Archive for the ‘Connectivity’ Category

Originally written as a Facebook posting to my Facebook friends….
“Facebook has declared sovereignty”

writes Molly Roberts in the Washington Post today (31/1/2019)


“This is not a missive from a dystopian future, but rather a fair reading of the company’s recent announcement that it will move forward with creating a supreme court. Facebook will select “judges” from experts around the world with the authority to overturn decisions about what content or accounts are approved or removed from the platform. The court also may help Facebook shape the policies under which those content-moderating decisions are made.” [1]

Indeed all the signs of a new independent state that will soon fly it’s flag in the forest of flagpoles beneath the high rise headquarters building of the United Nations are there. As always utopian and dystopian visions are oscillating in the wind of times to come, like state flags and coins do have two sides. We, the ones that perceive ourselves as citizens of the world try to carve within this global message network our own shared space, beyond all borders, instantly without bodily traveling. It is also us users of this network that not only feel, but know we are spied on all the time, mostly for reasons of direct profit of the upper class of the Facebook nation, sometimes as well by secret services of the traditional national states and the supra surveillance bodies they have created.

Molly Roberts observes further on in her article Facebook’s inability – having the structure of a corporation however large it may be – to mimic the constellation of states with their separation of power between the political and law system…

“Facebook’s decisions can fundamentally alter the speech ecosystem in a nation. The company does not only end up governing individuals; it ends up governing governments, too. The norms Facebook or its court choose for their pseudo-constitution will apply everywhere, and though the company will strive for sensitivity to local context and concerns, those norms will affect how the whole world talks to one another.”

I invite my readers to read the whole article and give the questions raised in it a thought, a thought beyond the too obvious superficial conspiracy phobia. [direct link at the bottom of this posting].

Can one say that in the sense of media theoretician Marshall McLuhan, “the medium has become the message”, that the phenomenon of ‘social media’ is just a means in itself for message traffic – whatever it’s content – in the end only serving Big Brother control mechanisms and the insatiable hunger of global profit making molochs like Facebook?
I refuse to see it that way, there is a positive sense as well in such global networks, the oportunity to keep abreast of what friends nearby and far away are up to, to make new friends, to admire, to like, to dislike, to quarrel, to lose friends, all that being social acts, not in real but in electronic space.
I am wary of all those negative campaigns against ‘social-media’, with their implicitly condemnation of the social act of ‘two way’ communication – open to all – leaving us with the ‘one way’ model of mass media. Studies and articles are frequent now on the ‘addictive effects of social media like this article of today in The Guardian (1/2/2019):

“Delete your account: leaving Facebook can make you happier, study finds New study from Stanford and NYU finds logging off causes ‘small but significant improvements in wellbeing’.” [2]

The headline of the article rubs in the negative, while when one reads the whole text of this study about the behaviour of only two thousand or so USA participants (while Facebook users are all over the world and number in hundreds of millions) but when one reads on the positive social aspects are mentioned as well. It is interesting that the latest communication means tend to be under attack , often in a moralistic way (explicit or implicit) while one would laugh when the same sensational slogans would be applied to previous forms of communication. ‘Pull out your television cable’, ‘cut your telephone wire’, ‘burn you letterbox’…

I do have my own utopian ideas of how electronic social media communication can be enhanced; to make it better; how the sneaky peeking elements can be limited; how the financing of the network can be a ‘shared by all according to ability’; how advertisements can be limited to a bearable level; how to establish real user control…
Is it not so that this new medium is very young, that its techniques are so versatile that they can serve other means and goals? These two way communication new media have the potential to change the McLuhan paradigm of mass media:
The medium is what we are able to formulate and make of it!

