The final days of free access to copyright music have arrived. Despite a small last-minute injunction basically it's all over for Napster. Any record company can now inform the file-sharing service of copyright material it wants removed from the servers and Napster has to comply. So basically it's curtains, right?
Well, maybe. There are now a number of Napster clones operating and users are signing up for them in droves. On top of that, users sticking with Napster will be quite at liberty to give their music different titles and so dodge the bullet when it comes to copyright. How many of you out there can misspell Metallica for instance?
The movement, unheard of such a short while ago, has really caught the imagination of internet users everywhere. At last count there were terabytes of music available on thousands of servers around the world. If the music industry doesn't sit up and take notice of this demand for downloadable music it will surely come a cropper in the years ahead. And if you think the movie industry isn't paying close attention to this whole legal saga, think again. Now you can't make digital copies of other people's music available online, how long will it be before the question of VHS recordings of TV shows rears its ugly head again? Imagine a Napster offering full digital copies of the latest pay-per-view movie that some techno-baby has copied and posted online. They won't like that one little bit. All this is, as they say, far from over.
Napster judge issues new injunction - IDGNet
Napster hit with another lawsuit - NZHerald
Second Level Domain Vote goes Public
After much internal debate the Internet Society (ISOCNZ) has decided to allow anyone with a .nz email address to vote on whether or not we should extend the number of second level domain names (2LDs). The Society has received an application from the Bankers Association to add .bank.nz to the list of approved 2LDs. This is the first time anyone has applied for an additional name since the Society took over the running of the .nz space from the University of Waikato. Procedures for this kind of request were set in 1997 and this will be their first outing. If this is approved then the question must be asked: why not have unlimited 2LDs? The answer seems to be: why not. It would certainly help with situations where you might have two different industries competing over the same domain name - Jones the lawyer could have jones.law.nz while Jones the dentist could have jones.dentist.nz.
The process is a lengthy one from here, so don't expect to see .anything.nz any time soon. Hot on the heels of the Bankers Association are other applications so this won't be the end of the issue even if the motion is defeated.
New .bank goes to public poll - IDGNet
Banks seek votes - Stuff
Interested parties can vote at: http://vote.election.com/isocnz
ISP war - Round Two goes Premium
Just when you thought it was all over and ISPs couldn't slug it out any more, it seems the war is only just beginning. ISPs will no longer battle on offering the lowest possible price but will instead try to offer higher grades of service for a little extra cash. Would you pay an extra, say, $5 a month to have someone else worry about viruses for you? What about spam? All the major ISPs have some kind of tiered programme for pricing based on either time spent online or speed of connection. Now you can expect to see a raft of add-on services, from voice calls to filtering, in an effort to entice you to switch. Most ISPs offer remarkably similar packages with a number of email addresses and a set amount of web hosting depending on how much you are willing to pay so they need to find something to make them stand out from the crowd. As if to signal the start of this round, Ihug has announced it is increasing the price of its flat rate "all you can eat" dial up package. On top of that it has introduced download limits on its Ultra high-speed satellite package because of "a couple of hundred people screwing it for everybody" by downloading gigabytes of data each month.
Also in the ISP news, a series of denial of service attacks (DoS) has hit some of the country's smaller ISPs. The attacks appear to be aimed at IP addresses managed by the ISPs rather than the companies themselves.
Ihug bumps up flat-rate - IDGNet
Local DoS attacks flare up again - IDGNet