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Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users
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Old 16-12-2008, 12:29   #1
bywater
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Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Just having read this and a bit alarmed. What will this mean to my internet connection ? I like to download and watch programs from 4OD and BBC and various other streaming media which I think uses P2P technology. I also have VOIP vonage service. Will these restrictions effect the quality of any of the services I have. What is the point of super fast broadband if the only thing you can do on it is read and visit web pages and the rest of the traffic is being slowed down in someway. Its really is pathetic and taking the **** to offer fast broadband and then restrict your the speed of the traffic to the things you use it for.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12...in_bittorrent/



Moderator Edit:
This story has now been denied by Virgin Media PR: http://blog.wired.com/27bstroke6/200...-media-de.html
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Old 16-12-2008, 12:42   #2
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Maybe its not all bad:

Quote:
Asked why the firm would ditch its system of choosing who to throttle based on their total usage, in favour of singling out BitTorrent, Berkett said: "I think it's an issue of fairness."
The end of STM?
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Old 16-12-2008, 12:45   #3
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

I wouldn't worry yet. Given that there is limited bandwidth available (for whatever reason) then it's better to reserve some for latency-critical (VOIP) and bandwidth-critical (on-demand) traffic.

Whether VM consider Vonage and BBC/4OD to be worthy of protection is another matter, but it seems likely that they'll prefer them to non-commercial torrents.

When VM release the full details (and I hope they will), the arguments can start in earnest.
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Old 16-12-2008, 12:49   #4
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Commercial suicide.
Retentions are going to be busy.
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Old 16-12-2008, 12:56   #5
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Only problem with this is it also effects legal torrents as well, Linux distro's use this method to distribute the various releases. There are also completely legal torrent websites that distribute unknown bands songs, as well as freeware. As this is a way for some of these small bands to eventually break in to the main market, i can see some strong opposition to this.
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Old 16-12-2008, 12:59   #6
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Quote:
Originally Posted by bywater View Post
Just having read this and a bit alarmed. What will this mean to my internet connection ? I like to download and watch programs from 4OD and BBC and various other streaming media which I think uses P2P technology. I also have VOIP vonage service. Will these restrictions effect the quality of any of the services I have. What is the point of super fast broadband if the only thing you can do on it is read and visit web pages and the rest of the traffic is being slowed down in someway. Its really is pathetic and taking the **** to offer fast broadband and then restrict your the speed of the traffic to the things you use it for.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/12...in_bittorrent/

4OD, BBC and "other streaming media" does not use bittorrent. Neither does Vonage VOIP (or any other VOIP for that matter).

None of the things you do are likely to be restricted, so what this means for your internet connection is that your speed and quality of service will improve and go up. In theory.

Assuming that throttling will replace STM rather than be applied on top of it, I'm actually rather in favour of this.
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Old 16-12-2008, 13:02   #7
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Quote:
Originally Posted by qasdfdsaq View Post
4OD, BBC and "other streaming media" does not use bittorrent. Neither does Vonage VOIP (or any other VOIP for that matter).
4OD and Iplayer don't use Bittorrent, but if you use the download client, rather than the web based catch up service, they *do* use P2P, so Virgin could very well "manage" them..
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Old 16-12-2008, 13:15   #8
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

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Originally Posted by hoohim View Post
Commercial suicide.
Retentions are going to be busy.
Except it's not.

If it was all the other ISPs that employ traffic shaping (and there are many) would have gone bump by now. Strangely they haven't, why is that?

Traffic shaping makes perfect sense when you're forced to oversell capacity to even break even (people seriously underestimate how cheap it is to provide bandwidth to end users). If you don't want shaping and want gaurenteed bandwidth go get a leased line. Residential connections will ALWAYS be oversubscribed so will always need measures in place to ensure latency dependant applications get priority when usage exceeds capacity.
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Old 16-12-2008, 13:21   #9
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Quote:
Originally Posted by qasdfdsaq View Post
(or any other VOIP for that matter).
I thought bittorents are P2P and actually Skype VOIP uses P2P.

Can anyone tell me what the difference is between bittorent and P2P is because I'm dammed if I know. Also in the article it mentions restrictions based on applications now that could be almost any service we use the internet connection for. Whats to say Virgin start throttling my Vonage service so I am forced to take there phone service or throttle BBC ,C4 and all the other media offerings coming on line to force customers onto there own cable service.

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Old 16-12-2008, 13:25   #10
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

I must be doing something wrong. I have tried downloading from torrents, including Linux distros, but found that the speed I was getting was pitiful. I prefer direct download, and even when STMed I get a better download rates than from torrents.

If this means an end to, or at least a relaxation of, the STM rules, then I, personally, am happy.
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Old 16-12-2008, 13:26   #11
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

If this replaces STM then I could be in favour. I remain optimistic however will reserve judgement until the full details are announced.
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Old 16-12-2008, 13:37   #12
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

And in the next breath there saying

"We could have launched 100Mb today if we'd wanted," he said, "we're not capacity constrained."

So if they are not capacity constrained why the need for any restrictions at all ? It sounds rather confusing and schizophrenic to me.
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Old 16-12-2008, 14:03   #13
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

Quote:
Originally Posted by bywater View Post
And in the next breath there saying

"We could have launched 100Mb today if we'd wanted," he said, "we're not capacity constrained."

So if they are not capacity constrained why the need for any restrictions at all ? It sounds rather confusing and schizophrenic to me.
Berkett is so full of the stuff, it's coming out of his ears.
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Old 16-12-2008, 14:09   #14
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

OMFG is all I can say, I knew it would go down hill, too good to be true looks like Trax's was right
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Old 16-12-2008, 14:23   #15
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Re: Virgin Media to dump neutrality and target BitTorrent users

oh well, i'll hold on as long as I can and then i'll be saying bye to Virgin Media. They are ever increasingly imposing their will on the consumer, it is not up to them to decide what i do on the internet and when. If they want to constrain my use of the internet and what apps I can use, I will go to another isp and I hope everyone else joins me.
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