Network Neutrality

Michael Torrie torriem at
Mon Dec 1 11:36:55 MST 2008

Andrew McNabb wrote:
> On Mon, Dec 01, 2008 at 10:58:24AM -0700, Michael Torrie wrote:
>> Bittorrent's new udp protocol is an attempt to address the problems
>> and make bittorrent more palatable to business users and isps because
>> it does have it's own built-in controls now to make it coexist better
>> with other forms of traffic that were previously harmed.  I don't
>> think they've done this without thinking about the long-term
>> consequences.  Nor is this an attempt to somehow beat ISP throttling.
> Interesting.  So does this mean that Bittorrent is implementing an
> alternative form of congestion control?  As you point out, that would
> really change the story.

They claim that it does, somehow (heard it on slashdot, so it must be
true!).  Of course since Bittorrent is being aimed at businesses as a
legitimate distribution tool, this would make sense as no commercial
user is going to want it to wreak havoc.

> I'm still curious, though, about what would happen if we had net
> neutrality laws and some application tried to beat ISP throttling with a
> very aggressive protocol.  I'm wondering how a staunch net neutralist
> would view this hypothetical situation.

Dunno.  it's a hard one.  Especially because, by design, our bandwidth
is always over committed.

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