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Net Neutrality Opponent Calls Google a "Bandwidth Hog"

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the oh-yeah-well-stop-hogging-all-the-ugly dept.

Networking 320

Adrian Lopez writes "According to PC World, an analyst with ties to the telecom industry — in a baseless attack on the concept of Net Neutrality — has accused Google Inc. of being a bandwidth hog. Quoting: '"Internet connections could be more affordable for everyone, if Google paid its fair share of the Internet's cost," wrote Cleland in the report. "It is ironic that Google, the largest user of Internet capacity pays the least relatively to fund the Internet's cost; it is even more ironic that the company poised to profit more than any other from more broadband deployment, expects the American taxpayer to pick up its skyrocketing bandwidth tab."' Google responded on their public policy blog, citing 'significant methodological and factual errors that undermine his report's conclusions.' Ars Technica highlighted some of Cleland's faulty reasoning as well."

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320 comments

Probably true (1, Interesting)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021163)

If my server logs are any indication, then this is probably true. They spent 6 months hitting my server every 2 seconds at one point.

Re:Probably true (5, Insightful)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021241)

If you're an ISP then you will note that almost all of your customers are hitting google, and google is sending data back to them. It's not the search engine crawler that people are complaining about, it's the traffic in both directions. The traffic that is a fundamental part of google's business.

Of course if both ends just paid a fair price for traffic (which is currently the case), then there does not need to be any complicated scheme of prioritizing packets at each hop based on what you paid to that provider.

Re:Probably true (4, Insightful)

Forbman (794277) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021995)

Yep, but you're assuming that the "man in the middle", the ISP, doesn't have any business interest in things other than shuffling bits back and forth and solely getting paid to do that at a decent profit. Some of the ISPs (cable companies and the ILEC telcos themselves providing some of these big fat dedicated pipes to the Googles), also have internal business units that they want to push forth at the expense of the rest of the world they allege to serve. They want users on THEIR networks to use THEIR search engines, THEIR media delivery services, etc., not Google/YouTube, FaceBook, etc. Why? Well, they're not symbiotic partners, they're parasites. They don't want to be merely infrastructure that facilitates the rest of the system. They want to BE the system, and think that they are. The world of "The Matrix" is a colossal wet dream for them.

Re:Probably true (-1, Flamebait)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021279)

You know, having read the article on Ars Technica, I think google's response to this is rather bogus.

Google doesn't use all that bandwidth delivering to customers. They use vast amounts of bandwidth spidering the web so they can create their massive indexes. Which is kind of like doing market research surveys, but calling collect when you do it.

This comment isn't intended as an attack on net neutrality, but Google is still full of shit.

Re:Probably true (5, Insightful)

Zironic (1112127) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021349)

If people don't want to be crawled by google they can just get a robots.txt

Re:Probably true (4, Insightful)

JesseL (107722) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021439)

In all likelihood, most of the sites being spidered want to be indexed by Google. If they don't, they can say so in their robots.txt file.

excuse me, dont speak foolish (-1, Troll)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021451)

where does the google's search service pull the data from ? out of thin air ?

are you stupid, or you dont know that it is mandatory to crawl web pages and create a current index so people will be actually able to FIND stuff ?

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021575)

And if they don't want google to crawl google unlike a few others actually obeys the robots.txt file.

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021651)

I don't see a way to use robots.txt to limit the number of crawler hits per interval other than just denying it. So you can block it, but that's undesirable if you want people to find it. It's also undesirable to have a robot hit your site every two seconds if ShieldW0lf is saying the truth, but robots.txt only address it in a simplistic allow / disallow.

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021669)

a 'hit' doesnt require the bandwidth you are complaining about. its just a request. and first request is robots.txt. if you deny all in robots.txt, nothing happens.

its WAY STUPID to be complaining about a 4 k text file request creating any kind of load on a server.

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (4, Informative)

flycream (1381739) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021737)

Crawl-delay directive

Several major crawlers support a Crawl-delay parameter, set to the number of seconds to wait between successive requests to the same server: [1] [2]
User-agent: *
Crawl-delay: 10

if-modified-since (4, Informative)

SgtChaireBourne (457691) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021825)

Crawl-delay directive

Several major crawlers support a Crawl-delay parameter, set to the number of seconds to wait between successive requests to the same server: [1] [2]
User-agent: *
Crawl-delay: 10

Further, not only do the Google crawlers obey the robots.txt [robotstxt.org] described above (or other standards for robot exclusion), they also use HTTP's if-modified-since [w3.org] to make a conditional request. The file is only returned to the crawler if it has been changed. That saves a lot of time and bandwidth.

PC World will also lose out if double-dipping is allowed.

Excellent information: Mod Parent Up! (1)

CFD339 (795926) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021985)

I was unaware of this directive, and it would be a good setting for me to use.

