Talk:Internet service provider

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This all seems rather US-Centric. I think it could probably benefit from some more information on what an ISP is rather than just being a list of them -- Darac 11:37, 8 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Misplaced redirect[edit]

Internet service redirects me to this page, but service providers (AOL, etc) are different from services (web hosting, email, DNS, etc). I have no idea how to remove the redirect and put a more appropriate article in. --Elijah 22:51, 2004 Dec 7 (UTC)

The ISP's raison d'etre[edit]

But what do they do, exactly? Why are they needed? Is there any reason you couldn't connect to the internet without an ISP? Also, I removed some of the history section because it seemed irrelevant to ISPs - the internet or WWW articles would have been better places for them. --Philip Hazelden 00:03, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

"A Virtual ISP (vISP) re-sells to the general public Internet access purchased from a wholesale ISP." Needs a section describing what a "wholesale ISP" is/does. This would also answer the above person's query. -- KLEBESTIFT 09:00, 16 June 2006 (not UTC)
I've rewritten the first paragraph of the vISP section. I tried to integrate a decent explanation of the wholesale ISP's role, let me know if it needs improvement. Thedangerouskitchen 17:28, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Categorization discussion notice[edit]

There is a discussion going on to settle the "in country" / "of country" nomenclature. The discussion is a CFD, so it should run for 7 days from the timestamp on this message. --Syrthiss 20:32, 17 March 2006 (UTC)


The article says that "while the DMCA is generally seen as fair and balanced..." Who says the DMCA is fair/balanced? I don't. In fact, I'm not even sure most people do. This really needs to be backed up.--Frenchman113 20:09, 5 April 2006 (UTC)

The DMCA cannot be assessed in the lump. In my view, the provisions of the DMCA about ISP liability can be seen as balanced because on the one hand the DMCA does not oblige ISPs to actively monitor third party content, but on the other hand does not allow ISPs to ignore copyright infringement once they receive a notice. The question if the DMCA provisions about Digital Rights Management Systems and their circumvention are balanced is a totally different one. I agree that in respect to the latter the DMCA is often criticised as being unfair and unbalanced. I therefore clarified the section.Koala27 14:42, 15 May 2006 (UTC)


Unless there are objections, I intend to rewrite large portions of this article, and go into far more detail. What I'll be trying not to do is to replicate too much content from other articles dealing with specific access methods like DSL or dial-up, or fill the article with inpenetrable jargon. However, if the Internet was an entirely new concept to me, and I read this article in its current state, I would have little idea as to the whats, hows, and whys of ISPs. Thedangerouskitchen 14:26, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

OK, I've rewritten a pretty decent portion of it. There's still a lot to go, though. I'd like the article to get more into the business and legal aspects, maybe include a network diagram indicating where ISPs are in relation to the customer, telcos, and the rest of the Internet, and get into traffic accounting (which ties in with business via billing). I'll do my best, but if someone wants to put in a big slab of their own expertise we'll have a much better article :) Thedangerouskitchen 14:07, 9 September 2006 (UTC)


Looks like this page has been wrecked somewhat with duplicate sections and comments in headlines. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 16:43, 18 December 2006 (UTC).

Broadband vs. narrowband[edit]

I find that the term ISP can have two meanings. One use, as suggested by this article, is general, referring to any company providing Internet access, either broadband or dialup (i.e. narrowband.) The other use I see a lot in business articles and in companies' SEC filings is more specific. In this second connotation, ISP seems to define a specific business model that precludes ownership of the physical distribution infrastructure, such cable systems or phone wires. Examples of companies that fall under this second definition are Earthlink, AOL and M$, who generally do not own local access lines, as opposed to cable operators or phone companies who do.

In summary, even though logically, and as implied in this article, cable operators and phone companies could all be called Internet service providers, yet in business literature, I almost never see the term ISP applied to broadband service providers. If somebody who has more knowledge could comment on what seems to me dual uses of the term, it would certainly be welcome. I am sure I am not the only one wondering this. Thanks in advance. Staretz 22:15, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

My understanding is that if the company provides IP routing services such as peering or transit, then they qualify as an ISP, regardless of what they might do above (eg: web or email hosting) or below (ATM switching, DOCSIS cable networking, local loop for the PSTN, etc) the IP layer. This role as an ISP may be secondary to other roles such as those you mention, and less a part of the company's identity as perceived by the general public. However, if there's something definitive we can put in the article about what is or is not called an "ISP" in certain contexts, then I think it's worth including. Thedangerouskitchen 23:43, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

