Posts Tagged ‘isp’

the pirate bay logo 300x300 Swedish ISP cant be forced to block The Pirate BayLast year, a joint lawsuit was lodged by Universal Music, Sony Music, Warner Music, Nordisk Film, and the Swedish Film Industry, against Swedish ISP Bredbandsbolaget, claiming that they should be made responsible for the infringement copyright.

The wanted to see the ISP blocking The Pirate Bay, or else! Bredbandsbolaget refused. They weren’t having it at all. Well, a Stockholm District Court presiding over this had a think about it and decided that the ISP should not be forced to block TPB.

In the ruling, the court rejected the idea that the ISP’s services constitute a participation in crime.

“A unanimous District Court considers, therefore, that it is not in a position to authorise such a ban as the rights holders and therefore rejects the request,” presiding Chief Magistrate Anders Dereborg said in a statement, as translated by TorrentFreak.

Bredbandsbolaget said the judgment was positive one and “important for freedom of expression and the Swedish model of a free and open Internet.”

The ISP added that, if they were required to block The Pirate Bay, they were worried that it would set a precedent that could lead to more sites being blocked.

Now, it is worth pointing out that The Pirate Bay is blocked by a host of ISPs around Europe, but this court ruling might see some renewed action in all of this.

TalkTalk mislead customers over cheap claim

July 10th, 2014 2 Comments By Mof Gimmers

TalkTalk 300x225 TalkTalk mislead customers over cheap claimTalkTalk have been ToldOff by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for “misleading” customers with their claims that they offered Britain’s cheapest unlimited broadband.

They don’t.

A few people grassed TalkTalk up to the ASA about their three ad-campaigns were a load of cobblers, especially the claim that they were offering “the UK’s lowest priced, totally unlimited broadband”.

One of the grasses was BT and the ASA ruled in their favour, saying that Talktalk failed to substantiate their claims and that the ISP’s price comparisons also showed inaccuracies, which altogether, meant that TalkTalk had “misled customers”.

The ruling said (and you can read it here): “Most consumers would believe that, at the time the ad appeared, TalkTalk offered the cheapest unlimited broadband package in Britain, in comparison to both their competitors’ standard and promotional prices.

“Because that was not the case, we concluded that the claim was misleading.”

A TalkTalk spokesmachine said in a statement: “We’re committed to making Britain better off and consistently offer our customers Britain’s best prices for TV, broadband, mobile and home phone. As such, TalkTalk homes make significant savings in comparison to our competitors.”

“We note the ASA’s comments about ensuring comparison text is prominent and look forward to continuing to provide Britain’s lowest prices.”

Then, for good measure, supergrass BT got slapped by the ASA too, for a mailout that stated, “SKY TO SWITCH OFF O2 BROADBAND BY APRIL 2014″ on the envelope. They too, were being misleading.

5249613624 eae6609d6d m Want to watch loads of dirty videos and annoy David Cameron?

David Cameron is determined to pop a protective wrapper around the internet to stop people looking at mucky photos and bongo videos. It soon turned out that existing smutblocks were stopping people from looking at sites designed to give helpful advice on domestic abuse and sexual health while grumble was readily accessible.

Crucially, everyone knew that it wouldn’t take long to bypass all this Mary Whitehouse nonsense.

And now, there’s a bypass to the filter called ‘Go Away Cameron’, which is an extension for Chrome that promises to “bring porn back”. Install that, and you’ll be able to watch whatever grot you please.

Go Away Cameron “automates a private and smart proxy service to route your access around censorship so you can regain your access to your favourite blocked sites in the UK,” according to the FAQ.

The reasons the extension was built, according to the site: “I enjoy my internet freedom, and urge all of you to never give that up, let alone to any government agencies.”

If you want to look at dirty things without having to ring up your ISP to opt in, have a look

illegal downloading 269x300 Record companies are bothering ISPs about file sharers againThe BPI, representing all the record companies, are organising a meeting with PM David Cameron on 12th September in a bid to, once again, go after ISPs.

They want to see the ISPs signing -up to a scheme which will see them handing over details of those who are downloading music illegally.

BT, Virgin Media, BSkyB and TalkTalk have been asked by the BPI and British Video Association to sign up to a voluntary code to create a database of file sharers, however, it doesn’t seem likely that the ISPs will want to annoy their customers, so this’ll probably fizzle away like all previous attempts.

Again, the ‘three strikes’ rule is being floated, where customers will be sent some letters advising them to legally download things, before a final warning of some kind of sanction and “ultimately prosecution.”

Virgin and Talk Talk are both resisting the collection of user data, with Talk Talk pointing out that this kind of activity is dubious under the Data Protection Act.

