Online games stealing your bandwidth

Mark Smith nanog at
Wed Sep 29 03:11:03 UTC 2010

On Sat, 25 Sep 2010 16:56:21 -0400 (EDT)
Jon Lewis <jlewis at> wrote:

> On Sat, 25 Sep 2010, Rodrick Brown wrote:
> > If you follow the links in the article people are complaining that the LotR
> > process has served 70gb in a week, others are complaining that the service
> > is resulting in 300ms pings, and unusable connections.
> > This is a very grey area it will be interesting how this issue unfolds in
> > the long run.
> I haven't played any of these things, so I don't know what they put in 
> the fine print, but unless LotR makes it clear that they're going to 
> utilize your (i.e. players of the game) bandwidth to PTP distribute their 
> software, I'd call that theft and unauthorized use of a computer network.

Skype have been doing this for years to ISP users who have public IP
addresses, which is how they get around NAT without having giant
publicly addressed relay servers. I don't know how much effort they
got to to notify users via the T&Cs. The only real difference here
seems to be the volume of traffic involved.

> Are these companies not making enough in monthly subscriptions to afford 
> Akamai or similar CDN services to distribute their software updates?
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
>   Jon Lewis, MCP :)           |  I route
>   Senior Network Engineer     |  therefore you are
>   Atlantic Net                |
> _________ for PGP public key_________

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