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First European Provider To Break Net Neutrality

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the deliver-what-was-paid-for dept.

The Internet 343

Rik van der Kroon writes "Major Dutch cable provider UPC has introduced a new network management system which, from noon to midnight, for certain services and providers, caps users' bandwidth at 1/3rd of their nominal bandwidth (Google translation; Dutch original here). After the consumer front for cable providers in The Netherlands received many complaints about network problems and slow speeds, UPC decided to take this as an excuse to introduce their new 'network management' protocol which slows down a large amount of traffic. All protocols but HTTP are capped to 1/3 speed, and within the HTTP realm some Web sites and services that use lots of upstream bandwidth are capped as well. So far UPC is hiding behind the usual excuse: 'We are protecting all the users against the 1% of the user base who abuse our network.'"

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343 comments

What they mean: (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29165893)

'We are protecting all the users against the 1% of the user base who use our network.'

Re:What they mean: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166019)

No, they mean that they are making more money by not paying as much for bandwidth.

Re:What they mean: (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166023)

In Belgium, UPS which was recently bought by Telenet (both UPC Holland and Telenet Belgium are in fact owned by Liberty Global - check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberty_Global [wikipedia.org] ) have been doing this for years now. They provide 25Mbps downstream and 1.25Mbps upstream but most of the time the downstream is capped to what appeared indeed to me as 1/3 of the advertised speed. I had this doubt for quite some time now and this article only confirms it. Are there other users from Belgium who could confirm that? Anonymous for obvious reasons.

Re:What they mean: (1)

TheCowSaysMooNotBoo (997535) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166175)

well, in 2007 some customers complained [www.tik.be] , and later [www.tik.be] it was confirmed (search for "capping", both links are Dutch). However, Telenet isn't talking about it. I wouldn't be surprised if they did however.

Re:What they mean: (4, Interesting)

Romancer (19668) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166065)

Kinda like the old overbooking of flights.

I used to see the excuse:

We overbook our flights to save you money because some poeple don't show. So for that 1% that hurt our business we have to lie and sell you a service that we cannot possibly deliver on.

Just like the ISPs that overbook their network by selling a service that they could never deliver if all the poeple decided to show up at once and try and use their tier of 10/1.5 or whatever they pay for every month.

So the bet that not everybody will use the service doesn't pay off when some people regularly try and use what they have purchased. They get turned away at the gate or get 1/3rd of the service they paid for or even just get cut off. All for paying for a service and thinking that they have a right to use it.

Re:What they mean: (4, Insightful)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166379)

If they overbook your flight they give your money back. If ISPs paid back w/e % you had taken away we'd see less complaints.

Re:What they mean: (1)

genner (694963) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166489)

If they overbook your flight they give your money back. If ISPs paid back w/e % you had taken away we'd see less complaints.

or they book you first class on the next flight.

Re:What they mean: (2, Interesting)

slamb (119285) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166447)

I don't think that's accurate. For starters, your description of the airline's policy is wrong:

We overbook our flights to save you money because some poeple don't show. So for that 1% that hurt our business we have to lie and sell you a service that we cannot possibly deliver on.

They sold the tickets to those 1% and get the money whether they show up or not. A more accurate statement would be "we overbook our flights to (save you money and/or make more profit) because we can - 1% of people don't show up, and we can get paid twice for those seats if we lie and sell you a service that we cannot possibly deliver on.

Second, overbooking doesn't make the top 10 list of things that airlines do to make people mad. Why? They ask for volunteers and offer incentives to be bumped. If no one jumps, they increase the incentive. Even on a small plane that's the last chance to get home before Christmas, someone will volunteer once their price is reached. I would be pissed if I were involuntarily bumped, but so far they've been smart enough to make that not happen.

In contrast, this ISP is saying that they sold 3X as much bandwidth as they should have, and they are just not going to deliver with no compensation. WTF? How is that possibly acceptable?

Re:What they mean: (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166081)

What I find funny is if my ISP did that, capped stuff to 1/3rd the speed... It'd still be twice as fast as the DSL service I paid the same price for a little while ago.

Re:What they mean: (1)

dmartine40 (1571035) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166231)

I'd go back to the DSL if my ISP did that, even if it meant slower connection. I do not buy the "we're protecting you from the bad guys by cutting back our service" nonsense. I really would not find anything funny about it.