“We are involved in discussions about measures to address illegal file-sharing and ultimately would like to reach a voluntary agreement. However our customers’ rights always come first and we would never agree to anything that could compromise them,” said a spokesperson for Talk Talk.

Over at Virgin; “Music and film companies are speaking to broadband providers about how to address illegal file-sharing but what they’re currently proposing is unworkable.”

Which ISP is most useful on Twitter?

August 14th, 2013 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

Bitterwallet Twitter is suspicious of YOU 300x224 Which ISP is most useful on Twitter?An independent survey has been undertaken to see which ISP is most cop on Twitter and, coming up trumps was Virgin Media’s Twitter team who have been hailed as the most helpful.

Of course, everyone goes to Twitter to gripe, whinge and bitch about absolutely any trouble they get with their internet connection, helpfully putting a fullstop at the start of all tweets so everyone can see their thoroughly uninteresting issues.

With that, it is worth seeing who is mostly likely to help. While Virgin is the most helpful, Sky got the plaudits for being the fastest to respond. They respond to 59% of customers within the hour, according to research company WaveMetrix.

While BT and TalkTalk don’t respond as quickly, figures show that these companies are actually more likely to fix your problem more quickly than those with the fastest response time.

Naturally, these figures won’t stop people complaining at everyone online, but it’s a start.


the pirate bay logo 300x300 Pirate Bay announce browser so you can dodge ISP blocksThose scamps at The Pirate Bay have rolled out their own browser so you can get round ISP blocks easier. Basically, with one click, you can download the pre-configured FireFox PirateBrowser, which makes all blocked sites available.

This is also coupled with Mozilla’s Firefox portable browser and the FoxyProxy add-on, which lets you bypass content-filtering in a number of countries.

With a bit of customisation, this new browser also allows you to “circumvent censorship that certain countries such as Iran, North Korea, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Belgium, Finland, Denmark, Italy and Ireland impose onto their citizens,” according to the PirateBrowser site.

This launch celebrates the 10th anniversary of The Pirate Bay and will invariably annoy loads and loads of people.

It is available on Windows but as yet, no Linux or Mac versions have been announced.

Find out more by visiting PirateBrowser here

Virgin Media blocks Newzbin 2

August 16th, 2012 5 Comments By Mof Gimmers

my little pony makeover m 015 300x242 Virgin Media blocks Newzbin 2Virgin Media is bracing itself for DDoS business at they have become the latest ISP to block access to Newzbin 2 (a site which sorts you out with pirated films and music) after they received a court order from the Motion Picture Association.

Sky and BT have already blocked the site.

“As a responsible ISP, Virgin Media complies with court orders addressed to the company, but strongly believes that changing consumer behaviour to tackle copyright infringement also needs compelling legal alternatives to give consumers access to great content at the right price,” said Virgin in a statement.

Of course, people will be able to circumnavigate this block, so is this just a case of shutting organisations like the BPI up?

Data has shown that the Pirate Bay block only saw their track dip for a week before going back to normal levels. And still, no letters have been sent to those infringing copyright from the Data Protection Act and there are no plans to do so until 2014.

Picture 2 BT and Talk Talk lose filesharing appeal, which is niceBT and Talk Talk have lost an appeal over measures to tackle copyright infringement online. All the ISPs argued that the UK’s Digital Economy Act was incompatible with EU law, which says that they’ll have to be the ones to send warning letters to illegal downloaders as well as cutting users off.

The firms’ lawyers said that stricter measures could result in an invasion of privacy and create disproportionate costs for both ISPs and consumers.

In a statement, Talk Talk said it was now “considering our options”. They added: ”We’re disappointed that our appeal was unsuccessful though we welcome the additional legal clarity that has been provided for all parties. Though we have lost this appeal, we will continue fighting to defend our customers’ rights against this ill-judged legislation.”

A spokesman for BT said: “We have been seeking clarification from the courts that the DEA is consistent with European law, and legally robust in the UK, so that everyone can be confident in how it is implemented. Now that the court has made its decision, we will look at the judgment carefully to understand its implications and consider our next steps.”

Of course, the ISPs have been long chided by the creative industries. Christine Payne, general secretary of the Actors’ union Equity, called on the ISPs to “stop fighting and start obeying the law”. Through the medium of dance, she continued: ”Once again the court is on the side of the almost two million workers in the creative industries whose livelihoods are put at risk because creative content is stolen on a daily basis.”

Adam Rendle, a copyright specialist at international law firm Taylor Wessing, expects BT and Talk Talk to take this to the Supreme Court, saying: ”We know how keen internet users are to protect what they see as freedom of speech. When the Digital Economy Act itself was passed in the dying stages of the Labour government, there was a huge amount of disquiet that this kind of important legislation was being introduced without proper scrutiny.”

