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FCC investigates Netflix speed throttling

Posting in Technology

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US regulators are reviewing agreements between content and Internet service providers to discover whether slow video download speeds are being enforced deliberately.

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has received a high volume of complaints by consumers who experience slow Internet speeds when attempting to stream video content. Internet service providers and video content provider Netflix have accused each other of slowing down speeds by way of traffic rerouting, and and spat has embroiled consumers within the fray.

At the heart of the matter? Whether ISPs are deliberately slowing down speeds when video content providers become involved. Netflix has traditionally paid ISPs to deliver such content to consumers, but agreements between the company and ISPs have remained outside of the FFC's control.

When such deals go sour -- as Netflix is now involved in a spat with ISPs over fees and content delivery -- consumers are the ones that suffer. This in turn has led US regulators to request the details of such agreements. An FCC spokesman said:

"Consumers need to understand what is occurring when the Internet service they've paid for does not adequately deliver the content they desire, especially content they've also paid for. What we are doing right now is collecting information, not regulating. We are looking under the hood. Consumers want transparency. They want answers."

Via: The Wire

Image credit: Flickr

— By on June 16, 2014, 4:39 AM PST

Charlie Osborne

Contributing Editor

Charlie Osborne is a freelance journalist and photographer based in London. In addition to SmartPlanet, she also writes for business technology website ZDNet and consumer technology site CNET. She holds a degree in medical anthropology from the University of Kent. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure