Hey, You, Get Offa My Cloud!

Mark Cuban, chairman of the HDnet HDTV network and gadfly billionaire, thinks tiered broadband is the only way to assure to P2P users and gamers can co-exist with routine Internet users. Keep in mind this comes from the head of a business that needs high bandwidth connections to thrive. In his most recent entry on his Blog Maverick blog, he launched a passionate and pointed attack on the main tenet of network neutrality, the so-called “right” to consume as much bandwidth without consideration for consequences on overall network performance.

“I have no sympathy for bandwidth hogs. You all are productivity killers for the rest of us. People who are working, people who are trying to play games, people who are in virtual worlds, people who are networking, people who are just trying to watch a You [T]ube video or their favorite TV show, you all are the reason why we get incredibly annoyed by slowdowns and buffering. Leave and take your [BitTorrent] client with you.”

Cuban goes on to say that, for just a few more dollars, large bandwidth users can get what they want.

“If downloading TV shows is so important to you, add a DVR [digital video recorder] to your cable or satellite service for 5 bucks a month and download all you want. If you want to watch those shows on your laptop, connect the composite video out in your DVR to the composite in on your laptop. Same with movies. Can’t download movies illegally, tough. The internet is a great resource for unlimited quantities of video. Downloading video is an internet given right. Using the internet to fill up your PC turned DVR at the expense of the performance of every user around you is not. I’m a heavy internet user. I’m online hours per day. To me, the promise of the internet comes not from how many bits I can download, it’s in finding new ways to leverage the utility and stability of the internet as a platform for new applications. The performance of the net is key to new applications working and gathering users. Internet consumers avoid new applications that are slow. Even when they don’t realize that the application is slow because the latency on their net segment has skyrocketed because of bandwidth hogs disproportionate consumption of bits.”

A tip of the hat to Adam Thierer at Tech Liberation Front for the pointer.