“That kind of disquiet didn’t result in the kind of action we’ve seen against Acta and Sopa. It wouldn’t be surprising to see a lot more public outcry than there was when the Act was first passed.”

TalkTalk 300x180 TalkTalk ad banned for claiming to be UKs safestNot content with losing a bumload of customers and being frequently complained about, TalkTalk have now irritated the Advertising Standards Authority.

The ASA have told TalkTalk that they’re not allowed to claim that their new internet security system – HomeSafe – is the “UK’s safest broadband” after BT snitched on them and won a ruling from the watchdog who determined that it offers only “basic security”.

BT took umbrage with a TV spot, posters and national press campaigns that made the claim.

TalkTalk argued that the claim was legitimate as they’re the only home broadband provider in the UK to apply security features at a “network level”. Basically, they’re the only ones providing alerts to us when we visit to sites with potential viruses as well as putting a parental lock on certain sites.

Alas, TalkTalk admitted that its claim of being the “safest” only related to where the broadband connection enters a household and not wireless connections to devices around a house. Basically, they had to concede that they aren’t providing “the UK’s safest online experience” at all.

The ASA said that the claims used in TalkTalk’s advertising implied that users would have the safest online experience of any provider and, with that, customers would assume safety from viruses and hacks. The watchdog also noted that most people wouldn’t understand what the term “network level security” meant. As such, the ASA said the campaign was misleading and banned it.

Don’t forget – TalkTalk are one of the finalists in our Worst Company in Britain 2011 poll – you’ve got until midnight tonight to make your vote count.

Virgin logo 300x257 ASA uphold complaint against Virgin Medias con advertThe Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) have slapped the wrists of Virgin Media eight times (or, if you prefer, upheld eight out of eight complaints) after BT and Sky were angered by Virgin Media’s ‘Stop the Broadband Con’ advertising campaign.

Basically, Virgin wanted to point out that ISPs don’t deliver the broadband speeds they claim, taking umbrage with the whole ‘speeds of up to’ get-out clause so frequently used.

Not wholly unreasonable you might think. However, the ASA objected to Virgin’s continued statements that consumers are being “conned” and the implication that ISPs deal with customers dishonestly. In addition to that, embarrassingly, the ASA also judged that Virgin were exaggerated claims.

Basically, don’t talk yourself up and shoot your mouth off about everyone else or people will get angry and grass you up to the ASA.

If you’d like to read more about BT and Sky complaints, as well as Virgin’s attempts to justify their claims, then visit the ASA website here. Warning. It is very, very dry.


film reel 300x300 BT under pressure to stop you watching films onlineHollywood is having a bad time of it at the moment, basically because it is made up entirely of idiots. For example, there’s a bit of excitement surrounding a film called Super 8 which has been released in America. However, for some stupid, arbitrary reason, it isn’t hitting UK screens ’til August. By this time, you will have invariably seen a whole bunch of spoilers and whatnot, so you may as well watch it online, illegally.

Watching it online means you don’t have to deal with idiot humans spoiling your fun in a cinema screen also.

Of course, this is a big problem for those who want to make money from films. So, instead of looking at ways in which the whole cinematic process could be improved, people like the Motion Picture Association have turned against That Nasty Internet for spoiling everything.

Naturally, chasing every IP address on Earth is too time consuming and expensive, so the logical answer is to harangue ISPs so they do the dirty work instead. The MPA have decided to hound BT to block copyright-infringing content by seeking an injunction which will force the ISP to refuse everyone access to download site Newzbin. The MPA is also lobbying the Government to implement a web-blocking system to prevent people from accessing illegal download sites.

However, the ISPs want to be onside with those that pay their phone bills as that’s where the money is – not some already wealthy coalition of studios in America.

BT say: “We can confirm that we will be appearing in court, following an application for an injunction by members of the MPA. We have no further comment to make at this stage.”

It is thought that BT will probably tell the MPA to sling their hook because, if they play ball, other ISPs will be able to say ‘we would’ve fought them… come to us with your direct debits please’. The MPA say: “Newzbin has no regard for UK law and it is unacceptable that it continues to infringe copyright on a massive and commercial scale when it has been ordered to stop by the High Court. We have explored every route to get Newzbin to take down the infringing material and are left with no option but to challenge this in the courts.”