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (3, Informative)

darkpixel2k (623900) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021739)

I don't see a way to use robots.txt to limit the number of crawler hits per interval other than just denying it. So you can block it, but that's undesirable if you want people to find it. It's also undesirable to have a robot hit your site every two seconds if ShieldW0lf is saying the truth, but robots.txt only address it in a simplistic allow / disallow.

I'm not sure if any of the other providers implement this, but Google does. SiteMaps [sitemaps.org]

Lets you specify how often to update certain content, what URLs to block. It's a more advanced robots.txt.

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021829)

I don't see a way to use robots.txt to limit the number of crawler hits per interval other than just denying it. So you can block it, but that's undesirable if you want people to find it. It's also undesirable to have a robot hit your site every two seconds if ShieldW0lf is saying the truth, but robots.txt only address it in a simplistic allow / disallow.

Aside from saying the obvious "Well, keep robots.txt on from one crawling untill you are ready to get next one", as robots is really quite easy to generate dynamically, any webmaster facing the problem should be able to find out that google has google.com/webmasters/tools where you can log in, tell Google that some site is yours (verified by adding certain file there for a moment) and set them to crawl slower. :)

Aside from that... I would pay a hefty sum to get a domain crawled every 2 seconds. Bandwith would cost but the possibilities would be endless... Having all your newsposts appear immediatelly after written would mean that whenever something important appears in the news and such you can write something quickly and get all the people googling it to visit your site for a few hours...

Re:excuse me, dont speak foolish (1)

Ne0v001 (1423531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021835)

It's my understanding that the robots.txt file is the first grabbed by a webspider, right? If you don't want anything crawling your site, just disallow /, no?

Re:Probably true (3, Interesting)

he-sk (103163) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021687)

First of all, the traffic a web site gets from Google's spider is dwarfed by the the traffic it gets from legit users.

Secondly, if it weren't for Google's spider the web site wouldn't receive a lot of user traffic anyway.

Finally, Google pays the telcos (but not the web site) for the spider traffic it generates on its end.

Re:Probably true (1, Interesting)

earlymon (1116185) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021809)

First of all, the traffic a web site gets from Google's spider is dwarfed by the the traffic it gets from legit users.

First of all, you can use your Google account, register your website with them and see how often they crawl your web.

Secondly, you can use something pretty way OK like http://www.statcounter.com/ [statcounter.com] and monitor your own traffic.

Thirdly, you'll discover that there's no truth whatsoever in the assertion of your First of all.

Your first point is complete bullshit. I don't even want to guess how you made up the factual-sounding second point.

Thank you, come again.

Re:Probably true (4, Informative)

earlymon (1116185) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021851)

Oh - and here's a big PS: If you feel you're getting too much spider traffic - meaning you're somehow SO wildly popular that you really believe Google is hitting you too often - you can reduce the Google crawl frequency via your Google webmaster account - voila, your (non-existent) problem solved.

And for those that don't use the service, and I do - the Google webmaster features in no way require you to be hosted at Google.

Re:Probably true (1)

Briareos (21163) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022157)

Reading comprehension DOUBLE FAIL. Clbuttic.

It would have been less surreal if you hadn't written the exact same thing that he-sk had stated in your own response(s)...

np: Benni Hemm Hemm - Riotmand (Ein à Leyni)

Re:Probably true (1)

he-sk (103163) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021983)

Reading comprehension is not your forte, eh?

I said, a web site gets more traffic from legit users than from teh Google.

Re:Probably true (4, Funny)

earlymon (1116185) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021877)

Please disregard everything I just said and I apologize for my bad attitude.

I don't know how, but I read your first sentence 100% backwards from what you wrote.

I totally fucked up and I'm sorry.

Re:Probably true (2, Funny)

imamac (1083405) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021989)

I was going to mod this +5 for the first apology ever on slashdot, but that option wasn't there.

Re:Probably true (4, Funny)

he-sk (103163) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022007)

No problem, and I take back my insult above. I posted it before I read your second reply.

All is good.

Re:Probably true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021697)

Google's spidering is like 1/10000th the amount of bandwidth that YouTube uses... and that's what the telco's typically complain about, since they never planned for a lare increase in streaming video and the bandwidth that requires...

Re:Probably true (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021357)

Learn to use the robots.txt file before moaning, duh! But then, judging from your previous posts, you are full of shit and don't know what you are talking about.

Not True. Economics 101 Fail. (4, Insightful)

iYk6 (1425255) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021457)

It is ironic that Google, the largest user of Internet capacity pays the least relatively to fund the Internet's cost

Economy of scale is not ironic. It is a appropriate, and makes sense to anyone who understands basic economics.

Re:Probably true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021597)

ooooh 30 hits per minute.

What is this, 1999?

Re:Probably true (2, Informative)

RobertM1968 (951074) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022163)

Google hits my server regularly - but doesnt use much bandwidth in doing so. But then again, I run Google ads on my sites, so they monitor the content to show more relevant ads. Considering most sites are 80% graphical, 20% html/css/javascript; these requests are no big deal.

