back to article Netflix sued by South Korean ISP after Squid Game fans swell traffic to '1.2Tbps'

Netflix should cover bandwidth and maintenance costs of a surge in our network traffic, says South Korean ISP SK Broadband, which has taken legal action after subscribers flocked to watch the streaming giant’s latest Korean-language TV show Squid Game. SK Broadband is unhappy that the flow of packets through its systems …

  1. vektorweg

    Sooo, an ISP sells bandwidth to customers and then complains to enablers when the customers use it?

    1. John Doe 12

      I am not surprised this type of douchebag comment is right at the top of the pile. Netflix are leeches who built their business on this kind of attitude shown by the original poster.

      Domestic Internet supply is contended - get used to it. You would complain fast enough if they charged for supplying uncontended access. This is no different to one of those open buffets being abused by a gang coming in with the intention to put the owner out of business.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        It's not abuse to utilize all resources promised to you.

        If you do not intend to provide all you can eat, Then it may be in your interest to be honest in that intention and specify specific limits and enforce them consistently.

        An ISP's customers pay the ISP to deliver the packets from any endpoint on the net to them, and to transmit from their end to any another.

        If the isp has dishonestly represented their costs by abstracting that from their customer service fees, then they should be left to learn from their choice of strategy.

        They are already being paid for that traffic. If they mismanaged their own resources, it should be on them.

        They could always partner with Netflix and put a Netflix box on their data center.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Netflix are leeches "

        No Netflix are a business selling movie viewing, and without businesses like Netflix, there is not reason to pay for ISP's high speed links. They drive the demand that this ISP cashes in on by selling services.

        "Domestic Internet supply is contended"

        No, that's not the agreement the customer is paying for. It's totally reasonable for customers to use what they paid for and expect the ISP to deliver on their promises, just like every other business everywhere (including all you can eat buffets).

        "This is no different to one of those open buffets being abused by a gang coming in with the intention to put the owner out of business."

        How would that even make sense?

        Look, you have a weak argument there, and you've tried to fluff it up with childish insults like douchebag.

        Go away, rethink your argument to be cogent, and come back with a proper claim like a grownup.

        1. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

          Actually, you're both right but he's operating off a better knowledge of the network than you.

          The ISPs are not the cable providers. They are charged for traffic. They compete on price by modelling usage patterns and scaling retail price accordingly. Netflix breaks that model deliberately -- treats transmission as free. It's not -- the cost is borne by 3rd parties.

          1. Tomato42

            Netflix does pay for its peering, they wouldn't be on the Internet otherwise.

            if ISP underestimated what customers will actually want to use, it's entirely the fault of the ISP unable to do their business properly, not a fault of Netflix

            1. Jon 37

              Most of the Internet giants pay for transit, but not peering. Most big ISPs have loads of customers using Google/Amazon/Microsoft/etc, so instead of paying for transit for that traffic, they agree to free peering. This saves money for the ISP, as well as for the big Internet companies, and gives a better experience for their mutual customers.

              1. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
                Boffin

                "free peering" has a cost - they need to buy and maintain the equipment; potentially renting some dark fibre or paying to get their own fibre installed. Often that's within the same datacentre/IX, but in the case of a nation-level provider it may translate to international fibre links.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "The ISPs are not the cable providers."

            They are SK Broadband, the Korean cable provider, its in the article:

            https://www.skbroadband.com/eng/Main.do

            So their 3 year contract KRW 38,500 pcm, about £25 pcm for gigabit unlimited cable, assuming every single customer uses UHD, that's 2.5% of the bandwidth they sold to those customers.

            "They are charged for traffic. They compete on price by modelling usage patterns and scaling retail price accordingly. "

            This is not Netflix's problem. Models fit markets, not markets fit models. If they sold 100% of the service and cannot deliver even 2.5% they have a very bad model. They need to fix their model, not try to force the market to cap it at 2.5% just to make their model work.

            1. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
              Facepalm

              Precedent

              Let them do it.

              Because if netflix has to pay the ISP to deliver the content, presumably the ISP has to pay the consumer in the same way.

              It's the exact same process - data arrives at your router, you get paid for it.

              No? Well then don't try to charge upstream.

            2. Alan Brown Silver badge

              "the Korean cable provider"

              aka Vertically integrated Monopoly

              There are very good reasons for not allowing this kind of behaviour in a regulated market

          3. 0xAE

            The ISP aren't a cable providers, they are an internet provider.

            The ISP provide bandwidth regardless what the customer do or how much he consume : netflix, pornhub or open exit relay tor node is at the discretion of the consumer

            They are the only responsible: over sell, can't deliver, end.

        2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

          1. stiine Silver badge
            Facepalm

            ...Says John Doe 21.

            I'd rather deal with an anonymous coward than a John Doe.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              re: I'd rather deal with an anonymous coward than a John Doe.

              You don't seem to understand that "John Doe 21" identifies a specific poster and "anonymous coward" is available to all of us, so:

              "I'd rather deal with an anonymous coward than this specific John Doe."

              Why?

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            How is he self entitled?

            People pay Netflix to watch movies.

            They pay SK Broadbands to deliver that internet.

            A typical home package from SK is : KRW 42,900 per month and includes Gigabit internet.

            Why should they pay twice to get that internet delivered? It's literally a fraction of the bandwidth they're supposidly paying for. If SK won't deliver on their promises, even a tiny fraction of those promises, others can.

            I removed your childish insult, and addressed it like a grownup, see how that works? Try it.

            1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                "People demand to pay peanuts for their broadband and then whine when they don't get a leased line level product. "

                SKBroadband packages cost KRW 33,000 and upwards.

                Netflix 4x UHD package costs KRW 14500

                It's not unreasonable to expect SKBroadband to deliver streams that Netflix manages to deliver to them on half the money. SKBroadband also sell cable TV packages, and they manage to deliver those down the very same wire. They are not paid peanuts and it is not unreasonable for customers to stream movies on their internet connection!

                Again, I ignored your childish comment and address the only substantive part I could find.

                1. John Doe 12

                  "Again, I ignored your childish comment and address the only substantive part I could find."

                  Translated this means that you DON'T work in the ISP business but prefer not to admit you are commenting on things you know too little about. So you throw around words like childish to try and disguise the fact you are dodging the question.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    @John Doe 12

                    You said this:

                    "Are you in the ISP business or just another ill-informed commentard who wants to fight for net neutrality regardless of reality"

                    Hence it was ignored as childish false dichotomy.

                    You have not made any coherent argument here, and I do not believe you have any knowledge on the subject beyond TV punditry you may have watched.

                    1. John Doe 12

                      "I do not believe you have any knowledge on the subject beyond TV punditry you may have watched."

                      Well you just confirmed to me that you really have no clue about anything relating to this topic.

                      Oh and nice try to dodge the question AGAIN about you having any real experience in the ISP business. Clearly you don't :-D

        3. boblongii

          "without businesses like Netflix, there is not reason to pay for ISP's high speed links"

          Netflix doesn't require the 180Mb connection I have, and not only because I don't have Netflix. I use it for working from home and transferring large amounts of data around to different sites and servers.

          If I only wanted to watch TV shows I could do that with a tenth of my current bandwidth.

          The problem here is that the Internet is a hugely inefficient way to deliver television to millions of people compared to broadcasting radio-waves, and that's not going to change any time soon.

          "No, that's not the agreement the customer is paying for."

          In terms of contention, it probably is. Read the small print on your agreement.

          1. doublelayer Silver badge

            "The problem here is that the Internet is a hugely inefficient way to deliver television to millions of people compared to broadcasting radio-waves, and that's not going to change any time soon."

            It's not that inefficient for delivering specific videos. If I want something that you don't want, then the internet gets it just to me without impacting you. Radio waves work very well for people who all want the same thing in the same format at the same time, but a lot of modern videos don't work on that basis. People want video on-demand, they want to watch things that others don't want to, they want full streams which aren't popular with their neighbors, and in each case wire works better than radio waves. This isn't new or limited to the internet. Although digital broadcast has increased the number of channels you can send through the air, it's nothing to the number you can send over a wire.

            1. Zolko Silver badge

              broadcast -vs- streaming

              they want to watch things that others don't want to, they want full streams which aren't popular with their neighbors

              did you read the article ? It specifically talks about videos that everybody wants to watch ! Which means that this should be broadcasted and not streamed. Netflix is using/abusing a system which was not meant for that.

              1. Annihilator Silver badge

                Re: broadcast -vs- streaming

                Not at the same time they don't. Plus I'm not sure about Korea, but so far I don't believe there are many 4K broadcast facilities in the UK. Sky might have an occasional one, but most of their 4K content is (you guessed it), downloadable/streamed.

                "Netflix is using/abusing a system which was not meant for that"

                That's a pretty bold statement. I'd say 90% of internet traffic wasn't conceived of when the internet was.

                1. Zolko Silver badge

                  Re: broadcast -vs- streaming

                  I'd say 90% of internet traffic wasn't conceived of when the internet was.

                  At it's core, Internet is a decentralised point-to-point protocol ... which Netflix is trying to use as a centralised broadcasting service.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: broadcast -vs- streaming

                    @zolko

                    "centralised broadcasting service"

                    FFS, netflix is NOT a broadcaster, it's a point to point individual choice streaming service.

