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Will AT&T go head-to-head with T-Mobile for Verizon spectrum? | TeleGeography.com

AT&T Mobility is considering buying Verizon Wireless’ lower 700MHz A block spectrum, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal. If the article proves accurate, it could result in a bidding war between AT&T and T-Mobile US, after the latter’s interest in the airwaves was revealed last month.


Thus far, none of the parties involved have confirmed their official positions regarding the spectrum, although T-Mobile remains the likeliest candidate to strike a deal with Verizon, given AT&T’s prior purchase of 700MHz B block spectrum from Verizon.


According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, in September this year AT&T completed its acquisition of wireless spectrum in the lower 700MHz B block from Verizon. The licences involved cover 42 million people in 18 states, namely: California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Montana, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming.

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Everything about Broadband Policy, Network Infrastructure, Voice, Video and Data Services, Devices and Applications for Managing our Planet
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Comcast Affiliated News Outlet Censored My Article About Net Neutrality Lobbying | RepublicReport.org

Comcast Affiliated News Outlet Censored My Article About Net Neutrality Lobbying | RepublicReport.org | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In a move that smacks of censorship, Republic Report has discovered that a telecom industry-affiliated lobbying group successfully persuaded an African American news website to remove an article that reported critically on the groups advocating against Net Neutrality. The order to delete the article came from the website’s parent company, a business partner to Comcast.


Last Friday, I reported on how several civil rights groups, almost all with funding from Comcast, Verizon and other Internet Service Providers, recently wrote to the Federal Communication Commission in support of Chairman Tom Wheeler’s plan, which would create Internet fast lanes and slow lanes, an effective death of Net Neutrality. That piece was syndicated with Salon and The Nation, and several outlets aggregated the article. For a short period, NewsOne, a news site geared towards the African American community, posted the piece along with its own commentary.


Then, the NewsOne article with my reporting disappeared.


If you Google the term ‘MMTC NewsOne,’ the NewsOne article (“Civil Rights Groups Blocking Efforts To Keep Internet Fair?”) still appears in the result list, though if you click it, it’s been deleted off of the web.


Luckily, the Internet cache still has a copy.


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HP agrees to settle allegations it overbilled US Postal Service | Grant Gross | NetworkWorld.com

HP agrees to settle allegations it overbilled US Postal Service | Grant Gross | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Hewlett-Packard has agreed to pay US$32.5 million to settle allegations that it overbilled the U.S. Postal Service on a IT hardware contract.


The U.S. Department of Justice had alleged that HP overbilled the Postal Service for a government contract called Acquisition of Desktop Extended Processing Technology (ADEPT) II, which ran between October 2001 and December 2010. HP allegedly failed to comply with pricing terms of the contract that required the company to offer the Postal Service prices that were not higher than offered to HP customers with comparable contracts, the DOJ said in a news release.


The DOJ also alleged that HP misrepresented its prices.


The Postal Service’s Major Fraud Investigations Division (MFID) “fully investigates those contractors who wrongly take advantage of the Postal Service,” Thomas Frost, MFID’s special agent in charge, said in a statement. “The Postal Service and the public must have complete confidence in the procurement process.”


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IN: AT&T Digital Life, Home Security And Automation Service, Expands In Michigan City And La Porte | MarketWatch.com

IN: AT&T Digital Life, Home Security And Automation Service, Expands In Michigan City And La Porte | MarketWatch.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

 AT&T* today announced beginning Friday, July 25 it will expand Digital Life to cover Michigan City and La Porte. Other nearby areas with new availability include Rolling Prairie, Westville and Union Mills.


AT&T Digital Life ®makes customers' lives easier by simplifying the management of their home. Digital Life offers security, convenience and peace of mind, in a customizable and easy-to-use experience from smartphones, tablets or computer.


Starting Friday, July 25, customers can receive a live demo and purchase Digital Life in company owned retail stores or purchase online at att.com/digitallife . With these new additions, Digital Life will be available in 82 markets across the U.S.


With Digital Life, customers can use their existing home broadband provider, and any wireless phone service , and enjoy the security and convenience of a home management system with the flexibility to meet their unique needs.


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Web Companies Back Vimeo In Fight With Record Labels | Wendy Davis | Media Post

Web Companies Back Vimeo In Fight With Record Labels | Wendy Davis | Media Post | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Google, Facebook and Twitter are among a host of tech companies that are backing the video-sharing site Vimeo in its battle with record labels.