Re:What they mean: (3, Insightful)

Delwin (599872) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166297)

That's why I'm glad that my cable company is quite upfront: They tell you not only what speed but how much bandwidth (in GB/Mo) you have. If you go over that they can and will lower your speed to something that allows only web browsing.

The fact that they told me that up front (and I chose my plan based on my own usage history) makes me quite content even with the caps.

Re:What they mean: (3, Interesting)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166257)

Funny that. Is the 1% P2P users, or is the the new breed of people watching video's online? If I remember the last graph that Teksavvy tossed out of their current breakdown of net traffic, people watching streaming media of all types accounted for around 50% of their net traffic.

Re:What they mean: (-1, Troll)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166395)

It's videos, not video's. If you're old enough to be interested in slashdot, you should have learned this in 3rd grade. Your schools failed you and you should shame your parents for not correcting you.
 
/grammar nazi

Re:What they mean: (-1, Offtopic)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166473)

My heart bleeds. Would you care to take offence to offence as well? Or would you like me to use another form of one of the 35 different dialects of English?

Re:What they mean: (1)

Ambiguous Coward (205751) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166493)

its kind've irrelivant too this discusion, dont' you think.

You dam grammer/spelling/e.t.c. nazzies.

Re:What they mean: (1)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166511)

They're aiming for douchebag of the week award. To think, it's only Sunday. Amazing how time flies when you're having fun, smiling, singing, and imaging what the world would be like without idiots.

More intelligent ways (1, Insightful)

tsa (15680) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165901)

There must be more intelligent ways of handling this. For instance, someone who downloads more than so many GB a day can be throttled or capped individually. That shouldn't be too hard, I think.

Re:More intelligent ways (1)

Denihil (1208200) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165973)

That's a great idea, if the idea in place wasn't merely a front to cap torrent networks.

Re:More intelligent ways (2, Interesting)

stonedcat (80201) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166169)

What's to stop me from using port 80 for things other than http?
Not a god damn thing that's what.

Not capping, investing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166049)

Instead of finding bad excuses for bad/no investments in network-installation, they should invest in their infrastructure. However, I assume they want to do this so network-based TV or radio streaming are throttled as well, because they compete with their primary businesses. It is time for the EU to kick those infrastructure guy's a**** so they remember what their job is. Business is not their (for the public/people) to make as much money as possible, it is there to fulfill their dedicated role in a society. Therefore they have to provide a solvent infrastructure for all usages over their network.

BTW: If they sell a 6000 kb/s down and 512 kb/s up = 536 GiB a day = 1.6 TiB per month. If they cannot deliver the stuff they sold me, then I can charge them for this. It is not misuse of a network to use it in its technical margins. If they are only willing to sell special quotas then they should do so.

Re:Not capping, investing (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166235)

They actually have decent infrastructure.

The problem is that recently UPC started selling up to 120mbps (EUR 70,- per month) connections in a market were nobody can even come close to that. ADSL maxes out at 20mbps. In their advertisements they make that speed a issue.

In a market like this you can expect the kind of customers you draw in with an offer like this are the ones who actually want to use that speed. Knowing that, making such an offer anyway and then apply bandwidth throttling is nothing short of fraud.

Re:Not capping, investing (5, Insightful)

ImYourVirus (1443523) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166445)

They want to cap me to 1/3, then I'm only going to pay 1/3 of my bill. Sure they want to blame (illegal) file sharing for the increase, but that's not the only thing that uses large amounts of bandwidth.

How about sharing homemade pictures, movies, music, free games, software, etc, not to mention playing games, uploading other types of files not via http, how about ftp, ssh, some other network, etc...

Some of the several games I play the maps can be 50 megs or bigger, the same goes with patches, hell I've seen some patches that are bigger than a couple hundred megs, oh and what about demo's and such, not to mention getting full games, like through say steam or some other provider, a demo I got was like 600 megs, and several full games are easily greater than 2 gigs, most being around 4 gigs or so, so gaming is easily an excuse (not that you should need one in the first place) for using high amounts of bandwidth and transfer.

