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Comcast customer's Raspberry Pi bot tweets when speeds are lousy

Tired of complaining to your ISP over and over? Have a machine do it.

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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

No one likes complaining to an internet service provider, but it's especially frustrating when you're not getting the performance you're paying for. Many ISPs refuse to do anything unless your speeds are truly glacial, even if the slowdowns create serious problems. Well, Comcast customer AlekseyP has devised a clever way to make his voice heard: he created a Raspberry Pi-powered Twitter bot. The machine automatically tweets his speeds to Comcast whenever the downstream rate falls below 50Mbps, or a third of the 150Mbps he's supposed to be getting. The approach saves him the trouble of calling out Comcast himself, and catches those speed drops even when the house is empty.

Aleksey admits that he hasn't actually followed up with Comcast on his slow connection, since he believes that everyone should get their advertised speeds, not just the individual customers who raise their voices. That's a bit counterintuitive when ISPs rarely do anything without a formal complaint in hand. Still, efforts like these could be worthwhile if they get internet giants to notice service quality problems that they'd otherwise ignore. If you're willing to try it yourself, you can grab the source code to set up a Raspberry Pi watchdog for your own connection.

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