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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Broadband Providers Continue Choking BitTorrent Traffic

The latest report from the Measurement Lab shows how Internet service providers across the world throttle BitTorrent traffic. Due to the efforts of entertainment industry and other entities benefiting from this, hundreds of ISPs worldwide are trying to curb piracy by chocking their subscribers’ Internet pipe when they see BitTorrent transfers of data, paying no attention to its legitimacy.

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The data collected by the Google-sponsored Measurement Lab indicates how often ISPs temper with the connection speeds. The research covers the first quarter of 2012. When compared to 2010, throttling BitTorrent traffic in the US dropped from 50% to 3%, thanks to Comcast’s struggle to protect its subscribers’ rights. Another factor was the FCC ruling stating that Comcast mustn’t interfere with BitTorrent traffic. Charter’s throttling was reduced from 11% to 4%, while Cox is still regarded as the #1 throttler in the country with 6%. This makes Comcast, Verizon and AT&T the best major ISP to have in the US.

But if you live in the United Kingdom, the picture is different. The worst Internet service provider in this regard is BT, which limits BitTorrent traffic by up to 65%, which exceeds 57% it showed back in 2010. In the meantime, other major UK ISPs – O2 and BskyB – keep tempering with BitTorrent transfers, showing 2% and 4% throttling. As for Virgin Media, it dropped from 33% in 2010 to 22%.

Canada can also be regarded as one of the worst countries to access BitTorrent networks in. For example, Rogers, one of the country’s largest broadband providers, is liable for throttling over 3/4 of all BitTorrent transfers. The first quarter of the current year makes them the worst ISP to have, with over 80%. Then comes Bell with its hefty 77%, showing an increase of 19% since 2010.

Let’s look at Australia now. This country appears far more understanding than the rest of the world: here iiNet accounts for 11% of BitTorrent throttling, but it’s good news when compared to 2010, when it had 3 times more. Aussie’s Dodo also improved its relationship with the subscribers, dropping throttling from 14% in 2010 to nothing this year.

The rest of the world, including such countries as Sweden, Italy, France, Spain, Poland and the Netherlands, is heavily tempering with BitTorrent transfers as well.

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