Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings has posted a long write up on net neutrality on the company’s blog today, discussing recent peering agreements and saying “a stronger form of net neutrality is required.” This follows a peering agreement the company entered into with Comcast to improve its service for customers.
Netflix customers were subjected to poor streaming quality for months during certain peak hours, something that prompted a loud outcry from those experiencing buffering issues, low video quality, and more. The problem came to an end late last month when Netflix and Comcast formed an interconnection agreement, with, at the heart of it all, the video streaming service paying for the improved access.
Hastings has discussed this move and the larger issue of net neutrality at length, calling what is presently in place “weak net neutrality” and saying a stronger version is need to keep service providers from charging in the way the above has taken place, instead providing “sufficient access” to the network without charging services for it.
Said Hastings: “Netflix believes strong net neutrality is critical, but in the near term we will in cases pay the toll to the powerful ISPs to protect our consumer experience. When we do so, we don’t pay for priority access against competitors, just for interconnection … Some big ISPs are extracting a toll because they can.”