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Verizon CEO says heavy broadband users should pay more for their service

Published Feb 26th, 2014 9:20AM EST
Internet Service Cost

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Are you constantly streaming high-definition video, downloading tons of Xbox One games and sending massive files to friends and family? You should pay more for Internet access than your neighbor, who only uses a 10-year-old PC in his living room to read email and occasionally browse the Internet for cat GIFs. This is the position of Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam, who said this week that heavy broadband users should have to pay more for home Internet access than those who don’t take full advantage of the service for which they already pay top dollar.

Verizon recently made news when it was accused of throttling Netflix in a move that would have danced on net neutrality’s grave mere weeks after a court ruling killed the rule set. As BGR learned, however, the company denied impeding Netflix traffic and the issue was instead thought to be related to peering congestion.

According to recent rumors, however, Verizon is following in Comcast’s footsteps and looking for Netflix to help shoulder the cost of the heavy network traffic its service necessitates.

But it’s not just service providers that should pay more, Verizon’s CEO said.

“It’s only natural that the heavy users help contribute to the investment to keep the Web healthy,” McAdam said on Monday, according to IDG News Service. “That is the most important concept of net neutrality.”

McAdam went on to say that the Federal Communications Commission does need to create a set of rules that govern the Internet, but those rules must also take into account the roles of the wider industry including not just ISPs, but also companies like Apple, Netflix and Google, as well as heavy Internet users. “Any rules will have to include all of these players,” he said.

On a positive note, McAdam again dispelled concerns that Verizon might employ bandwidth prioritization practices that would see some services throttled while others are provided clear paths across Verizon’s network.

“We make our money by carrying traffic,” McAdam said. “That’s how we make dollars. So to view that we’re going to be advantaging one over the other really is a lot of histrionics, I think, at this point.”

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.

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