Recent reports in the media have been that several Internet providers have turned off the Global Mode® setting in their network. These reports about Global Mode® being switched off are incorrect says Matthew Jackson of Bypass Network Services. “I have personally spoken with every ISP on the Global Mode® network and they have all verbally indicated their support. No Global Mode® ISP’s have turned the service off as a result of the legal threats made by SKY, TVNZ, Mediaworks and Lightbox.” Bypass Network Services has helped abolish data caps, increased ultra-fast broadband uptake and reduced online piracy. Bypass takes the threat to consumer choice very seriously.
Bypass Network Services (BNSL) has reached agreement with IndonesianCloud to represent Global Mode in Indonesia.
With a rapidly growing middle class in Indonesia, more and more consumers want access to the latest sports, entertainment, and educational content.
Neil Creswell, CEO of Indonesian Cloud, says “We were initially hesitant about providing this platform service due to strict local censorship laws; however with the combination of Global Mode and Buddy Guard we can ensure compliance whilst providing open access to content.” Neil is expecting to attract upwards of ten million subscribers within the first twelve months of launching.
Matthew Jackson of BNSL said that this just showed the global potential for the technology the company has developed. “We’re pleased we are able to work with IndonesianCloud to utilise their local market expertise.” he added.
Sky, Mediaworks, TVNZ and Lightbox have once again given Bypass Network Services Limited (BNSL) an ultimatum. Shut down by 12pm today, or we’re taking you to court.
Last week BNSL sought further clarification from Buddle Findlay, the lawyers acting on behalf of the big media gang. BNSL received this at 3:54pm on Friday.
BNSL has just replied to them asking them to consider a declaratory judgment instead of a full blown high court case. Statements from the big media gang say they are seeking to “clarify” the law, this seems like a good way to achieve that without crushing BNSL out of existence.
Letting EU citizens watch movies online anywhere, is key to the European Commission’s efforts to unify the continent’s digital market to enhance economic growth. In March the Commission agreed how to proceed with its European Digital Single Market plan and identified priorities to be detailed this May to expand the knowledge economy.
Commission Vice-President for the Digital Single Market, Andrus Ansip, said during the news conference that limiting access to content to people in a particular country or region is a bad strategy.
The Commission wants to tear down geo-blocking barriers, he said. However, there could be exceptions, particularly when geo-blocking is necessary to respect national laws, such as those that forbid online gambling in certain countries for example.
“But deep in my heart, I would like to say, I hate geo-blocking. I think this is old fashioned,” he added.
The European Commission, who represents the shared policy interests of 28 countries, says the removal of geo-blocking will offer better services and new jobs. The goal is to create a market that allows new business models to flourish, start-ups to grow and the industry to take advantage of the Internet of things.
Digital technology is part of everyday life. From studying to watching films, buying or selling online to connecting with friends or your doctor – the Internet is a goldmine of digital opportunities.
Better access for consumers and businesses to digital goods and services by tackling geo-blocking will enable a digital environment in which local services can flourish, “Such discrimination cannot exist in a Single Market” – says Andrus Ansip.
The modernisation of copyright law will ensure the right balance between the interests of creators and those of users or consumers. Simplifying tax arrangements is important to boost the cross-border activities of businesses, especially for SMEs. The cost and complexity of having to deal with foreign tax rules are a major problem for SMEs.
The Commission is also proposing to review the current telecom and media rules to make them fit for new challenges relating to consumer uses and for new players in the field.
Digital services, web applications and content depend on high-speed open access internet and secure networks. Nationwide Ultra Fast Broadband is the key for countries like New Zealand to develop new, innovative digital services which spur international economic growth.
As the first network wide solution in the world for Internet Providers Bypass Network Services is well positioned to accelerate the removal of geo-unblocking service with ISPs in the Europe. By integrating Bypass’s Global Mode PaaS offering ISPs will allow their end users to access a world of content in Europe and beyond far sooner than the global market can react.
Why we need a Digital Single Market – You can read the European Commission fact sheet for economic growth here.
Can you imagine the difficulties of operating in an environment where your customers are bullied into giving up despite believing they’re doing nothing wrong? That’s what we face. Bypass is an innovative company, with global potential. The actions by the media bullies go against New Zealander’s values and are unsubstantiated claims. Listen Mate, this is competition! Listen to the podcast interview with Mary Wilson from RNZ here.
We’ve been receiving quite a few phone calls and emails for support of late after the threatening letter from the media bullies. One came through this afternoon Kim Robinson who wrote, “I have emailed Buddle Findlay informing them that they have until 5pm tomorrow for their clients to provide 100% captioning on their streamed services or face human rights legal action. Their actions are a direct threat to NZ’s Deaf/Hard of Hearing consumers who rely on captioning to access stream tv/movie content.
I am a seasoned Human Rights advocate who has previously taken major telecommunications companies, Cinema’s etc to the Human Rights Commission with successful outcomes.
I’ll be quite independent in this course of action. I don’t represent any organisations or groups.
Happy to work with you to assist protecting this current asset that’s benefiting a group of NZers who are already disadvantaged by those companies trying to block what you’re offering.
His latest blog post about accessibility is below and available for republication under the creative commons licence. It follows a trend that was picked up by Russell Brown on his public address blog.
This automatically changes the political and legal landscape when this kind of action infringes a basic human right. When there’s a restriction on gaining accessible material legally in NZ, this creates a risky situation where a person who wants to be able to follow the content to download a copy of pirated accessible content when it’s access is available legally in countries like USA, UK.
These companies greatest excuse is the cost of upgrading their technology to allow such functions to serve us with one company quoting $3-5million to set up captioning access. With Stats NZ indicating there are over 300,000 New Zealanders who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing requiring accessibility daily. By providing accessible content, this increases revenue opportunities for companies that make their services 100% accessible.
The long term benefits of providing the access now enables increased revenue opportunities outweighs not providing the access. The actions of those companies have mounted a serious attack on this basic human right through their selfish actions of ‘protectionism’ of their serving their own market needs. Remember their attack on Netflix over not paying GST on their goods? These companies have been hard at work protecting their territory at all costs.
This is the last straw…
If the threat of legal action against BNS and the Global Mode product is carried out, this will automatically trigger a course of Human Rights action. This becomes the perfect flash point to protect the very fundamental right to access accessible legal content in today’s technical age.
Consumer NZ chief executive Sue Chetwin said the television companies’ legal threat was “simply protectionism of old content distribution models”.
“While they may argue that this is not about taking action against consumers, it’s exactly consumers who will end up paying more because of this,” Chetwin said. “Consumers will always look for the best deal, and if that isn’t offered by a New Zealand company then they shouldn’t be stopped from looking overseas for a better deal.”
In his insightful blog about the geo unblocking debate Hadyn Green from Consumer NZ says “When you look at it like that, it’s very hard to see this action from the plaintiffs as anything but protectionism, herding consumers back into old models.
Consumer says “It’s like a tax simply for living in New Zealand. Remember these overseas services are subscription-based, consumers are paying for them. No one is getting anything for free, but consumers are always looking for the best deal, and right now, that is not from a New Zealand-based service.”
“Should this legal challenge be successful, it’ll be a huge blow to consumer choice. What is available overseas is just as fast, more accessible to those with impairments, in many cases easier to use, cheaper, and often of equal or higher quality to what is offered here. Why should New Zealand consumers be lumped with inferior products?”