At least they aren't complete idiots from what I read and don't throttle http, because then how am I supposed to watch my 10,000 youtube videos per day?

Oh and don't get me started on them investing in a better infrastructure, no no that'd cut into their precious bonus's to much, that's one reason right there that most if not all suits (read executives) will ever have any respect from me, because to them it's all about their bonus's and the grunts (read anyone below them) are only fodder for their meat grinders.

Re:More intelligent ways (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166087)

I download a TON of stuff. I would happily accept a speed throttle.

Of course if they charge you by gigabyte over the cap they make more money than just throttling you.

Re:More intelligent ways (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166135)

More than how many a day do you propose? My monthly limit from UPC is 100GB and since I receive the bill, I would like to use the allowed traffic at the advertised speed I am paying for.

Re:More intelligent ways (1)

ImYourVirus (1443523) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166353)

Well if they only give you 100gb and charge you more for over, then why the hell would they want to throttle you, if anything they'd want to give you a faster connection to make you more likely to go over and thus make for money for them. This kind of business strategy is shite, thankfully in my area things are opening up and you have more choices to pick from who you want to be with, though if they all do it then you don't really get a choice, but it's unlikely they'd all try to do it at the same time.

Hopefully one of these days soon they'll (providers) figure out that were not fodder for their meat grinders, just so they can make more money (read bonus's) when a customer has choices and you treat them wrong, they'll usually go somewhere else, I know I would. Just my 2 cents.

Re:More intelligent ways (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166457)

I stopped looking for logic in Benelux companies long time ago. Unfortunately I mean all of them.

Sure (1)

drhamad (868567) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166267)

Sure, but /. gets all upset when Comcast/etc does that as well. Many ISP's either do that or have done that - and everyone gets pissed every time.

Re:Sure (1)

dmartine40 (1571035) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166349)

We get pissed because we - as consumers - have this funny notion that we're entitled to high-speed internet when our ISP advertises and promises to deliver it. Now if it really is one percent of the users who abuse it, go after them, not everyone else. Now, if you go up to any of the consumers of these services, they'll tell you just like I am that they/we are not abusing the service. But let's be honest, those who do probably have a good idea they are offending. And I'm pretty sure the ISP has some way to determine where all the bandwidth is going.

Re:Sure (1)

drhamad (868567) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166419)

No, /. (and most net-savvy user websites) gets pissy when they go after the 1% because after all, they agreed to X Mbps, they should get to use that 100% of the time.

Whether that argument is right or wrong, the two situations combined (the one in this article and the one I'm laying out in this post) equate to a catch 22 for the ISP. The ISP's only remaining choice is to drastically lower promised speeds, but that's a marketing disaster, and really a technical one as well, since most people do sometimes use the top speeds, but don't do so regularly - makes them happy to have it available when needed though.

First? really? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29165903)

Tiscali have been doing this for yonks

I use UPC (2, Interesting)

bhima (46039) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165919)

I use UPC in Austria. I don't think this is anything new. They been fucking with my bandwidth for ages.

Re:I use UPC (1)

Nick_13ro (1099641) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166329)

I use UPC in Austria. I don't think this is anything new. They been fucking with my bandwidth for ages.

Here too. They're the worst ISP in Romania. Practically nobody else does this here. If they did they'd end up with just as few clients as UPC has for internet access (and they have quite an extensive infrastructure).

Re:I use UPC (1)

Elbart (1233584) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166389)

Austrian UPC-Victim here, too. No proper usage of anything not-http since March. It's a disgrace.

You use that word... (5, Insightful)

jmknsd (1184359) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165921)

I thought Net Neutrality was to prevent ISPs from filtering and controlling content, not protocols and speeds?

Re:You use that word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29165967)

Net Neutrality means that the ISP doesn't filter or even hinder any packet, regardless of protocol, source, destination, or contents.

Re:You use that word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29165971)

I thought Net Neutrality was to prevent ISPs from filtering and controlling content, not protocols and speeds?

It seems more and more people are just lumping everything they don't like from ISPs into the term Net Neutrality, perhaps because it's becoming a buzz word amoung techies. To my mind, your definition is the correct one, but I could be wrong.

