Monday, February 12, 2007

The ISP Sponsored DarkNet: The Future of IPTV

The Past

The last sparks of the traditional mass media distribution has burnt, and its blaring light for society is fizzling. I speak of traditional broadcast mass-market television.

The Future

The future is on demand content, influenced by the spirit of the Internet, fed by the Internet, and carried on the brittle backbone of the Internet with resilience unmatched by any other media available. The future of on-demand content will eclipse todays majority of BitTorrent traffic, while at the same time be sponsored by it.

Why It is Not Now

By viewing the popularity of on-demand illegal content already popular accost the BitTorrent community, it seems this reality is already upon us. But the vast amounts of bandwidth used by ordinary users is being traded between ISPs at a cost that might seem crippling compared to that low cost introductory rate most of us are familiar with. The amounts of credit passed between Sprint and Level 3 just to allow the Internet to function daily is astronomical, though manged in a reasonable balance. How would the strain of a mass media market immediately dumped upon it survive? It may survive, with frowns from many ISPs.

A currently available recommendation, as spoken and developed by the community, is the advancement of the current BitTorrent distribution network, with ISPs taking advantage of cache functionality to reduce cross network traffic. This will not be done due to the cost to the ISP, and the possibility of questionable user generated content housed on company property.

What Must Be Done

An easier model for dealing with cross ISP traffic would be to encourage internal traffic without modifying existing external cross ISP traffic capabilities. Internal traffic among hosts on one ISP network would be granted more bandwidth, at the cost of the ISPs upgraded infrastructure as passed on as a distributed cost to the user. Internal traffic increases would immediately be noticeable in current BitTorrent implementations, with possibilities for future modifications. Competition would rise between ISPs with touts of the best "In" network.

More Ideas For Corporate Media Companies

This new content network has yet to be taken advantage of by corporations. One immediately available opportunity is advertisement sponsored content provided through current sources. A quick search for a popular TV show will reveal that the first released files are always the largest swarm. A corporate media sponsored released file with embedded commercial advertising would have forced acceptance, and would benefit users. How this advertisement is implemented is questionable, but the past success of in-stream commercials edited into the main content. Of course DRM free. The rise of integrated applications would soon follow in all markets if such media was available.

Darknet != Lightnet But it makes a better headline.