Surfing the Broad...
Follow
Find
83.2K views | +120 today
 
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
onto Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Scoop.it!

Google may be winning battles with publishers, but it is losing the war | paidContent.org

Google may be winning battles with publishers, but it is losing the war | paidContent.org | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Google is clearly trying hard to portray a new German law involving the republishing of news as a victory, and some observers seem to agree, saying the company “defeated” publishers who wanted it to pay for the right to publish excerpts. But if you look more closely, this is not an obvious win for the search giant — just as recent deals with French publishers and Belgian publishers were a lot closer to being a saw-off for both sides than an outright win.

 

And with every deal it strikes, Google makes it harder to argue that paying publishers for excerpts is unnecessary and even counter-productive — or that there is something to be gained by allowing even large companies to engage in the “fair use” of content for the larger good.

 

As my colleague David Meyer has reported, Germany’s lower level of government, the Bundestag, passed a bill on Friday known colloquially as the “Google Law.” It doesn’t officially become legislation until it is approved by the second chamber, the Bundesrat, but it has already caused a firestorm of criticism — much of that stoked by Google and its “Defend Your Internet” campaign. The law was promoted by most of Germany’s major media companies, who believe Google News is stealing their content by including excerpts of news stories.

 

Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Everything about Broadband Policy, Network Infrastructure, Voice, Video and Data Services, Devices and Applications for Managing our Planet
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Lessons learned from UPS Store breach | Antone Gonsalves | NetworkWorld.com

Lessons learned from UPS Store breach | Antone Gonsalves | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The security breach discovered at a few dozen franchises of the UPS Store, a subsidiary of United Parcel Service, provides a number of lessons for other retailers.


The UPS Store reported Wednesday that malicious software was found within the in-store cash register systems of 51 franchises in 24 states, or about 1 percent of the 4,470 U.S. stores.


The compromise exposed customer names, postal and email addresses and payment card information. How many people were affected was not disclosed.


Malware infections on so-called point-of-sale systems were also discovered in a string of breaches reported by other major retailers, including Michaels, Neiman Marcus, P.F. Chang's, Sally Beauty, Target and, more recently, the Albertsons and Supervalu supermarket chains.


In all the computer break-ins, the hackers scanned the networks for tools that let employees and vendors access systems remotely. Once the tools were found, the criminals focused on finding vulnerabilities or stealing credentials to let themselves in.


Once, a system was breached, the hackers traveled through the network to the electronic cash register system, where malware was planted to capture credit-card data.


Because credit-card data often remains in plain text until it arrives at the payment processor, an obvious precaution is to encrypt the information as soon as the card is swiped and leave the decryption key with the processor, experts say.


Such a system would be expensive to install, since it would involve replacing card readers and upgrading software within the POS systems. Nevertheless, with hackers exploiting the weakness, the cost is likely less than that of a breach.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Media Policy Watch: State & Main 2014 Conference Recap | ACM/NAMAC

Media Policy Watch: State & Main 2014 Conference Recap | ACM/NAMAC | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When ACM/NAMAC Conference entitled 'State & Main' began last week, the big news on the policy front was President Obama's August 5th announcement at the U.S.-Africa Business Forum in Washington that he opposed what's come to be called "paid prioritization"—the idea that media companies should be able to pay ISPs for more bandwidth, and thus provide their customers with Internet "fast lanes" offering better access to their services (i.e., February's Netflix/Comcast dealsee this HuffPost articlefor a list of other tech companies who have brokered similar deals).


In Thursday morning's policy panel session, The Future of Net Neutrality, or Fear and Loathing in the Digital Commons, one attendee pointed out the problem with such deals, using as a metaphor one of my favorite foods, pizza: no matter whether we call Domino's or an independent, local pizza place, we have an expectation of clear phone service. However, were a deal like Netflix and Comcast's in place, we might find ourselves with dropped calls and crackly sound unless we give in and order from Domino's. Eww, no thanks!


President Obama said as much in his August 5th comments:


"I personally, the position of my administration, as well as a lot of the companies here, is that you don’t want to start getting a differentiation in how accessible the Internet is to different users. You want to leave it open so the next Google and the next Facebook can succeed."


This issue highlights a problem that attendees at State & Main's policy sessions noted: as long as broadband continues to be classified as an "information service" under Title I of the Communications Act of 1934 (as amended by the Telecommunications Act of 1996), it seems increasingly unlikely that the FCC will enforce or support the necessary regulations to stop paid prioritization deals. Thus, there were many calls for reclassification of broadband services as "telecommunications services" under Title II, where they would be subject to additional protections against "fast lanes."