Re:You use that word... (2, Informative)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166015)

Definition of: Net neutrality (NETwork neutrality) A level playing field for Internet transport. It refers to the absence of restrictions or priorities placed on the type of content carried over the Internet by the carriers and ISPs that run the major backbones. It states that all traffic be treated equally; that packets are delivered on a first-come, first-served basis regardless from where they originated or to where they are destined.

From http://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia_term/0,2542,t=Net+neutrality&i=55962,00.asp [pcmag.com] (yes, I know I probably could have found a better site, but didn't feel like Wikipedia would have enough credibility for this AC). This violates net neutrality because HTTP is being favored over FTP, P2P, and a whole host of other protocols.

Re:You use that word... (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166075)

But that definition talks about major backbones, about enforcing such rules on wider scale; it doesn't fit this scenario, sorta fits to what jmknsd says.

Yeah, I think he's right - while not a correct behavior, let us not put this into "net neutrality" bag. If only because it trivialises the issue of net neutrality to "those damn leechers soaking everybody's bandwidth" (if you think about it, those pushing for "real" net neutrality breaches would very much like that...)

Re:You use that word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166195)

This violates net neutrality because HTTP is being favored over FTP, P2P, and a whole host of other protocols.

No, it doesn't. Net Neutrality deals with the origin and destination, not the protocol. An example of violating Net Neutrality principals would be an ISP blocking access to YouTube unless an additional $5/month service fee is charged.

Re:You use that word... (3, Interesting)

avilliers (1158273) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166055)

Technically, "net neutrality" refers to the traffic being completely agnostic about what a packet is--phone, video, http, etc.

Most of the insidious scenarios painted by the loss of neutrality do relate to content filtering--ie, Comcast makes a deal with Amazon and gimps the connections to, say, Powell's dodgy enough customers just think Amazon is the place to shop.

If it's really as described in this case, for bandwidth management, I personally don't think it's all that scary. There are issues about transparency, and for some users this might mean their ISP isn't providing sufficient bandwidth anymore. But IMHO it's not automatically different than simple changing the maximum bandwidth available to a customer.

On the other hand, if a AT&T gimped VOIP to knock Skype out of business, or Comcast filtered video so you needed their cable services, you could get filtering-by-protocol that was just about as evil as the content filtering.

Re:You use that word... (2, Insightful)

Dragonslicer (991472) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166597)

Technically, "net neutrality" refers to the traffic being completely agnostic about what a packet is--phone, video, http, etc.

No, it absolutely does not. Net Neutrality only refers to filtering or throttling based on source or destination. Prioritizing VoIP traffic over BitTorrent traffic is not a Net Neutrality issue. Throttling Vonage's VoIP traffic to make your ISP's VoIP service more attractive is a Net Neutrality issue.

In unrelated news... (5, Informative)

lalena (1221394) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165923)

Torrents updated to now support P2P over HTTP.

Re:In unrelated news... (4, Insightful)

Renraku (518261) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166017)

It's really not a joke, I suspect something like this will happen.

The only way they'll be able to completely stop torrents and warez downloading would be to cut off internet access entirely.

Never underestimate nerds who want to fix something, even if they have to resort to TCP/IP over Carrier Pigeon.

Carrier Pigeon? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166067)

We would prefer something involving swallows, and coconuts. Thank you.

Re:In unrelated news... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166545)

I think your ACK just shat on my car.

IT'S MADONNA'S BIRTHDAY TODAY! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166039)

Madonna is 51!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MADONNA!

I made it through the wilderness
Somehow I made it through
Didn't know how lost I was
Until I found you

I was beat incomplete
Id been had, I was sad and blue
But you made me feel
Yeah, you made me feel
Shiny and new

Chorus:

Like a virgin
Touched for the very first time
Like a virgin
When your heart beats (after first time, with your heartbeat)
Next to mine

Gonna give you all my love, boy
My fear is fading fast
Been saving it all for you
cause only love can last

You're so fine and you're mine
Make me strong, yeah you make me bold
Oh your love thawed out
Yeah, your love thawed out
What was scared and cold

MADONNA IS THE BEST!

Where Can I learn About This (1)

wizzerking (1036902) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166119)

Where Can I learn about bit Torrent using Http ?