                    Broadcast = same thing sent out to many at one time, (all get same no individual choice)

                    Streaming = you choose what you want, (everyone can watch a different item)

                    See the fucking difference?

                  2. Annihilator Silver badge

                    Re: broadcast -vs- streaming

                    I think you need to read up on what streaming services do. Broadcasting is not on that list.

                    Not to mention there are multicast protocols available to do what you're suggesting. But funnily enough, people aren't gathering around the box all at the same time to watch the same thing anymore. They're not any likelier to do it just because a few die-hard ISP zealots think that people shouldn't use the bandwidth they think they've paid for...

              2. doublelayer Silver badge

                Re: broadcast -vs- streaming

                People are watching the same episodes at different times. You can't broadcast that without setting up the Squid Game Marathon Channel, and that's a lot more expensive than using a wire. And when people are done with this show, they'll still be using video a lot, but no longer watch the same thing. It's not broadcasting because it's different things to different people at a time of their choice.

              3. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: broadcast -vs- streaming

                To appl that consistently, DRM, , traffic shaping, unicast streamimg and centralized services are abuse of the Internet because it prevents casual mirroring ,and Anonymous access and multicast as designed.

          2. Alan Brown Silver badge

            "The problem here is that the Internet is a hugely inefficient way to deliver television to millions of people compared to broadcasting radio-waves, and that's not going to change any time soon."

            Clifford Stoll made the very same point in Silicon Snake Oil about 25 years ago

            And there is a solution for broadcasting: Multicast/mbone - which ISPs ignored

      3. The Brave Sir Robin

        But the bandwidth used by Netflix on any particular home Internet connection is just a fraction of the bandwidth you're allegedly being supplied by the ISP.

        If I'm paying for, say, 30mbps ISP bandwidth and Netflix is consuming at most 10Mbps then I'm only using 1/3 of my total bandwidth. Therefore the ISP should easily be able to provide the bandwidth for everyone to watch Netflix. Not Netflix' fault if the ISP is overselling their bandwidth.

        1. Zolko Silver badge

          But the bandwidth used by Netflix on any particular home Internet connection is just a fraction of the bandwidth you're allegedly being supplied by the ISP.

          peak -vs- mean, that's why there are traffic jams on roads.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "peak -vs- mean"

            fucking irrelevant.

            ISP sold X can only supply 10% of X is the fucking ISP's problem, not netflix or the consumer.

            And to the fuckwit who keeps saying people don't understand networks due to not working at them, FUCK OFF.

            I created a fucking ISP from scratch, I know all about buying minimum bandwidth and sharing it out due to peek V mean, ISP's over sell what they don't have to make it cheaper to consumer, it worked when the old patterns were just a bit of browsing and email, NOT now pattern useage has changed.

            If a modern ISP does not understand this, they deserve to go out of business, as they are shit and conning consumers

            1. Alan Brown Silver badge

              As someone who also built an ISP, I concur

              This behaviour is what you expect from a monopolist, not a competitive business

      4. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

        By the downvotes and the other posts here, you would seem to be about the only person who understands how the networks (and pricing) _actually_ operate, rather than how people would like them to operate.

        (Cf my post just above)

        1. John Doe 12

          @W.S.Gosset

          I have long since learned there are times where I can be right and almost everyone else is wrong :-D This seems to be one of them ha ha.

          It's one of those emotive topics that brings out a massive sense of entitlement in people. It's been a race to the bottom for many years and though this does mean that most low-income families can afford to have some form of Internet access (which is brilliant) the average joe seems to be losing all sense of reality. What's more worrying is that I guess most people using The Register should know better but seem to be even more deluded :-D

          I am in this line of business by the way which is why I understand how it works. So downvote away guys as you only prove my point further ;-)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "I have long since learned there are times where I can be right and almost everyone else is wrong :-D This seems to be one of them ha ha."

            your a fuckwit. and wrong as wrong can fucking be.

            I made an ISP from scratch, stop making excuses for shitty business practice.

            The world moved on, the net is no longer just used for a bit of browsing and email.

            If ISP's want to limit, thats fucking fine, but they need to stop pretending and marketing it like it's unlimited.

            Part of the issue is fucking goverments allowed marketing assholes (are you one?) to use the word "unlimited*" when it's NOT unlimited, words fucking matter, and redefining a word just for marketing assholes is fucking fraud.

            * note unlimited in this use means "NOT unlimited" as the GOV allows me to fool you.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @W.S.Gosset "By the downvotes and the other posts here, you would seem to be about the only person who understands how the networks (and pricing) _actually_ operate, rather than how people would like them to operate."

          You didn't even read the article:

          "SK Broadband urged the Korea Communications Commission in November 2019 to get web video giants like Netflix and Google’s YouTube to pay for network usage."

          That's not how they operate, its how they WISH they could operate having failed to get their way in 2019.

      5. derrr

        So are you saying the open buffet providers should not provide content/food people wish to consume to prevent popularity??

        1. John Doe 12

          No I am not saying that. But if some greedy pig comes in with the intention of eating until they puke and then stuffing food into their pockets then I would totally support the buffet owner for banning them. Once again I will use the word "entitled" as this describes the category of personality that has no willingness to be reasonable and behaves like it's a challenge. In the past I have described The Register as the Daily Mail of I.T. and certainly reading some of the comments in this thread I feel like got that correct.

          Downvote away you Daily Mail lovers :-P

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            The "greedy pigs" in this case are the customers watching Netflix streams. Netflix does not force people to watch, it's the customer that initiates the transaction, its the customers that choose that service.

            Cable providers like SKBroadband are paid by those customers to let them watch Netflix and other internet sites. They are in effect, reselling those websites and reselling that content to their customer.

            Without those websites and that content they have nothing to resell.

            So SKBroadband should pay Netflix a cut of the customer money they make on the resale. That would cause a flow of money to content creators who make the actual content. Stimulating content creation and stimulating internet use and increasing broadband in the process. Also ultimately good for the ISPs since their ability to sell fast services to content depends on there being content that needs fast services to resell.

            SKBroadband are a parasite on Netflix here, getting to sell broadband to customers that customers otherwise wouldn't need to buy. But in a broader sense these ISP parasites get to resell the works of others for huge profits, without paying the content creators.

            ISP's customers click on Google and cause processing on Google's servers and bandwidth across Google's network.

            That parasitic relationship needs to stop, ISPs need to pay for the content they resell. They need to pay their way.

          2. Matt Ryan

            If we applied your argument about Neflix to open buffets, the buffet owner would try to get his food supplier to pay him so his customers could eat the food.

  2. IceC0ld

    I can think of one way to settle it .................

    who is up for a quick round of Squid Game ? :o)

    1. Ken Shabby
      Pirate

      Release the Kraken...

      1. Kane Silver badge
        Joke

        "Release the Kraken..."

        I've seen enough hentai to know where this is going...

  3. Cheshire Cat
    WTF?

    Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

    Haven't the ISP subscribers already paid for this bandwidth? If they all happen to use it to access the same internet site, that's not the fault of Netflix.

    The ISP is just being greedy. If they can't supply the bandwidth the customers paid for, then they should change their pricing structure.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

      Yeah, pretty much this. The analogue in the physical world would be an airline overbooking its flights and then demanding that a destination city compensate it for putting on a festival that made people want to go there.

      Oversubscribing any resource you sell should be illegal unless your contracts create explicit tiers of access. Want to be in a higher-priority tier? Pay more. Want to pay less? Accept that you'll sometimes get nothing. Promising something and failing to deliver should mean prison time.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        The big difference being that Netflix could cache their data within the ISPs network, eliminating the cost of purchasing international bandwidth.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          Annndd... who would pay for that? Hmm?

          1. vekkq

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            the ISP is paying of course. they gonna save bandwidth and with that they save money.

          2. John Robson Silver badge

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            Well, when I was running a CDN we'd put the hardware in - they'd pay for power/cooling.

            It makes a huge amount of sense from both parties, since you only deliver once to the cache, and don't pay central bandwidth fees for all the deliveries downstream, and the ISP obviously gets a huge benefit as well.

            So both save on bandwidth costs - the ISP by more than enough to pay for the power.

            The CDN also gets to provide a better service to it's customers in that region.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          Only if they're permitted to install caching servers. And its the ISP who has to permit it. Please re-read the article.

        3. martyn.hare
          Thumb Up

          Or… a happy medium

          Netflix could offer a way for ISPs to opportunistically cache data by not unnecessarily using HTTPS to deliver their video content. Send the client a compressed+encrypted wad of checksums/keys and then deliver the exact same DRM-encrypted data to every subscriber.

          Problem sorted.

          1. ewanm89

            Re: Or… a happy medium

            You mean like the system they do provide: https://openconnect.netflix.com

            They can do it with the DRM and encryption, they have a whole setup for it.

        4. MatthewSt

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          https://openconnect.netflix.com/en_gb/

          Looks like this is already solved for ISPs if they're willing to get a free appliance from Netflix to plug in to power and network

          1. jockmcthingiemibobb

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            Yeah it's really bizarre that there's no netflix CDN / openconnect in South Korea?

      2. AndrueC Silver badge

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        Oversubscribing any resource you sell should be illegal unless your contracts create explicit tiers of access.