The tech companies are urging the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals to rule that Vimeo is entitled to rely on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's “safe harbor” provisions, which protect Web platforms from liability when users upload infringing material.


The battle between Vimeo and the record labels dates to 2009, when Capitol Records sued Vimeo in federal court in Manhattan for hosting “lip dubs” -- or videos of people lip-synching.


U.S. District Court Judge Ronnie Abrams ruled earlier this year that Vimeo was entitled to rely on the safe harbors for many of the clips that allegedly infringed copyright, but also ruled that the company could potentially face liability for some clips with “well-known” songs.


The safe harbors generally provide that companies are immune from liability for copyright infringement by users, as long as the companies remove the material upon request. But the safe harbors have some exceptions, including one for companies that know about infringement.


Abrams said the record companies were entitled to proceed with allegations regarding 18 clips, on the theory that Vimeo should have known those clips weren't authorized. All 18 used “well known” music and appear to have been viewed by at least one Vimeo employee.


Abrams also ruled that Vimeo was ineligible for the safe harbor protections for any clips that used pre-1972 music.


Vimeo is appealing both of those rulings to the 2nd Circuit.


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How Far Will Murdoch Go to Acquire Time Warner? | Variety.com

How Far Will Murdoch Go to Acquire Time Warner? | Variety.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

At 83, Rupert Murdoch still carries the swagger of a corporate brawler.


At Allen & Co.’s annual Sun Valley captains of industry conference in July, the media baron approached a throng of eager reporters, and swung and stretched his arms like an aging pugilist about to enter the ring.


The 21st Century Fox chief will need to brace himself for a long fight if he continues to try to wrest Time Warner away from a board that is steeling itself for battle. Buying the company that’s behind HBO, Warner Bros., TNT and other marquee brands will require a series of deft financial maneuvers and a willingness to lay it all on the line with an offer that could hit $100 a share.


“It’s not clear how high (Fox) can go,” says David Bank, RBC Capital Markets managing director. “This is the $64,000 question: It’s not purely what Time Warner’s worth, it’s what Fox can pay.”


Raising Fox’s initial bid of $85 a share to the $90-$100 range will either require Murdoch to issue more shares of his own company’s stock or to raise debt, both of which come with risks. The latter could lower Fox’s bond rating, according to a report last week by Moody’s. Upping the stock portion of the deal would be preferable from a financial perspective, but the company’s share price is a moving target while Wall Street watches to see how the courtship ritual plays out. Fox closed trading on July 15, the day before news of the bid broke, at $34.16. It closed on July 23 at $32.25.


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DirecTV CEO says he's open to mediation to resolve Dodgers TV dispute | LATimes.com

DirecTV CEO says he's open to mediation to resolve Dodgers TV dispute | LATimes.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Satellite broadcaster DirecTV said it would be open to some sort of mediation to resolve its dispute with Time Warner Cable over carriage of SportsNet LA, the new local TV home for the Dodgers.


Speaking to analysts and investors during its second-quarter earnings conference call, DirecTV Chief Executive Mike White said he is "frustrated" with the negotiations with Time Warner Cable, which has distribution rights for the Dodgers-owned channel.


While White's remarks may be seen as cause for optimism for Dodgers fans, he also suggested that the team should be part of any talks.


"Without active participation of the Dodgers I'm not sure how you get any resolution to this dispute," White said. 


So far, the team has shown little interest in getting actively involved in the standoff. Time Warner Cable acquired distribution rights for SportsNet LA in a 25-year deal worth $8.35 billion, according to a valuation by the Dodgers and Major League Baseball.


Earlier this week, Dodgers President Stan Kasten declined to comment when asked if the team would consider renegotiating that contract if it meant getting distribution for SportsNet LA. Besides DirecTV, other carriers who have passed on carrying SportsNet LA include Dish Network, Cox Communications, Verizon FiOS and Charter Communications.


On Monday, Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Sherman Oaks) wrote White and Time Warner Cable Chief Executive Rob Marcus encouraging the two companies to enter into binding arbitration to resolve the dispute. White said he appreciated the concern of Sherman and other lawmakers but did not commit to any sort of arbitration to resolve what he said is a "commercial dispute."


White noted that between the Dodgers deal and its earlier acquisition of TV rights for the Lakers, Time Warner Cable has created "stratospheric pricing" for sports in the Los Angeles market.


