The heated back and forth between Netflix and Verizon has gone on for long enough that other companies are beginning to throw their hats into the ring. Level 3, a Netflix network operator, came forward with evidence last week which seemed to indicate that Verizon had the capacity to cheaply and quickly upgrade its network to improve streaming quality for customers, but was consciously deciding not to do so. Verizon, unwilling let these accusations go unaccounted for, has responded with a snippy blog post of its own.
In the post, Verizon Regulatory Affairs VP David Young attempts to make the same argument that Level 3 made last week — the Netflix partner has accidentally revealed that it is in fact responsible for the congestion in its peering links, not Verizon.
“Level 3 insists on only using its existing settlement-free peering links even though, as Level 3 surprisingly admits in their blog, these links are experiencing significant congestion,” writes Young. “Level 3’s solution? Rather than buy the capacity they need, Level 3 insists that Verizon should add capacity to the existing peering link for additional downstream traffic even though the traffic is already wildly out of balance.”
Young delves into Level 3’s history to find that the operator has in fact been on the other end of a similar battle in the past when in a peering agreement, Cogent Communications started using significantly more of Level 3’s network than the reserve. In the case of the Verizon-Netflix battle, Level 3 has switched sides, and Young believes that Level 3 is now the one “trying to get a free ride on someone else’s network” and failing to “keep the interest of their customers paramount.”
We’ll be on the lookout for another combative blog post in the near future.