        I don't totally disagree with you but we're talking about resource contention here and it is a very complicated problem that all businesses have to deal with (talk to a restaurateur about how they plan staffing levels and manage bookings throughout the week). The only reason private individuals can afford a home network connection is because it's contended. Lower contention is the reason business packages cost more (lower bandwidth and lower engineer contention). Lack of contention is why leased lines are so expensive.

        Residential contention is sometimes a fixed figure if the connection rates are fixed. In the early days of fixed rate connections in the UK it was 50:1 for residential, 20:1 for business. With today's variable rates that doesn't work so the ratio varies across the network according to local demand with the ISP trying to balance cost v customer complaints. Spikes in demand are particularly tricky because bandwidth isn't something you can just increase and decrease on a whim. Who knows how long Squid Game will capture attention? When viewing figures drop off SK could be left with under utilised routers losing them money.

        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          The only reason private individuals can afford a home network connection is because it's contended.

          Yup. It's one of the key arguments/problems behind the whole 'Net Neutrality' debate.

          Customer pays ISP $10/month

          Customer pays Netflix $10/month

          Netflix pays ISP $0

          So Netflix and their customers generate 1.2Tbs, which is a cost to the ISP. ISP is generally forced to provide 'free' peering to Netflix, because otherwise that traffic will go via a transit ISP, which means more costs to the consumer's ISP. The transit ISP will probably peer with Netflix, or if the the cost of carrying Netflix's traffic is too high, may want to charge Netflix for transit.

          But changing from a 'free' peering to a paid transit connection generally ends up leading to peering (or PR) wars when there's a trafic imbalance. Which there always will be with content like streaming. But such has been the Internet since the '90s. Netflix doesn't want to pay carriage because it's loss making.

          So we're left with an uneasy status quo, and lobbying. This ISP has identified the cost element, and that cost is due to Netflix. If Netflix has to pay to deliver it's traffic, it's subscription charges will have to go up (again). If the ISP has to, consumers will find their $10/month subscription has to increase.

          It's an old problem, and one that really needs the regulators to solve. The model is pretty simple, ie the old POTs model with orignation & termination costs, and settlement betwen operators. But that would add costs to the OTT content providers, hence why they lobby for the ISPs to carry all the costs.

          (There's also been some fun with Amazon's new MMO game. Launch day for those generally gets interesting. Amazon's created instances for 2,000 players, >2,000 players have attempted to join. So people have found themselves sitting in queues of 10k+ players trying to get into the game. Which is fun because if anyone could 'flex' server capacity to support surge demand, you'd think it'd be Amazon and AWS.)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            There's one huge problem with your theory:

            "Customer pays ISP $10/month"

            Sure, or whatever. The customer does pay the ISP for both connectivity infrastructure and packet transport.

            "Customer pays Netflix $10/month"

            Sure, or whatever the price is.

            "Netflix pays ISP $0"

            Netflix don't pay *the end user's* ISP, no. Because they aren't (in general) receiving any services from it. But Netflix absolutely do pay their own ISPs, from whom they receive both connectivity infrastructure and packet transport. Eventually the two ISPs' ISPs etc. meet at some giant peering exchange or backbone provider where the tier-1 comms vendors have decided, probably correctly, that it's in their mutual interest to make sure packets can move freely among their networks.

            The important point here is that there is symmetry in these commercial arrangements: each party pays its own provider for infrastructure and transport. As has been pointed out elsewhere, no one is freeloading: it's in everyone's interests to see that packets can flow among providers, because if (for example) SK's upstream providers won't accept packets from Netflix's upstream providers, then neither of those providers is going to have packets to move, which means neither of them can charge their customers (SK and Netflix) for moving packets. Everyone loses. That's why peering exists, and why it works.

            This problem is fundamentally about SK not wanting to invest in its network nor charge its customers more for pulling more packets to fund that investment. They would prefer to blame a competitor at the distant end of the pipe and hope a court will be dumb enough to hand them a pile of someone else's cash which their executives will then pay to themselves as a bonus instead of improving the network. In the meantime, SK's customers need to get real about the cost of the service they're consuming. If you want to move TB of data around, you're going to need to pay more than the local equivalent of $20 a month for it. If you won't, then you're going to have to accept that during peak demand periods you are likely to have very limited throughput, high latency, and packet loss. That's what happens on a contended network, and a network on which everyone is promised fantastic throughput at a tiny flat rate is usually going to end up heavily contended. Priority costs money, and bigger pipes cost money, and you have to choose between paying for them and suffering a contended network. I'm not sure how TANSTAAFL translates into Korean, but it's a message both SK and their customers need to hear. SK want customers, and connecting them with services like Netflix is what attracts customers. SK's customers want reliable service. There's a market there, it just hasn't found its clearing price.

            1. Muppet Boss

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              >They would prefer to blame a competitor at the distant end of the pipe and hope a court will be dumb enough to hand them a pile of someone else's cash which their executives will then pay to themselves as a bonus instead of improving the network.

              Sorry mate but SK Broadband's network is much faster, better and cheaper for the customers than anything any UK ISP has to offer. South Korea consistently ranks among the best for the Internet access, while the UK... well... it's a bit of a shame really, maybe as you said it's all about the bonuses.

              As for the court, you see, S. Korea has some sort of different mentality (like chaebols, "Koreans buy Korean" etc) and the courts there do not really appreciate when some American company tries to get other's piece of pie from the local market. I would say, SK Broadband have very good chances at the Korean court against the US company.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                As for the court, you see, S. Korea has some sort of different mentality (like chaebols, "Koreans buy Korean" etc) and the courts there do not really appreciate when some American company tries to get other's piece of pie from the local market. I would say, SK Broadband have very good chances at the Korean court against the US company.

                Perhaps the remedy should be as follows:

                1. Netflix blocks SK Broadband's IP addresses. After all, it's what they asked for: no Netflix traffic peaks on their network.

                2. Netflix offers refunds to affected Netflix subscribers who are on SK Broadband.

                3. SK Broadband goes out of business, when its customers realise that they can't reach the whole Internet through them, and move to a different provider

                This however assumes that Korea has a somewhat competitive ISP market, unlike (say) much of the US.

            2. cdrcat

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              Some Netflix traffic goes via backbones, but most Netflix data is streamed from cached content served by appliances installed at reasonably local peering exchanges.

              “Each Open Connect Appliance (OCA) stores a portion of the Netflix catalog, which in general is less than the complete content library for a given region. Popularity changes, new titles that are added to the service, re-encoded movies, and routine software enhancements are all part of the nightly updates, or fill, that each appliance must download to remain current.” — https://openconnect.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360035618071

            3. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              Netflix don't pay *the end user's* ISP, no. Because they aren't (in general) receiving any services from it.

              Sure they are. The end user's ISP is enabling Netflix's service, and delivering Netflix's traffic to Netflix's customer. But they're not getting paid to do that, by Netflix. Think of it like the postal system. You order something from say, Amazon, you pay a delivery charge to have it sent to you.

              Eventually the two ISPs' ISPs etc. meet at some giant peering exchange or backbone provider where the tier-1 comms vendors have decided, probably correctly, that it's in their mutual interest to make sure packets can move freely among their networks.

              Tier-1 is largely meaningless. But the problem is it's not mutual interest. Traditionally, settlement free peering was based around a roughly equal traffic flow, either by volume or value. When flows became asymmetric, that tended to result in 'peering wars' where one ISP attempts to charge the other. But where the traffic flows are highly asymmetric, there's additional pressure. A transit ISP won't want to convert to a free peering session, but if a transit ISP is the only route to Netflix, then the end-user's ISP has to pay for more transit, eg 1.2Tbps. Alternatively, it could try peering with Netflix, assuming they're present in S.Korea and willing to peer.

              But adding 1.2Tbps of capacity is also rather expensive. Where there's mutual benefit, each party generally pays the cost. But this kind of capacity would need a BFR with some expensive ports. There may be the option of installing Netflix caches, which would cost rackspace & power, and a lot of ports. So say, 12 servers with 100Gbps capability.. or a lot more if they can only handle 10Gbps. That would save the ISP peering or transit costs, but it would still have to deliver that 1.2Gbps of Netflix traffic to it's customers.

              The important point here is that there is symmetry in these commercial arrangements: each party pays its own provider for infrastructure and transport.

              No, not at all. The costs are highly asymmetric. The local ISP gets paid nothing for the costs of delivering Netflix's traffic, other than what it can charge it's customers for their broadband connections. In this case, the problem is pretty clear, ie the cost of delivering 1.2Gbps of traffic from Netflix to their subscribers.

              Netflix may pay it's own ISP or CDN, but the costs of fat pipes or transit networks are much less than the costs of building & operating access networks for a few million subscribers. So basically the cost of delivering 1.2Tbps of traffic to S.Korea is a lot less than the cost of building the access network to deliver Netflix's traffic. Netflix pays nothing towards the cost of that network, or the costs of delivering it's customer's traffic.

              So the problem basically boils down to the cost of delivering that 1.2Tbps. If ISP's can't charge Netflix, then the only people it can charge are the ISP's customers, so the cost of their broadband connection would have to increase, whether they're a Netflix customer or not. But this isn't just a Netflix problem, it's the cost inequality of delivering traffic for any of the OTT streaming services.

