> That would allow Netflix/Hulu/OnLive/whoever to offer me a streaming service that requires a 15Mbps connection even though I'm not willing to upgrade my 10 up/1 down ISP connection to get it.

There's little difference in my mind between this model and a model where service provider X is in bed with content provider Y (perhaps they share common ownership) and subscribers to provider X are given a dramatically better user experience to content Y than to other content of a similar nature.


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