ISPs are demanding more money for use of their networks because Netflix show Squid Game is too popular (via Vice).
During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, ISPs were willing to remove data caps on their networks due to the surge of remote work. To many, this proved that those data caps were artificial constraints in the first place.
Now, those constraints are back in place. ISPs are claiming that the popularity of Squid Game on Netflix places a burden on their taxpayer-funded infrastructure.
In South Korea, Internet service provider SK Broadband sued Netflix earlier this month, claiming that between May and September the ISP’s network traffic jumped 24 times to 1.2 trillion bits of data processed every second. This surge is Netflix’s fault, the ISP insists, and Netflix should be held financially responsible.
In the UK, British Telecom executives have been making similar complaints, insisting that Netflix should be forced to help pay for the surge in network traffic caused by the show.
John Bergmayer, telecom expert at consumer group Public Knowledge, disagreed. “Internet service providers typically design their network capacity to handle prime-time peak consumer demand, regardless of traffic type. Already paid by businesses and consumers alike, the responsibility of meeting this demand falls on the ISP, not Netflix.”