updated 04:55 pm EDT, Thu April 16, 2009
TWC Freezes Expansion
Time Warner today quickly followed up on its plans to drop Rochester metering with word that it will also drop any near-term plans to expand the trials beyond those areas already testing the service, which limits the included amount of data transfer and charges overage fees for any use beyond an arbitrary limit. It doesn't plan to stop trialing altogether but claims to need time to change plans and discuss the issue with both end-users and others.
The cable company's chief executive Glenn Britt has so far attempted to minimize criticism and dismisses notions that criticisms are legitimate, instead calling them inaccurate.
"It is clear from the public response over the last two weeks that there is a great deal of misunderstanding about our plans," he says.
Newly-formed public protest groups as well as politicians, including New York's Senator Chuck Schumer, have accused Time Warner of imposing metering and in many cases forcing customers into the billing system with an absence of true competition in certain areas, particularly those subject to the trials. Some of these have also said the telecom firm is using increasing amounts of network traffic to justify an excessive increase in the rates for frequent users and to prevent customers from dropping cable TV in favor of Internet-only solutions like Hulu and iTunes.