Netflix accused of mudslinging

Verizon, the US telecommunications giant, has issued Netflix with a “cease and desist” letter following media reports claiming that Netflix was blatantly telling its customers that the Verizon network was responsible for faulty streaming.

Relations between the two companies have not been smooth. In March Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings publicly expressed his dismay that internet service providers (ISPs) such as Verizon were demanding a fee to maintain video quality. This being said, in April Netflix agreed to pay Verizon in order to establish a direct connection to its network, thus ensuring that content was delivered to consumers’ homes.

Verizon argued that “there is no basis for Netflix to assert that issues with respect to playback… are attributable solely to the Verizon network”, and moreover, that Netflix chooses how it connects to ISPs and is thus responsible for faulty streaming.

Netflix defended its questionable behaviour by stating that its intention was to provide more transparency to its consumers. Verizon, however, has implied that this incident may call future deals with Netflix into question.

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