Technology is always an expression of existing social-relations. Technology appears to many as a major agent of change change in society. In my view the role of technological innovation is less fundamental. New technology tends to amplify the existing social relations, the power structures in a society… one can recognise that observation through the whole of time. So the sovereign nation of Facebook, LET’S FACE IT, is only momentary, new post-national-electronic communities will arise, both on a micro and a macro level and combinations thereof… It is to us to come up with ideas [3], to resist the misuse, and meanwhile also to enjoy being able to do what I just do here at the moment, sitting at my desk, writing and knowing when I press the button it may be read by others, it may have some impact, be it not more than an electronic space butterfly effect.

Facebook is not here to stay forever, like states are not, such supra structures seem to be solid, but over time their structures ossify, get brittle and crumble… fall apart… forming the breeding ground for new forms of social association.

[2] The Guardian article (1/2/2019):
The study, titled The Welfare Effects of Social Media, from researchers at Stanford and NYU, is being praised as one of the most rigorous to look at what happens to people when they log off. Logging off seems to be as positive as you probably expect it would be, leading to increased subjective wellbeing, less political drama and attention span agitation, and increased time spent with friends and family. On the other hand, it also led to a decrease in awareness of the news. Although, to be honest, that sounds pretty nice too. To track social media’s effects, the researchers recruited 2,844 Facebook users, then randomly assigned half of them the task of temporarily deactivating their accounts for a month. To ensure compliance, subjects were paid for their efforts, and their accounts were monitored to make sure they weren’t scrolling their timeline on the sly. The authors checked in with them regularly via text to see how they were feeling during the cleanse. “Deactivation caused small but significant improvements in wellbeing, and in particular on self-reported happiness, life satisfaction, depression, and anxiety,” they concluded.
The study acknowledges there are, clearly, benefits to Facebook and social media at large. Facebook is still, for all its faults, an important means for people to stay connected to friends and family and as a source of information, community, and entertainment, particularly for those who are otherwise socially isolated. But, they conclude: “Our results also make clear that the downsides are real. “We find that four weeks without Facebook improves subjective wellbeing and substantially reduces post-experiment demand, suggesting that forces such as addiction and projection bias may cause people to use Facebook more than they otherwise would.”

[3] Like this initiative of Tim Berners-Lee:

“Welcome to Solid Solid was created by the inventor of the World Wide Web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee. Its mission is to reshape the web as we know it. Solid will foster a new breed of applications with capabilities above and beyond anything that exists today. Get a Solid POD How it Works THIS IS FOR EVERYONE Solid empowers users and organizations to separate their data from the applications that use it. It allows people to look at the same data with different apps at the same time. It opens brand new avenues for creativity, problem-solving, and commerce.”


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KPN gaat merknaam XS4ALL opheffen….. (*)


Op Facebook reageerde ik op bovenstaande XS4ALL handtekeningenactie met deze tekst:

de idee van  XS4ALL uit 1993 werd XS2ALL 

– access 2 all our data –
– with us users more and more out of control –

tijden zijn veranderd wij behoeven nu

– exchange under our (own) control –
– deciding to whom we give access of what – 

XS4ALL werd al jaren terug (1998) opgeslokt door KPN
om nu weer uitgespuugd te worden

Ik lees de tekst van de handtekeningenactie
maar begrijp niet wat er nu bedoeld wordt…
Waartegen? Waarvoor?

Een actie om een merknaam te laten voortbestaan lijkt mij niet meer dan een daad uit nostalgie om een verleden terug te halen dat al lang verdwenen is en nooit meer terugkomt. Zelfs de positie van werknemers bij de KPN afdeling XS4ALL zal er uiteindelijk niet door beveiligd worden (de belangrijkste redenen achter bovenstaande handtekeningenactie die niet expliciet gemaakt wordt).