When it comes to them indexing the site for their search engine, a simple directive in the robots.txt file to tell them how frequently you wish them to stop by is all that is needed - and is spelled out numerous places on the Internet (of course, including on their own pages). Any webmaster who is not aware of that (especially since Yahoo's bot is at least 20 times worse per my server records for www.startreknewvoyages.com where it would be 10-15 GoogleBots and 200-300 YahooBots) just doesnt know what they are doing. Both Google and Yahoo honor it (the "how many times in x minutes to visit flag in robots.txt). The only reason I put it in was for Yahoo, followed someplace inbetween by Microsoft, and in least invasive position at a fraction of the number of simultaneous bots, Google.

I dont care how many pages they index, but Google's bots at least seem a lot smarter. Often I would have 10 or more Yahoobots reading the exact same page.

Their overall traffic use (all combined) was nothing compared to normal site traffic from the same number of "requesters"

*groan* (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021169)

Someone's insulting Google? on SLASHDOT?!? That's almost as bad as saying something bad about Apple... let the flamewars begin.

Phone companies are oxygen hogs (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021171)

Phone companies are one of the single greatest causes of people talking. More people talking means more oxygen consumption. And the externalities of all that poisonous CO2 exhalation.

Phone companies are literally living off our dimes. And the Amazon and Sting and Al Gore don't even get a cut.

Re:Phone companies are oxygen hogs (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021209)

I love the smell of straw in the morning...

Re:Phone companies are oxygen hogs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021765)

I don't think so, it seems to be about equivalent. Google pays for all their own bandwidth costs, but other people's bandwidth costs go up as a result of them existing. Home computers get popular and as a result the collective cost of all electricity used goes way up (and that doesn't mean the makers of home computers should pay the electricity bills).

I can't speak for GP, but I think that's what he's saying.

Re:Phone companies are oxygen hogs (1)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022077)

Well you also have to remember that "Economy of Scale" really is just a reference to many production and cost improvements that often(but not always) occur as the quantity of production is ramped up.

It is a general rule of thumb that can be used to explain why something on a large scale is more economic but cannot be used to show that a large scale operation is more economic(it isn't a proof of economy, only an explanation for it).

not the largest user (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021175)

Google may be the largest provider of services and the aggregate use the most bandwidth, but the users are the users- what a thought.

Charge more? (0)

Zironic (1112127) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021189)

If they think google is getting their bandwidth too cheap why aren't they just charging more?

Re:Charge more? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021411)

Because they're not in a business relationship with Google. The traffic from Google appears at their network borders as a result of transit contracts with tier-1 carriers, not with Google directly.

Basically some providers see themselves in an important enough position to try and negotiate deals which put them higher up in the food chain. Instead of bargaining with world-wide network backbone connections, these ISPs try to bargain with their end-user reach.

Network neutrality is a (necessary) kludge, because many home users can not choose a different provider. If users could always choose another provider, then the market would indeed deal with ISPs which overestimate their importance.

Re:Charge more? (4, Insightful)

budgenator (254554) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021513)

The "they" that are complaining about google not paying their "fare share" aren't the same "they" that sell google their bandwidth. The "they" that are complaining actually want google to pay for the pipe to the backbone and again for the pipe down to the actual consumer of the content; the problem is I all ready pay for the pipe from the backbone to my computer. I don't mind a company making a fair profit in a competitive market but what they want is to double-dip after already getting billions in tax incentives and favorable legislation and regulations.

Re:Charge more? (3, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021661)

The "they" that are complaining about google not paying their "fare share" aren't the same "they" that sell google their bandwidth

So charge Google's providers more for peering. Or just don't connect to them and see how many customers you get if you Google isn't reachable from your part of the Internet.

Re:Charge more? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021519)

The problem is that Google is paying the same price as everybody else. It's almost like the problems they're having keeping up with residential customers using too much bandwidth on bit-torrent. What they really need to do is just build out their infrastructure, but they can't afford to.

It really boils down to the government was fucking around where they shouldn't have been and screwed everything up

The problem is that since the government paid for most of the existing infrastructure, the telcos haven't had to charge "real" prices because they didn't have to cover the cost of building their infrastructure like they should have. Theoretically they would have to pay for any future build out, but in the past it was pretty hard to imagine the existing infrastructure ever being saturated, so they didn't really worry about it and just lowered the price as much as possible so they could beat out the competition.

So in the future they're going to need the government to build out their infrastructure again, or have to significantly raise prices.

If the government had just stayed out of it, there wouldn't be a problem.

I'd love to read the Google post... (0, Offtopic)

Haeleth (414428) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021197)

...but Google apparently doesn't want me to.

The post loads perfectly. The post finishes loading. The post displays perfectly in its entirety. I start reading it. Then, after 15 seconds, it disappears and is replaced with a message saying "Your request took too long to complete. This is typically just a temporary error due to high network traffic or heavy usage of Blogger."