Re:Where Can I learn About This (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166519)

AFAIK There is no torrent client out there that mimics the HTTP protocol (yet?). Of course there is nothing stopping you from setting the port for incoming connections to port 80 (or 8080, or 21, 23, etc http://www.iana.org/assignments/port-numbers [iana.org] ). This trick works for some ISPs but fails for others.

Re:In unrelated news... (1)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166321)

Might as well. It seems to me, their real problem is they oversold their bandwidth, and the proper thing to do is to reprice bandwidth usage. Stop bullshitting the customers with promise of bandwidth they can't deliver.

Yeah, that would suck in marketing aspect. Again might as well. If a company actually uttered a truth, it just might shock some of us into death by heart attack.

There's got to be a better way (2, Insightful)

Adrian Lopez (2615) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165939)

Couldn't they instead perform a kind of load-balancing based on the actual bandwidth being consumed by each customer, regardless of protocol or destination? As far as I'm concerned, that's the only way to do QOS without violating the principle of network neutrality.

Re:There's got to be a better way (1)

anarche (1525323) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166053)

Limit the number of packets by IP address?? Since the IP address of the computer shouldn't be changing in the middle of a session that could be tracked. The implementing of it may slow the network as a whole.

Of course spoofing gets around this..

Re:There's got to be a better way (1)

Otterley (29945) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166287)

Or, they could just charge by the bit, like every other utility (water, gas, electricity).

Re:There's got to be a better way (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166453)

That would make common applications prohibitively expensive and leave the network mostly unused while still not avoiding congestion at peak times. Unlike with "classic" utilities, there is no additional cost if you use the network off-peak, because there is no scarce resource that needs to be acquired and provided to the consumer. A per-megabyte cost is a bad fit for the cost structure of computer networks. Inter-ISP accounting often uses a metric called the "95th percentile", but good luck marketing something like that to ordinary users.

Argentinian ISPs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29165941)

Argentinian ISPs do this every fucking day since forever.

You never get the full bandwidth you pay for.

We enjoy our non-existent market.

Re:Argentinian ISPs (-1, Troll)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165979)

However, if you read the title you will find that this is about Europe, Argentina is not in Europe. Argentina is in South America which isn't in even in the same hemisphere as Europe.

Re:Argentinian ISPs (1, Troll)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166101)

Was that really necessary? Yes, the story is about Europe, but has clearly been going on elsewhere for some time, but nobody cared, but now it's Europe everyones panties are in a bunch.

Re:Argentinian ISPs (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166151)

I'd say the primary reason to get things like that up in the media is the war over the "public meaning" of things. For example, I think in my country the consumer protection agency would be all over them and say "Well, if you're delivering Internet subscription at 1/3rd the speed, you have to advertise it as such. You can't say 'up to' but only on specific protocols, sites and on friday the 13th under a full moon". If they have to instead say "2Mbit Internet, up to 6Mbit on selected websites" it'll pretty much kill the advantage of promising something you're not delivering.

And I already wanted to go to another ISP (2, Insightful)

isama (1537121) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165959)

But it's a one year contract wich ends in a few months goddamn! a well, let's look for a new isp.

Move along now, nothing to see here!

Re:And I already wanted to go to another ISP (1)

dvice_null (981029) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166027)

Are you sure contract can hold you, considering that it probably mentions also speed, which has now changed?

Re:And I already wanted to go to another ISP (1)

anyGould (1295481) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166089)

Most likely the contract, if it even mentions speed, will use the "up to" wording that all the advertising does. It lets them put a big honkin' number in front of you, while disclaiming any responsibility to actually reach within a county mile of that standard.

It's a pity that it doesn't fall under false advertising - while technically true, it's completely useless information for the consumer.

Re:And I already wanted to go to another ISP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166443)

will use the "up to" wording that all the advertising does.

Yeah or small print saying "actual speeds may vary".

I'd like consumers to start paying them "up to" the price they quoted for the connection.
"Actual amount may vary"

Re:And I already wanted to go to another ISP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166547)

change of contract details is a valid reason for contract termination in the Netherlands!

Re:And I already wanted to go to another ISP (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166113)

You need a contract for internet access? Jesus. I can just call my ISP and say "Shove it. Cheers!"

