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What Can Europe Learn From the Comcast Affair in the United States?

September - October 2008

La Lettre de l'Autorité de Régulation des Communications électroniques et des Postes
The facts in the Comcast affair are by now well known. Comcast switched off or slowed the connection of those subscribers who were using peer-to-peer programs such as BiTorrent. Comcast initially denied this and later maintained that its behavior was related to network management. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) concluded that this was, in fact, illicit discrimination aimed at urging subscribers to use Comcast's VOD services. The FCC ordered Comcast to make its network management practices more objective, transparent and non-discriminatory. Comcast appealed the decision maintaining that the FCC did not have any legal basis on which to order such measure.


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