There was much conversation, too, about the FCC's newly proposed Internet rules, and speculation about what would happen after the open comment period ends in September. Other topics of discussion in policy sessions included rural broadband (800 rural ISPs shoose to be classified as "common carriers" under Title II); the telecom companies' end goals of vertical integration (for example, providing broadband and content); a whole host of PEG-specific issues (captioning, U-Verse, program guides, funding streams, HD, franchising, and the Community Access Preservation Act.


Finally, regarding the FCC's upcoming rulemaking once the open comment period is closed, one thing folks agreed on was that no matter what happens, the FCC will get sued over it.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Where We Stand on Net Neutrality | NCTA.com

Where We Stand on Net Neutrality | NCTA.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In April the FCC issued its draft of proposed rule making on new Open Internet rules to replace those struck down by the DC Circuit Court in January. Since then, the FCC has requested comments on those proposed rules so that all stakeholders – from network operators and content creators to entrepreneurs, intellectuals, and everyday users alike – could weigh in on the future of the Internet. Over a million comments were submitted. Ideas and opinions ranging from the sublime to the insane were shared with the FCC in order to contribute to this important conversation. Reply comments are now being submitted and then finally the FCC will draw up official rules.


Since the draft was issued, we’ve been working hard to encourage an enlightened and constructive discourse on the future of the most important communications technology since moveable print. We’ve shared how over-regulation would threaten innovation and broadband investment. We’ve revealed how Title II reclassification could lead to a permission-based Internet, replacing today’s vibrant digital marketplace. And we’ve shown how the principles of Net Neutrality can be protected without extreme changes to our existing regulatory framework.


Cable broadband providers are unequivocally committed to building and maintaining an open Internet experience. That means we support the original principles of Net Neutrality – that all legitimate Internet traffic should be treated equally when traveling over local networks, that ISPs should not pick favorites, and that consumers should have unfettered access to legal content of their choosing. Consumers value a free and open Internet experience, and we value their business. That’s why we’ve supported the FCC’s efforts to ensure consumers have basic protections — from the Four Freedoms first set forth in 2005, to the more recent Open Internet Order, which created actual rules in 2010. Again, cable companies did not appeal the 2010 order and we still support its principles today.


But in spite of these facts, some still insist that Title II is the only way to protect consumers from an unfair Internet. They suggest the FCC throw out 15 years of growth and success by reclassifying broadband as Title II common carrier and regulating the Internet as a public utility. But pursuing that course ignores an incredibly important reality – that the Internet has succeeded up until this point because it has been free to grow, innovate, and change largely free from government oversight.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

SoftBank Set Up for More Deals After T-Mobile: Real M&A | Bloomberg.com

SoftBank Set Up for More Deals After T-Mobile: Real M&A | Bloomberg.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Billionaire Masayoshi Son, Japan’s most acquisitive executive, is raising a war chest that could be used to buy companies from Yahoo ! Inc. to Dish Network Corp.


Son’s SoftBank Corp. is selling almost $4 billion in bonds to help finance future investment even after the company scrapped a merger of its Sprint Corp. with T-Mobile US Inc. Targets could include an Internet, music or entertainment company that would help bolster Son’s global technology empire and possibly increase Sprint’s appeal to consumers by widening their choice of content to download.


Yahoo would fit that category, said Atlantis Investment Research Corp. Taking a stake in messaging service Line Corp. is another option for the Tokyo-based mobile-phone operator, according to Thornburg Investment Management Inc. Already the biggest shareholder in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., SoftBank could team up with the e-commerce company, or buy a movie maker or news service, said SMBC Nikko Securities Inc. Abelian Research said the $85 billion company may even consider tucking Dish into its fold to better compete with the likes of AT&T Inc.


Japan is not big enough for Son,” said Edwin Merner, president of Atlantis Investment Research in Tokyo. “He’s looking at the world.”


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Sprint’s New Plans: Putting Lipstick on a Pig and Enraging Your Soon-to-Be Ex-Customers | Stop the Cap!

Sprint’s New Plans: Putting Lipstick on a Pig and Enraging Your Soon-to-Be Ex-Customers | Stop the Cap! | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

If this is the best Sprint’s Marcelo Claure can do, Softbank needs to keep shopping for another CEO.


Claure’s decision to deep-six the appallingly stupid Framily Plan was a no-brainer. Sprint’s own customer service agents barely understood the multi-level marketing scheme it actually was, and I never saw much value in alienating friends and family by cajoling them to use the atrociously bad Sprint network. Neither did Sprint employees who loudly cheered its upcoming demise.