Nothing new.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29165977)

UPC has been fucking with the network speeds in The Netherlands for years. I left UPC 5 years ago for the Dutch ISP XS4ALL because of this..

A little cultural understanding here please? (3, Funny)

Vinegar Joe (998110) | more than 4 years ago | (#29165991)

After all, where did the term "going Dutch" come from?

Re:A little cultural understanding here please? (2, Insightful)

binkzz (779594) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166167)

Actually, UPC is an American company, and they don't have a very good name in Holland for reasons such as this one.

Re:A little cultural understanding here please? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166227)

It is mainly the English that gave the term 'Dutch' a negative connotation (due to the Anglo-Dutch wars), e.g. Dutch Courage.

trying to bring fun into this talk (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166009)

Huh ?
A Dutch provider messes with the network ?
What are they smoking ?

'We are protecting all the users against the 1% o (1)

Amarantine (1100187) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166033)

There used to be a time were Dutch providers had a download limit, but one by one they changed this to a FUP.

I can understand them doing this from a commercial point of view (a competitor's FUP sounds more interesting to potential customers than their own hard limit), but if you ask me, all a FUP does is attract people you don't want on your network, for exactly this reason.

Re: 'We are protecting all the users against the 1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166109)

FUP works, I'd say.

Well I mean, come on, if ten people leech all day and you and 989 others can't read slashdot anymore because of that. Obviously, it costs way too much money to upgrade the network for those 10 people. Then 990 people pay extra for those 10 people. That's not fair, is it?

Not filtering by destination (2, Interesting)

Alain Williams (2972) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166037)

At least they don't seem to be filtering by destination ... eg Disney paid something so they get priority of their bandwidth.

I don't like filtering by protocol: I would get pissed off if my ssh sessions were slowed down.

Re:Not filtering by destination (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166289)

I'm not going to RTFA, but FTFS:
"and within the HTTP realm some Web sites and services that use lots of upstream bandwidth are capped as well."

You know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166095)

Maybe there's something wrong with your infrastructure if 1% of your userbase can cripple it.

First EU provider? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166105)

Isn't this what plus.net [plus.net] has openly been [plus.net] doing sucessfully for a few years now

I *used* to be UPC customer (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166107)

In the short time that I've been UPC customer, I have been thoroughly dissatisfied with their service. Too many outages, and a paid helpdesk who weren't competent enough to do anything but reading from scripts. Quite the difference from when I was with XS4all- slightly more expensive, but what a difference. Competent people there (met them at HIP back in '97). Never needed the helpdesk as the connection *just worked*. Always. Now that I live abroad, I've got similar experiences. Goodbye BT- I hope you've learned that throttling my bandwidth by 95% isn't the way to go. Vote with your wallet, people- reward good customer service.

yes! 74 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166123)

BSD had become cuntwip3s Jor3an achievements that Distro is done Here the numbers. The and sling or table All parties it's Whether you of reality. Keep

"Protecting" everyone from the one percent... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166131)

Hmmm. Sounds like a very democratic solution to the problem.

Christiane (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166143)

The German cable provider Kabel Deutschland has been limiting Bittorrent traffic during the evening hours for more than two years now. See, for example, http://www.heise.de/newsticker/Kabel-Deutschland-bremst-Tauschboersennutzer--/meldung/104734 .

No mistranslation of item 2) (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166165)

In case any of you were wondering, Google did not mistranslate step 2). They really do market this as a "speed improvement" for their customers:

2) These adjustments significantly increase the speed of the higher subscriptions when using newsgroups. According to our statistics, this affects around 1% of our customers who fanatically use newsgroups and p2p

In other words, only 1% of their users fully utilize the bandwidth that they pay for, and that's still more than UPC thinks is acceptable.

And to make matters worse, not only the highest plans are limited: also the 30/16/12Mbit links now offer only 1/3 of their previous speeds, and apparently some protocols (like FTP and Soulseek) only reach modem speeds (7kB/s).