Ik schreef eerder op Facebook spontaan onderstaande ontboezeming als reactie op een posting van een vriend van mij over de KPN en XS4ALL op zoiets ouderwets als een email-list, te weten die van internet-activisten, stammend uit dezelfde periode als de oprichting van XS4ALL, genaamd nettime… (mailing lists for networked cultures, politics, and tactics) een verzendlijst via email van discussies ontstaan in een tijd toen er geloofd werd in een sociale revolutie die via het internet gestalte zou krijgen:


“Wel aan alles gaat eraan
hetgeen ooit XS4ALL was bestaat al lang niet meer
wie heeft de infrastructuur in handen?
de conglomeraten
namen zijn wegwerpartikelen
wie herinnert zich nog de niet geprivatiseerde PTT, als Post Telegraaf Telefoon?
zoals de POST ooit grote gebouwen in de stad, genaamd postkantoor
nu een gepropt in een kiosk of sigarenhandeltje hier of daar
dat zijn post nauwelijks naar binnen kan halen
wat zakken en pakken op pallets met zwenkwielen op de stoep 
en als het druk is staan de mensen (zoals bij de KPN servicepuntje Waterlooplein) zelfs buiten half in de regen
dat is er geworden van de paleizen van Tante Pos…

dus dient niemand verbaas te zijn dat de KPN zich zelf voor de zoveelste keer herschoffelt en alle het overbodig geachte eruit haalt.

Dit bericht gaat ook via de kabels van het conglomeraat met de K de P en de N of die van de Z, de I, twee maal een G + een O…. die het weer pachten of verpachten aan anderen, enkel het computer-management-systeem weet nog wie of wat op welk moment in de tijd formeel gesproken eigenaar van de gebruikte data-communicatie-infrastructuur was of is.

Zijn wij soms verstekelingen op dit netwerk waaraan niets ‘eigens’ meer is?

Moet ik mijn abo bij Ziggo opzeggen? Een ander dat bij de KPN, Vodafone, of welke ‘provider’ dan maar ook?

Is er ergens een onbesmette kabelaar te bekennen tussen hier en Tokyo?

Ik denk van niet.

Moeten we dan al die kabels uit de grond trekken?

Zijn er hackers die de data van ons digi-verstekelingen ‘ondergronds’ weten te smokkelen ?

Zijn niet alle succesvolle pioniers van toen – zoals de Digitale Stad, Hacktic, XS4ALL – geworden tot de nieuwe en uiteindelijk ongewenste fuserende en herschoffelende ondernemingen van morgen?

Wordt niet alles wat – al was het maar even – succes heeft overgenomen samengevoegd, opgeschoond, doorverkocht, uitgekamd op alles wat niet winstgevend is en de rest opgeheven?

Is een stabiele ideële organisatie die niet meegaat met de tijd van maximalisering van gewin NIET het gruwelijkste wat een samenleving gedreven door marktwerking kent?

In welke mate was en is XS4ALL (ooit) een ideële organisatie?

Hoe zit het met de korte golf? …het verzenden van berichten via de stratosfeer, is dat gebied van kaatsende radiogolven die digitaal omgezet kunnen worden nog vrij?

…of rest ons nog slechts de postduif en de fietskoerier, oh nee ook die laatste is vermarkt met een Über app.

Ja ik zie mijzelf nog fietsen – jaren geleden – door de Flevopolder naar een tentenkamp op een weitje in de polder met allemaal discussiërende hackers…

Galactic Hackersparties had je toen (ook nog een keer in poptempel Paradiso)… ik ben er geweest in een verleden vol met idealen die als een salamiworst plak voor plakje afgesneden en opgegeten werden door de winstmaximaliserende conglomeraten…

…hoe lang terug was dat al niet, dat revolutionaire elan van datacommunicatie? 1993 of zo…

Zijn er dan geen nieuwe datageuzen?

… zitten die diep verborgen in het oude medium van een mailinglist zoals de nettimers?

… gaan zij de KPN torpederen? al was het maar een poging met een publicitair karakter?

… moeten we met zijn allen XS4ALL uit de KPN wegkopen?

… hoeveel energie zal dat kosten en kan die niet beter ergens anders voor gebruikt worden?

Wie moer er aan de macht komen om al die kapitalistische kabelaars te nationaliseren en zijn we als dat ooit maar zou gebeuren niet veel verder van huis?