              1. Geez Money Bronze badge

                Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                > Sure they are. The end user's ISP is enabling Netflix's service, and delivering Netflix's traffic to Netflix's customer. But they're not getting paid to do that, by Netflix. Think of it like the postal system. You order something from say, Amazon, you pay a delivery charge to have it sent to you.

                What a brutally bad analogy that actually totally undercuts your point. Do you pay the postal service a set amount of money for a certain number of letters per month in bandwidth as the recipient?

                1. The Real SteveP

                  Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                  In effect, at least in the UK, yes you do. The sender pays a fee to the carrier (Netfix) which varies according to the size and weight of the letter/package/parcel (bandwidth). Often the sender will transfer that cost to the recipient, but that is a contract between the sender and the recipient which does not involve the carrier (ISP).

              2. deep_enigma

                Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                I *work* for a smallish mid-sized ISP, and I (and by all indications, the owners of this company) think you're wrong. It is absolutely NOT on the content provider to help pay for the receiving end's costs; it is up to the customer's ISP to scale their transit/peering as needed to support their customers' use of the Internet - whatever that usage is.

                Or find some way to not have the data flow over a transit link for each and every viewer in the first place.

                I've just had a quick skim through the Netflix Open Connect site, and if SK has decided not to host a handful of these appliances they've just gone and shot themselves in both feet with great enthusiasm. This kind of transit data volume is exactly the kind of thing they're designed and intended to PREVENT, and it's not like Netflix charges for them.

                1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                  I *work* for a smallish mid-sized ISP, and I (and by all indications, the owners of this company) think you're wrong. It is absolutely NOT on the content provider to help pay for the receiving end's costs; it is up to the customer's ISP to scale their transit/peering as needed to support their customers' use of the Internet - whatever that usage is.

                  Ask your owners how much it'd cost to increase your capacity to support 1.2Tbps of traffic. They should understand their peering/transit and their network costs. Again it's a simple business problem. If Netflix won't contribute towards the cost of delivering their customer's traffic, then the only way for ISPs to recover the cost is to increase their subscriber's charges. Alternatively, if they can't afford the capex/opex to pay for capacity increases, all that ISP's customers would suffer congestion, packet loss and a generally worsening service.

                  I've just had a quick skim through the Netflix Open Connect site, and if SK has decided not to host a handful of these appliances they've just gone and shot themselves in both feet with great enthusiasm. This kind of transit data volume is exactly the kind of thing they're designed and intended to PREVENT, and it's not like Netflix charges for them.

                  But Netflix doesn't appear to be present in SK, so there'd still be the issue of bandwidth costs to the OC caches, costs to host those servers (space/power etc), and the cost to carry traffic from cache to Netflix's customers.

                  1. Alan Brown Silver badge

                    Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                    "Ask your owners how much it'd cost to increase your capacity to support 1.2Tbps of traffic"

                    It wouldn't BE 1.2Tbps of traffic with local caching appliances in the network, that's the entire fucking point of the appliances for such flows

                    Are you being wilfully clueless in order to keep the argument going or are you actually as stupid as you appear to be?

            4. Zolko Silver badge

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              Because they aren't (in general) receiving any services from it.

              They are getting the paying customers from them. No ISP, no Netflix customer.

              that's the exact same "business model" as tax heavens: big corporations make stuff in a country with good infrastructure, good universities that provide skilled workforce, but make all their "profit" on a small remote island where they only have a virtual office and pay no taxes. They want a free ride, like Amazon, Google, Facebook ... and all the US net giants.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                "They are getting the paying customers from them. No ISP, no Netflix customer."

                then the reverse is true, why use an isp if the content you want isn't avalible.

                And the customer of the ISP is PAYING for the bandwidth and wants netflix data (already paid for by the customer to the ISP).

                Just because the fucking ISP oversold it's capacity does not make it a netflix problem.

                (i'm suspecting we have a lot of marketing/sales wankers in this thread, they like to promise the cake and then deliver a sloppy shit in yer hands.)

                1. Alan Brown Silver badge

                  Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                  "then the reverse is true, why use an isp if the content you want isn't avalible."

                  In the cases of a lot of USA customers - "Because nothing else is available" (this also applies in many other areas around the world)

                  This is a business model based on being the only game in town and shutting out competition. A model which (in the USA at least) is ripe for disruption and the people who've been coining it are rather belatedly realising that pissed off customers who are offered Starlink will bite off the proffered connection at the elbows to get away from the old ISP - EVEN IF the old incumbent ISP turned around and matched Starlink's bandwidth and cost

                  A quick bit of google-fu shows that Korea is mostly a comfortable Duopoly for broadband with some areas having a whole FOUR ISPs to choose from (but seldom all four in any one location), which explains why this rent-seeking activity is being contemplated by an incumBENT ISP in the first place - it's a case of "dominant Chaeboi seeks to manipulate market to its own advantage"

                  Anywhere else, customers would leave. In Korea it appears they have little choice (for the moment)

          2. rg287 Silver badge

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            So Netflix and their customers generate 1.2Tbs, which is a cost to the ISP.

            Err, it's also a cost to Netflix.

            If SKBroadband are receiving 1.2Tbs, it means Netflix are also pushing 1.2Tbs. If that's via transit then both parties are paying $$$ for that (and more fool them). If it's via peering then both parties are paying to locate hardware in peering locations (SK peer all over the world). For sure, SK's final-mile connectivity to consumers are expensive to maintain. That's why SKBroadband's packages are at least 3x more expensive than a Netflix subscription.

            And of course a network the size of SK can easily justify a Netflix OpenConnect appliance or 10.

            1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              Err, it's also a cost to Netflix.

              Yep. But it's a very asymmetric cost, ie Netflix doesn't pay for the 'last mile' delivery.

              If SKBroadband are receiving 1.2Tbs, it means Netflix are also pushing 1.2Tbs. If that's via transit then both parties are paying $$$ for that (and more fool them). If it's via peering then both parties are paying to locate hardware in peering locations (SK peer all over the world).

              Yup, that's kind of how transit ISPs survive, charging transit to both parties. But again it's a cost inequality. So Netflix pushes 1.2Tbps into it's transit or peering connections. SK ISP then needs 1.2Tbps of connectivity via transit or peering to deliver that traffic to Netflix's customers. Netflix doesn't contribute towards those costs.

              Also if you look at the exchange sites in peeringdb, it doesn't list Netflix as peering at any of the IXs-

              https://www.peeringdb.com/net/457

              Again it's a pretty simple problem. SKBroadband can identify the cost of carrying Netflix's traffic. It can also identify the cost of any infrastructure upgrades, or additional peering transit costs. If Netflix won't contribute towards that, then the only cost recovery possible is increased broadband costs for SKBroadband's subscribers.

              1. John Robson Silver badge

                Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                "Yep. But it's a very asymmetric cost, ie Netflix doesn't pay for the 'last mile' delivery."

                No, because the consumer has already paid for that.

                The post office don't get to bill me for letters delivered, all the cost is borne by the sender.

                But I could set up a freepost address, and then the sender wouldn't pay, I would,

                Why should SK charge both parties for the same bandwidth?

                1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                  The post office don't get to bill me for letters delivered, all the cost is borne by the sender.

                  Well, yes. Which was rather my point. Sender in this case is Netflix, but they expect free delivery because you're paying for a letter box. Depending where you are, there's also sometimes FUN! like finding a card saying 'we missed you, please come and collect <whatever>', so you end up paying for the last-mile delivery.

                  Why should SK charge both parties for the same bandwidth?

                  They're not. They're simply pointing out that someone has to pay for that 1.2Tbps of capacity, and if it's not Netflix, then the entire cost will be borne by SK broadband customers.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                    "They're not. They're simply pointing out that someone has to pay for that 1.2Tbps of capacity, and if it's not Netflix, then the entire cost will be borne by SK broadband customers."

                    Yes and???

                    SK customers "already" pay for that, it's not the customer or netflix fault that SK set their pricing wrong.

                    To expect Netflix to pay for SK charging too little is just fucking crazy.

                    I thought the whole fucking point of free market capitalism is the market will set the price?

                    Why allow a court to reward SK for lying to their customers? (they told them unlimited)

                  2. Alan Brown Silver badge

                    Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                    " Sender in this case is Netflix, but they expect free delivery because you're paying for a letter box"

                    Wrong analogy. Everything on the Internet is "receiver pays", not "sender pays"

                    That's WHY spam is evil and theft of services. It's cost-shifted advertising on the receiver's dime.

                  3. John Robson Silver badge

                    Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

                    Except that I am paying for a freepost box...

                    That's why it costs me more if I want a box that can receive more letters....

                    Just because one person uses my freeport box a lot doesn't mean that the post office can charge them *as well*

          3. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            " This ISP has identified the cost element, and that cost is due to Netflix. "

            No, this ISP has identified an opportunity for "rent-seeking behaviour"

            It's a textbook example

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rent-seeking

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          "I don't totally disagree with you but we're talking about resource contention here and it is a very complicated problem that all businesses have to deal with"

          None of that is the customers or Netflix's problem. They have no duty to fix your problems for you.

          1. Zolko Silver badge

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            None of that is the customers or Netflix's problem. They have no duty to fix your problems for you.

            they could throttle Netflix, that would solve the ISP's problem. And then let Netflix sort out why their full-4K HD-videos don't stream.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              and the simple reply would be

              "your ISP SK is not supplying you with what you paid for, so sue them for fraud".

              which would be reasonable.