Thanks, Google. I love an application that claims there's an error when nothing's wrong, and displays the message in such a way that I can't even read the article that was displaying perfectly until you replaced it with your error message. Says a lot for the quality of Blogger.

Re:I'd love to read the Google post... (5, Informative)

senorpoco (1396603) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021233)

Loaded fine for me. Here is the post. "Response to phone companies' "Google bandwidth" report Thursday, December 4, 2008 at 3:28 PM Posted by Richard Whitt, Washington Telecom and Media Counsel Earlier this week I thought that the announcement of a broadband access "call to action" was an encouraging sign that the phone and cable carriers could set aside their differences with Internet companies and public interest groups over network neutrality, and focus on solving our nation's broadband challenges. Unfortunately, a report issued today suggests that some carriers would still rather point fingers and keep fighting old battles. Scott Cleland over at Precursor Blog is, of course, not exactly a neutral analyst. He is paid by the phone and cable companies -- AT&T, Verizon, Time Warner, and others -- to be a full time Google critic. As a result, most people here in Washington take his commentary with a heavy dose of salt. The report that Mr. Cleland issued today -- alleging that Google is somehow unfairly consuming network bandwidth -- is just the latest in what one blogger called his "payola punditry." Not surprisingly, in his zeal to score points in the net neutrality debate, he made significant methodological and factual errors that undermine his report's conclusions. First and foremost, there's a huge difference between your own home broadband connection, and the Internet as a whole. It's the consumers voluntarily choosing to use our applications who are actually using their own broadband bandwidth -- not Google. To say that Google somehow "uses" consumers' home broadband connections shows a fundamental misunderstanding of how the Internet actually works. Second, Google already pays billions of dollars for the bandwidth and server capacity necessary to connect our data centers together, and then to carry traffic from those data centers to the Internet backbone. That is the way the Net has always operated: each side pays for their own connection to the Net. Third, Mr. Cleland's cost estimates are overblown. For one, his attempt to correlate Google's "market share and traffic" to use of petabytes of bandwidth is misguided. The whole point of a search engine like Google's is to connect a user to some other website as quickly as possible. If Mr. Cleland's definition of "market share" includes all those other sites, and then attributes them to Google's "traffic," that mistake alone would skew the overall numbers by a huge amount. Mr. Cleland's calculations about YouTube's impact are similarly flawed. Here he confuses "market share" with "traffic share." YouTube's share of video traffic is decidedly smaller than its market share. And typical YouTube traffic takes up far less bandwidth than downloading or streaming a movie. Finally, the Google search bots that Mr. Cleland claims are driving bandwidth consumption don't even affect consumers' broadband connections at all -- they are searching and indexing only websites. We don't fault Mr. Cleland for trying to do his job. But it's unfortunate that the phone and cable companies funding his work would rather launch poorly researched broadsides than help solve consumers' problems. "

belong to google! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021225)

Google thinks "All ur interenetz belongs to us"

I'm sure the Republicans will be happy to help (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021253)

After all, rich people and companies don't pay their "proportional" share of the cost of government, even though they benefit from it.

... oh wait.

More Laws (1)

corby (56462) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021277)

Hey, I just conducted a study and found out that my interconnect connection would be more affordable if Scott Cleland payed for my bandwidth costs.

There oughta be a law!

And just to be clear, is Scott Cleland proposing that well-run companies should be transferring their profits to all poorly-run companies, or just the poorly-run telecoms?

Re:More Laws (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021731)

The telecoms are generally well run.

I mean, how much is this costing them, and if they happened to win, they would get huge sums.

Same thing with all the tax breaks that people complain about. They didn't lose their monopolies or get punished in any way, and they got the breaks anyway.

This is bullshit, but it isn't a symptom of bad management (because there aren't any consequences).

Really stupid (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021291)

Is customers paying for individual bandwith, not the ISPs. And I will pay a isp to get a link and not use then? stupid, really stupid.

Re:Really stupid (1)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022165)

No it is standard user behavior at least for most of the internet, but it is changing.

Fair Share (5, Insightful)

andy1307 (656570) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021307)

Your customers who use google are already paying their fair share. Any bandwidth used by google for it's indexing is purchased from its ISP. The telcos just want to double dip.

Re:Fair Share (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021843)

It's extortion, nothing else. Pay us, or the people on our network might have "difficulty" reaching your site. Not much different from the people who threaten to knock out gambling sites just before the superbowl.

Can you imagine other industries trying this crap? Cable and satellite companies extorting the networks, demanding payment from the most popular TV shows, because that's what most TV users are watching, clogging up their tubes?

Net Neutrality opponents want to get away with committing extortion. Always keep that in mind when these arguments brew up.

Re:Fair Share (1)

MMC Monster (602931) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021859)

Or perhaps the ISP getting money from Google should share that money with all the other ISPs.