De Rijkskabelaar is ook de Rijksbeknibbelaar…. de Rijkswebwachter…

… denk eens in het het rijksgeregelde dataverkeer in de voormalige Soviet Unie, China, Cuba, Iran…

Kan dan Brewster Kahle met zijn kennis en het Internet Archive en de Way Back Machine een nieuwe superorganisatie, als alternatief voor Google en wat al niet meer realiseren?

Is het nieuwe world wide web systeem al klaar? van die menselijke God die het World Wide Web schiep…. ik lees

“Tim Berners-Lee unveils radical plan for the fabled ‘New Internet’ that will decentralize the global system and allow users to take back control of their data from sites like Google and Facebook….”

Kunnen we daaraan bijdragen, daaraan meedoen? Dat lijkt me beter…

zie deze wiki:

“Solid (Social Linked Data) is a web decentralization project led by Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web. The project is run from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The project “aims to radically change the way Web applications work today, resulting in true data ownership as well as improved privacy” by developing a platform for linked-data applications that are completely decentralized and fully under users’ control rather than controlled by other entities.”

XS4ALL betekent nu dat wij allen met al onze sterktes en zwaktes digitaal toegankelijk zijn voor het winstbejag conglomeraat dat als een duizendkoppig monster steeds andere merknamen gebruikt om een onstilbare honger naar profijt te voeden met ons dagelijkse gedoe op het internet.

XS4NONE is dat het enige antwoord daarop?

Kan XS4ALL veranderd worden in XCHNG_CTRL?

… toegang voor hen die wij uitkiezen tot dat wat wij beschikbaar wensen te stellen. Publieke algemene toegankelijke informatie kan daar een onderdeel van zijn.


Berners-Lee has seen his creation debased by everything from fake news to mass surveillance. But he’s got a plan to fix it.

Ik kreeg een reactie op bovenstaande tekst van Peter P.

Peter van der P Het bestaan enerzijds van xs4all als eigenzinnige en niet alleen maar commerciële provider (zie de steun aan Zuid-Afrikaanse jongeren op dit moment) en anderzijds een compleet and
ere datastructuur zijn volgens mij twee verschillende zaken. De kabels waarover de data gaan zijn per gebied van iemand anders, hier zijn ze van KPN en van de kabelmaatschappijen als Ziggo, die hun tv-kabels monopoliseren.
Zie ik het goed dat er met het opdoeken van xs4all een meer uitgesproken monopoliesituatie gaat ontstaan, waarbij KPN niet alleen de kabels bezit maar ook een vollediger zeggenschap over de toegang? En biedt dat wellicht extra mogelijkheden tot tegengas?

en schreef deze reactie:

Tjebbe Van Tijen Natuurlijk heeft XS4ALL een aparte geschiedenis, ik denk aan het faciliteren van data-communicatie van de oppositie tegen de de wisselende regimes in Belgrado… op het hoogtepunt van onderdrukking aldaar… maar dat alles neemt niet weg dat Xs4ALL besloot om de regen onafhankelijke bedrijfsrechtelijke onafhankelijkheid in te ruilen voor een afhankelijke binnen een geprivatiseerde staatsfirma als KPN. Hoe gedetailleerd ook de vrijwaring tegen inmenging, de onafhankelijkheid werd ermee opgeheven. Daarop concerteert zich mijn overdenking. 
Zie het statenrechtelijk, als je als klein land een regeling aangaat met een veel groter land dan wordt je onontkomelijk een vazalstaat.
Er moet contracttechnisch een optie zijn geweest om een aangegane inlijving van XS4ALL in de KPN weer ongedaan te kunnen maken. Mocht die er zijn, waarom horen wij daar niet van? Ik vermoed dat die er of niet is, of dat de ‘echtscheiding’ dusdanige financiële verplichtingen met zich brengt dat in de praktijk een uittreden van XS4ALL uit het conglomeraat KPN praktisch onmogelijk is, of direct zou leiden tot een faillissement.