              SK fucked up pricing, they only have themselves to blame.

              (are they undercutting the true price to gain customers and enforce a monopoly once large enough, so they can then rip off consumers and content providers???, my opinion would be most likely, knowing typical company behaviour from greedy director twats )

        3. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          " In the early days of fixed rate connections in the UK it was 50:1 for residential, 20:1 for business"

          UK had per minute call charges for local calls which put people off staying dialled in for long periods. It was 20:1 or lower for residential connections elsewhere

      3. Muppet Boss
        Thumb Up

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        >The analogue in the physical world would be an airline overbooking its flights and then demanding that a destination city compensate it for putting on a festival that made people want to go there.

        Or rather someone putting on a big event in London with lots of spectators and people wanting to go there and then wondering why TfL wants to charge them for extra trains required to maintain the adequate service for all.

        >Oversubscribing any resource you sell should be illegal unless your contracts create explicit tiers of access. ... Accept that you'll sometimes get nothing.

        Oh, the Tube again!

        There's such thing as fair use policy: if you consume too much at the expense of others, you will be asked to pay more. Well, Netflix in this case.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          "There's such thing as fair use policy: if you consume too much at the expense of others, you will be asked to pay more. Well, Netflix in this case."

          Except it's not Netflix that's consuming it. These connections are being initiated by SK's customers, not Netflix. Those customers have paid for connectivity to the rest of the Internet, on what terms I do not know. You are responsible to your customer, not to someone else. If Netflix care that much about being accessible to these customers, perhaps they'd like to subsidise their service or provide direct-to-Netflix leased lines as part of their service agreements. Since they're not offering to do that, it stands to reason that it's up to SK's customers to make sure their contracts guarantee access if they consider Squid Game essential to life and health, and it's up to SK to provide whatever their contracts require. If SK can't do that, it's not Netflix's fault but SK's. SK's recourse here would be to cease peering with whoever provides service to Netflix unless they can negotiate a subsidy large enough for them to meet their obligations to their own customers. Those kinds of peering disputes rarely benefit anyone but those are the options. Demanding money directly from Netflix is insane and wholly unjustified.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            I don't really know whether the network was actually overstretched or not. I might be a faux problem. Overall, I am in favor of net neutrality, and honest tiers.

            However, your argument has some shortcomings I think:

            - Doesn't the ISP have a fiduciary duty to supply reliable service to customers who don't watch Netflix, but may need to remain connected with whoever provides service to Netflix for, say, work reasons?

            - Doesn't Netflix collect a subscription charge to watch the content?

            If the network was REALLY overstretched - and I am not 100% convinced that it is - then could the ISP ask Netflix to stage distribution of it's series - staging releases to different IP addresses over three or four days, and charging less (e,g, a rebate) for watching later? Not long enough to make it worth pirating, but long enough to prevent a bottleneck. I agree that is a potentially slippery slope, but still far better than court ordered payments which may never be used to directly address the problem anyway, and better than disturbing customers who depend on connectivity and do not watch that Netflix series.

            The advantage of that would be that any providers who could match the demand would not request staged release, so they would get more customers from SK.

            1. doublelayer Silver badge

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              "Doesn't the ISP have a fiduciary duty to supply reliable service to customers who don't watch Netflix, but may need to remain connected with whoever provides service to Netflix for, say, work reasons?"

              No, or at least not any more than they have a duty to let people watch Netflix. They decide what their duties are when they make a contract. They make two kinds of contract: subscriber contracts with their customers and peering contracts with other ISPs. If they decide to be one of the few ISPs that blocks part of the internet without government censorship, then they have the right to do that and they'll undoubtedly lose customers (subject to anticompetition laws depending on the government and market involved).

              If customers requested the same amount of bandwidth, but it all went to different sites, the ISP would just have to figure out what they're going to do, be that decreasing speeds or putting in more capacity. It doesn't change anything that they're using one particular site this time. They can use their various peering arrangements to try to extract more money from the places sending them that data, and it might work, but if they fail to do so, their product suffers. That's like the fights between airlines for airport landing space--you can't cut off an airport without angering some people who want to fly there, so that's a business decision you have to make. The airline can't blame a customer for wanting to fly where they don't want to go, and SK can't blame Netflix for having data that people want to read. SK can only change the terms for people with whom they have contracts, and Netflix isn't one.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

              Overstretched???

              A UHD stream is barely 2.5% of the gigabit bandwidth customers pay for with SKBroadbands cable packages. That's assuming even UHD.

              How little of their contract are they prepared to deliver then? 1%? 0.1%? Did they sell those customers 10mbps packages or gigabit internet packages???

              Is it unreasonable that customers expect to be able to stream a 25mbps stream on a 1gigabit cable? FFS, what are they paying for cable for, if it cannot even stream their movies!

              I get that you want to play one customer off against another, but SKBroadband are badly failing here if they cannot even keep up with Netflix!

              Netflix *delivers* those streams *worldwide*, yet SKBroadband cannot deliver them in South Korea???

              Netflix has no problem delivering the bandwidth on their fees, they even make movies on those fees, and pay the movie makers on those fees, yet a Korean Internet Service Provider cannot even provide Internet Service in Korea with much higher fees!??

              They are in the wrong here, they tried this in 2019, and lost, and they should lose again.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

      Sounds like a variation on the gym membership model. It’s lucrative until everyone turns up.

      1. Warm Braw Silver badge

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        It's more like the on-line retail model: use your scale to create attractive headline prices for product while screwing the delivery chain.

        Although it's easier to feel sorry for Amazon delivery drivers than it is for ISP businesses, the same forces are at work. In the end, it isn't going to be great for the consumer because if competitive pressure makes it difficult for ISPs to provide the necessary investment, you'll simply end up with fewer ISPs with a greater ability to push back. And higher prices.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          Yeh, but at least Walmart *pays* it's suppliers. BT doesn't pay any of the internet content providers whose content it resells to its customers!

          ISP's like BT, get to resell the internet to customers, but none of that money makes it way back up chain to the websites.

          The websites end up scraping a living running adverts and selling traffic info, a few manage to make money bypassing the ISPs and doing a second deal with the customer directly. The freeloaders are the ISP's here.

          BT on the other hand, gets all this cash, "here have every site on the internet for £60 pcm, none of it goes to the websites you visit, we take it all!".

          Imagine if Walmart got all its goods for free, and suppliers had to rely on advertising revenue, and then Walmart turned around and demanded a cut of that advertising revenue.

          Leeches.

    3. Muppet Boss
      Facepalm

      Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

      >The ISP is just being greedy. If they can't supply the bandwidth the customers paid for, then they should change their pricing structure.

      Well... The "greedy" + "ISP" + "UK" combo is still unbeatable by a large margin! In the UK the ISPs generally can't supply the bandwidth in principle... 10Gbps for £32/mo is greedy? I am happy to pay £50, take my money!

      From ispreview.co.uk:

      Rank - Country - Avg. Mo - Avg. Down - Avg. Up

      3 - South Korea - £25.51 - 114.31 Mbps - 90.2 Mbps

      27 - United Kingdom - £31.27 - 55.14 Mbps - 12.72 Mbps

      ---

      SK Broadband (price converted from KRW):

      - Giga Premium X10: up to 10 Gbps for £31.27/mo,

      - Giga+WiFi: up to 1Gbps for £24.72/mo

      BT:

      - Fibre 900: up to 900Mbps for £60.99/mo (where available lol)

      - Fibre 1: 28-36 Mbps up/5-7 Mbps down for £26.99/mo

      It is rather that SK Broadband is also the 2nd largest paid TV broadcaster in South Korea with almost 9mln subscribers and they do not want to lose them to Netflix for nothing.

      1. AndrueC Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        Haven't you just proved that to get a better service you have to pay more? I can't recall the last time a UK ISP had a moan at Netflix and peaks like the World Cup or major game release never seem to cause any problems.

        1. Muppet Boss

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          JFYI mate: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-51974866

          1. AndrueC Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

            Yup. Loads of capacity. You pays your money and you gets your service ;)

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

          Didn't he just prove that paying more doesn't guarantee better service?

      2. Howard Sway Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        If you compare the prices in South Korea and the UK, over there it's sick squid a month cheaper.

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        It seems cheaper in SK, but how do those prices match with the cost of living/disposable income between SK and UK? Are there sales taxes involved?

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        I pay about £15 for Triple T fiber, 850 mbps down, 300 up here in Thailand.

        So greedy is relative.

        Yeh I get the UK gets screwed on broadband pricing! But that's hardly relevent. A more relevent comparison is to compare Netflix itself.

        Netflix is 419 baht pcm for 4 UHD streams, so for £9.20 pcm they can deliver 4 UHD streams to the ISP, yet the ISP cannot then deliver those streams onwards to its customers given 3 times that money???

    4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

      If they can't supply the bandwidth the customers paid for…

      It doesn't sound like this is the case, it's just one of the less well-known aspects of the internet: the interconnects. The "inter" part of the internet is supposed to suggest that, over time, equal volumes of tratfic go both ways. Still, the solution is simple: throttle the interconnect on which Netflix traffic is coming and renegotiate transit fees or pay for caching.