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Samsung and LG put 105-inch curved UHD TVs up for pre-order | GizMag.com

Samsung and LG put 105-inch curved UHD TVs up for pre-order | GizMag.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Following LG and Samsung both unveiling their contenders for the world's largest curved Ultra HD TV at CES earlier this year, the game of one-upmanship between the Korean electronics giants continues. Samsung announced last week that it was starting to take pre-orders for its model, and LG has quickly followed suit.


Both 105-inch offerings support 3D content and boast 5K resolution of 5,120 x 2,160 pixels, outdoing the 4K standard of 3,840 x 2,160 by around three million pixels and leaving the 1,920 x 1,080 pixels of Full HD sets far behind. With 4K content, let alone 5K content, still thin on the ground, both sets make use of up-scaling technology to increase the quality of lower-resolution content.


And being 21:9 aspect ratio screens, everything other than CinemaScope content will leave some space at the sides. However, both models allow that unused space to be put to use, with LG's 105UC9 allowing the space to be filled with additional info or programming details, while Samsung's UN105S9W features the company's Quad Screen Multi-Link feature that allows the screen to be split into four to display live TV, streaming video and the web all at the same time.


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White House Innovation Day Highlights Disaster Response, Recovery | GovTech.com

White House Innovation Day Highlights Disaster Response, Recovery | GovTech.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Emergency managers converged with the tech community in Washington, D.C., to discuss tools that can create more resilient communities and also positively impact disaster preparedness, response and recovery. The White House Innovation for Disaster Response and Recovery Initiative Demo Day on July 29 showcased new innovations in both government and the private sector that aim to aid the survivors of large-scale emergencies.


The key goal is to “find the most efficient and effective ways to empower survivors to help themselves,” said U.S. Chief Technology Officer Todd Park, adding that there have been many technological advancements since Hurricane Sandy in 2012.


“We all know that tech in the wake of a disaster isn’t helpful,” Park said. So the demo day sought to highlight new initiatives and how emergency managers can work with and benefit from them.


“You all here today and the effort that’s associated with this really do help bring the whole-of-nation approach to building preparedness because it relies upon integrating the efforts of the private sector, nongovernmental actors, communities, individuals, federal, state, local, tribal and territorial governments,” said Rand Beers, deputy homeland security adviser to the White House National Security Council. “What we need to do is to build on this collective group of people who are committed to making our country safer and to responding to these kind of issues.”


Numerous government agencies and companies made announcements during the event, including:


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Hate Your ISP? Maybe You Need Community Fiber | EFF.org

Hate Your ISP? Maybe You Need Community Fiber | EFF.org | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Between the net neutrality debate and the Comcast/TWC merger, high-speed Internet access is getting more attention than ever. A lot of that attention is negative, and rightly so: Internet access providers, especially certain very large ones, have done a pretty good job of divvying up the nation to leave most Americans with only one or two choices for decent high-speed Internet access. Many of us don't like those options.


That’s one reason folks have been looking to the FCC to enact neutrality rules. If there’s no competition, customers can’t vote with their wallets when ISPs behave badly. Beyond the neutrality issue, oligopolies also have little incentive to invest, not only in decent customer service, but also in building out world-class Internet infrastructure so that U.S. innovators can continue to compete internationally.


But guess what: we don’t have to rely entirely on the FCC to fix the problems with high-speed internet access. Around the country, local communities are taking charge of their own destiny, and supporting community fiber.  


Unfortunately, those communities face a number of barriers, from simple bureaucracy to state laws that impede a community's ability to make its own decisions about how to improve its Internet access.  


We need to break those barriers. Community fiber, done right, should be a crucial part of the future of the Internet. To see why, let’s take a deeper dive.


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Keith Alexander: I'm Worth $1 Million Per Month Because I'm Patenting A Way To Stop Hackers (Which I Didn't Tell The NSA) | Techdirt.com

Keith Alexander: I'm Worth $1 Million Per Month Because I'm Patenting A Way To Stop Hackers (Which I Didn't Tell The NSA) | Techdirt.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The Keith Alexander story just keeps getting more and more bizarre. Almost immediately after retiring from the top position at the NSA, where he oversaw the total failure of the NSA's supposed "100% auditing" system, allowing Ed Snowden (and who knows how many others) to escape with all sorts of documents, Alexander announced that he had set up a cybersecurity firm -- with the ridiculously Hollywood-ish name of IronNet Cybersecurity.


