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  • "Operation Chokehold" Spreading


    A plan to flood AT&T's network as a protest against the carrier's service is building momentum on the Web... and AT&T is not amused. Started with a single post by popular blogger Fake Steve Jobs, "Operation Chokehold" will have iPhone users soak the network for one hour starting at 12 noon Pacific Standard time on Friday, December 18. AT&T calls it "irresponsible and pointless scheme to draw attention to a blog," in a statement released on Tuesday.

    Fake Steve Jobs is the online identity of Newsweek writer Dan Lyons. His blog, "The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs," features satirical takes on issues of the day delivered in the voice of a sort of Steve Jobs-meets-Dr.-Evil (or Steve-Jobs-IS-Dr.-Evil) character. On Monday, Fake Steve Jobs wrote the following:

    I’m really blown away by the way people have responded to AT&T’s bastardly behavior over bandwidth usage. Our engineers are friggin livid. And, because they’re engineers, which means they’re basically evil little pricks, they’ve come up with a plan to teach AT&T a lesson. They’re calling it Operation Chokehold. Last night I got this email that they’ve been sending around inside Apple, encouraging people to join the crusade:

    Subject: Operation Chokehold
    On Friday, December 18, at noon Pacific time, we will attempt to overwhelm the AT&T data network and bring it to its knees. The goal is to have every iPhone user (or as many as we can) turn on a data intensive app and run that app for one solid hour. Send the message to AT&T that we are sick of their substandard network and sick of their abusive comments. THe idea is we’ll create a digital flash mob. We’re calling it in Operation Chokehold. Join us and speak truth to power!
    The post came after after Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO of AT&T Wireless, hinted that the carrier may go to usage-based pricing for heavy data users: read "iPhone owners." The outrage spread rapidly. "An American company creates a brilliant phone," Fake Steve Jobs wrote, "and that company hands it to you, and gives you an exclusive deal to carry it - and all you guys can do is complain about how much people want to use it."

    AT&T, understandably, doesn't find this all that funny. In a statement to the Cult of Mac blog, a company spokesman said:

    We understand that fakesteve.net is primarily a satirical forum, but there is nothing amusing about advocating that customers attempt to deliberately degrade service on a network that provides critical communications services for more than 80 million customers. We know that the vast majority of customers will see this action for what it is: an irresponsible and pointless scheme to draw attention to a blog.
    In an amusing reaction, some loyal AT&T customers have created something called Operation Cuckoo opposing the action. From their Facebook page:

    ... you don't urge AT&T to improve its network and terms by attempting to bring it down or violating your contract with the entity. Much the same as you don't put out a fire with a gasoline shower.
    Ideas for disruptiing AT&T's network on Friday include:
    • Turning off WiFi
    • Streaming YouTube videos
    • Streaming live video with the new USTREAM Live Broadcaster app
    • Streaming high-bandwidth video from Akamai’s iPhone Showcase site

    One commenter on Gizmodo's story on Operation Chokehold quipped: "I have one problem with this. How do we know if the operation is underway? I don't think I'll be able to tell the difference."

    image via The Unofficial Apple Weblog
    This article was originally published in forum thread: "Operation Chokehold" Spreading started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 89 Comments
    1. LGgeek's Avatar
      LGgeek -
      "Much the same as you don't put out a fire with a gasoline shower."
      well if it's an oil fire you use explosives.
    1. xwinger's Avatar
      xwinger -
      wow cool you were first want a cookie?


      anyways, if i lived in the US i would definitely take part in this. sounds awesome
    1. The Maestro's Avatar
      The Maestro -
      Yes Im so in! AT&T pisses me off, I'll prolly have to wait cause I'm on the east coast
    1. hancoma's Avatar
      hancoma -
      Allow me to play devil's advocate.
      Could this not be considered an attack, similar to a denial of service?
      It is also very easy for ATT to find out who participated in this with data logging of the phones...
      Call me paranoid, but I really don't want a piece of this..
    1. smiska2's Avatar
      smiska2 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Carlos View Post
      first
      tool!
    1. jeffhesser's Avatar
      jeffhesser -
      Awesome... even on a site devoted to standing up for the rights of consumers to use devices/services they PAID for, there are users who are more concerned for the corporation than their own rights! The issue here is that we are all paying for a service and ATT is too busy lining it's wallet rather than re-investing this income into their network! ATT needs to stop treating it's customers like the enemy and start trying to solve some of these problems.
    1. extremzocker's Avatar
      extremzocker -
      even though i am not an ATT customer i think this is a good idea.
      since they dont seem to care about written complaints this is the only way to show them
      let the data usage begin...
    1. aekhamsouk's Avatar
      aekhamsouk -
      Quote Originally Posted by hancoma View Post
      Allow me to play devil's advocate.
      Could this not be considered an attack, similar to a denial of service?
      It is also very easy for ATT to find out who participated in this with data logging of the phones...
      Call me paranoid, but I really don't want a piece of this..
      how do they tell who is legitimate and who isn't?
    1. NCMacMan's Avatar
      NCMacMan -
      I'm in!
    1. The Maestro's Avatar
      The Maestro -
      Quote Originally Posted by hancoma View Post
      Allow me to play devil's advocate.
      Could this not be considered an attack, similar to a denial of service?
      It is also very easy for ATT to find out who participated in this with data logging of the phones...
      Call me paranoid, but I really don't want a piece of this..
      No just watch a few YouTube videos. And if you get a letter just tell then you were bored. If they got a problem with that sue them :-P
    1. niqolas619's Avatar
      niqolas619 -
      I hope there aren't very many people that go through with this, because it is one of the dumbest things I've ever heard of. If this goes through, it might cause millions of people to lose service during that time, and who knows what emergencies or important calls might be missed.