      Still, no need to go to court except with whoever drew up their peering arrangements.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Looks like the ISP wants 2 bites of the cherry

        "The "inter" part of the internet is supposed to suggest that, over time, equal volumes of tratfic go both ways"

        There are two ends to the pipe, one delivers the content the other consumes it, claiming the middle should always balance is ludicrously impossible. Are we supposed to send a movie up to Netflix for each one we download?

        "Still, the solution is simple: throttle the interconnect on which Netflix traffic is coming and renegotiate transit fees or pay for caching."

        The obvious solution is for ISPs to pay for the upstream content they resell to their customers. BT, for example gets £60 pcm for fibre connections, that's an insane amount of money. The only reason people pay it, is to be able to access content. BT gets to resell that content for free, while charging a shedload to customers to receive it. But its not their content to resell!

        BT (and SKBroadband) should pay the upstream providers a cut of that money for their customers drawing down that traffic. The money should flow up to the content makers as the content flows down.

        ISP's have had a free ride for far too long.

        Forget net neutrality, its time ISPs paid their way and split the customer money they get with the websites that actually give them their customers.

  4. Ashto5

    Netflix should not pay

    The ISP sells broadband

    Netflix sells shows

    The customer pays for both

    Why should the ISP get money from Netflix?

    It’s ridiculous

    If Netflix and others didn’t produce the content then ISP’s wouldn’t be able to charge the silly monthly rates they do

    1. Muppet Boss
      Boffin

      Re: Netflix should not pay

      Sorry mate this is not how ISP peering agreements work. The article says that the SK Broadband's Netflix traffic peaked to 1.2Tbps, which is very large load (e.g. BT's typical evening peak is ~15Tbps for all of the UK traffic). Upgrading the ISP's core network is very, very expensive and SK Broadband want Netflix to contribute to that because the surge is caused by Netflix commercial traffic. Peering agreements are a very common thing between telecoms, hosting providers etc, what is unusual is being unable to agree and then get sued.

      In fact, BT and EE have been asking Ofcom to do the same, change UK's current net neutrality rules to be able to "officially" charge Netflix, Amazon and Google for traffic since these 3 generate 60-70% of all traffic at peak times.

      Historically, peering agreements more or less worked from the dawn of the Internet but large streaming providers changed that because they generate lots and lots of traffic and leverage their size and influence to use the ISPs transport network "for free", and the ISPs are unwilling to shift the upgrade costs to the customers and would rather charge for traffic at source.

      1. Persona Silver badge

        Re: Netflix should not pay

        the ISPs are unwilling to shift the upgrade costs to the customers

        Yes, because their customers would then then move to ISPs that didn't put the price up. By attempting to make the supplier pay they get to keep their customer derived profits without having to waste part of them paying for pesky thing like the infrastructure needed to serve those customers.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Netflix should not pay

          "Yes, because their customers would then then move to ISPs that didn't put the price up."

          Yes, until that second ISP's network started groaning under the strain from all the new users. Then it's time for the second ISP to start complaining about Netflix getting a free ride.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Netflix should not pay

        "large streaming providers changed that because they generate lots and lots of traffic and leverage their size and influence to use the ISPs transport network "for free""...

        No, the ISP's transport networks are not being used "for free"; they are paid for by the ISP's customers who pay for access to the rest of the Internet. The streaming providers also have to pay their service providers for access to the rest of the Internet. No one is freeloading here; the problem is that the ISP's customers are demanding the ability to move a lot more packets than they're paying for and the ISPs are unwilling to invest in their own networks to accommodate that. They can and should raise their prices, but that's unpopular (people want something for nothing and bitch endlessly when denied it), so instead they -- with really no justification whatsoever -- have decided the populist move is to blame the big bad corporation at the other end of the pipe and whine about injustice until they get money out of them.

        The really shit part of this is that SK is itself a huge corporation, and part of it is ... a television network. So this is also just plain old competition, with the populist angle thrown in to deflect public outrage onto the competitor.

        SK need to invest in their network if they want to retain their customers. If that means they need to raise prices (perhaps selectively on customers who pull the most packets), they need to do that. If that means they lose customers, tough cookies; those are customers *they can't serve profitably anyway*. Firing bad customers is good business. Suing a competitor to demand they subsidise your own customers' demand for your services is batshit insane and the judge should throw it right out while using words like "vexatious litigant", "frivolous", and "steep sanctions for wasting the court's time".

      3. Blane Bramble

        Re: Netflix should not pay

        SK Broadband want Netflix to contribute to that because the surge is caused by Netflix commercial traffic

        Wrong. The surge was caused by SK Broadband customers. They could all have been watching different shows on Netflix, they could all have been watching different shows on a whole slew of other video providers, or all surfing the net hitting random websites.

        The problem is SK Broadband don't have enough capacity for their customers. Netflix have exposed the problem, but they didn't cause it.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Netflix should not pay

          "Netflix have exposed the problem, but they didn't cause it."

          That's true. On the other hand, ISPs networks were designed before there was this amount of data being thrown around to so many of their customers all that more or less the same time.

          More investment in their core network is required, but like any organisation, no one wants to spend money on upgrades to support something that may or may not catch on. It's a supply issue. A bit like, I dunno, having barely enough petrol tankers to keep the filling stations supplied. Drop a scare story that fuel is running out, demand goes up and customers suddenly find the network can't deliver the higher loads. More tankers and more drivers can fix the problem, but it takes time to bring that all on line. Looking ahead from the past, it was clear a problem was coming, but no one would spend the money to fix the problem before it happened. Same with ISPs networks. No one wanted to beleive that streaming video was going to get so big, so fast, so didn't properly invest to solve the problem. Now they need to, and it'll cost even more now and they have unhappy customers while waiting for, testing and installing new kit.

          The poster boy for planning ahead is probably the Y2K problem. Ask most people and they say "what Y2K problem?". Yeah, because it was seen, planned for and solved before it actually became a problem. One of the rare occasions!

          1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

            Re: Netflix should not pay

            No one wanted to beleive that streaming video was going to get so big, so fast, so didn't properly invest to solve the problem. Now they need to, and it'll cost even more now and they have unhappy customers while waiting for, testing and installing new kit.

            It was a known problem a long time ago, eg debates at the LINX about allowing content providers/non-ISPs to peer there. Some ISPs wanted to keep it ISP-only to try and charge transit, others (like me) realised the genie was well and truly out of the bottle, and meeting content at Telehouse would be cheaper than taking it from transit upstreams, or places like 60 Hudson St, NY.

            But it's pretty much the snowball that spawned the whole 'Net Neutrality debate. Content providers on one side that don't want to pay carriage, ISPs on the other looking at traffic stats and watching video streaming become the #1 traffic type by volume.

            It's an interesting challenge, politically, commercially, and also technical. Especially given IP load balances about as well as a sumo wrestler on a pogo stick, so using things like channel bonding across Nx10 or 100Gbps links is FUN! in itself.. As well as being rather expensive. And caching/CDN doesn't really help with the 'last mile', unless caches are widely distributed across the network, which is another cost. It's one of those things the Internet wasn't really designed for, and multi-casting doesn't really help given it's VoD rather than live streams.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Netflix should not pay

        "Netflix traffic peaked to 1.2Tbps, which is very large load"

        It's a load that Netflix itself manages to cope with on a fraction of the fee! Here SKTelecom, sells 10gbps cable, 1.2Tbps is barely 1200 of those users at 10% capacity.

        "In fact, BT and EE have been asking Ofcom to do the same, change UK's current net neutrality rules to be able to "officially" charge Netflix, Amazon and Google for traffic since these 3 generate 60-70% of all traffic at peak times."

        Google Amazon etc. don't generate that traffic. BT's *customers* generate that traffic. It's their customers that initiate those streams and access those websites. At any time BT's customers could click pause on those videos.

        BT and EE just want another source of income.

      5. rg287 Silver badge

        Re: Netflix should not pay

        but large streaming providers changed that because they generate lots and lots of traffic and leverage their size and influence to use the ISPs transport network "for free",

        Nobody is getting anything for free. It costs money to peer. It costs money to buy transit.

        Every single bit that an ISP receives from Netflix is paid for twice. The ISP had to connect to a peering point or transit provider and so does Netflix. The winners being the transit providers and IXPs who get to collect at both ends (albeit most well-run IXPs are community owned and charging cost-price-plus-a-smidge per port).

        The amount my ISP charges me to connect my house to the wider internet is 3-4x what Netflix charge me for connecting their network to my ISP and... oh yes, licensing and producing billions of pounds worth of entertainment.

        SK want to be a postal service where the sender has to put a stamp on their letter and the receiver has to pay for it to be delivered once it gets to the sorting office. Remarkably enough we don't put up with that nonsense in the real world and shouldn't have to online either.

      6. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Netflix should not pay

        "BT and EE have been asking Ofcom to do the same, change UK's current net neutrality rules to be able to "officially" charge Netflix, Amazon and Google for traffic since these 3 generate 60-70% of all traffic at peak times."

        Please do. The moment they start pulling that stunt they'll find that customers will leave faster than rats deserting a sinking shop

        BT & EE are the same company and as a former(*) monopolist incumbent, this kind of attitude is hardly surprising

        (*)Current - *AHEM*OPENREACH*AHEM*

  5. elsergiovolador Silver badge

    Overselling

    Takes another victim. Oh well...