A month ago, it was revealed that he's going around asking banks to pay him $1 million per month for his "expertise." That caused a few to wonder if he's selling classified info, because really, what else could he offer?

Alexander has a new answer: Patents! Yes, Keith Alexander is claiming that he has an amazing new anti-hacker technique that is brilliant and wonderful and deserving of at least nine patents.


According to Shane Harris over at Foreign Policy:


Alexander said he'll file at least nine patents, and possibly more, for a system to detect so-called advanced persistent threats, or hackers who clandestinely burrow into a computer network in order to steal secrets or damage the network itself. It was those kinds of hackers who Alexander, when he was running the NSA, said were responsible for "the greatest transfer of wealth in American history" because they were routinely stealing trade secrets and competitive information from U.S. companies and giving it to their competitors, often in China.


Of course, this leads to all sorts of questions.


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Canada: CRTC rules Rogers discriminated unjustly in domestic roaming agreements | TeleGeography.com

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) yesterday issued a judgement (Telecom Decision CRTC 2014-398) asserting that the country’s largest cellco by users Rogers Communications has been treating certain domestic rivals unfairly in its wholesale mobile network roaming agreements.


Based on its review of the sector, the regulator stated that: ‘there were clear instances of unjust discrimination and undue preference by Rogers Communications Partnership with respect to (i) the imposition of exclusivity clauses in its wholesale mobile wireless roaming agreements with certain new entrants, and (ii) the wholesale mobile wireless roaming rates it charged certain new entrants.


Consequently, the Commission prohibits exclusivity provisions in wholesale mobile wireless roaming agreements between Canadian carriers for service in Canada. Since the implementation of section 27.1 of the Telecommunications Act [see below] mitigates the risk of future unjust discrimination with respect to wholesale mobile wireless roaming rates, the Commission will not put in place a remedy in this regard.’


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T-Mobile US claims nationwide VoLTE footprint; ‘Wideband’ LTE now live in 17 metro areas | TeleGeography.com

T-Mobile US, which notched up its 50 millionth subscriber in 2Q14, has announced that it has deployed voice-over-Long Term Evolution (VoLTE) technology across its entire network footprint. Just two months after introducing VoLTE in Seattle, the cellco claims that the advanced technology now covers 233 million Americans in 325 metro areas, well ahead of its initial schedule.


Further, the carrier has confirmed that its so-called ‘T-Mobile Wideband LTE’ network, which involves the use of at least 15MHz+15MHz of spectrum, is already live in 17 metro areas, with the cellco on target to reach 26 cities by year-end. Wideband LTE delivers theoretical peak down/uplink speeds of 110Mbps/38Mbps.


Meanwhile, the company notes that it has already started equipping its cell sites in preparation for the introduction of its recently acquired 700MHz A block spectrum. T-Mobile notes that it has started field-testing its first 700MHz-compatible devices, with a view to introducing them commercially before the end of the year.

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Bolivia: ATT says it has not authorised COTEL’s fixed line price hike | TeleGeography.com

Bolivia’s La Autoridad de Telecomunicaciones y Transportes (ATT) has confirmed that it has not authorised an increase in the price of Cooperativa de Telefonos Automaticos La Paz’s (COTEL’s) fixed line service.


According to local news source La Razon, in the wake of the telco’s announcement that it was boosting the monthly charge by BOB5 (USD0.71) the regulator has directed COTEL to submit information regarding the reasoning behind the price hike.


It is understood that the president of COTEL’s board of directors Jorge Fabian Guillen has claimed that the extra income expected to be generated by the higher rates will cover the debts plaguing the cash-strapped telco; the operator is said to have debts amounting to BOB800 million. Meanwhile, Mr Guillen has also reportedly claimed that the price increase is little more than inflationary adjustment.

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A City In Tennessee Has The Big Cable Companies Terrified | BizInsider.com

A City In Tennessee Has The Big Cable Companies Terrified | BizInsider.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

While the nation's largest internet service providers have been making lots of noise recently, the country's fastest network has stayed quiet, just like the Tennessee town it services.


The southern city of Chattanooga, Tennessee, with a population of about 170,000, boasts internet speeds up to a whopping gigabit per second, thanks to a local municipal fiber internet network, and has since last year. That's the same speed as Google Fiber, only there's no legacy tech giant pumping technology into the project.


