Sunday, August 4, 2013

Corporate Greed: How Verizon is Sticking It To Their Customers, And Why They Don’t Care…

Right now you feel like watching a movie so you decide to start up your XBox and watch a little Netflix, but for some reason it’s really slow, and it seems to stutter a lot. You assume it’s just some intermittent problem with Netflix, you’ll try later and it will probably work just fine. Well you are only partially right about this one. In fact, it is an intermittent problem, but it’s not really a problem with Netflix, rather it’s a problem with Verizon.

And I know what you are thinking, but I have FIOS, that doesn’t make sense. We all turn on our televisions and get inundated with speed upgrade requests, and commercials about Verizon FIOS being the fastest. I’ve even seen commercials from Verizon suggesting that video is so much faster when you upgrade from XFinity to Verizon FIOS.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love FIOS, and wouldn’t recommend any other kind of ISP service if it’s available, but there are some things they are doing right now that you may not know about, and it’s shocking to think this is even legal.

Is My ISP Peering at me?

Most of us have discovered that the internet is an integral part of our lives. So much so that almost every decision we make must be accounted for on Facebook or Twitter or some other social networking service. We don’t really think about how the internet actually works, because it’s become so integrated that it’s like an extra appendage that becomes problematic only when it stops working. I mean seriously, if you were walking along and your leg just stopped working, you’d notice, and you notice when you can’t reach Facebook or send an email in very much the same way.

We just expect the internet to work perfectly every single time we sit in front of the computer, or watch Netflix from our television, or play our favorite online game. With the exception of a few of us, the general public is in complete darkness as to how it all comes together and works in harmony to make getting that webpage to come up in Chrome as simple as 1-2-3.

But the truth is much different, and in this article I will try to explain the different aspects of what is going on as well as try to explain why you should take notice and complain, complain and complain some more.

Many years ago before modern fiber connections, most people used dialup, and the internet was kind of shaky at times, so when it worked it was great, but when it didn’t work… well that was just part of the internet. But today there is no reason to expect that the next time you turn on your computer that it should be hit or miss. Stating that your ISP should have a 99% uptime and service level agreement should be normal. Beyond the very rare occasions when the shit hits the fan, you should never think “well it’s just the internet being the internet.”

When you think of the internet it should be apparent from the word itself that it means: Large Inter-Connected Network. In fact it’s just the largest Wide Area Network in the world, as opposed to a Local Area Network, which covers a small location often using a single (non-public) IP space.

The logistics of running a network the size of the Internet using a single provider would be a nightmare if not impossible. It’s in fact, the very nature of it being many different networks inter-connected that make it so robust. Even when small networks go down, the Internet as a whole would never go down, and this makes it a very strong mechanism for commerce, and communications throughout the world. But it also creates a problem.

When many small networks connect together there is the potential problem that although no single network could bring the entire whole down, one could complicate a part of the network to which it provides end-user service, and this is precisely the issue many of us are having right now.

Before I get into the problem more, let me try and explain Peering because it’s an important part of what is going on at the heart of the issue.

Peering is the process by which multiple networks share traffic with each other. The internet could not work without it, because again the internet is one large network built out of multiple smaller networks. These smaller networks must agree to share traffic with each other, if that fails to happen the whole thing doesn’t work.

The internet is broken up into Tiers: Tier 1 being (AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, Qwest, Level 3, NTT, Cogent), Tier 2 being (Comcast, Internap, etc), and Tier 3 which would be any ISP that provides internet to your home, not already on that list. It gets muddled when you consider that small ISPs are virtually all gone now in favor of the big companies like Comcast and Verizon who have swallowed up the market share by providing direct access to the large pipes that provide broadband.

The way it all works is that Tier 1 providers have had a long standing agreement to provide uninhibited free data exchange with each other. That means no matter what comes through their network, it is passed along to the other Tiers without any interruption. If this wasn’t so, you could very easily find parts of the internet completely inaccessible, or accessible much slower than you could imagine right now. Tier 2 providers are not subject to this free exchange however, they must pay a transit fee to Tier 1 providers to exchange traffic between their networks. That means if a Tier 2 provider wants to pass along traffic on one of it’s networks to another part of the Internet, it’s going to have to pay a Tier 1 provider to do this.

