YouTube Joins Netflix In Blaming ISPs for Slow Buffering

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Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) has been on the war path with slow ISPs for some time now, and today YouTube joins the movie streaming giant and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL) in explicitly blaming ISPs for slow connections that result in stuttering or delayed videos.

A pop up message now appears when users experience slow buffering on a YouTube video, inviting users to click to find out why.

Details on new YouTube popups

According to tech news site Quartz, YouTube has recently started producing small pop-up messages in videos that are experiencing slow buffering. The pop up invites users to “find out why” you’re “experiencing interruptions.” If you click on the pop up, you’re directly linked to Google’s new website for documenting the video streaming quality of major ISPs, and then you can see for yourself that your internet provider is the reason for the delay.

Google has also started to identify some high-performing ISPs with the status of “YouTube HD Verified”.

Peering disputes

Peering disputes between Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL), Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) and other streaming services and ISPs over the financial responsibility for upgrading ISPs’ interconnection infrastructure have been going on for years. Given the growing number of complaints they receive regarding buffering issues, streaming services haven’t been shy about publicly embarrassing ISPs when streaming quality drops. Netflix began the practice of calling out an ISP for subpar streaming several months ago when it started giving users on Verizon’s network notices informing them that Verizon was at fault for their poor experience.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) has objected, saying delays are usually caused by multiple factors and crowded networks are a fact of life today. They also say some of the factors behind the delays are outside their control and many relate to limitations in the users hardware. The situation is a bit bizarre given that streaming quality on Verizon has actually been getting worse despite the fact that Verizon and Netflix reached a peering agreement a few months ago in which Netflix agreed to pay Verizon for improving its interconnection quality.

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