Laten we wel wezen ook de KPN kan opgeslokt worden door een andere data-moloch… 

Peter van der P stip het al aan het samengaan van leverancier van data-communicatie met dat van toegang krijgen tot data van de klanten. Dat is zulk een totale chaos (vanuit het gezichtspunt van de klanten/gebruikers) met de staat als Rijkwachtmeester van dat wat de staat wenst te definiëren als privaat-gebied (dezelfde staat die weer sleepwetten heeft gemaakt die ons allen tot verdachten maken en dus toestaat dat onze data constant door de zeef van de politie gehaald wordt) … ik zie iet in in welke mate XS4ALL een wezenlijk verschil zou weten te maken in welke mate ongewenste toegang door wie of wat dan ook tegen gegaan wordt.

Het lijkt mij dat er vooral sprake is van een nostalgisch verlangen naar tijden die voorbij zijn… toen het internet, toen het World Wide Web nog tot het beloofde land van melk & honing van mens bevrijdende communicatie leken te behoren, vrij van al die winstmakerij, pioniersgebied van gelijkheid, zuster- en broederschap.

Natuurlijk niets van dat alles bestaat… maar wellicht is het zo, dat hoe groter de datastromen, hoe gedifferentieerder de kanalen waarlangs gebruikers hun data aanbieden en uitwisselen, hoe meer dynamische vrijruimte (Freiraum) er bestaat.

Ik gebruikte in mijn eerste tekst niet voor niets de term data-verstekeling. Daar ligt de toekomst
Tjebbe van Tijen 12/1/2019

(*) Dutch incumbent KPN will no longer offer new subscriptions to its Telfort, Telfort Business, XS4ALL and Yes Telecom brands. Customers of these brands will be brought under the KPN flag. For customers of these brands nothing will change’, according to the provider. Both Telfort and XS4All offer triple pay packages including IPTV from KPN. The change will be implemented in the course of 2019 and 2020. “With the focus on the KPN brand, we will expand KPN’s services with the best elements of the individual brands’, said Jean-Pascal Van Overbeke, Head of KPN’s Consumer Market. “These include the highest rated XS4ALL service, Telfort’s affordable value-added services and Yes Telecom’s personal service and expert business advice.” XS4All is the third-oldest ISP in the Netherlands, after NLnet and SURFnet. XS4All was the second company to offer internet access to private individuals, since 1993. The provider was acquired by KPN in December 1998, but remained an independent subsidiary. After the KPN announcement, former XS4All employee Kirsten Verdel has started a petition to keep the brand alive, which attracted over 8,000 signatures within a few hours.

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Newspaper heading these last days on the Dutch Stichting Brein (Foundation Brain) forces providers to effect an INTERNET BLOCKADE against Pirate Bay web sites“. The Foundation Brein received on January the 11, 2012 a court order that forces some of the big internet providers in the Netherlands (Xs4all and Ziggo at first, T-Mobile and UPC are on the list) to block internet services that Brein claims to be infringements of copyright and intellectual property. The blockade is aimed at  sites of, and related to, ‘Pirate Bay’.  The court order (1) mentions 24 internet addresses to be blocked. Already  at court, Stichting Brein did make some changes in this blockade-list by taking off 4 addresses, that would take off-line web services that had little or no relation with Pirate Bay activities seen as infringements  (one of them was a web site with educational movies for young people). It is in the same week that Dutch internet service providers  (and 20 search warrants in eight other countries) have been forced to take the domain MegaUpload off line. The Dutch firm LeaseWeb – working for MegaUpload – saw 690 computer servers sealed (storing 15 of the total 25 ‘petabyte’ of data used by MegaUpload) by the Dutch Tax Authority (FIOD), executing an order of the American FBI. This series of events prompted a Green Left member of parliament (Arjen El Fassed) to ask questions to the Dutch government about  this whole sale anti-piracy operations, whereby illegal and legal forms of data-traffic are not properly separated:

“Operations like this cause huge damage to the freedom and openness of the internet.”