And what do Newzbin have to say about it all? A spokesperson told The Telegraph that attempts to shut Newzbin down would always fail because “we can run faster than them [the MPA] and shapeshift”.

bt logo BT and Phorm avoid prosecution despite spying on everyoneThe kind, wise folk at the Crown Prosecution Service has, in their infinite wisdom, decided against prosecuting BT and Phorm over the shadowy, secret trial of the online behavioural marketing tool that installed cookies on browsers without the consent of users.

That’s nice isn’t it?

The CPS couldn’t see enough evidence to prosecute despite claims made by privacy groups that the ISP and the often controversial marketing company had actually violated EU privacy laws.

If you missed the story way back in 2006, BT and Phorm joined forces and installed browser cookies without asking you if that was okay. Around 18,000 users were affected in the UK, prompting anger from privacy groups.

Basically, Phorm’s technology helped BT to track users’ online activities and behaviours, which allowed advertisers to serve behaviour-based advertisements straight into your web-addled brain.

The CPS claim that a prosecution wasn’t in public interest and that BT had stopped tracking users when it received warnings regarding the technology.

“At present, the available evidence is insufficient to provide a realistic prospect of conviction. In the vast majority of cases, we would only decide whether to prosecute after the investigation had been completed and after all the likely evidence had been reviewed,” the CPS said.


Ofcom want cheaper broadband from BT

March 31st, 2011 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

bt logo Ofcom want cheaper broadband from BTOfcom (them again) are pushing for broadband and landlines to be cheaper after they said that BT would have to cut their charges that they demand from those that use their network.

The watchdog have proposed lower prices for BT’s wholesale wing that gives other ISPs access to install their own kit in the telcom giant’s Openreach exchanges. If BT lower their price, everyone else can too, presumably.

Ofcom are gunning for BT’s Local Loop Unbundling (LLU) and the Wholesale Line Rental (WLR) services.

BT’s LLU service has been asked to drop between 1.2 per cent and 4.2 per cent every year. Ofcom have also requested that a shared unbundled line, where an ISP uses a proportion of the line only for the provision of broadband, should see a drop in price between 11.6 per cent and 14.6 per cent.

The regulator would also like to see BT’s WLR service a fall between 3.1 per cent and 6.1 per cent every year.

BT say: “BT invests more than any other company in the UK’s communications infrastructure, so it is critical that it is able to achieve a fair rate of return in order to continue its investment in copper and fibre based services. Upon initial review, we are encouraged by Ofcom’s recognition of this fact, but would question some of the underlying assumptions being used. As a result, we will be raising such concerns with Ofcom during the consultation process.”

BT announces 100Mbps broadband

October 20th, 2010 27 Comments By Mof Gimmers

bt logo BT announces 100Mbps broadbandBroadband customers will soon be able to reach speeds of 110Mbps (which equates to roughly 65mph) under plans announced by BT Openreach.

Openreach, if you don’t know, are the BT arm that manages the network for other internet service providers and they’re saying that the 110Mpbs service will be available in March 2011.

The service will be a fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) service, but it is worth noting that the 110Mpbs won’t be constant. At peak times it will be reduced, but Openreach are guaranteeing a minimum of 20Mpbs.

As part of this service, it is reported that you’ll also be able get an upload speed of 15Mbps.

Rival ISPs are able to rent the high-speed network and Openreach have said that prices would be £258.48 per year (£21.54 per month). How much this is going to eventually cost the consumer isn’t clear. There’s also a one-off connection charge which will also be added at £75 (plus VAT).

Just imagine how quickly you’ll be able to clog up your hardrive with absolute filth!

Ofcom to allow your new ISPs help you change provider

September 10th, 2010 6 Comments By Mof Gimmers
the internet 232x300 Ofcom to allow your new ISPs help you change provider

The Internet, this morning

Ofcom, who for the most part, are entirely useless, are considering changing the way in which we switch broadband providers.

Now, when you want to leave your broadband provider in favour of another, the side losing you has to fanny about supplying a Migration Authorisation Code (MAC) which is then handed over to a gloating new supplier.

As such, the resultant faff has seen 45% of broadband users having the opinion that switching to a new provider is too much hassle.

So, in a bid to grease the cogs a little, Ofcom is considering switching to a Gaining Provider Led (GPL) process, to put the onus on your new ISP, which will hopefully mean that there’s an all-round greater need for customer care.

“The gaining provider has an incentive to ensure that the switching process is as smooth and easy as possible,” said Ofcom.

“GPL processes are also more likely to deliver lower prices, greater choice and innovation for consumers as they force providers to compete vigorously for rivals’ customers,” Ofcom added.

“In Losing Provider Led (LPL) processes this incentive for providers to enter and compete for rivals’ customers is reduced because of the ability of the losing provider to identify (via the code request) and retain customers willing to switch through ‘save offers’.”