Comcast Sued for Interfering with P2P Traffic

This story stems from an AP story that broke about three weeks ago about how Comcast was blocking some internet traffic and actively interfering with attempts by some of its high-speed Internet subscribers to share files online. You can read the Associated Press story here.

But, stemming from that article comes a class action lawsuit filed by a Comcast customer, John Hart of San Francisco, who claims Comcast “intentionally slows and blocks file-sharing applications — actions that the plaintiff asserted violate California law, as well as the company’s contract with its customers.” (Source) The class action asserts claims for “breach of contract, breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing and violations of both California’s business and professions code and the state’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act.” (Source).

The article continues,

In his lawsuit, Hart alleged that whatever Comcast is doing with respect to P2P traffic, the interference runs counter to the company’s marketing claims — and the terms of its service agreement.

“Defendants advertise, market and sell their high speed Internet service … based on claims of ‘lightning fast’ and ‘mind-blowing’ speeds,” Hart said in the lawsuit. “Defendants further promise their customers and prospective customers that they will have ‘unfettered access to all the internet has to offer.’ Nevertheless, defendants intentionally and severely impede the use of certain internet applications by their customers, slowing such applications to a mere crawl or stopping them altogether.”

Through his class action, Hart hopes to end Comcast’s practice of interfering with P2P traffic and seeks recovery of fees paid by Comcast customers, whom Hart asserted have “paid for services they did not receive.”

While Comcast said that the interference with P2P traffic is done to manage its network and ensure a positive online experience for all its subscribers, Hart asserted in his lawsuit that the company provides no indication in contracts or service agreements that it interferes with P2P or any other manner of online file.

“Defendants have numerous different terms of service and/or use posted on their website,” Hart stated in the lawsuit. “Significantly, none of the terms of service state that Comcast can or will impede, limit, discontinue, block or otherwise impair or treat differently the blocked [P2P] applications.”

(Read the full story)

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