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Abusive Relationship: Mark Cuban’s Ongoing Love Affair With Big Cable, Despite Having His Networks Thrown Off Time Warner Cable

Phillip Dampier August 5, 2009 Editorial & Site News, HissyFitWatch, Net Neutrality 14 Comments
Mark Cuban

Mark Cuban

One would think Mark Cuban would have at least a small bit of resentment towards big cable companies like Time Warner Cable, who efficiently and swiftly deprived his HDNet and HDNet Movies networks from more than 8.7 million Time Warner Cable HD customers on May 31st over a channel fee spat.

But no.  He’s back plugging away with completely groundless predictions for the impending doom of the Internet if Net Neutrality has its way.  Opposed by big cable and telephone companies, Net Neutrality would provide a level playing field for all legal Internet content.  No provider could interfere with or prioritize traffic based on financial incentives, ownership interests, or for competitive reasons.

Cuban offers a bizarre rant about why that spells the death of online video, something he’s never been thrilled with anyway, on his blog:

If you run a TV network, broadcast or cable, you should be spending a lot of money to support Net Neutrality. You should have every lobbyist you own getting on the Net Neutrality train.  Why ? Because in a net neutrality environment no bits get priority over any other bits. All bits are equal.  In such an environment, all bits content with each other to ride the net.

When that happens, bits collide. When bits collide they slow down. Sometimes they dont reach their destination and need to be retransmitted. Often they dont make it at all.

When video bits dont arrive to their destination in a timely manner, internet video consumers get an experience that is worse than what traditional tv distribution options .

that is good for traditional TV.

Me personally. I don’t  support Net Neutrality. I think there will applications that require lots of bandwidth, that will change our lives. If the applications that could change our lives have to compete with your facebook page loads and twitter feeds among the zillion of other data elements carried across the net, IMHO, thats a bad thing.

But thats me.

If you believe that over the top video can impact the future of TV, and thats a bad thing for your business,  then you should be a big time supporter of Net Neutrality.  Its your best friend.

That’s proof that having millions of dollars to your name doesn’t buy an intelligent argument, or apparently a basic grammar checker.

I never realized the “series of tubes” Ted Stevens used to talk about corralled data bits into segregated clusters to protect them from “bit collision.”  Is there insurance for that?

Cuban should be spending more time worrying about getting his networks viewership on ANY television — “traditional,” “online,” or amongst his good friends in the cable industry that stabbed him in the back and threw his channels off lineups from coast to coast.

Karl Bode over at Broadband Reports has seen all this before, and has built quite a history on the antics of Mr. Cuban:

Of course bits don’t really “collide” on modern networks, and the bill exempts “reasonable network management” from neutrality provisions allowing for congestion control, but apparently no matter. This is the network neutrality debate, and as we’ve seen the last two go-rounds, truth, facts, and data are irrelevant — particularly to overly chatty millionaire TV tycoons worried about their wallets.

While the bill likely won’t survive a Congress that’s all but directly controlled by telecom lobbyists, that still won’t save us from several months of vigorous, fact-optional network neutrality debate. All the usual players are once again gathering, including Mark Cuban and his mouth, paid cable and phone industry sock puppets, stick figure cartoons, dancing men in green tights, and evil ISP flying saucers. Can we just skip to the part where consumer welfare gets ignored and be done with it?

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jr
jr
13 years ago

Cuban’s arguments in favor of big cable are a flop like his NBA team in the playoffs

techzen
techzen
13 years ago

He needs to read up a bit on QoS

preventCAPS
preventCAPS
13 years ago
Reply to  techzen

Absolutely right – there is nothing stating that there cannot be QoS over Net Neutral lines as long as the end points can set the QoS tags and that they don’t get monkied with and are reasonably respected as they pass through. Okay, maybe there are some who don’t think QoS would be viable – I’ll make the arguement that it can be no worse because right now, everything is of the same highest priority, the same as the worse case scenariowith QoS where everyone thinks their traffic if in need of the fastest, most latentless delivery. Instead of viewing… Read more »

mark cuban
13 years ago
Reply to  preventCAPS

There is nothing saying that there cant be QOS. True.

But there is nothing saying there will be QOS either. Nor is there any history to show that there will be. Nor is there any incentive for peers to support QOS.

