Posted: Thursday, June 28th, 2012
Over the past few days a number of tube stations (including Kings Cross and Oxford Circus) across London have announced free Wifi access on their platforms. All it takes is a device which can connect to the internet and an email address to register with. It is expected that 80 underground stations will be able to provide the service in time for the upcoming Olympics and a further 40 by the end of the year. However, free access is only available for a limited time. The end of the Olympics will mark the end of free Wifi and from that point onwards only Virgin customers will be able to access the network without paying.
Virgin Media have been working with TFL to bring the tube stations up to date in time to fully showcase London as “Europe’s leading digital city”. It has been claimed that the speeds will be similar to that of 4G technology, however it is still unknown quite how well the network will cope with the huge levels of demand this novelty service will no doubt incur.
Public opinion on this matter is noticeably divided. There are those who see this as an inevitable outcome, a continuation of the modern advancement towards an increasingly digitalised society and something to be welcomed. However, there are others who question this development, concerned that this need for constant internet access is unhealthy and unnecessary.
Here at Fluidata, we champion any new innovations which are able to deliver faster speeds to places that have always been considered disadvantaged when it comes to internet connectivity. Here’s to the future of the internet – who knows what is waiting around the corner…
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Posted: Monday, June 18th, 2012
As expected, Monday nights Euro 2012 football match between England and France led to a significant traffic surge across our network.
From 5pm onwards we generally see bandwidth on our graphing take a steady downward trajectory, instead we witnessed a steep increase at 5 pm followed by an even sharper decline at 7 pm when the game finished.
This is of course further evidence that corporate networks are being used for live streaming of sporting events. We’ll no doubt see more of this when the Olympics comes next month.
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Posted: Thursday, June 14th, 2012
TalkTalk confirmed this week that they have officially joined the ‘Pirate Bay Blockade’, becoming the fifth ISP do to so (along with SKY, Virgin Media and O2) following an April High Court hearing which ordered ISP’s to block the infamous bit torrent website. BT are expected to follow suit imminently.
The Pirate Bay Blockade represents the latest attempt by record labels to claw back some of the market power they once enjoyed before the likes of Napaster, LimeWire, and other peer to peer internet sharing platforms began to erode CD sales from the late 1990’s onwards.
The inventor of the world wide web, Tim Berners Lee, has condemned this ruling, telling a Wired press conference, “we must not allow record companies’ fear that their business model isn’t working to upset the openness of the internet”. That the record label business model is ‘out of date’ is a point that scarcely needs to be made. The twin pillars that upheld it; the reliance of artists on record labels to produce music, and consumer demand for cassettes/CD’s, have crumbled at alarming speed under the weight of file sharing and distribution of content, and although efforts have been made by these companies to embrace the internet age and find ways to charge for digital music, the industry still rests on precarious foundations.
While the internet has disadvantaged record labels, it is important to remember it hasn’t necessarily been a negative to the music industry. To the contrary, British artists such as Ed Sheeran, Jessie J and even American superstars such as Justin Bieber (my personal favorite) can be thankful to the internet for their current career success. Self-made artists can now upload audio and use media platforms such as YouTube and MySpace to broadcast their talent to millions of people at virtually no cost. In my view, this can only be positive for music and society as a whole and makes you wonder how many stars have been missed in the last 50 years due to the costs attached to recording and distributing music.
So in the light of the High Court ruling, what does the future of internet hold for the music and media industry? A plethora of unsigned bedroom talent? Or a world self-educated in the importance of social media and online presence?
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Posted: Wednesday, June 13th, 2012
The House of Commons debated the Defamation Bill yesterday; discussing wide sweeping reforms of the libel laws that could see internet service providers (ISPs) given greater protection from being sued in return for helping to identify so-called ‘internet trolls’.
Claimants will have to show they have suffered serious harm to their reputations, or are likely to do so, before they can take a defamation case forward.
As things stand, website operators are in principle liable as publishers for everything that appears on their sites, even though the content is often determined by users. Many operators of forums for instance, do have admin staff who are there to determine what could be deemed inappropriate and remove material accordingly. But, in the case of Twitter is that even viable?
The quid pro quo put forward by the government is you identify the individual/s and we prosecute them. Forgive me, but am I alone in thinking the Government are being somewhat naive? What happens in the case that someone masks their identity by using proxy? The ramifications are similar to ones I raised one of my previous articles.
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Posted: Wednesday, June 6th, 2012
Social network giant LinkedIn have reported that they are investigating claims by security analysts that more than 6.5 million user’s passwords have been uploaded online. Russian hackers boasted of this potentially huge data security breach on a local web forum and it is believed that such data could be in the hands of criminals by now.
LinkedIn are yet to release an official statement, but have Tweeted the following “Our team is currently looking into reports of stolen passwords. Stay tuned for more.” Many top cyber threat experts have encouraged users to change passwords as soon as possible.
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