Netflix-Comcast Deal Threatens Internet Innovation
This deal illustrates the fragile nature of innovation on the Internet -- and it's a problem that only government regulation can solve.
There is nothing wrong with the Netflix-Comcast deal. It's no violation of Net neutrality. But it illustrates the fragile nature of innovation on the Internet, and it's a problem that only government regulation can solve.
Comcast customers who also subscribe to Netflix should applaud a deal between the two companies reported this weekend, wherein Netflix will pay Comcast for bandwidth used. Comcast customers will see faster access to streaming Netflix video as a result of the deal.
In a press release Sunday, Comcast hastened to reassure the public that there's nothing shady going on. The two companies "have established a more direct connection between Netflix and Comcast, similar to other networks, that's already delivering an even better user experience to consumers, while also allowing for future growth in Netflix traffic," the release said. "Netflix receives no preferential network treatment under the multi-year agreement."
Everything here does seem to be above board. This is not a case where an Internet service provider (Comcast) is giving special treatment to a preferred service to the detriment of that service's competitors.