Internet Cafes[edit]

Are internet cafes virtual Internet Service Providers or just plain Internet Service Providers? I've seen it is included in the category internet service providers, but I'm not sure if that is right. -- 10:28, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

History of ISPs[edit]

Can someone add in the history of ISPs? When was the term originated? What was the first? How did they evolve from, say, Arpanet into the private sector? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Movieresearch (talkcontribs) 02:38, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

I'm also looking for information on the history of ISPs, specifically the software bundles most of them included with membership, to get around the chicken-egg problem of downloading internet software with no internet software before said software was part of operating systems.

Remember the AOL discs? I was involved in a kind of garage sale organised by nuns and they put one of those free AOL CDs up for sale (talk) 13:01, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

List of ISPs[edit]

Can someone add a list of business and residential ISPs —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:34, 18 January 2008 (UTC)


Certainly there is a large amount of trust involved with one's ISP. Else a packet sniffer inside it could reap millions... Please add a section about this. Jidanni (talk) 11:14, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

What's the biggeest ISP?[edit]

Cab anyone write which company is the biggest ISP in the contry? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:35, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

How do I establish my own ISP?[edit]

Please specify precise details as I am fed up with insufficient bandwidth speed —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:55, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

How to connect ISP to the internet?[edit]

How? Can anyone answer? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:33, 28 August 2008 (UTC)


This article is in dire need of a rewrite. Any volunteers? Shovon (talk) 16:57, 23 September 2008 (UTC)

internet service provider[edit]

i want to know about internet service provider — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:36, 15 February 2010

Welcome to Wikipedia. Do you see a link "Article" at the top of the page? Follow that and it will take you to the information. -- Smjg (talk) 11:13, 9 April 2010 (UTC)

Info about the standardization of ISP....[edit]

-- (talk) 09:44, 16 April 2010 (UTC)

Note: I have remembered that between the middle of 2006 - earlier of 2008, there are heaps of ISO standards regarding this topic and now they are not traceable anymore.... -- (talk) 09:48, 16 April 2010 (UTC)

Therefore, hard copy publications of ISO are required, as commented earlier at ISO discussion page -- (talk) 03:40, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

-- (talk) 03:50, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

-- (talk) 04:36, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

I see absolutely no relationship between Electronic medical record and this article, please explain. --Kgfleischmann (talk) 06:46, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

Reference section need to be closely examined.....[edit]

and I leave it for ISO 690 panelles to fix it up -- (talk) 01:08, 22 April 2010 (UTC)

How ISP's work, and what they do exactly[edit]

This article is so vague, it barely tells you how an ISP works and what they actually do in order to activate the internet for a persons home. I would very much like this article to be expanded.The Unbeholden (talk) 04:04, 23 July 2010 (UTC)


In the opening paragraph we see the word 'tubes' used which links to the article about the senator who used the term. Is tubes now a standard internet term such that it should be in the opening paragraph for the ISP entry? If so, why not link to an article explaining what tubes means technically? And if not, then why is the link here? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:27, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

Probably a joke, so was removed. W Nowicki (talk) 17:41, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

What about non-internet-access ISPs? Couldn't providers of internet services be classified as ISPs?[edit]

Can a VoIPP or a SIP provider be classified as an ISP? A VoIP or SIP is an internet service, and the provider of such service is, obviously, a provider. Doesn't it follow that a VoIPP is an ISP? In the interest of strict categorisation and in the absence of a VoIPP category, wouldn't it be better to classify VoIPPs as being an "ISP", instead of some other incomplete "I", "S" and "P" combination? Any thoughts? MureninC (talk) 07:00, 9 December 2011 (UTC)

The phrase means someone who provides "internet" as a service, not someone who provides a service using the internet (which is pretty much anyone these days). -Jason A. Quest (talk) 13:20, 9 December 2011 (UTC)


what is DSL — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:02, 11 February 2013 (UTC) This: Digital subscriber line --Kgfleischmann (talk) 13:32, 11 February 2013 (UTC)

Wholesale removal of references?[edit]

