7 October 1996
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A weekly E-zine about the NZ internet industry
WHAT'S NEW WITH THE BIG-BOYS?
In an email to subscribers, Xtra has announced that there will soon be "a new look to Xtra" including "a fresh new content look and new categories". The same email contained notification that some billing problems could be expected with access to usage details unavailable until next Sunday and many people not being billed until November for their Xtra charges.
Rumours have been circulating about Clear's readiness to launch into the ISP market - but so far nothing concrete has come to hand. Pricing rumours vary with some claiming that existing Clear customers will get 5hrs free net-access for every $50 worth of toll calls made and other rumours placing Clear's launch-day pricing at just under $2/hr.
PASSING OFF - IS IT ON THE INCREASE?
If I were to manufacture a cola soft drink and try to call it Coca Cola or use packaging that made it look identical to Coca Cola I'd be 'passing off' my product as "the real thing(tm)".
How does this affect the internet? Well the recent decision of the courts in respect to The Domain Name Company is one example. There could be no reason for anyone to hold domain-names that represent a trademark such as Sanyo or Cadbury unless they intended to trade-off on that brand's success.
Of course who would possibly try and do such a thing? Why would anyone seek to ride so blatantly on the back of someone else's hard work and success?
Well here are couple of examples The Aardvark found recently which must be at least a little "suspicious". Follow these links and see if what you find is what you expected...
YOU THINK WE'VE GOT IT BAD?
Depending upon your perspective, any kind of net control or monitoring might seem to be bad news, but take a moment to consider the plught of poor Burmese...
Under new powers created by "The Computer Science Development Law", it is now illegal to own, use, borrow or import a modem or fax machine without government permission. To flout the law can result in a term of imprisonment of up to 15 years. They're not kidding either - in July, a diplomat died in prison after being sentanced to a lengthy term for illegal possesion of fax machines. It sort of makes even Singapore and China's controls look almost liberal doesn't it?
However.... an innovative group of individuals have gotten together to create a system called Free World Dialup, a voice equivalent to the TPC international free-faxing network. If this takes off it could significantly enhance the utility of internet-telephone systems to the point where even I might be tempted to use them as practical alternative to a real toll-call.
But of course this article places a somewhat different perspective on the issue of internet telephony.
Now I wonder if Xtra is planning to offer an internet-phone dial-out facility for its subscribers or would the parent company (Telecom) simply veto such a proposition?
HOW IMPORTANT IS SECURITY?
AND YOU THOUGHT AARDVARK WAS BLUNT!
Well this page from David Dix of KCBBS makes Aardvark look like a girl's blouse!
RIGHT OF REPLY
So You Don't Forget!
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The entire contents of this publication are copyright 1996 to Bruce Simpson, all rights reserved. Don't copy it without my permission - just ask, I'm unlikely to refuse any reasonable request.