      Extremely irresponsible and will not improve anything. I can't believe this guy is a writer for Newsweek, it sounds like a scheme a pissed off teenager would come up with.
    1. sandstorm77's Avatar
      sandstorm77 -
      Quote Originally Posted by niqolas619 View Post

      Extremely irresponsible and will not improve anything. I can't believe this guy is a writer for Newsweek, it sounds like a scheme a pissed off teenager would come up with.
      This will indeed prove that AT&T customers can ban together and make a statement. I would consider doing this everyday for the rest of the month. Force AT&T to stop being assholes and deal with the issue rather than passing the buck to its customers.

      Down with AT&T!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    1. MrJayRizzie's Avatar
      MrJayRizzie -
      Quote Originally Posted by The Maestro View Post
      Yes Im so in! AT&T pisses me off, I'll prolly have to wait cause I'm on the east coast
      You can still participate even if you are on the east coast.. the chokehold is at 12 Pacific time.. Add 3hrs to that and thats what time you get on your iPhone-- 3pm est

      Quote Originally Posted by hancoma View Post
      Allow me to play devil's advocate.
      Could this not be considered an attack, similar to a denial of service?
      It is also very easy for ATT to find out who participated in this with data logging of the phones...
      Call me paranoid, but I really don't want a piece of this..
      Dude calm the hell down... I hate when ppl get all paranoid and act like stuff will happen..
      AT&T blows anyway.. and Ralph De La Vega is a punk... Even at the corporate office in Charlotte, NC.... straight punks...

      OPERATION CHOKEHOLD... MOVE OUT!!
    1. The Maestro's Avatar
      The Maestro -
      Quote Originally Posted by MrJayRizzie View Post
      You can still participate even if you are on the east coast.. the chokehold is at 12 Pacific time.. Add 3hrs to that and thats what time you get on your iPhone-- 3pm est
      Thanks bro hence why I said i had to wait
    1. rwin84's Avatar
      rwin84 -
      this will not yield the desired results. mark my words...
    1. hollow0's Avatar
      hollow0 -
      I think it's a stupid idea. What makes them think that by doing this it will make things better? If anything it'll prob force AT&T to implement the usage based plan and then whichever fool that does this will pay for it in the end and so will all customers.

      Like part of the article says why make it worse? It will solve nothing.
    1. MrJayRizzie's Avatar
      MrJayRizzie -
      Quote Originally Posted by sandstorm77 View Post
      This will indeed prove that AT&T customers can ban together and make a statement. I would consider doing this everyday for the rest of the month. Force AT&T to stop being assholes and deal with the issue rather than passing the buck to its customers.

      Down with AT&T!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      I CANT STAND AT&T ... Especially there home service when the took over bellsouth... They customer service SUCKS... Those reps act like they are soo hard core on the phone and they dont keep notes and will screw you on your bill....

      This is a great Operation bc I personally have been screwed.. AT&T charged me $1000 for data when I had the data package on my acct unlimited.. What they said- It was never on my acct... What kind of BS is that? I had the super smart rep look at my bill from the previous month and guess what it was on there.. Their excuse- the network removed bc I put my sim card in a less data capable phone. I change phones from my iPhone and put it in a phone that uses LESS data and the network drops my data when I go to use it?? So I am all for this chokehold..
    1. DirtyDan's Avatar
      DirtyDan -
      Definitely won't be participating. I'd rather work with my carrier in improving my service, not against them.
    1. TooSlo's Avatar
      TooSlo -
      I would try to get in on some of the action.... but alas, I only have EDGE service in my building at work.....

      This is truly disheartening now, considering a week ago I actually had some type of signal. I blame the rain.

    1. FoneWeasel's Avatar
      FoneWeasel -
      Do people actually think that this will work? It'll just be another reason for AT&T considering charging tiered prices for monthly usage for iPhone users.