AT&T Files Patent to Limit File-Sharing Bandwidth

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Weo

Limits for approved data... Look, I hate being on overused networks too (try paying for unlimited weekly contracts that are so overcrowded that you only get 3 seconds of 56k every hour on a 3G dongle/internet package in the city; issues found when traveling abroad). However, this opens the flood gates to required use of proprietary programs and services from ISP's, as well as significantly more access to personal info.

Like the cloud yet? Listen to cloud stored songs? Want to watch your cloud stored home movies or show them to your friends? Edit pictures or video using cloud services like Adobe? Want to upload your pic and home videos to cloud storage from your yearly vacations?

How about VoIP not issued from your ISP? How about security camera feeds for small business owners? Everyone knows about Netflix, Amazon, Crackle, Google Play, Hulu, YouTube etc. for streaming videos. Advertisements take up data traffic and videos on websites like CNN, CNBC, etc.

Will AT&T (or whatever ISP you use) have a policy that allows greater data usage when using their TV service, VoIP service, cloud service? I'm sure they will. We need greater liability for privacy conerns too.

What about businesses or customers who send contracts or personal data via their computers or phones? Paying bills? Making purchases? Many forms are sent and signed online or digitally now-a-days. Do you really want AT&T proof-reading your doctor's forms, accountant's forms, banking forms, and lawyer's forms? When the government finds fault and creates a lawsuit, those who have actually been hurt get minimal resitution for time, info, and often money lost. Whether they already do these things is not the issue... whether they are legally allowed to and to what extent is.

They want to restrict unapproved data? How about giving me the option to restrict all advertisements from downloading to my devices using up data bandwidth and limits which are so precious? How about giving end-users the ability to toggle internet speed for certain services? Try that on the newer phones... Where are the customers' benefits and options from such changes?

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RageQuit

This definitely sucks for AT&T users - and for everyone else if this or similar takes wide adoption. But the great thing about capitalism is that if this kinda crap becomes mainstream, eventually some company will emerge who recognizes there's a niche in the market for consumers who want more internet freedom, and will capitalize on all the customers who jump ship from the other ISP's.

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MaximumMike

Unfortunately capitalism no longer exists in the USA. But it'd be great if it would make a come back.

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Carlidan

You're kidding right.

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MaximumMike

Maybe that's why liberals such as yourself are always professing the evils and pitfalls of capitalism. You actually believe the socialism we have today is capitalism?

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Carlidan

Huh? I never said capitalism is bad.. it's just needs a short leash. It's needs to be regulated more to have a check and balance. Don't believe that the "free market" should dictate everything in our society. Don't think u know what socialism and capitalism is. Because nowhere we are even close to socialism. And also if you read the definition of socialism. Why is it bad?

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MaximumMike

>>Huh? I never said capitalism is bad.. it's just needs a short leash.

No, it needs a very long one, or its not capitalism.

>>It's needs to be regulated more to have a check and balance.

Over-regulated capitalism breeds the kind of socialism that we have right now. The only regulation capitalism needs is to enforce competition and break up monopolies.

>>Don't believe that the "free market" should dictate everything in our society.

No, but it should dictate everything in our economy. If it doesn't, then our economy isn't capitalism. Wouldn't you agree?

>> Don't think u know what socialism and capitalism is.

Considering how confused you are, I'm really not surprised.

>>Because nowhere we are even close to socialism.

Really, then what do you call a public debt with a private reward? Do you even know what I'm referring to?

>> And also if you read the definition of socialism. Why is it bad?

Many things sound great when you read their definitions. That doesn't mean they will turn out so well in practice. Just ask my wife when she tries to follow a new recipe.

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Carlidan

Forget it... Please read up on definition of capitalism and socialism. Because it's you that is confused. Because if you think we live in a socialist society, then I can't help you with your belief. But the facts states otherwise. Sure we have some socialism in society, but mostly social programs like welfare, medicare, no child left behind, etc... But our economy is pure capitalism. Period.

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2012/05/2012568342122448.html

Here is a nice article to read.

P.S. Not going to respond anymore. If you just debating your opinions.

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MaximumMike

>>Forget it... Please read up on definition of capitalism and socialism.

You do realize you sound like an 8th grader when you say things like that, right?

>>Because if you think we live in a socialist society, then I can't help you with your belief.

That's one belief that doesn't need any help.

