For years, large broadband players such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast let peering points saturate to kill settlement-free peering and extract new fees from a variety of video streaming sites. Essentially, major ISP’s were refusing to upgrade interconnection points to intentionally cause a degradation of Netflix service, in turn forcing Netflix to pay for direct interconnection. Cogent CEO admitted as such. Additionally, Level 3 called out Verizon in 2014 for this very same issue. The State of New York has even begun to investigate whether ISP’s agreed to interconnection deals and STILL didn’t provide anywhere near their advertised speeds.
Network services provider Level 3 has therefore asked the FCC to “mandate information about congestion at interconnection points (as) a requirement of its enhanced disclosure provisions of new Open Internet rules.” Basically, Level 3 wants ISP’s to supply basic information about the management of their networks.
Level 3 told the FCC that given that its new rules require ISPs “make useful, relevant disclosures of service performance,” that that must include “data reflecting performance across the interconnections that link the provider’s network to other networks [like Level 3].” – BroadcastingCable
Seems rather straight-forward, right?
As BroadcastingCable reports, cable operators are not happy and through their top lobbying organization, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) are
begging asking the FCC to reject this request by claiming that such a request was “erroneous and unwarranted.”
According to cable operators, even though the FCC included interconnection issues within their reach thanks to Net Neutrality, the FCC didn’t include specific rules about such interconnection issues, instead opting to make it a case-by-case situation. This means, again according to cable operators, that the FCC has already rejected Level 3’s request.
The cable operators want no part of this request because it would mean that their backdoor shenanigans with peering points would be exposed. For years, we heard fixed and wireless operators claim that they needed to force customers onto data caps due to “network congestion” issues. Granted, we never saw a single piece of evidence backing up any of these claims. Fast forward to today and the same providers quietly admit that usage caps are, and always have been, about milking consumers out of as much money as possible.
If only we had had access to network management reports when data caps were first forced onto customers.