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Comcast appeals FCC ruling on net neutrality violation

Fri, 09/05/2008 - 8:20am
Brian Santo

As expected, Comcast is appealing the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) ruling that the company violated network neutrality policy by improperly blocking certain peer-to-peer (P2P) Web traffic.

The company filed its appeal Thursday in the U.S. District Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C.

Comcast Executive Vice President David L. Cohen wrote the action was “legally inappropriate and its findings were not justified by the record.” The company argues that its actions constituted reasonable network management practice.

Comcast came under fire late last year for interfering with BitTorrent sessions. Comcast and BitTorrent subsequently agreed to work together to develop a different means for Comcast to manage P2P traffic on its networks.

The FCC, in a split 3-2 decision, said Comcast’s actions were discriminatory and anti-competitive. It gave Comcast a deadline of 30 days to explain its current management techniques and outline its plans for new management practices.

Comcast said it will introduce its new solution by the end of this year, but that’s not soon enough for some.

The Media Access Project (MAP) has filed suit in three separate federal circuit courts demanding that Comcast immediately change its current techniques.

MAP filed three Petitions for Review of the FCC decision, giving Comcast to the end of the year, one each on behalf of Vuze.com, the Consumers Union and PennPirg (a member of Consumer Federation of America).

The three fear that after the November elections, Comcast will convince a newly constituted FCC board to reverse the current FCC board’s August decision.

More Broadband Direct:

• FCC finally grants must-carry exemption to small ops

• Comcast appeals FCC ruling on net neutrality violation

• SeaChange posts Q2 profit of $1.5M

• Nortel gears up 40G optical platform for ACS

• Ambit releases next-gen, 2-line EMTA

• Broadband Briefs for 9/05/08

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