Netflix CEO Reed Hasting slams Internet service providers, calls for stronger net neutrality

By Kyle Johnson,

Netflix chief Reed Hastings blasted large Internet service providers over lowering Internet quality for consumers and urged regulators to work towards stronger net neutrality.

The CEO took to Netflix's blog to complain about large service providers, specifically calling out Comcast and AT&T, on forcing services to pay a "toll" for interconnection instead of treating all websites and services the same.

"Some big ISPs are extracting a toll because they can -- they effectively control access to millions of consumers and are willing to sacrifice the interests of their own customers to press Netflix and others to pay."

Hastings said that what consumers and everyone else should want is strong net neutrality to force ISPs to provide equal access to all web content. He did say that some service providers were already practitioners of net neutrality, like Cablevision.

The Netflix chief explained that fees for consistent and strong interconnection could possibly even increase as they hold the best bargaining position, forcing everyone else to pay. Hastings noted that while Netflix could afford to strike a deal for consistent access, not everyone can and smaller companies could suffer.

USA Today reports that Comcast disagreed with Hastings' position noting in a statement that the ISP "supported the FCC's Open Internet rules because they struck the appropriate balance between consumer protection and reasonable network management rights for ISPs."

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