Even Claure trashed Sprint’s network performance and upgrade program as glacier-slow and highly disruptive to customers who find nearby cell sites here today, gone tomorrow, and maybe back again someday when network upgrades have been finished. Unlike AT&T or Verizon where a cell tower outage might cut a few bars of signal strength, when a Sprint cell tower drops, it’s roaming time. It is not uncommon for residents along Lake Ontario’s shorelines in the United States to find their phones preferring to roam on Canadian networks (especially Rogers) to avoid Sprint.


Claure’s commitment to cut prices while cruelly excluding your current customer base from getting any of those savings is a sure-fire way to accelerate their departure… mostly to T-Mobile. John Legere is waiting with open arms.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Microsoft Has $93 Billion Overseas and Doesn't Pay Taxes On It | Mashable.com

Microsoft Has $93 Billion Overseas and Doesn't Pay Taxes On It | Mashable.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Microsoft holds $92.9 billion of earnings in accounts outside of the United States, saving the company almost $30 billion in taxes.



The U.S. government, along with plenty of other critics, claims Microsoft is dodging its economic responsibilities as an American company. Microsoft says the practice is business as usual.




Corporate taxes have become a flashpoint as major corporations continue to park massive sums of money in foreign accounts. The move helps companies avoid paying those sums to Uncle Sam.



The sums above are not disputed by Microsoft; the company admitted as much in its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. A report by the International Business Times found that the amount represents a significant increase from past years.


What Microsoft does not admit is the reason that money is kept overseas.The company claims that the cash was generated by its operations outside the U.S. and will be spent outside the U.S.


Microsoft is far from the one only keeping large cash stockpiles outside the U.S. and away from the IRS. Bloomberg recently found that U.S. companies hold almost $2 trillion in foreign accounts. Apple, for example, is known for its stockpile of $138 billion in cash held overseas.


The problem has been addressed by President Barack Obama, who recently said there is a "herd mentality" among companies looking to avoid U.S. taxes.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

US lawmaker wants to rebrand net neutrality | Grant Gross | NetworkWorld.com

US lawmaker wants to rebrand net neutrality | Grant Gross | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

A U.S. lawmaker wants to rebrand the term net neutrality because its definition is confusing to many people.


Representative Anna Eshoo, a California Democrat and backer of strong net neutrality rules, launched a rebranding contest on Reddit.com Thursday.


"Internet users know what they want and expect from the Internet, but these days all the jargon about net neutrality rules is making it difficult to know what box to check that advances their best interest," Eshoo said in statement. "If Internet users care about their right to uninhibited access to the Internet, [the contest] their opportunity to have an impact on the process, to help put the advantage back in the hands of the Internet user, and to ensure that the free and open Internet prevails."


The U.S. Federal Communications Commission is considering new net neutrality rules after a U.S. appeals court earlier this year threw out a large portion of the agency's old version of the rules. In addition, to Eshoo's contest, people interested in the issue have until Sept. 15 to submit comments to the FCC.


In Eshoo's contest, the most popular post in the rebranding thread on Reddit will be the winner.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Rural Gigabit Boom Expected Thanks to GPON Upgrades | Telecompetitor.com

Rural Gigabit Boom Expected Thanks to GPON Upgrades | Telecompetitor.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Gigabit network announcements involving Tier 2 and Tier 3 carriers have been coming out more and more frequently – and we may be seeing just the tip of the iceberg.


Adtran, a company that makes a variety of equipment underlying fiber-to-the-home networks, expects to see its equipment deployed in gigabit networks in 50 communities before the end of 2014 and in 150 additional communities in 2015.


“Many of these networks we have already won and we’re just waiting for them to deploy or make the decision to flip the gigabit switch on the existing rollout of gig-ready solutions,” said Kurt Raaflaub, who heads up product marketing for Adtran’s carrier networks division. I talked to him yesterday about gigabit network deployments and he also answered some follow-up questions by email.


A key reason that we’re seeing so much gigabit activity among Tier 2 and Tier 3 telcos is that many of them already have deployed FTTH, which means they’ve already done a large part of the work involved in deploying gigabit service.


I talked to Raaflaub about what’s involved in upgrading these systems to support gigabit service.