Once that traffic is passed to the Tier 1 provider it’s then passed along to all the other Tier 1 providers free of charge. Tier 3 providers must also pay these transit fees to the Tier 2 providers. Typically the way it works is that Tier 1 providers have the very large data pipes, lots of bandwidth, Tier 2 have smaller pipes, but still much larger than a Tier 3 would have, which leaves the Tier 3 who might provide you standard speeds to your home. In the old days this might be your local ISP providing dial-up.

And then you get to the end-users, you and me who pay our ISPs a fee which of course includes these transit fees from the Tiers above us.

In effect, all ISPs are always peering, because it is the method by which traffic is exchanged.

And now the problems begin…


When Two Peers won’t play nice…

I have started playing this game called Star Trek Online, it’s an MMO, loads of fun for any old Trekker like me. But recently I began having issues when playing the game. You see inside the game when you transfer between maps, or load an instance for a battle, the game would suddenly time out and disconnect you. This happened to me last night, and I was unable to get back into the game. I had noticed some lag issues recently as well, but didn’t think much of them at the time. I shut down the game and decided to take it up this morning instead.

So I start the launcher and log in, and of course I’m presented with a message indicating the last map I tried to play had a problem. This is what happens when you are disconnected. So I try to log back in, and everything works just fine again. I begin playing and everything is working when suddenly during another map change, I am timed out, disconnected again.

This is getting frustrating now because twice this happened and at first seemed to be a problem with Cryptic’s (The game maker) servers. So I complain to Cryptic immediately, although I do not expect a quick reply, their tech support is on par with what’d you’d expect if you got your tech support from someone sitting in a datacenter on Mars. By that I mean communication with them is slow, don’t expect you will get something fixed quickly, it’s just not going to happen – but I digress.

It’s when I begin sifting through their forums that I notice an absurd amount of complaints over very similar issues. My immediate thought is “well if this many people are having issues, it will get resolved,” however upon further examination a theme begins to immerge. All the complaining customers use Verizon as their provider.

Verizon provides FIOS and DSL access to millions of customers, they are everywhere in the United States, but throughout the East Coast they are major fiber provider for basically everyone. If you are on the East Coast like I am, you have very little choice, in New England it’s either Comcast or Verizon, with smaller providers.

An odd problem indeed, Verizon customers complaining about issues in Star Trek Online relating to lag and connection? As a FIOS subscriber that in and of itself is an absurdity, as I’ve stated all of us are inundated constantly with ads telling us how fast FIOS is and how we can upgrade to an even more super speed of 50 Mbps download and 25 MBps upload for only $10 more a month. They’ve even named it Quantum, to compete with Comcast’s XFinity, I’m guessing.

I already have a 25/15 connection, which is so ridiculously fast already the extra bonus is unnecessary. People who do not have FIOS cannot understand how much faster it is compared to everything else out there. Having been a dial-up customer and switching to Comcast broadband and then to FIOS I can understand the differences immediately. So when someone is complaining about lag on FIOS, this tingles my Spidey senses immediately.

So I began to do a little digging, I wanted to see if there was any kind of issue between Cryptic’s authentication servers and my end user connection. On first glance running a simple traceroute nothing is apparent, everything looks tip top with replies from each hop coming in at under 40ms. That’s fast, very fast.  In comparison, on Comcast’s broadband services I could expect to see 70-100ms or higher.

Games that require a constant exchange of traffic you would expect to see much higher end point latency, which of course feels slower. The term “rubber-banding” in games refer to a lag felt in the game that causes your actions to be pulled backward. For example in STO: I am in a starship and I travel from one point of the Devron Sector to another when suddenly I’m back to where I’ve started. This happens because the latency between the server and I jumps temporarily, so that locally I am farther than I am when the server gets the data, and on reply it sets me back.

This is really only felt in games that rely heavily on network traffic that must remain constant, thus your game of Farmville would never have such an issue, however your game of Call of Duty might.

I had been feeling this rubber-banding over the last few days, and now these connection problems, what gives?

So after I ran my traceroute, I wanted to test the actual traffic throughput. There are many tools that do this one called Iperf, for example. However, in this case Cryptic has one of their own they use to help diagnose network issues called NetTest. So I download and run this tool and patiently wait for the results.

