Why I think Rogers sucks
Date: 2005-12-09 (transfered from old blog)
I have been a subscriber to Rogers High Speed Internet service since 1998, having toughed it out through a lot of good and bad times with them. But in the last year service has really gotten bad. Internet access cuts in and out frequently… and it’s not just my computer, network card or router as I always have a glance at the cable modem sitting on a desk beside me and see that the CABLE LED light has gone out. Besides this, I use software called Bittorrent quite often. It is useful for downloading large files, specifically media and Linux distributions. For a fast Internet connection, bittorrent has always been noticable slow. I never really questioned it much and accepted it. About a month ago, my bittorrents stopped working altogether. I could not get it to even make initial contact with a tracker (if you use bittorrent, you’ll know what this means). So I call up Rogers support and ask if they are blocking bittorrent traffic. The guy says “Umm, no, our bittorrents are running fine here”, meaning the guy at least knew what I was talking about as he uses the software himself seemingly. Anyway, I started researching this on the Internet and found that Rogers does in fact throttle bittorrent packets on their network. And possibly is doing rolling black-outs of bittorrent traffic on certain IP blocks, which is probably what I was experiencing. Then last week I hear that they are discontinuing Usenet service. While I’m not a heavy Usenet user, I was alarmed at all the services that they are slowly eliminating. So, I started my quest for looking into some other broadband Internet provider and ended up switching to a small local ISP (sentex.ca) who has been in business for a long time and I’ve heard good things about them from friends. Yay, everything works again! And it’s fast! And cheaper than Rogers!
Now let me tell you how my Rogers cancellation call proceeded….
Rogers Agent: “I see you’ve been a customer for a long time, may I ask why you are leaving us?”
Me: “Well, my bittorrent software doesn’t work very well with your service… among other problems.”
RA: “I don’t know anything about this bittorrent, do you mind if I go ask someone and get back to you in a minute?”
Me: “Umm, OK. (waits on hold for 5 minutes)”
RA: “Ok, they’ve explained the situation to me. Yes, we do throttle bittorrent traffic because it slows down the Internet for everyone else.”
Me: “But you advertise 60G bandwidth up/down per month”
RA: “Yes, and I see that you don’t even use half of that amount”
Me: “I know, and you’re saying I shouldn’t even be using what I am using?”
RA: “No, you can use it, it’s just that this bittorrent slows down the connections for everyone”
Me: “So, you are saying we can have 60G up/down as long as it’s only email and web traffic?”
RA: “No, you can use whatever you like”
Me: “But I can’t, since you throttle bittorrent… I mean really Rogers doesn’t want users like me. Rogers wants people that will only ever use email and surf the web.”
RA: “Well, bittorrent slows down everybody elses connection, so it isn’t fair to the other users.”
Me: “Well maybe Rogers should lower their bandwidth caps to not give the false impression that you might actually be able to use that amount!”
RA: “But you can use it”
on and on it went…
Anyway, long story short, Rogers wants only users who will stick to email and web. Basically, users that have zero chance of using more than about 1% of their perceived 60G bandwidth limit. I guess if people using Rogers started somehow automating their browser to continually hit random sites all day, they would have to start throttling and possibly blocking web traffic too!
Oh well, if they don’t want me or other power users, that’s fine. Bye-bye Rogers!