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Re: Was it foreseen that the Internet might handle 242 Gbps of traffic for Oprah's Book Club webinars?

2008-03-08 08:32:02
10 years ago I would have thought audiences of this scale or larger 
would be supported with multicast...


Dan York wrote:

Here's your Friday afternoon bit of humor - as you all who have been 
around for a while were designing this set of Tubes known as the 
Internet, did you imagine that someday it might be used for 242 Gbps of 
traffic related to 500,000 people joining a web collaboration session 
for... Oprah's Book Club?

If you aren't aware of what I'm talking about, Oprah is hosting 10 
weekly (Monday night) web collaboration sessions to discuss Eckhart 
Tolle's new book "A New Earth".  Over 750,000 people have signed up and 
this past Monday 500,000 tried to participate and basically crashed the 
system. I have some links to various posts about it here in my blog:

The statement from her company, Harpo Productions, about the event is 
here: and I'll 
include this text:
Monday night's webcast was one of the largest single online events in 
the history of the Internet. More than 500,000 people simultaneously 
logged on to watch Oprah Winfrey and Eckhart Tolle live, resulting in 
242 Gbps of information moving through the Internet. Unfortunately, some 
of our users experienced delays in viewing the webcast. We are working 
to identify the specific causes for the problems experienced and will 
work diligently to rectify them.

Harpo Productions, Inc., Move Networks and Limelight Networks recognize 
that interactive Internet broadcasting to a mass audience is still an 
emerging medium, and we're proud to have been pioneers in pushing the 
industry forward.

The plan is for the sessions to go on for the next 9 Monday nights.   So 
on Monday night at 9pm Eastern US at IETF-71, if anyone wants to watch 
traffic patterns on the Internet, it might make for some interesting 
metrics...  ;-)

See you in Philly,

Dan York, CISSP, Director of Emerging Communication Technology
Office of the CTO    Voxeo Corporation     dyork(_at_)voxeo(_dot_)com 
Phone: +1-407-455-5859  Skype: danyork

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