What is apparent very quickly is that the traffic to and from the Cryptic server is very low. So I wondered what if I ran a speedtest of my FIOS connection using Verizon’s speedtest servers…

29.47Mbps downstream

23.81Mbps upstream

Well that certainly doesn’t jive with the throughput I’m seeing. To make a little sense of it, if Bandwidth is like a Highway with six lanes, the throughput would be volume of traffic passing through. So if my six lane highway has a few accidents than you’d expect the bandwidth to be high, but the throughput to be slightly lower near the accidents. The best way to describe this is potential to actual volume.

So when I look at these number’s Verizon tells me everything looks fine, nothing is wrong. But when I look at my throughput numbers something just doesn’t make sense.

On many of the ports Cryptic is using to exchange traffic the throughput is 80KBps – 120KBps so when I see numbers like this I know that I’m only getting a throughput 0.37% actual compared to potential volume. That doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Something is hinkey. Obviously I wouldn’t expect the results to reflect my actual bandwidth because although a speedtest to a Verizon server would not suffer much of a loss due to caching and the obvious less hopping of moving data over a single network, I would still expect a number much higher.

Even if the Cryptic server were dogshit slower, which I would expect they would be, they would need to be fast enough to support major traffic from a lot of users being they are supporting an MMO with a lot of users, each by themselves requiring a potential throughput.

This would not work if such a server or servers were being hosted somewhere on a smaller ISP, something in the Tier 3 range, so we would expect them to be much higher, even Tier 2 being too small. So where is Cryptic you ask? Well it’s servers are being hosted on Cogent Inc networks, which is a Tier 1 provider, a giant pipe, which means that the traffic to and from it should not be having lag issues.

So this is a bit of a mystery. We know that I’m on Verizon, and Cryptic servers are on cogent and both are Tier 1, which means they have the most bandwidth and a free exchange of traffic to each other.

It’s then when I begin researching this problem and I come across some interesting posts regarding issues between Cogent and Verizon.

Verizon is arguing that Cogent is in violation of this free exchange agreement because the agreement relies on relationship of give and take, equilibrium if you will. What Verizon contends is that although they have been freely exchanging traffic to and from Cogent, Cogent has not been reciprocating by balancing this equation.

According to Verizon the agreement is only valid if all partners maintain a balance of give and take. If Verizon is sending 1GBps of traffic from their network to Cogent they expect Cogent will reciprocate this by sending back in exchange 1GBps from their network, thus keeping things in balance. The agreement then goes on to basically say that partners are expected to pay transit fees for excess. Now for years the number were similar going back and forth, spikes would be forgiven at no cost, because essentially things were balanced.

However, video traffic accounts for more than 50% of all traffic on the Internet in North America, specifically traffic coming from Netflix and YouTube, both of which get their bandwidth from… Cogent, according to Verizon this is causing a major issue. The only video service Verizon provides is to it’s customers, therefore all traffic of this nature is internal to their network and incurs no additional costs.

To the people in charge of Verizon this is a breach of that friendly agreement they have, and it would seem Verizon is unwilling to compromise on this issue.

So what does this mean exactly? I don’t even use Netflix myself, and I rarely watch YouTube but I do like Star Trek Online, and Neverwinter another Cryptic game, which both seem affected by these connection problems, so what’s up with that?


Greedy Tactics

When Verizon demanded Cogent pay them for the additional traffic they were sending them, Cogent flat out refused. Now Verizon would like to tell you they had no other choice, that they wanted to take the high road, but principle dictates otherwise. Let me first say, no company should ever allow a dispute between corporations to affect end users, that’s for conference rooms, not living rooms. Second, in order for Verizon to claim the so-called high road, they would have to prove they did not allow their own principles to dictate an end that was harmful.

So what did Verizon do when Cogent refused to pay them these transit fees? Well they certainly didn’t cut off traffic to Cogent, no that would instantly turn off internet for a lot of US customers, and would affect any downstream data provided on Cogent networks and below going out over Verizon. I’d imagine such a thing would raise the ear of every congressman and have capital hill baring down on both of them like a lion on a zebra.

The calls from constituents alone when Congress wanted to pass SOPA would pale in comparison to the people who suddenly couldn’t watch YouTube videos or Netflix or any of the other services they require for their daily lives. No instead Verizon just balanced the equation…

Yes, Verizon taking the high road instead decides that the best course of action isn’t to cut service entirely, like a phone company would if you stopped paying your bill, instead they throttle, something many of them are being more and more frequent about.