I see as much Right as Wrong with CopyRight as it is practiced by the actual Media Content Industry – and Stichting Brein is – first of all – a tool of those corporate interests, though they like to pose as defenders of creative workers.

There is much to debate about copyright: what it once was, what it became and how to rethink the idea of claiming ownership on things reproducible for the future. As our media have changed dramatically, the idea and practical application of ownership of content should also be open to change. The same firms that invent and produce – endless and more and more quickly outdated – hardware devices, are producing and monopolising the content to be displayed on them, making profits on both software and hardware. There are many creative alternatives for intellectual property of content and distribution of “profits” in the making, that go beyond the singular ‘big players only’ approach, where content creators have little to no say and the content consumers are only seen as cattle to be exploited. ‘Creative Commons‘, ‘The Future of Music Coalition‘, and many more… When analysing how profits are made and revenues are distributed fairness for those who actually do the  ‘creative work’, is hard to find.

Two recent examples that show how media industry both pushes and earns from selling hardware and software (content) and what the practice of sharing is when it comes to those actually producing 'intellectual property'. For sources see note (2)

We are all aware of  the ‘digital gluttony’ that has been wakened in us by constant propagated consumerism. One’s personal economy to get unlimited access to content may deprive others from income, but to what extent ‘personal piracy’ hurts ‘corporate business’ is up to debate. The history of piracy in publishing and distribution  tells another story than what the lawyers of content business want us to believe. The title of  cultural historian and media scholar Siva Vaidhyanathan’s book published in 2003 says it all: “Copyrights and copywrongs : the rise of intellectual property and how it threatens creativity.” In the chapter “the digital moment” he sketches the impact:

The digital moment has also collapsed the distinction among three formerly distinct processes: gaining access to a work; using (we used to call it ‘reading’) a work; and copying a work. (…) Copyright was designed to regulate only copying. It was not supposed to regulate one’s right to read or share. But now that the distinctions among accessing, using and copying have collapsed, copyright policymakers have found themselves faced with what seems to be a difficult choice: either relinquish some control over copying or expand copyright to regulate access and use, despite the chilling effect this might have on creativity, community and democracy. (page 152-153)

The worst thing of this court order in favour of Stichting Brein is the wholesale BLOCKING of parts of the internet by a simple court order. Today it is Stichting Brein, tomorrow it is Stichting Zwijn (Foundation Swine), the day after Sacherijn (Chagrin), or whatever other interest group or private party that tries to claim ‘digital ownership’ by appealing to a court. We will see the court rooms reserved for months by the ‘law industry’ making a buck on limiting ‘freedom of expression’. What should be individual court cases against personal law infringement, have now become generalised measures which affects ‘fair use’ as much as ‘unfair practice’. This is were the historical idea of copyright (which was born as a tool for state or church censorship in the early days of the printing press) comes back in an ugly form: BLOCKADE.

What associations do we have with BLOCKADES? Depends who blocks whom for what and when and how. EEC BLOCKADE AGAINST IRAN, IRAN BLOCKADE AGAINST THE WEST, ISRAEL BLOCKADE OF GAZA, USA BLOCKADE OF CUBA, BLOCKADE OF WALL STREET, BLOCKADE OF WEAPONS FOR DICTATORSHIPS… So what is done to counter such kind of  blockades I asked myself and the first thing that came to mind was the Airlift of goods to break the BLOCKADE OF WEST BERLIN (June 1948 – May 1949 the start of the Cold War) ….. The town of Berlin with an open West and East sector, was split in two and West-Berlin became an island surrounded by the DDR. Roads and railways were blocked and only trough a constant airlift of goods by the Allied Forces, West Berlin survived.

So when providers delivering their goods through cables are BLOCKED we may ultimately  (if it was only a symbolic gesture to drive home the point of control of means of expression) consider ‘airlifting’ our data be it through some obsolete unused satellites, or by short wave radio, refracted (bend) radio waves between earth and ionosphere, accessible all around the globe.