Click headline to read the interview--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Eight charts that put tech companies’ diversity stats into perspective | GigaOM Tech News

Eight charts that put tech companies’ diversity stats into perspective | GigaOM Tech News | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The latest hot-button subject in tech, hotter even than ephemeral apps, is diversity. Or at least, if not actual diversity, the act of releasing employee diversity statistics. From Apple to Twitter, almost all the big names in Silicon Valley are doing it. Google fell first in May, and with some pushing by activist organizations the rest soon followed suit.


We’ve broken down some of the top players – Apple, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, eBay, LinkedIn, CiscoIntel, and HP – comparing their overall gender and ethnicity demographics. Then we went a step further to look specifically at the tech and leadership roles. Where relevant, we also charted the demographic information of the U.S. labor force and the graduating computer science class.


Please note that the numbers in the company charts come from a range of sources — federal EEO-1 data, company blog posts, and annual corporate reports. In some cases, particularly diversity in leadership roles, the companies have slight differences in how they collect and categorize their demographic data (For example: counting a global workforce versus just U.S. based).


In other words, it’s not entirely parallel information. But our charts represent the best comparisons we could draw among the companies. When appropriate, we explained the differences in the footnotes.


Click headline to read more and view charts--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Cable's New Business Model: Lower Ratings, Higher Revenue | Paul Bond | The Hollywood Reporter

Cable's New Business Model: Lower Ratings, Higher Revenue | Paul Bond | The Hollywood Reporter | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The stats are sobering: Seven of the 10 most profitable cable channels have seen total viewership fall significantly in both primetime and full-day averages during the past 12 months, the exceptions being ESPN, Discovery and TBS. At the same time, THR reported Aug. 4 that cable upfront deals for the 2014-15 season dipped 4.7 percent to $9.7 billion, the first drop since the recession ended in 2009.


But the metric that matters most — profits — keeps climbing. At Disney Channel, cash flow in 2014 will be up 5 percent compared with 2013, estimates SNL Kagan, even though Nielsen says primetime viewership is off 12 percent. Cash flow at USA should be up 5 percent, MTV up 3 percent and FX up 4 percent, yet all have had smaller audiences. In fact, of the top 10 cable channels based on cash flow, just one — ESPN — is expected to decline in 2014 (albeit by less than 1 percent).


It's enough to ask: What's going on in the cable TV business?


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Comcast's Cohen to regulators: 'Don't make us the next Blockbuster' | Daniel Frankel | FierceCable.com

Comcast's Cohen to regulators: 'Don't make us the next Blockbuster' | Daniel Frankel | FierceCable.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Stumping for regulatory approval of his company's proposed $45 billion purchase of Time Warner Cable, Comcast executive VP David L. Cohen reached for a rather interesting simile: federal regulators' decision in 2005 to stop Blockbuster from acquiring Hollywood Video.


"Regulators have to assess these issues in a world where technology is changing so fast that whole industries seem to come and go in no time," Cohen told the TPI Aspen Forum on Monday, Aug. 18. (His remarks were outlined in a filing to the Securities Exchange Commission, as all Comcast public comments are in these merger-vetting times.)


"In 2005," Cohen noted, "Blockbuster looked so dominant in home video that FTC antitrust concerns barred it from acquiring a competitor Hollywood Video.  Has anyone seen any Blockbusters around recently? Today, virtually the entire bricks and mortar video rental industry has all but disappeared."


Those who critique the proposed merger, Cohen said, "ignore complex but very real dynamics when they analyze the state of the market today. They too often rely on an overly simplistic and anachronistic model--where edge companies create content and services, ISPs provide pipes that bring services to consumers, and consumers sit in front of their computer and passively take them in."


Referring to the merger as the "800-pound elephant in the room" (editor's thought: that's pretty light for an elephant), Cohen took the opportunity to issue some blanket dismissals of common criticisms.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

New website aims to publicly shame apps with lax security | Robert Lemos | Ars Technica

New website aims to publicly shame apps with lax security | Robert Lemos | Ars Technica | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The amount of personal data traveling to and from the Internet has exploded, yet many applications and services continue to put user information at risk by not encrypting data sent over wireless networks. Software engineer Tony Webster has a classic solution—shame. 


Webster decided to see if a little public humiliation could convince companies to better secure their customers' information.


On Saturday, the consultant created a website, HTTP Shaming, and began posting cases of insecure communications, calling out businesses that send their customers' personal information to the Internet without encrypting it first.


One high-profile example includes well-liked travel-information firm TripIt. TripIt allows users to bring together information on their tickets, flight times, and itinerary and then sync it with other devices and share the information with friends and co-workers. Information shared with calendar applications, however, is not encrypted, Webster says, leaving it open to eavesdropping on public networks. Among the details that could be plucked from the air by anyone on the same wireless network: a user's full name, phone number, e-mail address, the last four digits of a credit card number, and emergency contact information. An attacker could even change or cancel the victim's flight, he says.