The city of Chattanooga and the publicly owned electric utility EPB did it by themselves.


Big telecom companies like AT&T and Comcast put off plans to outfit southeastern Tennessee with high-speed internet, essentially forcing the city to look for internet solutions elsewhere, Motherboard reports. This is actually a trend. Though Chattanooga's internet is notable for its blinding speed, many small communities around the country are similarly taking on high-speed internet without the help of big-name ISPs.


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Almost 200,000 people may have been affected by US visa system crash | Martyn Williams | NetworkWorld.com

Almost 200,000 people may have been affected by US visa system crash | Martyn Williams | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Computer problems with the U.S. State Department’s system for issuing passports and visas may have affected up to 200,000 people, it emerged Thursday, as the scale of the problem became clear for the first time.


The problems began July 20 when engineers from Oracle and Microsoft applied a software patch to the State Department’s Consular Consolidated Database, which handles millions of passport and visa applications in the U.S. and at its embassies and consulates around the globe.


The patch was intended to solve several months of instability but instead crashed the system, which did not come back online until July 23.


“From the start of the operational issues on July 20th through the 28th, we issued more than 180,000 non-immigrant visas globally,” said Marie Harf, a State Department spokeswoman, at a televised briefing Thursday. “Based on our average production figures, we would have anticipated issuing closer to 370,000 in that same time period.”


The State Department now faces a massive backlog in applications, and Harf said it would take “weeks to restore full visa-issuing capacity.”


The government is prioritizing immigrant and adoption visas and there are no significant delays issuing passports, she said.


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French Company That Sells Exploits To The NSA Sat On An Internet Explorer Vulnerability For Three Years | Techdirt.com

French Company That Sells Exploits To The NSA Sat On An Internet Explorer Vulnerability For Three Years | Techdirt.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Thanks to Snowden's leaks and a host of other information proceeding those, it's become clear that intelligence agencies -- despite their constant and loud "worrying" about cyberattacks -- are more than happy to make computers and the Internet itself less safe by purchasing, discovering and hoarding vulnerabilities. These are exploited to their fullest before being reported to the entities that can patch the holes. In the meantime, the NSA and others make use of security holes and vulnerabilities, leaving millions of members of the public exposed.

It may just be arrogance. Maybe these intelligence agencies believe they're the only ones with this access and, because they're ostensibly the "good guys," any collateral damage caused by unpatched vulnerabilities is acceptable. The other option is worse: they just don't care. Their "higher calling" -- the fight against terrorists and hackers -- is more important than the security of computer users around the world.

VUPEN, a French company that sells exploits to the NSA (as well as intelligence and law enforcement agencies around the world) recently capitalized on an Internet Explorer vulnerability it's been sitting on for over three years.


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Study throws doubt on LTE Broadcast as DTT replacement technology | Digital TV Europe

Study throws doubt on LTE Broadcast as DTT replacement technology | Digital TV Europe | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The economics of the use of LTE technology for the large-scale distribution of TV services and as a possible replacement for current digital-terrestrial delivery are not clear and require further study, despite claims by the mobile industry that costs could be reduced by an efficient combination of unicast and eMBMS multicast technology.


This at least is the conclusion of a report by the EBU on the delivery of broadcast content over LTE networks, based on a study by EBU Project group CTN-Mobile, the result of a cooperative effort between broadcasters and mobile operators.


According to the EBU report, costing would be crucial if LTE eMBMS were to be considered as a possible alternative to DVB terrestrial broadcasting. The study goes as far as identifying the main elements of a possible cost models but not to the point of making detailed cost calculations. It sounds a sceptical note with regard to claims made by some in the mobile industry that the costs could be manageable.


“Broadcasters remain concerned that the delivery costs over LTE networks may be significantly higher than the current costs of TV distribution. It has been suggested by the mobile industry that the delivery costs of providing broadcast services over LTE may be reduced by an efficient combination of unicast and eMBMS capabilities and as a result of economies of scale that could be achieved,” the report notes.


“However, this has not been investigated in detail. At this point in time the available evidence is insufficient for any conclusion on the issue of costs.”


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TV Business Weathering Digital Storm, Analyst Says | Broadcasting & Cable

TV Business Weathering Digital Storm, Analyst Says | Broadcasting & Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

There are few signs that the TV ecosystem is being drained by digital platforms, a Wall Street analyst concludes in a new report on the future of video.


