From what is being said around the blogosphere you would think that this newest escapade by Rogers to inject their own code into that datastream you are receiving is something new and underhanded. Well this current method Rogers is using to mess with your internet traffic and usage might be new but the fact that they or any other Canadian ISP has been playing games with that Internet access we pay outrageous monthly amounts for isn’t new.
Bell; or as its ISP arm is known as – Sympatico, has been capping and shaping the traffic going through its pipes since the early days of dial-up. Whether they called it Customer Fairness Usage back in the early days when you could find yourself without access for using your access too much during the peak times to now where all email traffic has to go through their SMTP servers to questionable speed claims with their DSL speeds.
Even though in the big cities there might be a modicum of (cough) competition (cough) once you reach the outlying small towns you are typical down to two choices either Bell’s DSL service or whatever the cable company wants to rape you for. As it stand here in Canada right now they might not call it price fixing – because we all know that is against the law – but it might as well be as both the telco’s; large and small, and the cable companies consider Internet access as their private money printing machine.
On top of this while the U.S. debates the finer point of what net neutrality is here in Canada all the ISP’s do as they damn well please because when push comes to shove we as consumers have no real choices that provide us with fair and equitable services for a price that doesn’t cut very deep gouges into anyone’s monthly budget.
So while many of the American bloggers might be getting up in arms over Rogers recent action of rewriting the web pages in your browser to tell you that your are using too much of the services they are providing and to behave or you will get capped my only questions is why this hasn’t happened sooner. It’s not like we have a government that will stand up for the consumer or any single company that believes that the money they are being paid for highspeed unlimited access means just that.
As Mike Masnick at Techdirt says:
Most importantly, though, it shows how some ISPs feel about its position in the value stream. They feel that they are more important than the content and services you are using. This is what leads to all those network neutrality debates, where the ISPs forget that they’re providing just a pipe and think that they are the most important part of the process and have the right to change how everything else works.
The things is that while it is the Americans that seem most worried about this intrusion by the ISP just about every Canadian knows that chances are nothing at all is going to be done to protect the consumer from this type of thing continuing just as nothing will be done about the rampant traffic shaping that is going on.
After all with you consider that Rogers is one of the most powerful cable and telecommunication companies in Canada next to Bell and that Ted Rogers is equally powerful within the Canadian political scene. As for Bell, well it just hires lobbyists and makes huge donations to whichever political party that will control the country for the next four years.
If there is any way that the cable companies and telecommunication companies can screw the Canadian consumer they will, because no-one in power gives a shit past the last election. Besides where are we going to go – the competition?
Well that might be possible if there really was any such thing in this country.