[discuss] African take on Net Neutrality

Seun Ojedeji seun.ojedeji at gmail.com
Thu May 15 18:10:13 UTC 2014

Hello Barry,

Thanks for breaking this down to a novice like me with an actual scenario.
Kindly find a few comments inset

On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 6:30 PM, Barry Shein <bzs at world.std.com> wrote:

> What started this recent kerfuffle was Comcast refusing to provide
> more ports to Level 3, Netflix uses Level 3 (it's an ISP brand, Level
> 3 Corporation.) Ports are bandwidth, essentially.

Okay this is clear, so Level 3 is somewhat the ISP (network based) brand of

> Netflix sells content, Comcast sells content and "last mile" (end user
> / home) access. And Comcast has a very large market share of last mile
> access in the US.
> This is also clear.

> Netflix and Comcast ultimately (ca 23 Feb 2014) came to an agreement
> whereby Netflix paid Comcast for the extra ports.
> This is the part that is almost clear; so the scenario is that netflix had
a 1gb port(bandwidth) with comcast through its ISP (Level 3) it then
decided that it needed to serve its clients better by getting more
bandwidth to meet up with the demand from customers. All these to me is a
normal process that anyone that provides content service go through. The
only place where i will perhaps find a fault is if those ports does not
inturn improve the streaming experience of neflix users on the Internet
(but of comcast last mile users alone). Even at that, i don't think it an
issue because neflix agreed to that with comcast.

Some argued this is nothing but a paid peering arrangement. The extra ports
> incurred costs for Comcast so they should be paid.

+1 this is normal for any IX points; whereby as a member you buy for
instance a 100mb port and then as your demand increase, you upgrade.

> Others argued that Comcast charges their last-mile customers for
> connections and, implicitly, bandwidth and those customers pay them so they
> can get to services like Netflix.

This is valid, however if demand from users of netflix runs to say 2gbps
concurrently and netflix only have a 1gb connection from its ISP then it
will just make sense for netflix to upgrade its bandwidth to 2gb
(especially the upload)

> That is, Comcast is double-dipping, charging their customer for the
> bandwidth and again charging Netflix for that bandwidth. Comcast can do
> this, the argument continues, because of their dominance in the
> last-mile market. The bandwidth argument was just an excuse made possible
> by market inefficiencies.

For me i think its just a coincidence that netflix happen to be on comcast
network. What if they were not on that network, will they not have upgraded
their bandwidth once they notice they were hitting threshold?

> This has broader implications for the entire internet, particularly in
> terms of regulatory frameworks.

IMO If this is an issue then everything about internet business is also

PS: Open to hear where i may have missed it.

*Seun Ojedeji,Federal University Oye-Ekitiweb:      http://www.fuoye.edu.ng
<http://www.fuoye.edu.ng> Mobile: +2348035233535**alt email:
<http://goog_1872880453>seun.ojedeji at fuoye.edu.ng
<seun.ojedeji at fuoye.edu.ng>*

The key to understanding is humility - my view !
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