Throttling is a process by which someone downgrades service temporarily. Some of you may be familiar with AT&T’s court loss over their claim of unlimited data which they began to throttle when customers suddenly thought unlimited meant “UNLIMITED.” Comcast now routinely throttles it’s customers unlimited internet service when a customer goes over the imaginary limit.

This whole thing stems from the notion that one customer is taking too much, and must be downgraded so that other customers get some as well. However, this is a fallacy that companies like Verizon, Comcast, and AT&T are only too happy to promote. Let’s be clear, data is limitless. There isn’t a giant warehouse out there with only so much data that must be equally split between everyone. The only limit that exists is the virtual limit imposed by these companies designed to force consumers to pay more for service.

When Verizon complains that Cogent is giving them more data than they are giving Cogent, it isn’t that Verizon is suddenly inundated with more traffic than they can handle. Let’s get this one thing clear. When someone refers to the internet backbone as a pipe, its not really a pipe. Pipes are fixed, only so much water can fit through a pipe. The backbone is so much more flexible than that.

The internet backbone which is the Tier 1 network all inter-connected is comprised of fiber connections, and what makes it so robust is that if you need more you just add more. It’s not something that reaches a certain point and “YOU SHALL NOT PASS!” In fact, although 50% of all traffic in North America is video related traffic, that number in and of itself should tell you we are no where even approaching capacity. If 90% of traffic was routinely video, I’d be a little more worried.

So what this basically comes down to in the end is nothing more than greed on the part of Verizon, and maybe a equally on the part of Cogent. In fairness Cogent only argues that Tier 1 agreement is that traffic is meant to be freely exchanged and that Verizon’s interpretation is nonsense. But even if Verizon was completely correct and Cogent was completely wrong, it’s Verizon’s obligation to target Cogent, not it’s customers, or their own customers for that matter.

You go into Wal-Mart and decide you want to buy a brand new vacuum cleaner, and you find out they are all out of vacuum cleaners. The salesman tells you that the vacuum cleaner manufacturer wants to raise the price of vacuum cleaners and instead of Wal-Mart refusing to raise the price of vacuum cleaners by a few pennies to their customers, they stop carrying vacuum cleaners from all manufacturers of vacuum cleaners. This creates a problem if you need a new vacuum cleaner and Wal-Mart is the only place in your area to buy one.

Now maybe Wal-Mart should just eat the extra few pennies, they have a lot of money, as does Verizon. Verizon is a billion dollar company, the cost of additional data *loss* is negligible. Let’s get this straight because it’s important. They have a free exchange agreement, that means they make $0 from the exchange of that traffic, which means they have no potential gross on it. So their only complaint rather is that they are losing money they would only gain if Cogent violates this friendly agreement. I know confusing. Basically they are quoting a cost for something that doesn’t already have one.

It would be one thing if the deal was one-sided as it is between lower tiers. Then if someone started sending you more traffic that you already meter you could figure out a cost, even though in reality that too is nonsense, since bits have no actual cost. Transmitting data costs nothing, don’t ever let someone tell you that it does.

And the worst part of all of this is that Verizon doesn’t settle this in a conference room or court room where it belongs, it throttles customers connections, all in an attempt to make Cogent feel the pain by making it’s customers and Verizon’s customers suffer. But the pain can be felt elsewhere because what Verizon is doing is essentially holding hostage the Internet for many people anytime they want to access a resource that touches one of it’s routers, if that resource also touches Cogent’s. This potentially affects millions of people, this isn’t hypothetical, its real and its happening right now.

Now it’s easy to blame Netflix or YouTube, and you’d be wrong if you did. This is why we have Tiers much like we have manufactures and distributors. Netflix buys their bandwidth from Cogent, it’s Cogent’s job to work out a reasonable rate for it’s customers, like Netflix must work out a reasonable rate with it’s customers. So blaming the guy down the street for watching too many cat videos on YouTube for your connection problems in game, makes little sense. He pays for a service and expects it to always work. The same way Netflix and YouTube pay their provider for a service and expect it to always work.

At some point you reach the top, and at the top it’s the job of those guys to work those problems amongst themselves in a way that will never affect the customers below them.


Build Bigger Roads

The problem with these services is that we allow corporations to run them at all. Corporations should be limited to products that have no utility value to them, thus their loss does not affect a person’s way of life. The same should be true of healthcare, electricity, phone, cable, internet, etc. Let companies innovate, make widgets and leave the important stuff to the government, because frankly that’s why they exist at all. Because losing my electricity is a whole lot harder to deal with than not being able to afford a bottle of Coca-Cola, or a roll of Duct-tape.

