Observations of an Internet Middleman (Level3)

Christopher Morrow morrowc.lists at gmail.com
Thu May 15 17:22:00 UTC 2014

On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 1:06 PM, Ryan Brooks <ryan at hack.net> wrote:
> On 5/15/14, 11:58 AM, Joe Greco wrote:
>> 2) Netflix purchases 5Mbps "fast lane"
> I appreciate Joe's use of quotation marks here.    A lot of the dialog has
> included this 'fast lane' terminology, yet all of us know there's no 'fast
> lane' being constructed, rather just varying degrees of _slow_ applied to
> existing traffic.

please correct me if I'm wrong, but 'fast lane' really is (in this example):
  'cableco' port from 'moviecompany' has 'qos' marking configuration
to set all 'moviecompany' traffic (from this port!) to some priority

  customer-port to 'cableco' has 'qos' handling/queuing that will
ensure '5mbps' of 'moviecompany' is always going to get down the link
to the customer, regardless of the other traffic the customer is

right? (presume that in the rest of the 'cableco' network is
protecting 'moviecompany' traffic as well, of course)

So, when there are 1 'moviecompany' things to prioritize and deliver
that's cool... but what about when there are 10? 100? 1000? doesn't
the queuing get complicated? what if the 'cableco' customer with
10mbps link has 3 people in the location all streaming from 3
different 'moviecompany' organizations which have paid for 'fastlane'

3 x 5 == 15 ... not 10. How will 'cableco' manage this when their
100gbps inter-metro links are seeing +100gbps if 'fastlane' traffic
and 'fastlane' traffic can't make it to the local metro from the
remote one?

This all seems much, much more complicated and expensive than just
building out networking, which they will have to do in the end anyway,
right? Only with 'fastlanes' there's extra capacity management and
configuration and testing and ... all on top of: "Gosh, does the new
umnptyfart card from routerco actually work in old routerco routers?"

This looks, to me, like nuttiness... like mutually assured destruction
that the cableco folk are driving both parties into intentionally.


BTW: I didn't use a particular 'cable company' name for 'cableco', nor
did I use a particular streaming media company for 'moviecompany'...
Also, 'cableco' is short-hand for
'lastmile-consumer-provider-network'. Less typing was better, for me,
I thought.

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