As an update on my previous post on the fight over net neutrality, here is an article from MSNBC that discusses how Comcast has been blocking some Internet traffic on its networks. According to the article by Peter Svensson:
Comcast Corp. actively interferes with attempts by some of its high-speed Internet subscribers to share files online, a move that runs counter to the tradition of treating all types of Net traffic equally.
The interference, which The Associated Press confirmed through nationwide tests, is the most drastic example yet of data discrimination by a U.S. Internet service provider. It involves company computers masquerading as those of its users.
If widely applied by other ISPs, the technology Comcast is using would be a crippling blow to the BitTorrent, eDonkey and Gnutella file-sharing networks. While these are mainly known as sources of copyright music, software and movies, BitTorrent in particular is emerging as a legitimate tool for quickly disseminating legal content.
While the article mostly discusses the issue of blocking content in general, especially with regards to file-sharing, an interesting question remains how this type of practice can potentially affect education, both formal and informal.
There is also a lively discussion about the Comcast practice, which can be found here. Most posts seem to oppose Comcast’s practices.
Image Credit: http://www.savetheinternet.com