[e2e] Re: crippled Internet

Henning G. Schulzrinne hgs at cs.columbia.edu
Wed Apr 18 08:04:10 PDT 2001

Jon Crowcroft wrote:
> god forbid anyone provide CONTENT if they are not a
> specially HI paying customer :-)
> god forbid anyone serve public domain MP3s, just in case they migh
> accidentally serve copyrighted ones too
> god forbid the users actually use bandwidth. might mess up the
> business caswe for reselling it for a profit even
> with IP header overheads
> btw: define "visible performance degradation" without defining
> _multiplexing_ :-)

To tie this to another discussion, I think part of the problem is that
the current rate structure (plus fear of RIAA litigation, I suppose)
forces ISPs to divide the world into "business" and "residential" users,
since a reasonable claim can be made that charging a web site operator
$50/month for a T1 line is not going to be a viable enterprise. 

It appears that telephone companies also tried to do this, where a
business line was significantly more expensive than a residential line,
with no difference except a one-line listing in the yellow pages. My
perception is that this is also not enforced in practice, at least for
small businesses.

If there was a more load-sensitive charging scheme, where you could pay
on 95th percentile or some peak-hour load or some other variation of
congestion pricing, there would be less perceived need to force every
residential user into web-browsing-only, please, mode. (The freebie
ISPs, whichever ones are left, also seem to have abandoned their
unlimited-use model, since they discovered that a very small fraction of
their customers accounted for a very large fraction of their bandwidth
and modem-connect-time costs.)

> i dunno......seems to me like these AUPs are approaching telco-ville
> at an alarming rate....
> note: i dont think someone provides an IP (or "Internet Service") if
> they don' allow symmetric connection setup -  is this one for the
> "trades description" again?

There was discussion at some point to have somebody (IETF? ISOC?) define
the term "Internet service", so that you could get companies that sell
anything less for false advertising. I don't think much came of it.

> (would someone like to start a phone company that allows outgoing
> calls only  -? not much of a business case:-)

Yes, these are called "pay phones" and in the U.S., there was a
once-thriving industry called COCOTS (customer-owned coin operated
telephones), where you could pay $2/minute to make a call. With the
advent of calling cards, the COCOT providers seem to have joined banks
and operate ATMs instead, so that you can pay $2 you get your own money.

Henning Schulzrinne   http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~hgs

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