In fact, IMHO, there are considerable reasons for peers to not support QOS.

You may not like my “collision” choice of words, but the point remains the same. Not all packets/bits are delivered in a manner that optimizes the result that applications would like.

If there were, there wouldnt be much of a market for CDNs, would there ?

techzen
techzen
13 years ago
Reply to  mark cuban

Data and voice will have QoS over other traffic Mark. There is no reason for it not to. If you are trying to view a pdf file online, it isn’t going to take 4 days for it to reach you because you’re watching a youtube video or streaming a conference call. There is plenty of incentive for QoS, the main one being the fact you kinda have to have some sort of QoS for anything to work smoothly. Net neutrality isn’t some scheme for total chaos over the internet and the complete abandonment of network administration strategies. You are full… Read more »

Tim
Tim
13 years ago
Reply to  mark cuban

Mark Cuban, that happens now and is handled perfectly. I have watched several streaming videos, and once properly buffered, go on without a hiccup.There are technologies in place to handle errors of all sorts and deal with them for transfers. I suggest you read up on TCP/IP protocols and see what error detection and correction measures are in place to ensure you get the proper data. If the internet was so unreliable as you say, anything that we downloaded would be corrupted. I suggest you do some more research before making assumptions about something you have no idea about. Might… Read more »

Tim
Tim
13 years ago

Mike Cuban, “You see when 2 bytes get together and get married, they have baby bits. And these baby bits grow up to be bytes themselves and have babies too!”

LOL, bits colliding? How absurd. Dude take a computer lit course please!

mark cuban
13 years ago

Read up on QOS. Im happy to say that i am very comfortable with my networking knowledge. The reason that QOS is a problem is that networks that peer are competitors. They want to be able to say that customers should work with them because their networks are better. In addition, the bigger issue with QOS isnt technical, its financial. How much should one network get paid for retaining the levels of QOS that their competitor network sold to a customer ? And what if you have events like today, where a DOS attack occurs. Who takes financial responsibility when… Read more »

Tim
Tim
13 years ago
Reply to  mark cuban

“Im still waiting for someone to put up a good argument to my blog post”

Good argument? When traffic is handled perfectly now without any problems whatsoever? Also, let’s pretend that what you are saying is right, ok is that the end of online video? Why not download the whole file to begin with and then watch it or buffer 20 minutes of it? As download speeds progress, downloading large files will be nothing. I have a 12Mb connection and downloading a 4GB movie takes what 45 minutes or so. Downloading a 700MB tv show takes what 7 minutes.

Smith6612
Smith6612
13 years ago
Reply to  Tim

Just to add to Tim’s comment: For me to download the 4GB file on my Verizon line, it’ll take roughly 12 hours at full speed. For the 700MB file, it’ll be a good hour and a half maybe. On the Frontier line however, the 700MB file will pull down in 35-45 minutes. The 4GB file will be pulled in 3-4 hours. On FiOS on the other hand, it’ll pull down crazy fast. Faster the speeds, the less I’m using the network in terms of utilization time 🙂

Michael Chaney
13 years ago
Reply to  mark cuban

I think you’re focusing too much on the QoS aspect. I agree with preventCAPS’s view. Everything right now is high-priority, and implementing QoS would really be allowing for low-priority data to be flagged as such (email, twitter posts, etc). Oh and btw….c’mon….no one buys that a 140 character twitter post will have any effect on a video stream. That’s like a drop in the ocean. What really boggles my mind is how you stick up for the same cable companies that strong arm you. This model is dying and you better figure out the new paradigm if you want to… Read more »

techzen
techzen
13 years ago
Reply to  Michael Chaney

also don’t forget that businesses can get PVCs dedicated to voice and video, making cuban’s entire argument irrelevant.

techzen
techzen
13 years ago

Basically you don’t change anything besides the blocking of ports or limiting speeds on ports even though some ISPs claim to give unlimited service. The person you send your money to for internet service is the person who takes the financial responsibility. Costs for supplying internet service are down, profits are up. If they have to invest some money to keep their network under control… then they have to invest some money to keep their network under control. If things were so ridiculously out of control I’d think they could have come up with another protocol suite by now, you… Read more »

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