Time Warner Changes to Terms of Service Could Allow Metering, Tiers

Net Neutrality June 1st, 2009

, Reporter, BroadbandBreakfast.com

WASHINGTON, June 1, 2009 – Consumer advocacy groups are gearing up for another fight with Time Warner Cable after the internet provider quietly updated its terms of service with language that critics have pounced on as a harbinger of future metering and usage caps.

Time Warner subscribers received an updated copy of the terms of service on their most recent bills –  which contained the changes. But the offending provisions came to light Monday after circulating through the blogosphere over the weekend.

The new changes come only months after Time Warner scrapped plans to institute bandwidth caps on customers, reportedly after pressure from Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

In addition to representing the company’s home state, Schumer sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Congress, the Federal Communications Commission and Federal Trade Commission should investigate Time Warner’s practices, Public Knowledge Founder Gigi Sohn said in a statement. Inquiries would determine “the extent to which [the policies] hamper the free flow of information online, and to which they are anticompetitive,” she said.

Time Warner’s previous promise to NOT institute bandwidth caps, combined with the recent changes in terms of service, could also constitute deceptive trade practices, Sohn said.

Free Press Policy Director Ben Scott said Time Warner executives should “rethink their strategy” if the “quiet and ambiguous online update is what they meant by consumer education.”

A spokesman for Time Warner had not yet responded to inquires at our deadline.

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3 Responses to “Time Warner Changes to Terms of Service Could Allow Metering, Tiers”

  1. links for 2009-06-09 « Reading on the Subway Says:

    [...] Time Warner Changes to Terms of Service Could Allow Metering, Tiers After losing a battle over metering Internet usage by its companies, Time Warner plans to go ahead and do it anyway. (tags: consumer timewarner internet media) [...]

  2. Time Warner Changes to Terms of Service Could Allow Metering, Tiers - CableTV.com Forums Says:

    [...] institute bandwidth caps on customers, reportedly after pressure from Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. Time Warner Changes to Terms of Service Could Allow Metering, Tiers | BroadbandCensus.com __________________ For Telecommunications Products and Services, go here: [...]

  3. gatekeepeR's Blog » ORLY? Says:

    [...] Get Ready to Pay More and Time Warner Changes TOS [...]

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