So far, TripIt and 18 other applications and services have made the shaming list, many submitted by other people fed up with the security missteps of companies, Webster says.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Yes, there's a tech bubble: Facebook's mobile ad success proves it | Fredric Paul | NetworkWorld.com

Yes, there's a tech bubble: Facebook's mobile ad success proves it | Fredric Paul | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Take a quick glance at the mobile ad world and you might think everything is hunky dory. Fueled by a big uptick in mobile ads, Facebook stock is testing all-time highs. Looks good, right?


But where’s all that money being spent on ads actually coming from?


Facebook has made no secret of the fact that much of its mobile revenue is coming from so called click-to-download ads for other mobile apps. These have been far and away the most effective and lucrative part of Facebook’s mobile ad business -- so much so that Google is working hard to emulate that success. (Note that Facebook took pains to downplay the dominance of these app install ads in its July earnings call, claiming that they don’t represent “all of the revenue or a great majority of revenue.” But company COO Sheryl Sandberg didn’t really offer more specifics beyond that.)


Click-to-download ads make a lot of sense; because the ads are being viewed on a mobile device, consumers can just click to download the app right to their phone. The user gets the app, the app gets a user, and Facebook gets paid. Everybody wins, right?


Well, sure, except here’s the dirty little secret -- the vast majority of those apps aren’t making any money off those new users they’re acquiring. They’re pretty much all trying desperately to achieve scale, and plan to worry how to monetize things later. That makes sense, too, because if those apps can’t acquire millions of users, then nothing else they do really matters. They’re dead, period.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Is Wi-Fi killing us...slowly? | Mark Gibbs Opinion | NetworkWorld.com

Is Wi-Fi killing us...slowly? | Mark Gibbs Opinion | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

What would it take to get you to not use Wi-Fi? I don’t mean simply not connecting to it; I mean not having Wi-Fi switched on. At all. And what about cellphones? I know that the issue of cellphone safety has come and gone and most authorities have dismissed the risks as negligible. But what if the risks to you are trivial, but not to your children? Would you stop using these devices? I ask because an academic paper has recently been published that concludes that electromagnetic radiation generated by humans is far more dangerous to children and babies than we think.


Now, human-generated EMR in the general environment was negligible at the beginning of the Twentieth Century, but by 1933 the problem of electromagnetic interference was becoming significant. In that year, the International Electrotechnical Commission in Paris “recommended the International Special Committee on Radio Interference (CISPR) be set up to deal with the emerging problem of EMI.” (Wikipedia)


Since then, despite much legislation and regulation, the general EMR background has increased significantly in the Western hemisphere and even more dramatically in suburban and urban areas, with radio and television being among the greatest contributors. That said, the general suburban and urban EMR levels are to the order of few tens of µW/m² which has been thought to be a harmless level of exposure.


For example, according to Kenneth R. Foster, Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania, wrote:


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Internet piracy isn't killing Hollywood | The Daily Dot | TheWeek.com

Internet piracy isn't killing Hollywood | The Daily Dot | TheWeek.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

"Hellboy II has great reviews," my friend argued. He knew I was loath to spend $12 for a movie ticket to spend two hours watching trash. I checked the internet, and he was right. Critics lauded the film. On Rotten Tomatoes, 89 percent of the top critics found the movie favorable. The tacit endorsement of an internet review aggregator was all I needed. My friends and I headed out to the movie theater, bought our tickets and overpriced snack bar fare, and watched the film.


And it sucked.


To borrow from The Simpsons, the film was so formulaic it "could have spewed from the power book of the laziest Hollywood hack." Hellboy II: The Golden Army had enough lazy tropes and predictable plot twists for the entire 2008 summer season, let alone one movie.


There's a brooding protagonist longing for acceptance he knows he can never truly have. There's an antagonist who makes the high school sophomore-level insight that humans are the true monster (never heard that before). There's a newly pregnant girlfriend acting crazy because hormones. There's truly love ultimately conquering all. And there's a host of other attributes that made the movie not worth the price of admission. Once the credits rolled, I parted ways with Hollywood. I haven't stepped in a movie theater since.


Judging by Hollywood's recent luck — or lack thereof — I was ahead of the curve.