  6. Version 1.0 Silver badge
    FAIL

    We're seeing the same environment

    The ISP was selling bandwidth but was not prepared for their customers actual needs and is now blaming the source of the user entertainment.

    The ISP Our government was selling bandwidth Brexit but was not prepared for their customers voters actual needs ...

    This is the way the world works these days, you come up with an idea and sell it to everyone (making a good profit) and then blame all the users when it turns out that the idea/app/website/phone/self-driving car/database fails to work.

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: We're seeing the same environment, which has disturbed unearthly forces and otherworldly sources

      That way of worlds working is the way of daemons and monumental fundamental revolution, Version 1.0.

      Follow and champion it at your own personal peril.

      1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

        Re: We're seeing the same environment, which has disturbed unearthly forces and otherworldly sources

        I think a lot of these things suck but we have to move on and work to fix the future, we can't "fix" the past - it's like jumping out of a plane with your parachute in your hands. There's only one good course of action.

  7. gnasher729 Silver badge

    Traffic has two sides. Consumers pay for the bandwidth to deliver from the ISP to their home. Does that pay for delivering from say Netflix to the ISP as well? Not sure here.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Netflix must be paying something for their servers to be connected to the internet? Whether that’s in South Korea though….

    2. Dinanziame Silver badge
      Stop

      Netflix most definitely pays for the bandwidth connecting its data centers to the internet backbone; and the consumers pay for the bandwidth from the internet backbone to their home. The ISP already got the money from the consumers, and now their job is to deliver that bandwidth.

    3. AndrueC Silver badge
      Happy

      The trouble is that the customers in this case are not 'paying for the bandwidth'. They are paying for a fraction of it. Unless you have a leased line you are sharing your ISP's bandwidth with other customers. You might think that having signed up for a 1Gb/s residential connection you are paying for 1Gb/s of bandwidth but you are not. Not even close. Somewhere in the contract it will state that it's a best efforts, contended service.

      It's quite surprising just how high contention can be before customers start to complain. Very few customers run their connection flat out 24/7 and a lot of traffic is bursty. Even video can tolerate pauses in transmission as long as the connection is fast enough to catch-up before the receiver's buffer runs dry.

      However it's not magic and given the right (wrong?) circumstances ISPs can get caught out. Then they have to invest but when it's for something fickle like a TV show that's a tricky proposition. Personally my view is that SK should invest, increase their prices and tell their customers to lump it. Too many people think that network bandwidth and connectivity is easy to provide and overpriced. A little dose of reality would be a good thing :)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        What I haven't seen anyone yet point out is that people pay their ISP for access to "The Internet", not to specific websites, video-on-demand providers, etc. If you are lucky to have a 1Gb connection from your ISP then that is 1Gb to "The Internet", not 1Gb to Netflix, or YouTube, or to any "random" Internet site etc. There is no way for an ISP to guarantee bandwidth to any specific Internet site.

        Indeed your ISP has no idea (and to a certain extent no interest) in what you do with your Internet connection and in particular no idea what you will do with it in the future (they could "guess" by analysing your historic usage) so they plan to upgrade the capacity of their peering and transit links or add new peering/transit based on general historical traffic patterns.

        Netflix could decide to get into the connectivity business and sell you a fibre-based connection (whether only to Netflix or the Internet in general) as part of your Netflix subscription (like AOL and Compuserve used to do back in the day) and then they'd be able to manage bandwidth for those subscribers.........but I assume NetFlix don't want to get into the connectivity business. [I believe OpenReach's FTTP supports multiple independant data connections over the same fibre]

        In the UK many (most?) of the larger ISPs peer with BBC (for iPlayer), Google (YouTube), Amazon, and NetFlix - whether via peering at Internet Exchange Points or via private peering.

        It seems that neither Korea Telecom nor Netflix have a presence at KNIX, the only "neutral" exchange point in Korea. Most of KT's main rival broadband providers (SK, LG) appear to be present at KNIX, https://kpf.kinx.net/about/kinxnetwork/#ixmember, so it is strange NetFlix aren't there. Seems that KT don't do much in-region peering (or indeed any visible in-country peering) at all: https://www.peeringdb.com/net/23. I'd assume there must be some in-country private peering going on between KT and their major broadband rivals.

        So it seems like the underlying issue is down to several things: (1) KT not wanting to peer with its in-country "rivals" and therefore not having a presence at KNIX, (2) Netflix also not having a presence at KNIX, and (3) KT & Netflix either not apparently having a private peering agreement or if they do have one it is based on peering outside of South Korea which then means expensive inter-country data links being required (with the issue of who pays for them).

        Brings back memories of when LINX was setup in the mid-1990s by the 5 main Internet players of the time (BT, Demon, JANET, PIPEX, & UKnet) where the initial membership rules required that any new member must have their own International connectivity as a condition of joining. I seem to remember when the first potential new member applied to join (and did meet the international link requirement) that there was still some reluctance, and delay, to let them join. Obviously these days its relatively easy to join LINX (or any of the other UK IXPs).

        1. rg287 Silver badge

          What I haven't seen anyone yet point out is that people pay their ISP for access to "The Internet", not to specific websites, video-on-demand providers, etc. If you are lucky to have a 1Gb connection from your ISP then that is 1Gb to "The Internet", not 1Gb to Netflix, or YouTube, or to any "random" Internet site etc. There is no way for an ISP to guarantee bandwidth to any specific Internet site.

          Strictly speaking what you're buying is a 1Gbps pipe to the ISP's network core. From there it's a total toss-up. The end service might be someone's blog hosted from home with a 10Mb uplink. So you'll never get better than 10Mbps. There might be contention on the link at your destination - your ISP has lots of idle capacity but the service you're accessing is under load.

          What SK seem to be whinging about is not wanting to provide sensible core capacity. People claim this is very expensive and for sure, carrier-grade R&S gear is quite pricey when you look at the invoice. It's also a rounding error on the cost of rolling vans and field techs all across a country to maintain the final-mile. An ISP which is trumpeting it's ability to sell 10Gbps customer connections shouldn't be whinging about 1.5Tbps of traffic.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Thank you for making your final point! Upgrading the core is relatively cheap as long as you've got free slots in your router chassis, just add another 100G or two and you're up and running. It's the last mile access network that's bloody expensive. Whether it's spectrum availability and modulation strength in the DOCSIS network or actual fiber availability in FTTH, THAT'S where the investments lie.

      2. Zolko Silver badge

        The trouble is that the customers in this case are not 'paying for the bandwidth'. They are paying for a fraction of it.

        it's the same as if you pay for the highway: if everyone wants to go to the same place at the same time, there is a traffic jam. A road is optimised for the mean usage, not the peak usage. If you wanted a highway such that even in the strongest traffic the throughput were fluid, the price during normal operation would be extremely high.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          please define "mean usage" and "peak usage"

          Just because yesterdays (last year/last decade) traffic was X mean and Y peak, does not mean tomorrows (next year/next decade) traffic will still be X and Y.

          And if I'm a consumer who has had advert yelling "unlimited*", I expect "unlimited", I don't fucking care that your planned X and Y was imaginary bollocks for Z price,thats not what you told me you sold me.

          * note - WTF????? why do I have to look down here?, to see you try to re-define a word from the dictionary, just because you want to pretend unlimited does not mean unlimited.

          Yes I know your GOV took a bribe/donation from a lobbyist (briber) to say you can legally??? WTF??

          1. Alan Brown Silver badge

            > if I'm a consumer who has had advert yelling "unlimited*", I expect "unlimited"

            I remember having a long discussion with a BT salestwit who insisted on telling me she was selling an unlimited connection then telling me I was limited to 10GB per month on it when my existing ISP allowed 100 times as much for the same money

            "But BT is so much better, we're unlimited"

  8. mark l 2 Silver badge

    It seem that SK Broadband have sold a service that they cannot deliver as they have under estimated how much bandwidth their customers will use, but that is hardly Netflix fault. If SK Broadband don't want the amount of traffic caused by such events they need to perhaps look at putting up end user prices to cover the costs, or restricting bandwidth during busier times with traffic shaping. But obviously these measures would not go down well with end users, so they are try suing Netflix instead.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      That's an interesting point. I wonder if it compares with, say, the mobile phone companies when a disaster happens? The solution they came up with wasn't to increase capacity so everyone could all make calls all at the same time. it was to declare an emergency and pretty block all users from the network other than "authorised emergency services workers".

      Not a great analogy, I admit. Netflix watching is hardly a life threatening disaster, but still. Capacity is usually built to handle significantly above average, but it's not always possible to justify the expense to allow everyone to max out at the same time because in general, that never happens. Most ISPs these days work on an "all you can eat" model, but reserve the option to load balance, throttle and even cap heavy usage.

      1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

        Re: Most ISPs these days work on an "all you can eat" model

        It would appear that they severely underestimated the amount of squid people could consume in one sitting.

  9. Giles C Silver badge

    If you do a search for Netflix peering, you can find information on Netflix putting machines in ISP data centres to allow them to reduce transit costs. So obviously they didn’t think it was viable to do this or they would have signed a commercial agreement rather than going down the lawyer route.

    https://openconnect.netflix.com/en_gb/peering/

    1. Crypto Monad

      Transit is only part of the issue though. Transit and peering are relatively cheap, once you have a fast enough router port. It's the rest of the ISP's own core network that needs upgrading to carry the large amounts of traffic, which is most likely the problem.