THE FREE AETHER instead of THE BLOCKED INTERNET. In the last years before the downfall of the Berlin Wall, radio and computer amateurs in Hungary used radio-emission of data as a means of communication (partly so because to get a landline telephone connection in that country could take a decade or so). Such data-radio even played a role in the Hungarian support of the rising against the Ceaușescu regime in Rumania winter 1989. Dissidents all over the world have used short wave radio to get informed what was happening outside of their totalitarian nation, from the Soviet Union a few decades ago, to Cuba, still today. Radio-jamming was the answer, like digital blockades now, but jamming has always been limited to certain parts of the radio spectrum.

Inventive usage of radio-modems and de-central data distribution protocols, could once more become popular. Centralised networks make it possible to censor, block, seize, filter, ban ‘top-down’. We may need to look back at earlier models of electronic information exchange and distribution. Like FIDOnet a worldwide amateur computer network of ‘bulletin boards’ based on a tree-structure up- and download system using  telephone lines and modems. FIDO has been founded in 1984 and grew into a world wide popular communication system till 1994, the year that the internet – as we know it now – started. FIDO is still popular in the Russian Federation, as a secondary form of communication. Some see a new future for such ‘bottom-up’ ways of electronic communication (3). There are nowadays many more creative solutions to go beyond the centrally controlled cable and satellite networks, an overview would go beyond the aim of this short article, but let me mention just one other inspirational experiment of ‘netless digital network‘ (4), a citywide network that uses public transport communication systems as its ‘information carrier’:

“… an independent communication tactic; invisible digital network that does not need wires or dedicated radio frequencies. alternative communication device that helps its users to avoid such controlled and observed space as the internet. free from governmentally owned medium channels (radio frequency ranges, emission power regulations), proprietary locked technologies and cable networks…”

It is of course not my proposed strategy to propagate a full change over from one way of electronic communication to another – adapted  restrictions and controls soon would be invented for any  generalised communication alternative – it is about over-dependency on one particular way of information access. By diversifying the communication systems we use, we may make ourselves more independent. Such a practice should also be stretched beyond electronic based systems.

Homing pigeons as messengers maybe still be considered, however outrageous that may sound. May I recall here the combined use of micro-photography and pigeon carriers used during the Prussian siege of Paris (1870-71), with handwritten news protocols, photographed, tightly rolled up and tied to the leg of a pigeon, moving back and forward from Tours and Poitiers – far behind the German lines – to the besieged city of Paris. Sometimes balloons were used to transport the pigeons out the other way to find back their homing target in Paris. During the First World War pigeons have been in wide use also on the trenched battlefields in the North of France. There is even a monument in their honour in Lille. The Imperial War Museum in London does have a vitrine that show message carrier dogs running over the battlefield delivering messages and post between the trenches.

I do not suggest at all that this should be repeated in exact the same way and under similar circumstances, but the basic principles is most inspiring: the combination of ancient (pigeon carriers) and modern (early days of photography) technology. Such an ‘intermediate’ technology  usage is what I propose, it will safeguard free and independent communication for a future we can not know. It will be both fun and useful to start imagining and trying…

Notice the symbolism of the free airborne pigeon versus the threatening landlocked poisonous snake.

Citation from court order (LJN: BV0549, Rechtbank ‘s-Gravenhage , 374634 / HA ZA 10-3184) with under (5.3) a list op ‘ip addresses’ and ‘domain and sub-domain names’ to be blocked by Ziggo and XS4ALL. What is alarming is the subsequent court order (5.4) that gives Stichting Brein the right to supply (without the need to go to court) other ip-addresses, domains and sub-domains related to Pirate Bay.

