According to a range of news sites, BT has been accused of throttling speeds to sites such as BBC iPlayer and YouTube during peak hours, on their option 1 internet package, without placing a clear warning to users.
Many customers have recently complained that speed limits have been put in place for sites that use video streaming during peak times. According to BBC News, users of the Option 1 BT Internet package will find video streaming site speeds limited from 5pm right through to midnight.
I personally don’t like it when internet companies throttle speeds, but BT certainly isn’t the only company that does this. I use Tiscali as my ISP and I am most certainly throttled for high demand websites between peak hours. BT definitely is not the only company to be blamed for speed throttling.
I do think that ISPs need to do something about speed throttling – I really hate it and think it is very unfair. Most ISPs claim that they only throttle to make sure that everyone gets a fair share of the available internet bandwidth during peak time, but if ISPs can claim 8MB broadband and make you pay for it, then 8MB is what you should get all the time. If ISPs can’t provide 8MB broadband during peak time, then they should either upgrade the stone-age copper cabling we have now or just not advertise 8MB broadband in the first place. Instead, they just rip us off, advertising features they simply cant provide.
Ever thought that the streaming music you hear for free on sites like last.fm and Spotify costs? You’d be right in thinking so. Somebody has to pay a royalty for that music you don’t pay a penny for. That’s why music streaming sites have to place advertisements to fund the costs of music streaming fees.
Yesterday, the Performing Right Society altered the royalties owed on streaming music tracks. The fee for each streamed track is now 0.085p, compared to the previous 0.22p.
It is rumoured that this change has been made in order to persuade sites like Youtube and Pandora to start allowing streamed music. Youtube stopped allowing music videos in the UK earlier this year due to a failure of agreement with the PRS, so hopefully this new low cost royalty will encourage Youtube to start streaming music again.
It would be nice to see some official bands back on Youtube again. Although last.fm and Spotify are great for free music streaming, Youtube became well known for watching music videos online.
We’ll see what happens in the next few weeks – Youtube may well start allowing music again, but I personally think that it’ll take quite a lot of persuasion. Youtube is currently the 3rd most popular site on the internet (and has been for some time), so Google (the owner of Youtube) may decide that it is not worth paying music streaming fees again. Youtube doesn’t seem to have lost many visitors since it stopped streaming music videos.