Re:Fair Share (2, Insightful)

Ne0v001 (1423531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021979)

Or maybe they should use some of their money to build up bigger backbones and the like so bandwidth isn't a problem. Oh wait, no more diamond-lined swimming pools if they don't abide by CAPITALISM.

Maybe Google should start charging them (5, Insightful)

RootWind (993172) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021319)

Google is a content provider after all, maybe they should start charging AT&T. People pay to connect to the internet for the content, not to say they can connect to the AT&T network.

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021467)

Nah the telco companies would just pass this cost on to the end consumer and effectively get exactly what they are wanting.

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021595)

True. At least one person I know got Internet access after a demo showing that you can find anything you want with Google. I'm sure there are more.

Imagine if my gardening hardware store was *so good* that people started buying pickup trucks to haul gardening material from my store to their homes. But the pickup truck companies, instead of being grateful for the extra business, are complaining?

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (5, Interesting)

langelgjm (860756) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021601)

Seriously. If telcos want start to throttle Google, all Google has to do throw up a web page for the affected users with something like the following:

"Dear Google/YouTube user: Your ISP, ISP_NAME, doesn't believe that you should be able to access the web sites and services that you want to, such as Google or YouTube. If you don't feel that this is fair, please contact ISP_NAME at ISP_PHONE_NUMBER and let them know how you feel. You may also want to consider switching to another ISP, such as one of the following in your area: (insert auto-generated list of ISPs that don't throttle Google)"

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (1)

genner (694963) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021663)

Seriously. If telcos want start to throttle Google, all Google has to do throw up a web page for the affected users with something like the following:

"Dear Google/YouTube user: Your ISP, ISP_NAME, doesn't believe that you should be able to access the web sites and services that you want to, such as Google or YouTube. If you don't feel that this is fair, please contact ISP_NAME at ISP_PHONE_NUMBER and let them know how you feel. You may also want to consider switching to another ISP, such as one of the following in your area: (insert auto-generated list of ISPs that don't throttle Google)"

This....I can't believe their trying to start this little war by going after google first. To many people google is the internet. If they started throwing up a pages like this the offending ISP will have its call center completely hosed with complaints.

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (2, Interesting)

NormalVisual (565491) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021837)

If they started throwing up a pages like this the offending ISP will have its call center completely hosed with complaints.

The ISPs won't care, just so long as they continue getting their monthly tithe from the complainers.

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (1)

Ne0v001 (1423531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021911)

I'm sure they'd care if they got a lot of complaints, were overwhelmed from said complaints, and then their customers switched ISPs due to the fact that the call center didn't respond in a timely manner, etc.

Re:Maybe Google should start charging them (1)

andy1307 (656570) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021997)

This is a great idea. They should make it punitive. If comcast, verizon and ATT start charging more, google's algorithm for searches should be tweaked to the detriment of one of the offending parties.

Bad economics? (2, Insightful)

bmorton (170477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021373)

I'm not sure technical arguments are really necessary to demonstrate this as bunk. Google's services add a lot of value to a consumer's bandwidth. I would wager that their contributions exceed their consumption.

The fucking non-sense? (5, Insightful)

Vexorian (959249) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021385)

I use google, I use it because I want to or rather because the other search engines aren't that good. Here's the thing : I pay my freaking internet bills! Just for the concept of being able to use any web site I'd like. So the ISPs are already getting my money for google hits. Not only that, but google also pays for its bandwidth to an ISP already. This sounds like lame excuses 2.0 with a demagogic twist. How about you fuck off?

Agreed, plus... (4, Insightful)

lenski (96498) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022169)

The Telcos are lying to us (a lie of omission): They carefully avoid estimating the reduction in total bandwidth consumed due to the optimization that search engines provide. Search engines serve as a repository of index information used to optimize our access to internet services and products. The net effect is reduced resource utilization.

Earth to telcos: Google is an example of a service that increases the value of the internet, which drives our willingness to pay for it. I have been an internet user since modem dialup days. My use of the service has increased during the last 18 years because it provides value. Google improves that value. It's a big win for the telcos and service providers, and they are trying to prevent us from recognizing that fact.

Free bandwidth indeed! Google pays for every bit of their bandwidth just like everyone else, probably with a bulk discount just like every other customer of a service with a predictable and large utilization.

How much do they pay? (2, Interesting)

cerelib (903469) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021415)

"It is ironic that Google, the largest user of Internet capacity pays the least relatively to fund the Internet's cost

So how much does Google pay for it's usage of the Internet?

Re:How much do they pay? (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021685)

A lot less than you or I would pay, per GB of transfer. That is one of the advantages of buying in huge bulk.

Re:How much do they pay? (4, Interesting)

Fastolfe (1470) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021773)

The report [precursorblog.com] makes a wild-ass-guess that Google pays $344M for its bandwidth, and that since (allegedly) 16.5% of a user's broadband bandwidth is for Google content, and consumers pay $44 billion for broadband in the US, Google is cheating "taxpayers" (WTF?) out of $6.9 billion.

