And the battle against a truly open Internet where service providers do not interfere with the usage rights — look it up in the service contract: long ago, in the BNNN (before no net neutrality) days, an uncapped Internet means you can use as much bandwidth as you please as long as you are a paying customer — continues, and folks, it’s pretty clear the customer is the one losing.
Worse yet, apparently, he/she doesn’t seem to mind one bit. From AT&T’s perspective, their customers want the higher bandwidth users to pay more, therefore, “justifying” the upcoming cap rule.
Oddly enough, I noticed “be tricked into believing unjustifiable bandwidth caps are good for you” was left out of their look-to-the-future commercial.
Forgive the aside here, but why is it up the heavy bandwidth user to foot the bill for the mysterious cost of bandwidth usage when the company’s infrastructure may not be adequate enough to handle their rapidly increasing customer base? As more and more users enjoy the conveniences and pleasures of streaming video in high definition, high-end PC gaming, and other robust Internet tasks, the company needs to adapt in order to support this growth, instead of resorting to punishing its power users, or “hogs” for lack of a better term.
Another consideration is, as pointed out by Wired.com, there isn’t a great deal of information concerning the congestion issues these caps are supposed to prevent. In other words, there’s no proof AT&T or Comcast even need these caps to begin with.
Different subjects for a different day, apparently. As for the upcoming AT&T cap, the details are as follows: DSL customers will have a 150 gigabyte per month usage limit. Those that exceed the cap will be penalized an extra $10 for every 50 gigabytes they go over.
Needless to say, reaction to AT&T’s wolf-in-sheep’s-clothing approach to such a sensitive subject has set off a firestorm of reaction around the Internet. Endgadget’s post has over 3000 comments and Reddit’s is somewhere around the 600 mark by now. As one might expect, there aren’t many supporters of the upcoming cap.
Though the vitriol is fast and fierce, the first comment on Reddit’s thread stood out to this writer:
“I love it when people who use the services they paid for and were promised are referred to as “hogs”. Kills me every time.“
Too bad such negative reaction won’t impact AT&T’s decision in anyway, shape or form. At this point, only a mass exodus would reverse this particular course. That being said, it would be nice to actually meet some of these ubiquitous customers AT&T keeps referring to.
The new cap makes its long-awaited debut on May 2nd, in what will no doubt be a red letter day… at least for AT&T