In an astounding turn to events, foes turned friends as Comcast and BitTorrent announced their agreement to collaborate on bringing better traffic management to Internet connections. This includes treating BitTorrent applications the same way as other applications and targeting high bandwidth users in a protocol agnostic manner.
"This means that we will have to rapidly reconfigure our network management systems, but the outcome will be a traffic management technique that is more appropriate for today's emerging Internet trends," said Comcast CTO Tony Werner in a statement. "We have been discussing this migration and its effects with leaders in the Internet community for the last several months, and we will refine, adjust, and publish the technique based upon feedback and initial trial results."
The agreement seems a result of discussions among the companies behind the scenes with Bi Torrent hailing the move as highly significant.
"Internet service providers will need the ability to shape the traffic in order to provide service," Navin told CNET News.com's Declan McCullagh during an onstage discussion at a technology policy conference here. "The win here for BitTorrent and for all peer-to-peer applications is that we will not be treated differently from other forms of Internet traffic."
But questions remain as to whether the announcements were made to deflect attention from the FCC investigations into the techniques being used by ISPs to throttle Internet traffic. The whole talk of a protocol agnostic de-prioritization of traffic is all hunky-dory, but it is necessary to go ahead with ensuring that ISPs implement practices that sustain Internet traffic on an equal footing.
Comcast admits it can do the impossible (Register)
Comcast, BitTorrent Pass The Digital Peace Pipe (InternetNews.com)