The toobz aren't full (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166181)

Once again an ISP wants to protect the rest of us from those who "abuse" the network. Translation = those who actually use what they pay for. Unlimited access at the purchased speed. That's not abuse. It's using what you paid for. What people tend to forget is that all of the bullshit about needing to manage the bandwidth to protect the rest of us is just that. Bullshit. A significant percentage of the fiber already laid is dark. No one is sending any data over it. Why? Because the ISPs don't want to spend the money to buy the routers to light it up. It's easier to keep charging us sheep more and more money for a smaller and smaller slice of the pie.

NOT the first European ISP to break net neutrality (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166189)

This is NOT the first European provider to break net neutrality!

"Kabel Deutschland" (provides Internet over cable only) in Germany is doing similar things for some time already!

Mo-Fr they block Bittorent and other P2P traffic between 6 p.m. and midnight; on weekends, the whole day.

"Block" is not the right word - they make it slow to a crawl so that's nearly unusable.

Re:NOT the first European ISP to break net neutral (1)

JackassJedi (1263412) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166277)

Yes, this is true. I am a customer of Kabel Deutschland, and in the past, they've already admitted to doing it, but have now taken back that statement. However, there is clear evidence when using traffic monitoring that this is actually taking place. Sources (in German): http://www.klamm.de/partner/unter_news.php?l_id=5&news_id=35204&a_datum=20.07.2009 [klamm.de] http://www.onlinekosten.de/forum/showthread.php?t=121367 [onlinekosten.de]

Soo they oversell their network (1)

future assassin (639396) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166307)

blame it on the magic 1% user and then punish their other customers by capping their bandwidth.

Re:Soo they oversell their network (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166431)

It's not a punishment if you don't actually commit the offense (in this case, using more than your alloted bandwidth), or rather, even come close to committing the offense. Most people won't notice at all. They're not being punished. It'd be like saying that we're currently punishing you for murder. Clearly, we're not, as you're a freeman, since you haven't committed murder (or have just eluded capture).

The reason ./ has such outcry over this is that a majority of people here download all sorts of stuff (large amounts of which are likely illegal) and WILL be affected by this. Worse than losing their ability to download this material is the attention (and investigations) violations will bring.

Let the remuneration equal the service delivered. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166367)

All users of UPC should send in two thirds of the money requested on their monthly bill.

That should put an end to the ripoff practices of that ISP fairly quickly.

Dutch ISP mini-review (1)

operator_error (1363139) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166369)

Compared to the US, I guess we're doing better, but these are my options as I currently see them in Amsterdam.

Everytime I change ISPs, it is to get more bandwidth for less cost. I'm just finishing a ADSL 2 year contract with Tele2 and was seriously considering UPC. Still am, but this news sucks. UPC also has extraordinarily bad customer service. Bad in a legendary way.

There are loads of ADSL ISPs offering 20mb down/ 1up, with phone & TV for 30 euros a month. UPC uses the city coax network and DOCSIS 3.0 I think, (claiming fiber, which is true i guess considering their backbone, but still). I was thinking of buying 60mb down/ 6up with TV and phone for 50 euros a month until this news. There is no other ISP using the higher bandwidth coax. Local ADSL seems to have peaked at 20 mbs down.

These lengthy contracts and the commitment DOES suck. At least once the 1-2 year period is over, it is possible to quit with a month or so notice.

FWIW, XS4all tries to compete based on privacy and is fairly libertarian regarding internet issues, but the price is also much higher. Since I'm mostly talking to our own servers, I'd rather buy internet in bulk.

http://se.tele2.nl/ [tele2.nl]
http://www.upc.nl/totaalpakketten/ [www.upc.nl]
http://www.xs4all.nl/allediensten/toegang/adslbellen/ [xs4all.nl] (note they 'give free' mobile internet for a year, then you gotta pay for that 2nd service, ouch!)

I really want more bandwidth upstream than 1mbs, but I really dislike UPC. I would really like to know if SSH is being throttled, the article isn't entirely clear about this.

Re:Dutch ISP mini-review (1)

operator_error (1363139) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166405)

Forgot to mention, real-life speeds:

While I pay for 20 mps down, I'm lucky to get 10 mbs down. Usually around 7.5 mps download is average, and about .6 mps up. This is with Tele2 ADSL, but I think all Dutch ADSL is the same now.

Any other consumers out there willing to compare? At least ADSL can be bought cheap here.

Re:Dutch ISP mini-review (1)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166543)

Sounds like your ISP is overselling its bandwidth.

