Comcast to revamp congestion management policy by year's end

It's no secret that Comcast has already put a stop to the most extravagant of download parties (all while charging more for its TV services), but for those still wondering what was to come of all the data tampering going on earlier this year, here's the final spill. According to an e-mail just sent out to customers, Comcast will be "switching to a new network congestion management technique by the end of the year." The new approach will focus on "managing network congestion only when and where it may occur," and obviously it completely replaces the current technique. As predicted, Comcast asserts that only the heaviest of users will even notice that it's watching their pipeline like a hawk, but it remains to be seen what kind of backlash the new throttling methods will / won't have. Hop on past the break for the memo in its entirety.

[Thanks, M.N.]

Dear Comcast High-Speed Internet Customer:

Comcast is committed to providing you with the best online experience possible.

One of the ways we do that is by managing the leading fiber optic network in the nation to ensure it is fast, safe and reliable. As part of our ongoing efforts to continuously improve the quality of our service, we are switching to a new network congestion management technique by the end of the year. It is focused on managing network congestion only when and where it may occur. It will also replace the current technique and will help ensure that all of our customers receive their fair share of network resources.

What does this mean for you? Probably nothing. We ran five market trials of this technique over the summer and found that less than one percent of customers were affected. So, the vast majority of customers will not notice any change to their Internet experience as a result of this new technique. During the times of busiest network use (which could occur at any hour, depending on your neighborhood), those very few extraordinarily heavy users â€" who are doing things like conducting multiple and continuous large file transfers â€" may experience slightly longer response times for some online activities until the period of network congestion ends.

As we transition to this new technique, we have amended our Acceptable Use Policy ("AUP") and posted it on the Web site. For links to the amended AUP, as well as answers to Frequently Asked Questions and more information about this new technique or our network management efforts in general, please visit our Network Management Policy page at:

Thank you again for choosing Comcast as your high-speed Internet provider.