UPDATE: Cogent Offers to Resolve Impasse Between Co., Major Telephone, Cable Cos. Related to Upgrading Connections
Today, Cogent Communications Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CCOI) CEO Dave Schaeffer offered to resolve the impasse between Cogent and major telephone and cable companies (Verizon, Comcast, AT&T, and Time Warner Cable) over upgrading the connections necessary to exchange Internet traffic, including streaming video traffic like Netflix, by paying the capital cost required for these companies to upgrade the connections (as well as Cogent's own costs) to ensure adequate capacity to deliver quality service to the customers of Cogent and these ISPs that have refused to upgrade traffic exchange capacity. Schaeffer said that for over a year customers of these ISPs have been suffering from the bottleneck imposed by these carriers.
"Cogent believes the traditional Internet model in which each party bears its own capital costs to upgrade an interconnection should be the model for these relationships but the reality of the gatekeeper power exercised by these telephone and cable companies requires that Cogent accept these additional costs in order to provide the highest quality Internet service possible," said Schaeffer.
To be clear, Cogent is not offering to enter into paid peering arrangements with these or any other networks. Rather, Cogent is simply willing, at this time, to incur the capital costs associated with augmenting its interconnections with these networks to address the current level of traffic congestion. Cogent believes that these major telephone and cable companies are attempting to leverage their monopoly on broadband residential Internet connections to increase their profits by imposing tolls on traffic requested by their customers and delivered by other Internet service providers.
Cogent believes that Title II classification is the optimal regulatory path to eliminate these tolls and preserve the open Internet. In the meantime, Cogent supports the FCC's effort to enforce and enhance the FCC's transparency rules and today submitted comments to the FCC in which Cogent offered concrete proposals that would advance the goals of the FCC's Open Internet Order. Cogent looks forward to continuing conversations with the FCC and the Internet community on these proposals and on the best ways to preserve a robust, innovative and truly open Internet.
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