An anonymous user just rewrote the entire article, removing all the references and some content, without any edit summary. The tag about needing references was removed too, which is just incorrect. Normally the reaction to this to revert first and ask questions later. The references were not very good, and some of the changes to the article were improvements, but some were not. For example, the Internet refers to one specific one, so is capitalized as per English rules for proper nouns. Unless there is a discussion, maybe we should do a wholesale revert and then work to merge in some of the improvements. But removing all the discussion about peering and tiers without comment does not follow guidelines. W Nowicki (talk) 17:41, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

History, Paragraphs 3-5[edit]

In the History section of this article, paragraphs 3-5 are a bloated, blow-by-blow account of the net neutrality debate in the United States from a very narrow timeframe (2014-2015). These paragraphs are wildly disproportionate to the importance of U.S. net neutrality policy to the history of ISPs, and this is especially glaring in light of the extreme lack of detail about... the actual history of ISPs. The years 1989-1995 are covered in five short sentences. The years 1995-2014 -- the years of hyperconsolidation after the initial competitiveness of the early market, which incidentally gave rise to the climate in which net neutrality began to be a concern -- are not covered AT ALL. Then the net neutrality debate of 2014-2015 gets three times as much space as the entire rest of the history of ISPs.

This is bad. I trust everyone reading this can agree with that. It's US-centric. It's unencyclopedic. It's as plain a violation as I've ever seen of -- heck, take your pick: WP:NOTNEWS, WP:UNDUE, WP:NOTEVERYTHING, WP:NOTNP, WP:TMI, and probably a few others whose shortcodes I've forgotten (didn't there used to be one about American-centricity?).

Nearly two years ago, in February 2015, I rewrote this enormous and inappropriate passage succinctly as follows:

"On 26 February 2015, the FCC is expected to vote on a proposal applying ("with some caveats") Title II (common carrier) of the Communications Act of 1934 to internet service providers[1][2][3][4][5], in hopes of ensuring net neutrality.[6][7]"

If anything, I think that's still too MUCH information about what is ultimately a footnote in the history of ISPs (and even in the history of U.S. net neutrality -- nothing that happened in 2014 was as important to NN as 2005's NCTA v. Brand X decision). However, I didn't (and still don't) want to push harder than I need to to help the article improve, so I left the two sentences there and called it a day.

I was then immediately reverted by a bot-driven anti-vandalism editor. I restored the edit -- again, bot -- but was reverted by one of this page's regular editors, who made a good-faith but improper application of WP:BRD to keep the section as-written. Having my first edit in several years -- a careful condensation I spent nearly an hour studying and paring down -- get strangled by what I viewed as overzealous reverts took the wind out of my sails, so I gave up, and I figured somebody else would fix it. But it hasn't been, so I'm going to give this a shot.

This post is proper notice under WP:BRD of my intention to rewrite the bloated, inappropriately TMI section on U.S. net neutrality debates to the text proposed above (EDIT: with updates for 2016, obviously -- new citations, and past tense instead of future tense). Please discuss. If there's consensus objection, I'm not going to fight it: I'm still totally burnt out on Talk page arguments, and this is the first serious note I've made on a Talk page in nearly a decade. -- (talk) 05:51, 3 December 2016 (UTC)

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  1. ^ Lohr, Steve (2 February 2015). "In Net Neutrality Push, F.C.C. Is Expected to Propose Regulating Internet Service as a Utility". New York Times. Retrieved 2 February 2015. 
  2. ^ Lohr, Steve (2 February 2015). "F.C.C. Chief Wants to Override State Laws Curbing Community Net Services". New York Times. Retrieved 2 February 2015. 
  3. ^ Flaherty, Anne (31 January 2015). "Just whose Internet is it? New federal rules may answer that". AP News. Retrieved 31 January 2015. 
  4. ^ Fung, Brian (2 January 2015). "Get ready: The FCC says it will vote on net neutrality in February". Washington Post. Retrieved 2 January 2015. 
  5. ^ Staff (2 January 2015). "FCC to vote next month on net neutrality rules". AP News. Retrieved 2 January 2015. 
  6. ^ Wheeler, Tom (4 February 2015). "FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler: This Is How We Will Ensure Net Neutrality". Wired (magazine). Retrieved 5 February 2015. 
  7. ^ The Editorial Board (6 February 2015). "Courage and Good Sense at the F.C.C. - Net Neutrality's Wise New Rules". New York Times. Retrieved 6 February 2015.