In the UK it's the same sort of situation.. you can get up to 24Mbps* (theoretically.. most people get around 16 due to distance from the exchange) but not all ISPs are equal. There are some *really* cheap deals out there eg. £9.99 'unlimited' (subject to limits**), but if you go with such an ISP be prepared to deal with nonexistant customer support, huge latency and massive slowdowns especially in the evenings. Alternatively you can go with a more pricy ISP and pay £30ish but get excellent support and able to download at your sync rate at all times.

I have dual lines bonded so I'm not the typical user.. I pay £40 per month for that (my ISP throws in as many IPs as I can justify and routed ipv6 for that price as well).

* I'm excluding the 20% of people not on LLU exchanges here - out in the sticks you have 8Mb only.
** In this country Unlimited means the same as Limited.

Re:Dutch ISP mini-review (2, Insightful)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166551)

60 down and 1 up is a joke. There is no way that you are going to be able to effective use much more than 10 mbps down with only 1 mbps up.

And since when did net neutrality have anything to do with traffic shaping? Net neutrality is when all destinations are treated equally, not all protocols.

If you are on a net that has both tcp and udp traffic (the entire internet) you are already making protocol choices.

Brownnets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29166377)

What can Google NOT do?
I love my toilet 3

Nobody has control over the shit that goes through there, besides sewage treatment, and they don't care either way.

True, the bandwidth isn't the HIGHEST, but we'll get the shit we want, regardless.

Sorry for the horrible puns.

It's not strictly the first one. (2, Informative)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166407)

I know from internal sources*, that at the beginning to middle of the decade, Jubii was so successful in Denmark, that they were able to put the following rule on the providers:
Either you give us money, or your users won't be able to access our site.

Of course this was not strictly caused by the providers, but it was certainly not neutral.
___
* I don't think that it was ever a secret. (For obvious reasons.)

1. Illegal, 2. Breach of contract (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166455)

If I buy a DSL 6000 line with a flat-rate, I expect to get it. Period. No, I don't care for any "up to" clauses or "extreme traffic capping". People are expecting to get those 6000 kb/s and no limitations, they know it, and they specifically use that expectation to get you as a client. It's a scam, and they know it. Period.

The nice thing is, that now, you can end the contract, because they changed the terms. They can't simply change things afterwards, without you accepting them.

So goodbye UPC. See you in bankruptcy.

That does not make sense (1)

Orion Blastar (457579) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166509)

All protocols but HTTP are capped to 1/3 speed, and within the HTTP realm some Web sites and services that use lots of upstream bandwidth are capped as well. So far UPC is hiding behind the usual excuse: 'We are protecting all the users against the 1% of the user base who abuse our network.'"

Well IMAP, SMTP and POP3 are not HTTP protocols, nor is IRC, or IM programs, or video game clients like Wow etc. I also assume Google Earth will be slower as well as Antivirus programs doing updates will be slower and OS updates will be slower as well. Forget VPN connections, they will be slow as well, so people working at home will suffer while what they do is 100% legal and required for their job.

This is a really stupid move and it will slow down more than just P2P File Sharing, which clever Dutch users will set the BitTorrent open ports to port 80 to avoid the slowdown and get around it anyway.

I think there are more than 1% of the users who use file sharing, and file sharing use is not always illegal, free and open source torrents for Linux distros are downloaded via BitTorrent, but now will be slowed. Musical Artists that are independent and submit FLOSS format of their recordings which were legal would be slowed down as well.

No longer Internet Service Providers (1)

thomasdz (178114) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166537)

Some day, in the not to distant future, we will all be paying money to our HSP (HTTP Service Provider), FSP (FTP Service Provider), VSP (VPN-protocol Service Provider), etc. etc.
If I want to PING somewhere, well I guess I'll just have to open up an account with my neighborhood ISP *ICMP* Service Provider! :-)

Yes, I know the difference between "to" and "too" (1)

thomasdz (178114) | more than 4 years ago | (#29166567)

notice to Slashdot grammer nazis:
yeah, I noticed that I spelled "too" with only one "o" as soon as I hit submit...so sue me... or, better yet, bring it up with the local OSP (letter "O" service provider)

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