Hollywood is mired in a terrible summer, its worst in eight years. Box office sales are down 20 percent in the United States, and according to the Hollywood Reporter, no movie surpassed the $300 million mark for the first time since 2011. It's estimated that summer 2014 will draw 15-20 percent less money for Hollywood than summer 2013, and such a dramatic decline over the course of 365 days hasn't been seen in over 30 years.


Why didn't those movies sell? Why didn't people go out to see them? Are people just smartening up and realizing mainstream entertainment is trash? Or is there something more at work?


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Community Broadband Bits Transcript - Episode 111 | community braodband networks

Community Broadband Bits Transcript - Episode 111 | community braodband networks | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Thank to Jeff Hoel for providing the transcript for Episode 111 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast with Jeff Hoel.


00:15:

Hunter Newby: It's the difference commerce, you know, and the economy growing, and not.

00:20:


Lisa Gonzalez: Hey there, and welcome again to the Community Broadband Bits Podcast from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I am Lisa Gonzalez.


This week, Hunter Newby, founder and CEO of Allied Fiber, returns to talk with Chris. If you caught our last interview with Hunter, you'll recall their conversation about the benefits of the carrier-neutral network model offered by Allied Fiber. In this interview, Chris and Hunter delve deeper into the concept of fiber as real estate, and how that concept can be expanded to bring better connectivity to every user -- government, business, and residential. As connectivity becomes more entrenched in our everyday activities, we need to recognize that a variety of models are available. There's no one-size-fits-all for local communities. Hunter and Allied Fiber offer one possible example and a launching point for future approaches.


Here are Chris and Hunter Newby from Allied Fiber.


Click headline to read more of the transcript--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Surprise! U.S. Wireline Services Revenue to Nearly Double by 2020 | Channel Partners Online

Surprise! U.S. Wireline Services Revenue to Nearly Double by 2020 | Channel Partners Online | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The huge growth of the wireless industry might lead you to believe that wireline services are going the way of the Dodo. But you’d be wrong.


So says Transparency Market Research’s latest report, which says that the U.S. wireline services market is valued at $19.1 billion this year, and will grow to almost $35 billion by 2020. That’s a compound annual growth rate of almost 10.4 percent.


The oil and gas industry is a big driver. Transparency says there has been a continuous increase in the exploration and production activities of oil and gas in finding new areas of unconventional resources, which has immensely bolstered the growth of the global wireline services market. These wireline services are required by the oil and gas industries for exploration, drilling, completion, stimulation and intervention. The growth in wireline services is directly proportional to the drilling and completion activities around the world.


Geological conditions and types of reservoirs require different types of wireline services. Increased investment in exploration for, and production of, oil and gas will continue to act as a market opportunity for the wireline services market, the research firm noted.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

NY: Syracuse Mayor Calls for Community Broadband | community broadband networks

NY: Syracuse Mayor Calls for Community Broadband | community broadband networks | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Syracuse, a city long frustrated by its lack of broadband options and in thrall to a monopolistic cable incumbent Time Warner Cable, is facing an even bleaker future. Comcast’s proposed merger with Time Warner Cable would shift Syracuse residents who need broadband from one of the two most hated companies in America to the other, while of course also ensuring that the combined company is even larger and more influential. Verizon gave up plans to compete in the Syracuse market several years ago when it ceased expanding FiOS


Fortunately for Syracusans, mayor Stephanie Miner doesn’t appear to be taking all this lying down. A Post-Standard article from Monday reports the mayor is considering plans for a city-owned fiber optic system that could bring gigabit connectivity to the area:


“I’m putting together a plan that we can do it ourselves, as a community,”


Syracuse has had rumblings of interest in municipal broadband for years, including a citizens group called the Syracuse Community Broadband Initiative that advocated and educated locals on the topic. Now, with mayor Miner’s comments, it appears the idea is again gaining traction.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

BOOK REVIEW: Brain Gain: How Innovative cities create job growth in an age of disruption | Bill Coleman | Blandin on Broadband

BOOK REVIEW: Brain Gain: How Innovative cities create job growth in an age of disruption | Bill Coleman | Blandin on Broadband | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

I have been a fan of the Intelligent Community forum for quite a while now. I have attended their annual conference many times and led Dakota County’s Intelligent Communities’ initiative that led to three consecutive years recognition as a Smart 21 Intelligent Community. I also brought the Intelligent Community concept to the Blandin Foundation to serve as the framework for their Minnesota Intelligent Rural Community project. Most recently, I worked with ICF co-founder Robert Bell on a project with three rural Louisiana communities. I provide all of this background to let readers know that I have a favorable bias towards the ICF concept and team.