And you think that sounds like Socialism not a free market economy. And well yes because we don’t live in a true free market economy, some things are socialism, some things are not, and there is apparently no rhyme or reason as to which ones are which. Calling 911 for help doesn’t cost you a penny if you have a heart attack, but the second you get into the ER, you better have insurance or you’re going bankrupt.

Governments are good with these types of tasks, how do I know? Because we’ve already done it. In the 50’s Eisenhower decided we needed an Interstate Highway System, so he built one, now imagine life without one now. And in many ways Eisenhower’s roads are like Internet backbone. Because the answer to congestion isn’t reduction, it’s production. That’s right, when your 2-lane road isn’t able to handle the traffic demand, they don’t start preventing cars from accessing it, instead they build bigger roads.

When that 4-lane isn’t enough, they make a 6-lane and so on. But if companies like Verizon were in charge of those same roads when too many trucks clogged their 4-lane highway, they’d simply restrict access to all cars. Imagine that? You are driving along and you see a sign that reads “These assholes are taking up too much room, so you have to leave or we’re just going to slow everything down until you decide to leave, or the trucks decide to leave.”

It’s nonsense. But then Verizon will claim the cost is too prohibitive to just lay more fiber. Companies today are more concerned with turning more profit every quarter, a cycle which cannot go on forever, at least without affecting service to the consumer. When is too much profit at the cost of services too much? When does a reduction in service become so bad that it costs that customer entirely, and therefore potential profit?

Companies like these don’t care, all they really care about is “What have you done for me lately?” That means getting a customer in, and getting as much money before that customer hates the service enough to leave. This is in fact the entire reason why contracts exist at all on services. When companies just provided their customer a good service they didn’t need to offer them anything more. But now they feel like they have to offer them whatever they can, and once they get them in make them sign a contract that forces them to stick with them even as their service becomes shittier over time.

It’s almost certain that if you are signing a contract you can expect to get fucked at some point. That’s why all phone companies make you sign one. It’s not because they supplement the phone, because if their service was perfect no one would ever leave. No one ever lost a customer providing them a good experience. Remember this when you are thinking about signing into one of these contracts.

So what is the answer? What can you do about any of this?

Well a call into Verizon will result in a run-around claiming they don’t see any kind of problem on their end. They won’t even mention anything about the Cogent problem even if you bring it up, because in their minds it’s a secret that should never have gotten out. A call to Cogent produces a similar result, however if you are lucky and talk to the right person you might get them to tell you the problem is with Verizon, but don’t hold your breath. Instead a common thread when referring to the traffic in an affected application like Star Trek Online is to tell you that you should take this up with Cryptic, knowing full well Cryptic cannot fix the problem.

But why do they do this? Is it to generate more of a run-around for you? Not at all. Verizon hopes that your complaints to Cryptic will result in Cryptic complaining to Cogent, which may bring them to the table for negotiations. Verizon knows that Verizon customers calling Cogent will fall on deaf ears, but if enough services the end-users pay for become affected it will be incumbent upon the businesses that provide said services to pressure their ISP into fixing this problem. Because a few dollars a month per user is chump change, complaints from someone who pays the bills is another thing.

It is the hope of Verizon that companies like Cryptic, and Netflix, and YouTube and a host of other companies whose customers are pressuring them will go on to pressure Cogent. I’m sure this entire thing would be resolved pronto, if Netflix negotiated a deal whereby they become a new Verizon customer, and suddenly Verizon’s bandwidth issues for Netflix customers no longer exist… because they never existed in the first place.

First rule of creating a solution that you can make money off of, is creating a problem that doesn’t yet exist.


Double Dipping

In the end, nothing pisses me off more than someone trying to get more than they need or more than they deserve. I’m all for capitalism, but there comes a point when enough is enough. No one wants to pay for the same thing twice, and Verizon is trying to double dip here. Let’s say you are a Verizon customer and all you wanted FIOS for was so you could watch your Netflix movies on their super fast connection. Well what’s the problem then? Isn’t it incumbent upon Verizon to be up front and include those kinds of costs into their bundles?