>>But the facts states otherwise.

Which facts would those be? The ones you've invented in that misfiring brain of yours?

>>Sure we have some socialism in society, but mostly social programs like welfare, medicare, no child left behind, etc...

Funny how these very social programs are mentioned in just about every discussion of the US economy. But you somehow think they are separate from the economy.

>>But our economy is pure capitalism. Period.

Except for the programs you just mentioned right? And except for the Affordable Care Act. And except for Imminent Domain. And except for the Federal Bailouts. And except for Social Security. And except for the fact that big government and big business are so far in bed with one another that it's many times difficult to tell them apart. Except for those things, we are purely capitalists.

>>Here is a nice article to read.

I don't consider Aljazeera credible news and wont bother reading the article. Even with my known stance against using wikipedia as proof of anything, I would still normally read the article at the very least. But in this case, I'll pass completely. No click-throughs to Aljazeera for me.

>>P.S. Not going to respond anymore. If you just debating your opinions.

Don't worry, you're off the hook. No need to strain yourself.

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Carlidan

double posted

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MaximumMike

ATT may be the most evil company around today. I hope their competitors bury them and they go out of business.

I would also hope that our lazy congressmen get off their rear ends and pass legislation to put an end to this nonsense. They could also bust up some of these illegal conglomerates.

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ohsnaps1104

I have Centurylink now and depending on where you live at their service is mediocre. We signed up for their 5 year 40 meg plan, but I can't squeak more than 8 tops. The upload speed never peaks 800k, but I haven't had any problems downloading ...

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Rebel_X

So those shmucks paid between $10,000-$15,000 for the crappy patent?!
WTF! They don't even offer high speed internet! The best they have in my area is like 5mbps while comcast's xfinity 100mbps.

Comcast while it is a dirt bag, it is better than AT&T. The worst they do to you is send you a warning email of illegally downloading copyrighted material activity "torrent" and 3 strikes notice.

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vrmlbasic

250 GB/month cap. I hear it goes largely unenforced, but they have that hammer always ready to drop on their customers. 250 GB/month is pathetically low, especially at 12.5 MB/sec supposed speed (if you ever get that fast on Comcast's crappy network).

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Incognito

I'm no fan of Comcast but your facts are wrong. The 250 GB cap was lifted at least a year ago (probably more) and I use well over 250 GB every month watching streaming video - I watch almost all my TV online through YouTube, Streampix, HBO GO, Netflix, etc. I pay for 50 Mbps down / 10 Mbps up and consistently get those speeds. Those aren't premium package speeds in my area - that's the normal speed that everyone gets. If you go for the higher speed tier it's 100 Mbps down (and probably 20 Mbps up, but I forget the upload speeds on the premium internet package).

I just looked up a news story regarding the cap and it was lifted almost two years ago:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57436489-93/comcast-ditches-250gb-data-cap-tests-tiered-pricing/

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PCWolf

And so it begins. So, before where we had to choose a plan based on speed, now we have to choose what we can DL? WTF! Thank you Verizon & the worthless US Court System that shot down Net Neutrality. You can all go suck the big one.

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vrmlbasic

Comcast deserves special mention in this, as they were doing download throttling and deep-packet inspection years ago :(

Comcast...there's nothing good that I can say about them, except that they're not AT&T. That's like saying that Pol Pot wasn't Mao...

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Incognito

Again, your facts are wrong. Comcast dropped packet inspection for throttling Bit torrent traffic over 4 or 5 years ago. Do you work for AT&T or something? Get your facts right before shooting off your mouth. There's plenty of stuff to hate about Comcast but everything you mentioned is all BS from the past that they no longer do.

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jamd315

vrmlbasic, I use Hotspot Shield for my VPN. After your free trial expires, every time you start and stop it, it shows an ad. So far, no data caps.

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vrmlbasic

Thanks

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Xenite

Well she had a good run, the days of an open and free internet will be remembered with nostalgia one day. Soon we will be in the era beyond the death of net neutrality where our ISP's have a finger in everything we do online. While the NSA makes a copy of our activity for future use.

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vrmlbasic

Time to break down those ISP monopoly zones across the country and let competition come in.

Just in case, does anyone know a good no-data-cap VPN?

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Brian Dowding

It is easy to do nothing and take it.