I recently read Brain Gain: How Innovative cities create job growth in an age of disruption. The authors, ICF co-founders Robert Bell, John Jung and Louis Zacharilla, provide numerous interesting stories about communities creating their own positive future. The stories are quite varied, but share common threads woven together into the quilt of the Intelligent Community elements – broadband, innovation, knowledge work, digital inclusion and marketing/advocacy.


The stories are from great urban centers, suburbs and rural regional center communities. The common element is smart and sometimes heroic leadership, often shared across business, government and education sectors. Shared vision, collaborative strategy, long-term commitment-these are at the heart of the all of these success stories. All involve creating an environment that can support business development and entrepreneurship. The themes are similar to those expressed in the book “The Rain Forest” by Hwang and Horrowitt.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

A federal court rejects Aereo’s request to argue it’s a cable company | Brian Fung | WashPost.com

A federal court rejects Aereo’s request to argue it’s a cable company | Brian Fung | WashPost.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Aereo's seemingly last-ditch argument to save itself won't be given an airing in court, according to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.


Instead, if the shuttered streaming video company wants to keep fighting for its survival, procedural reasons require that it do so at the district court level, officials said in a document filed Thursday.


The decision is a win for broadcasters, who had sought a ban on Aereo from the beginning. Initially, the district court decided against an injunction. But a ruling from the Supreme Court earlier this summer reversed that decision. Now the appellate court, following procedure, has also followed suit. Aereo declined to comment; a spokesman for the National Association of Broadcasters did not immediately respond to a request for comment.


How significant is this move? Seeing as Aereo had already voluntarily shut its doors after the Supreme Court verdict, a preliminary injunction doesn't mean much for the company operationally. But the Second Circuit is effectively telling Aereo that if it wants to argue that it's a cable company only for the purposes of copyright law — and therefore qualified to pay lower royalties — it's currently making the argument to the wrong people.


Click headline to read more including the court ruling--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Why Internet Access Monopolies Harm Innovation | Techdirt.com

Why Internet Access Monopolies Harm Innovation | Techdirt.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When antitrust stories make headlines—as the Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger has—even well-intentioned analysis often confuses harm to competitors with harm to competition. Viewing antitrust law through a "competition" lens, as opposed to a "competitors" lens, is not intuitive: consumers are harmed not by being denied access to existing services, but by being denied new ones.


In antitrust law there is a debate, known as Schumpeter-Arrow—based on the initial intellectual adversaries, Joseph Schumpeter and Kenneth Arrow—which concerns whether monopoly power leads to innovation. On the pro-monopoly side, Schumpeter believed that companies with market power have economies of scale and financial stability, which allow them to invest more capital into R&D. By contrast, more competitive firms have to focus their energy—and money—into maintaining their competitiveness. On the other side of the debate, Arrow argued that monopolists have no incentive to innovate. Anti-monopolists preach the gospel that competition begets innovation. Consumers will gravitate towards companies that are offering new and better services.


In reality, each view holds some validity, depending on the specific market at issue. In some markets, market power might have a more positive effect on innovation. For example, in certain markets—usually referring to patents—many believe that monopolies are sometimes necessary. The most commonly mentioned market of this nature is the development of new pharmaceuticals. Pharmaceutical companies claim they need the promise of a monopoly on their work if they are going to invest enormous research dollars into a new drug (whether or not this is actually true is another discussion for another day).


In most other markets, however, monopoly power is likely to do more harm than good. For example, in the market for Internet services, the Schumpeterian view that companies with dominant market power will invest their profits into innovation is both implausible and disproven. As Brendan Greeley wrote in Business Insider:


The utterly consistent position from the ISPs has been this: Guarantee us a higher income stream from a more concentrated market, and we'll build out new infrastructure to reach more Americans with high-speed Internet. A decade ago, this argument had at least the benefit of being untested.


A graph published by the National Communications and Telecommunications Association confirms that consolidation has not resulted in increased infrastructure expenditures.


Click headline to view the graphs and read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Consumer Groups Urge FCC to Reject Comcast/Time Warner Cable Deal | TheWrap

Consumer Groups Urge FCC to Reject Comcast/Time Warner Cable Deal | TheWrap | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Two big consumer groups — Consumers Union and Common Cause — on Thursday urged the Federal Communications Commission to reject Comcast's deal for Time Warner Cable. It sounds a warning that the transaction would give Comcast too much control over video choices.


“This merger would harm competition, impede innovation by online video distributors, threaten innovation in equipment and platforms and reduce the diversity of information sources and services to the public, all to the detriment of consumers and contrary to public interest,” the groups said in a joint filing with the agency.


