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Re: Comcast using IPS to protect the Internet from their home user clients?
From: Harry Hoffman <hhoffman () ip-solutions net>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 2004 22:48:09 -0500

I'm sorry but I think that's a bunch of crap.

Enforcing the AUP towards the outside world is not enforcing the AUP. Comcast
has before and still does take the stand that they do not protect their End
Users. AUP's are used to protect the business from lawsuits by placing blame on
the customer (whether or not it was the customer's direct fault).
Otherwise the AUP would read "We will protect your from the other users on our
network by providing X, Y, and Z" instead of "If we find you doing certain
things that a) we aren't profiting on or b) are causing us to spend more on
infrastructure then you can expect us to go medieval on your ass!"

How can it be Comcast (or any other ISP) use an AUP to stifle communications to
the outside world yet still allow attacks within it's network from one customer
to another?

And it is indeed censorship! While the justification may be the safety of the
"net" in general aren't we currently dealing with that in our own country with
the Patriot Bill! It's an oft used method to scare everyone into submission.

Private company or not when a service becomes common-place it transcends what
the private company may or may not do. Consider things like the tel-co's,
privatized garbage collection or privatized public transit. Lots of times the
only difference is regulation/small subsidies from the govt. (which by the way
is the people!).

Don't forget that without the customer their wires aren't worth anything. The
unfortunate position is that the customers are tied into a service because of a
certain needs.

Quoting "Randal L. Schwartz" <merlyn () stonehenge com>:

*> But they also have the right/responsibility to enforce an AUP, and to
*> play "good net neighbor".
*> In this case, they are disconnecting users who are violating AUPs
*> or causing them to collectively no longer play "good net neighbor".
*> It's not censorship.  It's especially not "censorship" when it's a
*> private company (you can always take your business elsewhere).
*> "Freedom of the press" doesn't mean you get to use everyone's press
*> for free, or that everyone gets a free press.  Comcast is entirely
*> within their right to cut people off as clients or from the net or
*> both.  It's their wires.
*> --
*> Randal L. Schwartz - Stonehenge Consulting Services, Inc. - +1 503 777 0095
*> <merlyn () stonehenge com> <URL:http://www.stonehenge.com/merlyn/>
*> Perl/Unix/security consulting, Technical writing, Comedy, etc. etc.
*> See PerlTraining.Stonehenge.com for onsite and open-enrollment Perl
*> training!
*> _______________________________________________
*> Full-Disclosure - We believe in it.
*> Charter: http://lists.netsys.com/full-disclosure-charter.html

Harry Hoffman
hhoffman () ip-solutions net
1) Someone waiting in line to become "The Establishment"

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