Of course, the numbers are dubious to start with, comparing mixed fruit to oranges, and suggesting that a major Internet content provider (and consumer) should have to pay the same rates as residential broadband customers is flat out laughable (though perhaps a nice goal). If anything, all this report shows is that consumers are paying 21x more than Google is, suggesting those same ISPs are robbing them blind and (in this guy's case) stupid.

Re:How much do they pay? (4, Insightful)

popo (107611) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021883)

The telco's and backbone providers would love you to look at it that way.

It's important to note that there is a war on for how the Internet is perceived. The telco's would love to create the legal perception that a "broadcast model" is at work. ie: Google "broadcasts" over the tubes, and pays the tube-owners nothing. The reality -- which they are trying so desperately to avoid -- is that http is a 'request'.

The revenue stream comes from the users who pay for the right to make these requests and receive the response data.

When they say "it is ironic that Google, the largest user of Internet capacity", they're clouding the issue: Google is the "most requested service" on the Internet.

The telcos are attempting to 'share the wealth' by taxing popularity.

It is the users that are the bandwidth hogs. After all, without the users Google doesn't use much bandwidth at all.

ISPs and HDD manufacturers (2, Informative)

Ceriel Nosforit (682174) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021427)

There's a local company offering a 1.5TB external drive when you order a 2mbit or faster internet connection. Since few people are likely to fill the drive up with holiday photos, the use for this combo is obvious.

ISPs and digital storage manufacturers benefit from online piracy. I'd wager the profits are greater than the loss the content producers face, and are of net benefit to the global economy.

But, my perspective on the issue is skewed. I've been a pirate since I was 7. :p

Re:ISPs and HDD manufacturers (2, Insightful)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021505)

An external drive? Sounds like they're asking people to set up sneakernets.

Bandwidth hog? (2, Interesting)

macemoneta (154740) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021431)

I was under the impression that Google purchased business/carrier Internet facilities (OC3/OC12/OC48/OC192 and Gig-E interconnects) just like any other major business.

Unlike shared residential services such as cable/DSL/FIOS, these are dedicated facilities. They are paying for all their bandwidth, whether they use it or not.

How can they be "hogging" what they are paying for?

Re:Bandwidth hog? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021517)

I think the ISPs are complaining that their customers are using the internet connection they paid for to watch youtube videos.

But then, if it wasn't for things like youtube, most people would be happy to stay on dial-up.

Re:Bandwidth hog? (5, Informative)

macemoneta (154740) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021653)

That's exactly right. The customers paid for a shared connection. Google (Youtube) paid for a commercial connection. The ISPs are already being paid twice for transporting the same bits.

Since the customer's connection is shared, there is no service guarantee. If contention is too high, bits get dropped. If too many bits get dropped, and the customer has a choice, they can go to another ISP.

To summarize, ISPs are currently double-dipping, and they don't like competition. To solve this "problem", they propose triple-billing for transport so they don't have to re-invest as much in infrastructure. The "net neutrality" spin is just an obfuscation of what would otherwise be an obvious abuse of their position.

Re:Bandwidth hog? (1)

Briareos (21163) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022093)

I think the ISPs are complaining that their customers are using the internet connection they paid for to watch youtube videos.

Customers are using what they paid for?

HOW DARE THEY!!1!one

*g,d&r*

np: Benni Hemm Hemm - FrifpjÃfur Og IngibjÃrg (Ein à Leyni)

Re:Bandwidth hog? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26022105)

What in the fuck is this post.

because (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021591)

the dipshit who propagated and placed this article in news outlets represent corporate asswipes who want to control the internet through charging whomever they want, whatever they want, so they can make internet to another cable tv network.

Re:Bandwidth hog? (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022201)

Easy because they are not double dipping on using the backbone that the megatelecoms who .. err tax payers paid for ... and these guys want to charge again and Google has plenty of money for them to double dip on.

obama is a fucking liar! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021447)

he wants you to drop your drawers and get fucked up the ass by the automakers. he doesnt give a shit about the tax payer once the tax has been paid. and if you don't give unto ceaser he'll throw your faggot ass in jail!

fairness is crap (3, Insightful)

fermion (181285) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021459)

This fairness thing is crap. Anytime I hear someone talk about it, and over the pst 15 years it has been mostly conservatives, at least with respect to monetary issues, I want to ask them, like, what are you, 10?

The consumers use bandwidth, and it is the consumers who should shoulder a significant cost of the bandwidth. Google, et al, need to pay for the redundant lines that connect their facility. It is true that due to different usage patterns, some consumer will pay out of proportion. It is also true that some taxpayers will pay for something they do not use. But such is life.

