Laying to Rest the ‘Bandwidth Bogeyman’

Free Press is welcoming (4/28/09) as “a long overdue step in the right direction” the news that “Cablevision announced plans to offer download speeds of 101Mbps and upload speeds of 15Mbps” without charging “usage caps or overage fees” to users. Research director S. Derek Turner explains that the plan

does, however, beg the question why Cablevision can offer fast access with reportedly no caps or overage fees, when others claim such a plan would cause the sky to fall and an exaflood to break the Internet. We hope this new announcement will put an end to the bandwidth bogeyman.

We also encourage companies like Cablevision to think about the other part of the value equation–price. These days, lower prices are just as important as faster speeds.

For some of the history feeding Turner’s healthy skepticism about giant media corporations’ claims regarding the Internet, read the fair magazine Extra!: “Deregulation’s History of Empty Promises: Net Neutrality and the Supermedia Monopolies” (3-4/07) by Jeff Chester.