OT - high speed (cable) internet

I thought the following might be of interest to anyone considering cable internet.
Subject: US Comcast High-Speed Internet cable residential: not so "unlimited" From: snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (RMonroe) Newsgroups: alt.internet.providers.america, alt.consumers, alt.consumers.experiences
After months of normal service, I received a letter from Comcast recently informing me of an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) violation - Bandwidth Usage Limitations and threatening suspension/termination. When referred to the page http://www.comcast.net/terms/use.jsp mysteriously missing is any language whatsoever specifically describing how many hours or how many bytes downloaded are "acceptable."
When I first investigated Comcast, I specifically said I would be using it in with Giganews to download from USENET newsgroups heavily. I asked the rep if there were any limits in bandwidth usage to the residential accounts. I was told NOT to operate a server and to NOT use it commercially. Other than that, I could be using it 24/7 to download as much as I wanted from the Internet or USENET, no problemo. Now that the introductory rate is about to expire at the end of the year, I suddenly receive this letter from their Abuse and Fraud department. After speaking to four representatives, I was told they really don't have any set level of usage but I was using it too much. How too much, I asked? Well, we can't tell you a figure of your usage nor what is too much usage but it was too much. So how much is "acceptable usage" then? We can't really say but use it less. Pay out your wazoo but use our service less. Sounds like a great deal!
Not much of a policy is it? Does a cop give you a ticket for speeding, then tell you that you were going too fast despite there being no speed limits? Does the phone company call you up to tell you that you used the telephone 25 hours a day instead of 24 so you overused it? No, but Comcast will invite you to the buffet, then tell you "you eat too much, you go now." Amazing considering that Comcast promotes GigaNews as your only source of USENET.
I said that was not what I had agreed to when service began but curious, I asked should I cut back 10%, 25%, 33 1/3%, 50%? How long and how many megabytes/gigabytes were "acceptible" to Comcast? Uh, we have no such number sir, but be assured you were above whatever it would be." Oh, we could sell you a "commercial" account, sir. I bet.
What BS. Had Comcast had a set number of hours/bandwidth usage, had the policy changed even, I would be disappointed but understand. However I see there is no policy, just an intimidation. Well, there are alternatives. Wonder if they sour like Comcast? Like DSL, like satellite.
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If there is no policy, there is no limit. Sounds like the makings of a lawsuit.
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Larry Blanchard quoted a complaint from a Comcast user:
<quote snipped>

Comcast does state there policy on the download limitation in the cited URL:
"Comcast permits users of the Service to download a maximum of one gigabyte (1GB) of newsgroup content in any one month, unless users are subject to a Service plan that permits downloading more newsgroup content. "
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA (Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
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That is actually just the limit of the plan that they provide from Giganews. You can purchase other plans directly from Giganews for higher limits.
Rob

URL:
gigabyte
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Nova wrote:

And to add to this, I understood that if you exceeded the 1gb limitation for free DLs etc, that you could not DL anything else automatically until the new month came about. Thats why I've stayed away from the binary groups which use a lot more space than the text newsgroups.
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Yes you are correct. If you have the standard Comcast/Giganews account that is good for 1gig of downloads, and you exceed that amount, you cannot download anything till that month is over. The good news is, there is a Giganews web site where you can review your current stats any time to want so you can get an idea of how much you've downloaded so far.
"Grandpa" <jsdebooATcomcast.net> wrote in message

URL:
gigabyte
a
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I looked at the Giganews site but couldn't find anything that would tell me what I'd DL'd so far. Since I'm a Comcast customer I don't have a 'paying' acct with Giganews, thus no login etc. For us on the newsgroup 'freebie' side thru Comcast, how/where do you access your DL stats?
Timothy Drouillard wrote:

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To see your Giganews stats,
Go here https://secure.giganews.com/maintenance/cgi-bin/index.pl
You will need to log in using the Giganews user login name and password that Comcast provided to you. Once you've logged in, follow the menus and you can drill down and see not only your stats for the past year or better but if you click on the current billing period, it will show you on a day by day basis your current stats.
"Grandpa" <jsdebooATcomcast.net> wrote in message

to
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I'm a residential user of Comcast cable modem internet access, and have been for a few years now.
The only limit I'm aware of as far as downloading, is USENT groups on Giganews.
I year or so ago, Comcast (at least in the Detroit area), switched from using their own News servers, to providing everyone with an account with Giganews. At no additional charge beyond what we eere paying for our standard montly broadband access, we are allowed to download up to 1 gig from the news groups.
If you feel the need to download more than 1 gig per month, you can upgrade your Giganes account. I don't remember the rates , but they weren't that bad.
In my area, about a month or two ago, I recieved a notice from Comcast that they were doubling our access speed at no charge.
here is what Comcast sent me in part
" Comcast High-Speed Internet downstream speed is limited to 3Mbps, upstream speed is limited to 256Kbps. Actual speeds vary and are not guaranteed. Many factors affect download speed. Comcast reserves the right to change the speed. Comcast High-Speed Internet Pro download speeds will increase to 4Mbps/384Kbps. Comcast Home Networking customer's downstream speeds will increase to 4Mbps; upstream speeds will increase to 384Kbps, formerly 2.5Mbps/256Kbps. "
The only limits I'm aware of on a residential account is you're asked not to run a server, and you can't use a VPN.
(RMonroe)

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Larry Blanchard wrote:

No alternatives for me. Adelphia cable or dial-up.
I've been afraid of the very sort of bait and switch tactics you describe, which is why I'm still using dial-up. Not to mention how much it hurts once they jack up the price.
I figure they're like crack dealers. Give you some for free, then get you addicted... They can keep it. I can update everything on my computer in 40 hours. I can tie my phone up for 40 hours once in awhile. I don't need cable, even if it is 100 times faster. I'm poor, patient, and cheap.
--
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < snipped-for-privacy@users.sourceforge.net>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
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