The lights are on
Communications giant AT&T has earned the ire of the gaming community after its comments to the FCC regarding the definition of "broadband." Their argument is gaming is not a vital part of the internet landscape, but rather an "aspirational service." Here is part of the statement from AT&T:"For Americans who today have no terrestrial broadband service at all, the pressing concern is not the ability to engage in real-time, two-way gaming, but obtaining meaningful access to the Internet's resources and to reliable email communications and other basic tools that most of the country has come to expect as a given."AT&T states that the core definition of "broadband" should be applications of the internet that help people "learn, train for jobs, and work online." While games have been used in some instances for educational purposes and job training, there is an argument about whether or not we actually "need" online gaming. ESA Vice President Kenneth Doroshow took issue with AT&T's stance, responding:"What AT&T describes as aspirational services are no less important to the future of the Internet than email and web browsing were to the past and are today. Online video games are a meaningful part of our participative culture. They remove geographic barriers, connecting people from across the country and around the world. They teach cooperation, cultivate leadership skills, and empower users to express their creativity."The FCC has not yet reached their official definition of broadband, and AT&T has not responded to Doroshow's comment.
Here's a thought, Why in the h**l would AT&T try to destroy something thats making them richer by the minute? That makes no since at all. If that inproves AT&T might become bankrupt from losing many and I mean many cosumers.
It sounds to me like AT&T is saying that they are going bankrupt soon. They are downplaying something that most of their customers are likely using. After trying to sift through the company's BS, I've come to the conclusion that they are getting scared at this point. The fact is that online gaming is one of the most bandwidth sucking activities you can do. When they say "Online games aren't vital..." what they mean is "We can't go any faster." This leads to their competitors, who are willing to put forth some cash to increase their speeds and their customers speeds, are going to swallow up all of AT&T's business.
If you did a poll with a random 1,000 people, chances are over have plays at least one game online, be it WoW, MAG, or even SF4's online VS. The fact is that the average American today is at least a casual gamer. Why else would the industry be surviving so well in the current economy? Why are so many colleges starting up programs for game development/design? AT&T is like an old man who keeps saying that computers are just a fad. In the end, they will either adapt or go out of business.
hm, with the popularity of games on facebook and iPhone apps and PSN/XBL I would have to say they are full of it.
If Internet is not part of gaming.....then the Internet speed would not have been like it is today....i mean yeah gaming catalyzed and gives the need for ISP to provide better and faster Internet...I mean do you need a 10mb Internet speed for you to chat on MSN or YM or IM???
You guys are mising the point of these hearings. The idea is to get the entire nation blanket coverage. A lot of us live in suburban areas or cities, but we forget that over 50% of this country sits in areas far away from the conveniences of well populated areas. And well over 40% of us, live in those areas.
These areas don't just need expensive hubs every 7 or 8 miles, but they need all new wire technology to carry solid signal. The importance of defining broadband to companies that cover a lot of this area, is also the importance of meeting an operations budget.
It's not difficult to weigh your options when you have 50 houses feeding on the same 25 thousand dollar hub. But when you have, say 10, houses on a hub, you're looking at limited returns.
Obviously, you won't be seeing 10Mb/s signals in those areas, but once the government starts mandating/subsidizing coverage for all, these companies are going to need a plan. Part of that plan is going to be meeting the minimum of what the government defines broadband as. So it's in their best interest to keep the target pipe as low as possible, so that they aren't throwing high dollar infrastructure in an area where it won't see worthy returns on investment.
This is completely insane. Gaming is a very important part of everyday life I believe. While in the end if someone did absolutely nothing but play video games day in and day out they would achieve nothing, but games do help with many things, such as stress, the feeling of loneliness and boredom, to say gaming isn't considered a part of the internet is to say a whip isn't a part of Indiana Jones.
This is all about money... If gaming is not a included in the definition of Broadband services it will give the internet providers a reason to charge above and beyond what you are already paying for gaming level broadband service.
Im glad AT&T doesnt exist in NZ. Its good that I dont have to deal with them because they seem like a bunch of idiots.
Anything involving the FCC is dangerous. As all they would do is try to enforce laws and retraints. Hardly ever do they try to guarranty freedoms.... The fact that AT&T has said such stupidity is even worse. But I guess they are trying to seem "professional & business".
Let's face it. This does not only affect gaming it affects almost everything people REALLY use the internet for:
#1. Wasting time on Videos(youtube, ebaums, failblog, etc)
#3. Downloading music, movies, tv shows FOR ENTERTAINMENT.
#4. Myspace/facebook/twitter etc.
#5. chatting, dating, hooking up.
What!? Stupid AT&T
It is obvious that AT&T does not have everyone's thoughts in mind. What these corporate big wigs lack is the fact that if you want to be a power house in the world, you must catter to everyone's needs regardless of your thoughts and opinions.
If this is how a business wants to practice, that is their sole right to do so. In the end, they will see as their numbers fall because they are leaving the multi-millon gamers out there in dark will eventually hurt them.
Give it some time, they will eventually see the light and make online gaming an important part of their business plan. If not, then AT&T will be looking for a buyer.
i hate atat i live in a apartment where atat is the only internet provider and i am at near the end of the cable i pay for 6g but i only get 3g and they want to charge me money to come out and fix the problem
Gaming has evolved the past few years to a completely viable resource of both entertainment and social interaction. The necessity has now been established and some of the more socially stunted now rely on online gaming as their prime source of public acceptance and human interaction. There are those of us that utilize online gaming merely a source of escapism from everyday activities, boredom, and yes even interaction outside the gaming experience. Is this a good way to make use of bandwidth? Perhaps it’s bad? This should be for no one to decide other than us.
AT&T should prepare for some backlash should they decide to act on their statement.
Wow, I mean really, just, wow. Well, that's the straw on the camel's back donchaknow? I'll be switching companies now. The fact that I was planning on doing that anyways is only coincidental. :P
Sadly, I prefer the AT&T U-Verse service compared to cable or satellite. After comments like that, I'm glad I haven't packaged my U-verse with their internet service. What a bunch of ignorant asshats.
"For Americans who today have no terrestrial broadband service at all,"
Ok. I'll agree with that one. However I don't see how that translates into a definition of broadband.
On a side note, does anyone else think the At&t building looks like a fortress?
"They remove geographic barriers, connecting people from across the country and around the world. "
This is the most important line in the whole article.
Would I have real friends in South America or Japan that I now talk to on a regular basis without MGO? Probably not.
AT&T blows. anyone ever been in New York City with an iphone? They need to get that sorted out before trying to "define" broadband or anythng that has to do with speed. *yawn*
This is yet another reason I will never go back to AT&T services.
Gaming is not a definable thing instead its an amalgamation of its parts.
It's a pastime/hobby
It's a communications hub
It's a competative envoirnment with its own tournament/league envoirnments with large cash prizes and highly sought after endorsement deals.
It's a form of escapism for those days we all wish would just be over already.
Online gaming allows people to communicate with others that they otherwise would never interact with, to learn from people around the world to hone skills that are often overlooked (leadership, communication, teamwork etc etc)
Sure you can argue that any form of online communication fosters this but as its been discussed in many Scientific communities the online gaming phenomenon is a unique entity of the internet and is fast becoming a staple of modern life.
12+million people play World of warcraft Wonder how many of them are dropping AT&T service as I type this....