If you are paying for a service like Verizon FIOS and you are paying for a service like Netflix you expect it to fucking work on Verizon FIOS. No one is suggesting that if you go to Starbucks with your IPad, not order a thing and try to watch something on Netflix that it should be perfect, we all understand that this is one of those two-part service things. You need the access, and you need the content, just having one without the other is useless.

But when I pay for both, when should I expect them to just work? ALWAYS! That’s why you pay for them. If Netflix suddenly offered a free version that mostly worked but didn’t offer HD content during peak hours or something else, you knowing going in what you are paying for, because it didn’t cost you a thing. But paying for two services and not being able to use either of them?

Because this comes down to more than just Netflix after all I don’t actually use it, I’d be more fuming than I already am. But as a paying Verizon FIOS customer I should assume that everything on the Internet that is available without an additional cost should just work as part of the cost of the Internet service Verizon is charging me for. But Verizon doesn’t see it this way, they want to get it not only from you, but from Cogent as well, and I imagine if they could figure out how to make Netflix pay some kind of fee they would want that as well.

But wait a second? To prove my point that it’s not the service itself, but rather just greed all I would need to do is prove that this doesn’t affect a video service that say doesn’t use Cogent’s bandwidth?

Well how about Redbox? You mean the Redbox service owned by… Verizon? That’s right Verizon owns it. And magically if you choose to sign up for that to watch your movies and not say Netflix, you are completely unaffected by this throttling nonsense. So what is Verizon really doing here? They are using an unfair tactic to incent customers looking for video on-demand services into using their video on-demand service because it just works, as opposed to Netflix which is malfunctioning through the malicious throttling of traffic going through their network.

How the fuck is this even legal?

It’s probably not, (screams of Anti-trust) but more over even if it were positively illegal Verizon has no incentive to stop doing it until a Judge orders them not to, and then Verizon will appeal, and if they lose, appeal again, etc. The entire civil justice system is designed to allow corporations freedom in skirting the law as long as there are no real complaints, and by real complaints I don’t mean a few pissed customers. And even if they lose in the end any reparations they must pay will be a pittance to the profits they have made whilst fucking people over.

This is why the entire corporations are people argument is purely nonsense, because corporations have no morals, or a necessity to adopt them. Their existence is purely to fuck over as many people as possible making as much money as possible until they are stopped from doing so, and sadly that rarely occurs, instead they are left to arbitrarily raise capital without consequence. People have morals, people feel empathy, corporations do not, they are not people and as such should never be trusted with anything important.

This is why the only corporations that should exist are those that sell us unnecessary items on infomercials at night, because we can buy if we want but we’ll be okay if we don’t.

It’s only when a corporation has the ability to take hostages, grabbing the consumer by the proverbial “short and curlies” and yanking until they give in and pay the ransom demand, that is until next time when they decide to do it all over again for more profit.


*UPDATE #1 (8/4/2013, 9:36PM): Upon finishing this article I thought I would spend some time in STO killing some Borg or Tholians, but upon trying to connect to the game, I was simply unable to. The Launcher wouldn’t even connect to the server to Launch the game for login. I wanted to give you a shot of what I am basically dealing with right now.

You can click on the picture to see a big version making it easier to read. Earlier in the article I indicated I was getting numbers around 110KB/sec average which is slow, really slow. But when you see what the numbers are right now you can see that on all these ports that number is cut in half now. There is now even less throughput then there was when I started writing the article to begin with. When I click Login, nothing happens at all. I see a blip where it should indicate its connecting, and nothing. And if you look in Nettest you can see it’s ping indicated as 1000.2 ms which equates to 1 second(should be around 40ms).

You can also see that ports that Cryptic uses to pass traffic completely time out all together. The application crashed because it was unable to keep a stable connection with their server. Verizon doesn’t care about their customers, they only care about money. I have been a loyal paying FIOS customer since it was available to me, and this kind of shit really pisses me off.


*UPDATE #2 (8/8/2013, 7:32AM): Just figured I’d give a little perspective of what it should look like by comparing the throughput of an off-peak connection, the difference is startling, and proves without a doubt that Verizon is throttling traffic from the CogentCo. network.

You can clearly see that my ping has dramatically improved, where it should be, coming down from over 1000. More importantly the throughput for example on port 7202 has gone from 54 KB/s  to 2542 KB/s an increase of over 4607%. Those numbers are impossible to dispute. Remember the numbers here are my average numbers, what I should be seeing every single day, at all times, compared to what I see when Verizon is throttling traffic from CogentCo.

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