      Or it could be that the ISP doesn't even *have* their own core network, but is outsourcing to a third party, in the same way that many ISPs in the UK outsource to BT Wholesale or Talktalk - and hence has to pay for the increasing traffic costs.

      In any case, their business plan said "we expect each customer to generate X Mbps of traffic", and now they find each customer is generating Y Mbps of traffic. They hadn't taken into account the rapid annual growth of Internet traffic which has been seen consistently *everywhere* in the entire world for at least the last 20 years.

      So whose fault was that then?

      1. Geez Money Bronze badge

        Clearly their inability to business plan is the fault of random other companies. Give the man his money. /s

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        AT&T made $98 Billion profit last year. Most of the websites their customers visited, received nothing of that. SKTelecom (the parent of SKBroadband) made $14 billion profit.

        Netflix made only $2.76 billion.

        I think it goes beyond net neutrality at this point, AT&T solds those telecoms service on the backs of content makers like Netflix, they need to pay some of that profit back upstream. No more freeloading.

        If they want to open up the net neutrality thing again, its time to take a damn good look at who is making the money selling what.

  10. midgepad

    Squid...

    That's a proxy, although not streaming g.

  11. ancilevien74
    Trollface

    If only there was a protocol to replace client/server by a network of peers

    I mean, instead of every clients getting the same stream from servers, imagine something where each client would also be a server so clients of the ISP would exchange the stream between each other, data staying on the provider network. We could call that, I don't know peer to peer, it could even be abbreviated to p2p.

    Imagine all the peers…

    I don't know why nobody as yet think of this⸮

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If only there was a protocol to replace client/server by a network of peers

      or multicast...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: If only there was a protocol to replace client/server by a network of peers

        Multicast will be brilliant for live mrdia, not so much on demand stuff!

        Proper use of multicast on Ip4 is a historical ead duck - hopefully it will be exploited on ip6

    2. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: If only there was a protocol to replace client/server by a network of peers

      And this would decrease the bandwidth when lots of people want the same file how, exactly? The servers didn't go down. The network was overburdened. P2P will do nothing to change that.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: If only there was a protocol to replace client/server by a network of peers

        It would keep a lot of the traffic "on net", so much less off-net peering costs. But as others have pointed out, Netflix can install kit on the ISPs network to also minimise off-net peering traffic.

      2. ancilevien74

        Re: If only there was a protocol to replace client/server by a network of peers

        The problem is that a lot of data is coming from Netflix outside of the ISP network, that is why the ISP is suing, because it's costing too much.

        But using p2p, the many users inside the ISP network would exchange the data between each others, and the quantity coming from Netflix directly would decrease.

        I was ironic because p2p is one of the most optimized distribution system, and it was nearly killed "because pirates" and big ISP are often content possessors who pursue that killing. So now they can complain, I don't give a care, that is mainly their own fault.

  12. mikus

    If anyone at SK Broadband had any reasonable clue, they would have done what most other ISP's have done (long ago) and peer directly with Netflix, or with a 2nd tier provider that does for direct bandwidth offload peering at least cheaper than what they're paying for general bandwidth use with their current peering relationships. They've obviously been too lazy, too cheap, or too self-absorbed to care until it's now hitting them in the pocket book, but this isn't the customer or netflix's problem - it's theirs for being a bad ISP. This just makes them look desperate, ignorant, petulant, and absurd as an organization that can't manage their own ISP.

    Netflix should just block SKB's ip ranges then and see how their customers and executives like that, but problem solved.

    1. stiine Silver badge

      ah, but if they do that, they'd have to refund all of those customers.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        And this is a problem because.....?

        Let's be really clear: whenever a popular service has done something like this, it's never worked out well for the ISP

        And let's not forget Google news aggregation

  13. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

    Frightening...

    Not the game,just the fact that, when you type squid into google, none of the hits on the first page (apart from the images) are to do with molluscs, most are to do with the game. Are we moving so far away from reality that the physical world has no relevance anymore?

    Pity squids weren't members of that other aquatic animal category where I could have made a stupid comment about crushed Asian bandwith.

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: Frightening...

      I suppose that's a commentary on Google's changability. I get the wikipedia article about the animal and two non-squid-game results on the first page of Google. Everything else is about the show, and mostly because Google's auto-suggester is pushing most real results onto the second page to make room for news articles and videos about the show they want me to read. If I go back to Duck Duck Go. I get three articles about the animal, including anatomy and behavior; two about cooking squid; the wikipedia article for the animal, the Squid caching proxy, a dictionary definition, and a mobile app.

      I stopped using Google a few years ago for privacy reasons, but now I'm thinking I might have won on quality too.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Frightening...

        Googles search results algorithm seems to be based more on the popularity of results, not the relevance. I'd expect typing Squid on it's own should be more relevant to the mollusc, but that's not currently the case because result popularity has a higher weighting.

        I see similar on the BBC news site. Sometimes a popular story links to to "You may also like" and sometimes a lot of people click that and a story from some years ago ends up in the Top 10 Stories side bar.

    2. thenitz

      Re: Frightening...

      Well, it's personalized. I get the show and caching proxy, two apps, and a wiki page on the animals. Plus a link to the source of this very article.

      1. stiine Silver badge

        Re: Frightening...

        I get 1 entry (at #9) for Squid proxy, 1 entry (at #10) for the sea creatures and 8 entries (1-8) plus 'people also ask' (didn't count them and NEVER pay them any attention) for Squid Game..

  14. msobkow Silver badge

    So the Asian take on Monty Python must be:

    "You must cut down the mightiest tree in the forest... with.... a SQUID!!!!" :D

  15. Noel Morgan

    Old timer here

    Am I missing something?

    In the old days there was this thing called broadcast TV.

    I seem to remember electricity usage going up when an episode was over.

    https://www.drax.com/power-generation/7-of-the-biggest-tv-moments-in-uk-electricity-history/

    I don't remember the electricity companies wanting to charge BBC/ITV extra when the electricity usage went through the roof afterwards. Is this not something similar?

    Also - very simplistic I know but:

    I pay Netflix to provide me with entertainment. (such that it is)

    I expect Netflix to pay actors & production crew for their content.

    I pay my ISP for internet access.

    I not expect content providers to have to pay ISPs as well, if they did, then what am I paying them for?

    Is that what they want? we pay the content providers more money and then we don't pay the ISP anything?

    In this instance (at the very least) the ISP is completely out of order. if you can't provide the service people expect for the money they are paying you then you need to charge more and upgrade the service. They want to provide a cheap service by running it on very thin margins and they got caught out.

    1. Falmari Silver badge

      Re: Old timer here

      @Noel Morgan "I seem to remember electricity usage going up when an episode was over." The time for a cup of tea power surge caused by millions of electric kettles being switched on. Not really the TV companies fault.

      I blame the freeloading electric kettle manufacturers they should have been paying to upgrade our electricity grid. ;)

      But seriously a good analogy.

  16. Richard Cranium

    The tragedy of the commons...

    ...look it up.

    In the early days of the web I used a London based web host for my client web sites. They had a policy of unlimited usage.

    It was fine for many months but then it started to get slower and, within a few days, glacial. I established the cause. Another user was hosting a single page web site which appeared to be promoting an islamic religious book, there were no internal links from that page but there were other pages, a substantial stash of pornographic images, available to anyone who knew what page name to enter to the browser.

    The news of that stash had spread. One the technicians they employed was not happy with the situation and went public with the bandwidth usage stats on a user forum. About 95% of the total available bandwidth was being consumed by that one customer. The management response was to put the blame on the lead time for getting additional capacity. What surprised me most was that many users on the forum who were all suffering the same virtually unusable speeds supported the management's stance of unlimited everything rather than apply some kind of fair-use cap.

    I spent an entire easter weekend shifting all my websites elsewhere, mostly early morning when the porno enthusiasts had worn themselves out.

    I think it's common for ISP and hosting contracts to include constraints such as a "fair use" clause. I believe my "unlimited" fibre broadband provider has a policy of throttling usage if I were to exceed a daily threshold, reinstating normal service at midnight.

    If SK Broadband are having a problem and have some kind of fair use clause they should be invoking it, if not they need to amend their contracts, hike their monthly fees, charge a premium to Netflix users, block or throttle Netflix pending a resolution.

    Fundamentally it is a mistake to set up any kind of "commons", in the case of internet services advertising unlimited bandwidth, disk, websites etc. It is a fiction, it is not deliverable and will be exploited by someone.

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: The tragedy of the commons...

      "I spent an entire easter weekend shifting all my websites elsewhere, mostly early morning when the porno enthusiasts had worn themselves out."

      uhhhhh..... surely you had a compleat image of your sites anyway which you could have simply setup elswhere and switched across?

      rule #1 of websites: Anything on a webserver is "disposable" and if it was your only copy "too bad"

  17. Jonjonz

    Imagine if highway toll were like this

    Toll to use this stretch of highway: $5.00

    Service Fee: After complete search of your vehicle, 80% of the net value of anything found in your car/truck.

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