Let's say that I am in the city. I drive like 20 or 20 miles a day, and the roads I do use are well traveled and largely cheap surface roads. Then why am I paying taxes and high gas taxes to subsidize the suburbanites excessive travel and wear and tear on the roads? Well, for one thing I do not want them in the city. Second, i need them in the city to serve me. I am likely paying out of proportion of my direct use, but not me total use.

It is the same thing with taxes. Suppose I am in the top 25% of the income. I likely am part of the group that pays a huge percentage of the nations taxes, maybe even in excess of the proportion of money that I earn. This is caused by the fact that the bottom third of the wage earners pay almost no taxes. A family earning 30K, after deductions, maybe a token couple thousand. That is, of course, because we all get a deduction basic living expenses, just like business only pays on profit, actual humans pay taxes only on their excess income, and the more money you make, the more actual excess income you have. It is an observable that 50% of the population have almost no excess income, while, when on reaches the 10 20% of the wage earners, excess income becomes the majority.

On one hand this is bad, as it means I pay higher taxes. OTOH, this allows us to keep wages low, as it is possible to pay barely enough to keep a family together. If everyone had to pay, say, 10%, then many family might double their tax bill, which might force them to ask for raises, which they would need to have to survive. This might mean that a couple who had been earning $9 an hour each, might now need to ask for $10, which might be more than a business could afford without increasing costs.And since business do not increase cost proportionately, such an increase could end up costing more overall. Or at least this is the conservative arguments.

So, fairness is not really crap, but fairness is dangerous, as people will inevitable skew the facts to make themselves the victims.

Re:fairness is crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021559)

Huh? Net Neutrality is not a conservative idea. If someone is arguing for Net Neutrality, you can be assured they're not really a conservative.

No they arent. but they SHOULD be (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021637)

network neutrality assures the equality of opportunity in business in internet world. the FAIR and FREE market that conservatives so blabber about.

if there isnt network neutrality, entrepreneurship will become impossible without amassing huge capital before attempting anything. for, noone will be able to set up a web service with 3-4 figure bucks and then proceed to become millionaires.

the big money who enjoyed ruling the world is annoyed with this prospect.

if the number of entrepreneurs rising to billionaires remain low, they can be controlled, and assimilated into the present 'club'. if it takes huge capital to establish big business, it further assures that noone that is contrary to your world view or interests will easily accrue capital and become a contender.

internet breaks this down. since 90s, innumerable people became powerful and influential through the newfound wealth through internet. and thats not only google, yahoo and similar, there are lots of small fish that do hundreds of millions $ of business, and annoy these big capital, because they dont share their views or accept the control they try to exert.

so basically this is an attempt by those people to assure that it stays the same -> someone is making big buck and amassing capital, but doesnt seem to 'fit in' with your club ? why, just call your chum and have them charge exorbitant rates for bandwidth, and sink their business. you dont even need a call actually, club does it itself, if we know anything about business history of the last 50 years.

therefore conservatives HAVE to be FOR network neutrality, if they ever want a FREE and FAIR MARKET in which people can actually have a chance of making money.

Re:fairness is crap (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021617)

This fairness thing is crap. Anytime I hear someone talk about it, and over the pst 15 years it has been mostly conservatives, at least with respect to monetary issues, I want to ask them, like, what are you, 10?

When I hear it, it's usually a liberal trying to rationalize punitive tax rates to fund social engineering projects like welfare.

Re:fairness is crap (3, Insightful)

Forbman (794277) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021745)

well, it's that or fund punitive social engineering projects like jails and prisons...

No, ISPs are the hogs (2, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021475)

for, if they had PAID their share of the bargain and INVESTED the HUGE profits they made from OVERSELLING bandwith for all those years, there would be NO issue about bandwidth anywhere. actually, there arent any issues about bandwidth at all. there is a SUPPOSED problem about 'internet breaking down due to bandwidth' in united states only for around 3 years now, and nothing happened.

considering all the pointers at hand, i have decided that the supposed 'an analyst with ties to the telecom industry' is either a non person that is invented to propagate a shitty corporate agenda, or a corporate shill to attempt justifying controlling internet, YET AGAIN.

you americans are WAY too much tolerant of this 'lobbying' thing. way too much.

Re:No, ISPs are the hogs (2, Interesting)

Fastolfe (1470) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022031)

...INVESTED the HUGE profits they made from OVERSELLING bandwith for all those years, there would be NO issue about bandwidth anywhere.

I don't think I agree with that. People will always find ways to use up their bandwidth. Yesterday, it was MP3s. Today it's DVDs. Tomorrow it'll be Bluray. Next week maybe it'll be always-on über-resolution live video streams. Give everyone gigabit connections and people will find a way to use that bandwidth.

The problem here isn't so much that the bandwidth is oversubscribed. You have to oversubscribe. The problem is that the key assumptions they made when deciding how much to oversubscribe by no longer hold true. People are finding ways of increasing their Internet utilization. Averages go up. ISPs have to reduce oversubscription, and pay for that new infrastructure somehow, or implement some form of QoS and piss off "net neutrality" advocates.