The organizations also struck out at a key argument the two companies have employed in asking the FCC and the Justice Department to approve the deal. That previous request claimed that the combination doesn't harm competition because TWC and Comcast operate cable systems in different markets.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Cox not interested in T-Mobile or going public says President Pat Esser | Reuters.com

Cox not interested in T-Mobile or going public says President Pat Esser | Reuters.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Cox Communications Inc. is not interested in merging with wireless carrier T-Mobile US Inc or rival cable providers, Cox President Pat Esser said on Tuesday, dispelling rumors recently swirling about the private company.


"We're not in any discussions to buy T-Mobile," Esser told Reuters. "I don't see a movement inside of our company that we feel like we have to pony up or match up with a wireless company."


Asked whether Cox, the third-largest U.S. cable and broadband company, was considering a merger with one of its smaller cable rivals, such as Charter Communications Inc or perennial takeover target Cablevision Systems Corp, Esser said family-owned Cox was not looking to become a publicly traded company.


"I would never say we'll never be public in the future. But right now where the family's at, where [parent company] Cox Enterprises is at, they like being private," Esser said. "We have a very, very healthy balance sheet, we have a lot of capacity and we can do most of that inside of our current balance sheet and still remain private."


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Netflix Hacks Up 3D Virtual-Reality Demo Using Oculus Rift | Todd Spangler | Variety.com

Netflix Hacks Up 3D Virtual-Reality Demo Using Oculus Rift | Todd Spangler | Variety.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Someday, you might be able to sit down to watch Netflix’s “House of Cards” with a virtual-reality helmet strapped to your head, to see around corners and experience the political machinations in a 3D environment.


Or maybe not.


Whether VR is the future of entertainment — or just a passing fad — Netflix is among those tinkering with the technology.


Last week, a team of the company’s engineers worked up a demo of “Oculix,” a 3D virtual room of the Netflix interface using Facebook’s Oculus Rift VR headset. The app included gesture support, so that when the viewer turns his or her head, the view of the “room” shifted accordingly. Facebook, for one, has placed a $2 billion bet on VR with its acquisition of Oculus (before the startup had shipped a consumer version of its product).


The Oculix demo emerged from Netflix’s latest Hack Day, held Aug. 14-15 at its headquarters in Los Gatos, Calif. More than 150 Netflix engineers participated in the event and produced more than 50 ideas — some jokey, and others that may hold commercial promise.


“If something interesting and useful comes from Hack Day, that is great, but the real motivation is fun and collaboration,” the event’s organizers wrote in a post on Netflix’s tech blog, noting that the concepts may never progress into actual products or services.


Other hacks that Netflix highlighted:


Click headline to watch the Oculix video clip. read more and access hot link to the other hacks--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

MN: State’s telecommunications industry continues to expand broadband | Mike Martin and Brent Christensen | People's Press

Minnesota’s telecommunications industry remains committed to providing broadband coverage from Ada to Zumbrota. The 2014 repeal of the sales tax on broadband equipment made a real difference and continues to help foster additional investment that benefits Minnesotans. The industry has invested over $5 billion since 2006 and continues to invest all across the state with dozens of projects underway. These investments include new service as well as constant efforts to improve existing systems and Internet speeds. We are also proud to report that over 50 percent of these investments were spent in isolated communities.


As telecommunications stakeholders — including the Governor’s Task Force on Broadband, members of the media, legislators and the Minnesota Office of Broadband Development — continue to look at ways to improve our state’s broadband coverage, it is important to remember that Minnesota has great coverage today with 98 percent of all homes and businesses with service levels at or above the FCC’s definition of broadband. Almost 90 percent of homes have access to broadband at speeds of 10 mbps download/ 3 mbps upload. These numbers continue to improve with each construction season.


In 2014, the Legislature also created a $20 million Border–to-Border Broadband Grant Program to foster additional coverage in areas that today are not served or underserved. These funds require the grantee to provide a 50 percent match. The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development’s Office of Broadband Development is in the process of touring the state with information on the grant program and specifics of the application procedures.


While this new fund has a role to play in helping expand broadband coverage, Minnesotans will be best served if these funds are dedicated toward areas of our state that lack service today. And, with a 50 percent match required, the state’s telecommunications industry looks forward to leveraging these new grant funds to expand in areas of our state that currently do not have service. Leveraging these public funds with private investment will foster the right kind of partnerships to expand coverage. This is the most cost-effective approach, and it will guarantee long-term success in these areas.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.