According to Laura Martin of Needham & Co. total U.S. TV revenue will reach $76 billion in 2014, up 20% from 2011 levels. And TV advertising will grow by $2.2 billion in 2014, while digital video ad spending will be up $1.8 billion, though digital’s growth is far bigger on a percentage basis.


The spread of mobile devices is creating a new short-form digital content ecosystem. That system is growing parallel to TV and is additive, Martin says, pointing to the way live streaming added 12% to the World Cup audience for Univision, and added 15% to its revenue. New digital companies will increase U.S. TV subscription revenues by $4 billion and advertising by $2.5 billion in the U.S. during 2014.


Martin lists the things that keep her up at night, starting with the possibility that the earnings multiples on TV stocks could be compressed if dual revenue stream business models are replaced by businesses that plan to survive on either subscriptions or ad dollars alone. She’s also concerned that over the next 10 years, short-form video could become better at monetization and disrupt spending on TV.


“We are most excited about new OTT experiments by TV content creators designed to garner global revenue streams with an annuity stream business model and a direct relationship with consumers,” she writes.


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US District Judge Waives Off Aereo's Emergency Motion About 'Bleeding to Death' | HollywoodReporter.com

US District Judge Waives Off Aereo's Emergency Motion About 'Bleeding to Death' | HollywoodReporter.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

On Thursday night, Aereo pleaded for its life to a New York federal judge, claiming it was "bleeding to death" in its current nonoperational state.


On Friday, U.S. District Court Judge Alison Nathan reacted swiftly, knocking Aereo for having "jumped the gun in filing, without authorization, its motion for emergency consideration of preliminary injunction issues upon remand."


Aereo's motion has been stricken from the record, but according to Bloomberg, the company told the judge, "Unless it is able to resume operations in the immediate future, the company will likely not survive."


It was, of course, the U.S. Supreme Court's June 25 ruling that put Aereo in such a dire spot. The high court disagreed with Aereo's contention that it was privately performing the copyrighted programming of broadcasters. Earlier this month, Aereo announced it was refashioning itself as a cable operator, eligible for a statutory license under Section 111 of the Copyright Act.


But the company's time for reinvention might be running out.


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Introducing the Internet.org App | Facebook Newsroom

Introducing the Internet.org App | Facebook Newsroom | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Over 85% of the world’s population lives in areas with existing cellular coverage, yet only about 30% of the total population accesses the internet. Affordability and awareness are significant barriers to internet adoption for many and today we are introducing the Internet.org app to make the Internet accessible to more people by providing a set of free basic services.


With this app, people can browse a set of useful health, employment and local information services without data charges. By providing free basic services via the app, we hope to bring more people online and help them discover valuable services they might not have otherwise.


The Internet.org app will be available first to Airtel subscribers in Zambia and we’ll continue to improve the experience and roll it out to other parts of the world.


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Fiber to the Home Industry Updates | Pinpoint Services

Fiber to the Home Industry Updates | Pinpoint Services | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Fiber to the Home has had a fast start to the year. With more and more communities seeking advanced broadband technologies, the need to stay on top of regulatory, funding, and other projects is extremely important.


To help you out we have compiled 4 important topics that could shape your FTTH project.


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Getting to the Real Roots of the Net Neutrality Debate | FreePress.net

Getting to the Real Roots of the Net Neutrality Debate | FreePress.net | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler released his Internet rule proposal in May, he said all the right things:


"The FCC must stand strongly behind its responsibility to oversee the public interest standard and ensure that the Internet remains open and fair. The Internet is and must remain the greatest engine of free expression, innovation, economic growth and opportunity the world has ever known. We must preserve and promote the Internet."


But the path the agency has laid out to do that is inherently flawed. And unless the FCC reverses course, we’ll end up right back where we started … again.


Free Press’ comments on Wheeler’s proposal explain why the agency must reclassify broadband as a telecommunications service under Title II of the Communications Act. Over the coming weeks, we’ll break down our arguments for those of you who aren’t up for the 150-page read. (Though on behalf of S. Derek Turner, the lead author of our comments, let me just say you should really dive into the whole thing.)


But if you want the executive summary of the executive summary, here it is: The FCC’s resistance to classifying Internet service providers as common carriers has dug the agency into a deep hole. And while the courts, the facts and millions of people have tried to throw the agency a rope (namely: reclassifying ISPs as common carriers), Wheeler has ignored it … opting instead to stay stuck in the ditch.