Google is not the hog (3, Informative)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021485)

The people who go to Google are the hogs. If your pricing model doesn't take into consideration your consumer's usage patterns, then FAIL.

What about the ISP's? (1)

trum4n (982031) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021497)

They are overcharging the customers. End of story. They are gluttonous swine. Adelphia and Comcast are perfect examples.

Re:What about the ISP's? (1)

Ne0v001 (1423531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022043)

Yes, they are, but a lot of customers don't know their asshole from their elbow when it comes to anything "on that there interwebbernet".

users bandwidth (1)

jmyers (208878) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021561)

I don't think Google is a "push" provider. Google does not use any bandwidth. It is the individuals consuming Google's services that are using the bandwidth and they are paying for it.

Re:users bandwidth (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021901)

Of course Google uses bandwidth, they use tons of it. Traffic doesn't just magically appear. They serve up search results and youtube videos and spider web sites, and that all uses their bandwidth as well as that of the customer.

Re:users bandwidth (1)

Fastolfe (1470) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022191)

Consumers pay for their consumer broadband connections. This includes the outbound costs (fetching a web page from Google) and inbound costs (the web page content).

Google pays for its connections as well, which includes more:

1. The inbound costs of your requests
2. The outbound costs of the content you requested
3. The outbound costs of requests against web sites (to crawl the web)
4. The inbound costs of those replies

Google is effectively downloading the entire Interweb, over and over. That's a lot of data. But every bit transferred is subject to some mutually-satisfactory business agreement. Every one of Google's network peers is fine transiting this data. If they weren't, they'd dissolve the agreement and/or start charging more.

Lets not forget (1)

chabotc (22496) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021583)

This is the same company who had a monopoly on the US phone network, and only allowed AT&T phones to connect to it (for 'network stability' reasons), and only allowed AT&T answering machines.. make a buck on the line, and then make a buck selling the stuff that connects to it; Sounds like their still trying to play the same game :)

There's an awesome response on the googleblog which makes a good read:
http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2008/12/response-to-phone-companies-google.html [blogspot.com]

Google Is Stealing Your Money (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021645)

They are a gigantic leach. Nothing but advertising, nothing creative from them. They haven't any real VALUE. All they do is suck and suck and suck your pennies. ADWORDS... ADSENSE... CRAP CRAP CRAP. They hit your site and eat your allotment. FUCKERS. WAKE THE HELL UP PEOPLE AND GET OFF GOOGLE!!!!!

"american taxpayer" (0, Flamebait)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021657)

the keyword. whenever conservative corporate shill tries to fool people into believing them, they use this keyword 'taxpayer'.

whoooooooooooo. taxpayer. they are gonna raise my taxes so i should oppose ! for i dont want to pay bucks from my pocket !!!

yet, it is a total display of STUPIDITY, since there are NO relation in between taxes and the fees isps charge their customers. its THEIR own greed, but they want to fool people to otherwise.

speaking of which, i would like to ask this expert, WHY was isp industry OVERSELLING the bandwidth they did NOT have for the last 15 years ?

i dont know about america, but in many places of the world, selling something you dont have is considered a FRAUD.

Translation: (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021667)

Google is making money, we want some of it, so if you help us get some of that money, we might give some of it to you consumers.. maybe.. if we're really nice generous companies.

Good for PC World (1)

davecb (6526) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021701)

It isn't every day that the glossies "get it", or even pay attention.

Next: the Wall Street Journal (;-))

--dave

Whiners (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021853)

Bla bla its not fair, bla bla bla.

This isn't worth even printing, let alone having a discussion over..

What am I missing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26021899)

Doesn't Google PAY for the bandwidth it uses? Don't Google's users PAY for the bandwidth they use? If not, why not, and if so how is this not just a blatant attempt to double-dip?

A Modest Proposal - Block Google (5, Insightful)

OpenYourEyes (563714) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021905)

So ISPs are losing money because of Google? Fine. They should do what Sprint did and block all access to Google. Let their customers use the "Internet" of the ISPs email and the ISPs news. Let's see how long that lasts.

ISPs need to wake up and realize that people don't want their email, don't want their home pages, don't want their internet "content", and almost universally don't want anything the ISP provides except a pipe to the outside world.

Re:A Modest Proposal - Block Google (1)

OpenYourEyes (563714) | more than 5 years ago | (#26021917)

Sorry, to clarify a point. "What Sprint did to a company they claim was costing them money (ie - cogent)."

so the story here is use of the internet? (1)

Dan667 (564390) | more than 5 years ago | (#26022065)

This is about the stupidest argument the ISP's have come up with yet. No one would use the internet if there was nothing on it. I bet an argument they have not considered is that they should be paying Google for their users having access to their services. Seems like the ISP's are getting a good deal as is.
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