Some people use the "if you are doing nothing wrong, then you shouldn't need to worry about privacy" line of reasoning as a way to justify ignoring it.

Let's take the same reasoning and alter the terms ever so slightly.

"If you are doing nothing wrong, then you shouldn't need to worry about having no respect or right to privacy"

I don't care who is doing what. There is an ethical way to do things, and an unethical way to do things.

AT&T is outlining unethical practices and pointing at users like villians to justify it. The very same villians that pay them for a service they provide, which makes them the fortunes and living they enjoy.

It is unethical.

Period.

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joeyjr

Sorry for your issue with at&t. I don't do file sharing only steam and netflix so I hope this will not affect me some day using uverse. Data hogs will just have to pay more I guess. Maybe this is just another way to justify raisng the cost and their profits. Peeking into others data seems to be spying and shouldnt be legal , then again, downloading free movies and games really not right either. If you have ever watch the first movie Jurassic Park this might come to mind, just because you can do it (meaning make a dino) doesn't mean you should. I am not telling anyone what to do, just that, what you do shouldn't effect another because of what someone else does. SB Sunday Get ready for some FB. YEA!! I'll be recording it free over the air.

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Renegade Knight

Data hog here. I pay 50 bucks a month for 5mbs of unlimited. It will affect you someday because torrents are an efficient way to distribute content. Humble Bundle being a case in point. I just downloaded their audio book special via torrent.

AT&T's means and methods presume guilt. However the simple fact is that some uses of content without permission are fair use.

Ignoring AT&T it would not surprise me if some distribution methods built bit torrent into them. I can see Windows updates, Computer Company Updates, Game updates etc. all being done via a bit torrent client built into the program.

The way I see it. I pay for my slow but unlimited broadband and what I use it for is my business. IF it's illegal. well it's already against the law and I don't need my ISP looking over my shoulder. What I want from this is free and unfettered access to the internet. That is just a pipe dream these days. My ISP blocks emails coming and going, blocks ports that let me access my web server. Dropped services, looks at my data without permission, throttles my slow internet when I pass some threshold of data use, and so on.

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PCWolf

Only clueless folks believe the BS that companies like AT&T spew out that the reason they are doing this is because of "Data Hogs". They are doing this because of GREED, plain & simple. The rich simply just want to become richer.

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vrmlbasic

I agree that the "data hog" is a myth.

If I have to get a "Business Class" connection to be free of the caps so that I can torrent and download from Steam and GOG well then so be it :(

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Renegade Knight

When the wife is ready to cut the cord that's the way we are going to have to go. Business class DSL. My cable company will probably pull the plug on my grandfathered unlimited plan.

We clear 300+ gigs a month easy. My Steam Library alone can use up something like 6 months of data caps just to get it all on a computer.

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draven913

Some of us are lucky enough to live in KC. Goggle Fiber FTW

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NoCtrl

Who wants competition? Big cable tries outlawing municipal broadband in Kansas. Lobbyist for Comcast, Cox, TWC wrote bill to stifle rivals like Google Fiber.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/01/who-wants-competition-big-cable-tries-outlawing-municipal-broadband-in-kansas/

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maleficarus™

Here in Canada download caps have been in place for years! Nothing new for us....

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compro01

That's what you get when you leave public infrastructure to private companies.

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tatsujin

Just get a VPN. AT&T can go EAT SHIT!!

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castrator86

VPN FTW

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John Pombrio

Like trying to outlaw Pirate Bay domains, this will fail miserably. How exactly will any company know exactly what this or that packet of data is for? Only the most clueless of downloaders will be affected.

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jtrpop

Time to switch from U-Verse to Time Warner Cable?

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carage

My thoughts are exactly WTF...
Unfortunately I don't get that choice where I live.
Comcast would gladly provide me with Business Class Internet service, but the wiring in my building is an obstacle.
I was willing to subscribe to Uverse's Business Tier if necessary, but AT&T wouldn't let me do that without a business tax registration number.
Comcast didn't care about that at all.

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Bucket_Monster

In my area I have no complaints with Time Warner. No data caps and I get decent speeds.

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Carlidan

That's why I switched to Time Warner. Prices are kinda of high though. I have to find out if there are special offers to lower the price a little.

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Carlidan

I switched since I AT&T put a 250 GB data cap.

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Innomasta

The lesser of two evils, methinks.

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Refuge88

The end is near...