Here are the main points from our comments, which we will explore in greater depth in upcoming posts.


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CO: ISP Sues Former Customer Over Reviews Claiming His Internet Speed Was Less Than A Third Of What Was Advertised | Techdirt.com

CO: ISP Sues Former Customer Over Reviews Claiming His Internet Speed Was Less Than A Third Of What Was Advertised | Techdirt.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Because this always works out well for the plaintiff, another company is suing another disgruntled customer over his online complaints.


Peak Internet, a Colorado ISP, has decided to ensure its former customer receives a broader platform to discuss its alleged connection speed issues. [H/t to Techdirt/Popehat reader Carl O. Graham, who may have shoved this in the wrong inbox…]


Russell Petrick is disabled and spends a lot of time on his computer at home. He signed on with Peak Internet for web access to watch movies and surf the net.

"It was just too terrible to consider keeping," Petrick said when asked about the service.

He said he was paying $50 a month for Internet download speeds of 20 mbps... Petrick claims the speeds were nowhere near that, and averaged 6.5 mbps.

"The fastest speed I got was 13.6 mbps download and 3.1 mbps upload," Petrick said. "I didn't get anywhere near the 20 mbps mark."


Since KOAA's "investigation" doesn't provide much more than "this is a thing that happened" reporting and the judicious deployment of the always-reliable "torn off bits of paper" skeuomorph highlighting words like "defamation" and "Yelp" to indicate a lawsuit is being discussed, I've hunted down some of the offending reviews.

Peak Internet's lawsuit says Petrick's statements are not only defamatory, but defamatory per se -- false statements that are so obviously harmful that the ISP doesn't even need to prove it's been harmed.


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I killed Facebook and left its body in the woods | T. C. Sottek | TheVerge.com

I killed Facebook and left its body in the woods | T. C. Sottek | TheVerge.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Facebook is dead. I killed it. You'll find its remains somewhere on the eastern shore of Maryland, in the forest beside a creek. I'll never hear its notifications again, at least not over the chirping of birds and the rumbling crescendos of cicadas.


I spread its body parts out, and buried them deep. Worms are munching on 10 years of wall posts, turning them over and excreting them in the soil. Bacteria are dissolving my college photos from the inside. The flesh of my profile picture has withered away, leaving behind a faceless void. Only bones will remain, for a time, among friends and relatives, until the coming flood of brands and sponsored likes washes them away into oblivion.


My colleague Ellis Hamburger says Facebook has a friend problem, but its problems run much deeper. It is an ergonomic exoskeleton we wear to get around, but it doesn't make us better people. It only makes us more efficient — for doing things that Facebook invented. It is for moving 10-ton pallets of old photos, for lifting endless "streams" of "content," and for carrying around our big data — the new byproduct of our existence — on our backs.


Facebook's biggest problem is us. It never turns its attention away from us, and it never lets our attention turn away from it. To borrow from Annie Dillard, Facebook is the constant verbalization of our awareness, it is the nagging need to experience every moment in anticipation of a moment yet to come: the mechanical drip of serotonin that comes with every "like." Self-consciousness is "the one thing that divides us from all creatures," Dillard wrote. "It was a bitter birthday present from evolution, cutting us off at both ends."


Facebook destroys the present moment, leaving us only with the metadata of experience; ultimately meaningless traces of what we now think looks like real experience. It does this by locking us in a room with ourselves, our self-consciousness, and throwing away the key.


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Bahamas: BTC fined for blocking competitors | TeleGeography.com

Bahamian watchdog the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) has issued fixed line incumbent and wireless monopoly holder Bahamas Telecommunication Company (BTC) with an order instructing the operator to cease certain anti-competitive practices.


URCA launched an investigation following complaints from Systems Resource Group (SRG, now part of Cable Bahamas Ltd [CBL]) that BTC had signed executive supply agreements with wholesalers preventing the latter from selling SRG’s ‘IndiGO’ calling cards, preventing SRG from distributing its calling cards through certain wholesalers since March 2012.


URCA’s probe found that BTC’s agreements were in violation of sections 67 and 69 of the Communications Act, as they prevent, restrict and distort competition ‘such that it appreciably affects trade within the Bahamas.’ Further, the regulator ruled that the telco’s measures amounted to an abuse of the operator’s dominant position.


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