We cover a great deal of topical industry matters on this blog so as a quick overview and update, here is an (almost) complete A-Z to highlight some of the most controversial ones that we discuss regularly and that you might be interested in or at least should be aware of…
A – ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution)
Back in 2012 OFCOM announced its plans to change the current ADR system for ISPs to make it more consistent. With the current system, very similar complaints can be dealt with very differently leading to dissatisfaction for the ISPs and the complainants. Little news has followed this announcement as OFCOM continued to gather feedback on the proposals but in March 2014 ISPA echoed our original perspective and called for changes to the cost allocation of the disputes as ISPs are usually left to pay for the ADR charges even when they win their cases. This is one to keep an eye on and we will provide updates as further news is announced.
- ISPReview.co.uk: ISPA UK Calls for Changes to Tackle Vexatious Consumer ISP Complaints
- Related Opinion article: Arbitrary Arbitration?
B – BDUK and BT
This has been a very controversial industry topic over recent years. The BDUK (Broadband Delivery UK) funding is being dished out to ISPs in order to deliver superfast broadband to the remaining ‘hard to reach’ areas of the UK. The controversial part comes down to the fact that BT have won virtually all of the BDUK funding bids, as many of their competitors have dropped out of the process as it’s too expensive to deliver.
- Related Opinion article: They may say that, we couldn’t possibly comment
C – Copyright Infringement
While this isn’t a new argument by any stretch of the imagination, the issue of ‘copyright’ is a time old one, whether it was recording the top 40 off the radio, through to pirated DVDs and CDs and most recently P2P file sharing. Despite the long running nature of this issue and its evolutionary nature to keep up with changing technologies, it’s one the entertainment industry is still fighting. Most recently, they want the help of ISPs to identify and ‘punish’ the alleged infringers. See DEA below for more information…
D – DEA (Digital Economy Act)
To fight the copyright war the Government rushed through the DEA which sought to fight copyright infringement by identifying alleged offenders by IP address and then sending them a series of letters before threatening disconnection of their service – the three strikes rule. Unsurprisingly, this wasn’t very popular amongst ISPs and the public and as such the ‘three strikes policy’ has never been put into practice and now appears to be being replaced by VCAP (see V – VCAP in part 2 of this article).
- Related Opinion article: Time for the DEA to get its Act together
- Related Opinion article: Is the DEA old before its time?
E – EU Data Retention Directive
This legislation (the EU Data Retention Directive) was recently ruled as invalid by the ECJ and that has reignited the long standing debate over retaining information in order to tackle criminal activity and terrorism. The UK has its own legislation that covers this too and currently information is only provided to the police and security agencies when a RIPA (Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000) notice demands it. This latest ruling has privacy advocates now debating whether our own UK laws are ‘valid’ and if any changes are on the cards.
- Related Opinion article: Is it the end of the road for data retention?
F – FTTC/FTTP/FTTH – Fibre broadband
It’s all about fibre! The news is constantly full of it and as the roll out continues and its availability grows throughout the UK, the opportunity for resellers also increases. If you’re not yet selling fibre, then why not? You could be missing out on valuable sales opportunities as we recently discussed…
- Related Opinion article: Focus on fibre: How can resellers benefit from the rollout’s progress?
G – Growth of VoIP
The growth of VoIP has been widely discussed over the last few years as its adoption becomes more widespread. Adoption of VoIP started fairly slowly but we are definitely seeing an increase in the number of solutions we are now providing as resellers realise the profitable margins that can be made and end users discover the benefits, including flexibility, cost effectiveness, scalability, disaster recovery options and easy management. Are you currently reselling VoIP?
- Related Opinion article: Get into VoIP – It’s perfect timing!
- Related Opinion article: 6 reasons why you should resell VoIP
H – Have your say
OK, this isn’t an industry matter but it’s important nonetheless. If you’re reading this and agreeing or disagreeing with us, are thinking ‘that happened to me last week’ or ‘my customers always ask for that!’, then why don’t you get involved and let us know your opinions too. At the end of every post we have a ‘Have your say’ section which invites you to share your views and experiences, so why not leave us a comment. Additionally, we have regular polls that we’d love to gather your feedback on, so cast your vote, have your say and get involved!
I – IPv4 & IPv6
News from RIPE just last month was that IPv4 address availability is now at a ‘critical’ stage and any networks not currently IPv6 ready need to get their act together sharpish! We’ve been discussing this since 2010 and encouraging network operators and ISPs to make sure they’re ready for the day IPv4 addresses eventually run out. IPv4 addresses are being replaced by IPv6 which provide significantly more addresses for the future. However, ISPs need to make sure their networks can support both existing IPv4 and the new IPv6 addresses for existing and future customers.
- Related Opinion article: World IPv6 Day – reason enough for an extra Bank Holiday?
- Related Opinion article: It’s time to act on IPv6
- Related Opinion article: IPv6: Do or Die!
J – Just for fun
What would we do without the Internet…
Well, that’s enough for now – we’ve covered A-J. Next week we’ll publish the remaining items K-Z. To be continued……
Have your say!
Like we said in section ‘H’, we encourage our readers to share their views and experiences by leaving us a comment below. Have any of the above issues affected you and your business? What are your views? Let us know with a comment below.
- ISPA: The UK’s Trade Association
- OFCOM: Review of Alternative Dispute Resolution Schemes: Statement
- GOV.UK: Broadband Delivery UK
- The Register: MPs attack BT’s ‘monopolistic’ grip on gov-subsidised £1.2bn rural broadband rollout
- Openreach: Extending the reach of fibre broadband
- Out-Law: Voluntary copyright alert programme could be operational before end of 2014, says UK government
- Saferinternet.org: Safer Internet Day
- Wikipedia: Digital Economy Act 2010
- Wikipedia: Data Retention Directive
- ISPReview.co.uk: Global IPv4 Internet Address Supply Hits Critical Level – ISPs Must Prep IPv6
- ASA.org: Broadband
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