'Orange to sue Cogent, seeks fair peering deal'
(DMeurope Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) France Telecom-Orange is suing internet traffic transit operator Cogent and video portal Megaupload for stating publicly that Orange was throttling access to Megaupload over the Cogent network to benefit France Telecom long distance carrier Open Transit. At the same time the French operator called for it and the US carrier to negotiate a fair contract to account for traffic asymmetry between the two. Under today's P2P system, where no money exchanges hands, taffic difference is meant to be capped at 1:2.5. Yet Orange executive vice president Pierre Louette told Les Echos that with Cogent it is 1:4 or even 1:8. Orange thinks the P2P system no longer works and that an internet termination fee must be considered. He said Cogent was one of the world's 40 significant transit operators and had a 17 percent share of world web traffic. As such it has not concerned itself with Orange's 24 million French internet customers. Orange has tried to find an agreement with Cogent as it has with Google, but Cogent has turned it down so far. Louette cites Google former boss Eric Schmidt, who said last year "You build the infrastructure and we take the money" as indicative of the problem. Asked whether Orange could install equipment on its French network to speed up access to popular portals, Louette said that operator did not want to build Google caches have other operator-branded servers on its network. France Telecom-Orange R&D chief Thierry Bonhomme said the company was talking to others about network architecture, especially with respect to content distribution networks, for example by making them interoperable. He countered Cogent's allegation that Open Transit was beiong favoured by stating that the subsidiary manages Orange operators' routers in different countries for domestic access and that there is not such a large traffic imbalance as with Cogent. Louette called for the development of the future world internet which recognises that the peering policy no longer works and the many types of service providers involved. The accusation that Orange was throttling access to Megaupload comes at a delicate time in France, where subscribers to any service offering TV content have four months during which they can switch operators without a penalty due to a change in terms after a VAT raise.
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