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[ NNSquad ] Re: Do the Happy Dance people...
From: David Farber <dave () farber net>
Date: Sat, 30 Aug 2008 19:13:55 -0400



Begin forwarded message:

From: Rahul Tongia <tongia () cmu edu>
Date: August 30, 2008 1:07:25 PM EDT
To: nnsquad <nnsquad () nnsquad org>
Cc: Nick Weaver <nweaver () gmail com>
Subject: [ NNSquad ] Re: Do the Happy Dance people...

Let's do some basic math:

250 GB for $50 (say) = $0.20/GB.  "Reasonable" perhaps?

But not all of the costs are uplinking. In fact, they are a minority of costs (forget issues of "at the margin"); capex, CRM, etc. are big.

So, the challenge runs both ways. I do not mind a cap IF it is grounded in costs, that too competitively. By that token, I should be offered a 125 GB plan for significantly lower money. That is the dilemma. If they only make it a tad cheaper (say, $42.99), then that means 125 GB is $10 . So, going over by a similar amount should only lead to penalties of aobut $0.15/GB. They cannot have it both ways (rather, shouldn't!). [(I realize that few people use the cap, but there are counters to that)]

In reality, given (1) congestion is rather granular in time and space (esp. in cable networks) and (2) bandwidth costs are falling over time, sometimes dramatically, I can but hope that not only will be cap grow over time but the penalties for overusage should be transparently low and falling. Else, something is wrong with the fundamentals (i.e., pricing and costs have a wide disconnect).
Rahul

Nick Weaver wrote:
When you get an ISP to implement a policy that is transparent,
neutral, and only has anticompetitive effects where the bandwidth
needed for 8 hours a day of HD content is considered insufficient [1],
you should be doing a major happy dance.

Yet the response that this is some evil plot by Comcast is ridiculous.

If Comcast was interested in building a policy that IS
anticompetitive, the solution would be simple:  A soft cap at 50 GB,
and $1/GB beyond that.  Voila: that WOULD kill video over the net.
Easy.  Signed, sealed, and delivered.

And if your reaction to a benign policy like Comcast's is as stern as
your reaction to a true anticompetitive policy, they are just going to
write you off: "if you are going to do the time, might as well do the
crime."

All the other cable ISPs and wanna-be-cable company ISPs are going to
look at your reaction and go "these guys can't be reasoned with.  They
can't be satisfied.  So since they will always be angry, who cares
what they think?"

It makes your arguments far easier to counter when you can be painted
as extremists.


So do the happy dance!  The network neutrality types got an almost
pure victory in this case.  You WON this battle.

Don't go turning a tactical victory into a strategic defeat by failing
to acknowledge your victory.


[1] HD today, 720P, is 2.5 Mbps over Hulu.  As Hulu is the biggest
player in the HD game, this should be taken as a reasonable amount for
what HD content really costs for Internet delivery.  8 hours a day is
a LOT of HDTV.

 [ Today's 2.5 Mbps streaming Hulu is not (as far as I'm concerned)
   true HD quality vis-a-vis broadcast HD.  Nor should subscribers
   be constrained to real-time streaming rates when an obviously
   more powerful model is faster-than-real-time delivery of very
   high quality content to local staging (e.g. local disk)
   facilities.  Not only does local staging allow for a more
   responsive interface, but permits off-peak transfers to be
   handled in a much more effective manner.  Off peak transfers are
   available to be viewed at the consumer's convenience (during
   prime time, if desired) without adding to peak traffic loads).

   If ISPs should decide -- as per your speculation -- that they
   can just "ignore" the analysis of those who question various of
   their (often proprietary) network management decisions, they do
   so at an ever increasing peril of additional and continuing
   regulatory and legislative interventions.

      -- Lauren Weinstein
         NNSquad Moderator ]







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