5.3. beveelt Ziggo en XS4ALL binnen tien werkdagen na betekening van dit vonnis hun sub VI van de dagvaarding bedoelde diensten die worden gebruikt om inbreuk te maken op de auteurs- en naburige rechten van de rechthebbenden wier belangen Brein behartigt, te staken en gestaakt te houden, door middel van het blokkeren en geblokkeerd houden van de toegang van hun klanten tot de domeinnamen/(sub)domeinen en IP-adressen via welke The Pirate Bay opereert, te weten:






 (i) thepiratebay.org;

(ii) http://www.thepiratebay.org;

(iii) thepiratebay.com;

(iv) thepiratebay.net;

(v) thepiratebay.se;

(vi) piratebay.org;

(vii) piratebay.net;

(viii) piratebay.no;

(ix) piratebay.se;

(x) http://www.thepiratebay.com;

(xi) http://www.thepiratebay.net;

(xii) http://www.thepiratebay.se;

(xiii) http://www.piratebay.org;

(xiv) http://www.piratebay.net;

(xv) http://www.piratebay.no;

(xvi) http://www.piratebay.se.

(xvii) depiraatbaai.be

(xviii) piratebay.am

(xix) suprnova.com

(xx) themusicbay.net

(xxi) themusicbay.org

(xxii) http://www.suprnova.com

(xxiii) http://www.themusicbay.net

(xxiv) http://www.themusicbay.org

 5.4. beveelt Ziggo en XS4ALL, voor het geval dat (de website van) The Pirate Bay via andere/aanvullende IP-adressen en/of domeinnamen/(sub)domeinen dan die onder 5.3) genoemd zou gaan opereren, de toegang van hun klanten tot deze andere/aanvullende IP adressen en/of domeinnamen/(sub)domeinen te blokkeren en geblokkeerd te houden, binnen tien werkdagen na aanlevering door Brein, zowel per fax als per aangetekende brief, aan Ziggo en XS4ALL van de juiste IP-adressen en/of domeinnamen/(sub)domeinen;

The videogame piechart has been published in the November 15 issue of Newsweek in an article by Christine Thompsen in the so called “Back Story” of that magazine.
Took me a long time to find the actual source of “The Great Divide” piechart of the music industry – as  I mistrust data representations without their actual source – it has been publsihed first on July 6th 2010 in ‘The Root’ web magazine ina well documented article “The Music Industry’s Funny Money Still think a music career is an easy path to a blinged-out life? Don’t believe the hype. A whole lot of folks have to get paid before the musician does. The Root traces the money trail.”  The writers of the article do thank Don Passman, writer of  “All you need to know about the music business” for his help. That book has been published in the year 2009. The Root article can be found here…

A nice cartoon like reflection on the advantages of the old concepts of FIDO

6 Jimmy J. Jazz - Facecömic: FidoNet messaging vs. Internet e-mail (the 16th of March, 2011) (Click the picture to enlarge it and click Esc button on your keyboard to return.) I was on trip from Monday noon to Tuesday morning. My customer called me Tuesday 10 a.m. and she asked me if I had read her e-mail she had sent to me on Monday afternoon. When I started to work with PCs on the 1980's, we had world wide net of private computers called FidoNet. It was sort of Internet with Social Media, but anybody having a PC, a modem and a normal voice phoneline could join. There were thousands of private PCs all around the world changing messages. The system was built to, that: people phoned to node, hub or host during day time or on evening nodes phoned to hubs, which phoned to hosts, which phoned to each other and handled international calls. This was done twice a night, which ment that every message was delivered in every part of the world within one day! We should get rid on Internet and change back to FidoNet. In that case if my customer writes me an e-mail on Monday afternoon, whe will know that I will get it on Tuesday and I will have time for the whole day to reply on it, and she will get my answer on Wednesdat. This will help us to get rid of the unneccessary panic and plan things better.

This is a map that show the FIDOnet in Russia…

A short manifesto like text of ‘netless’ is posted on their web site…

clicl text picture to enlarge

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Yesterday I was just checking the t figures of war death in Afghanistan… for an article I am writing and saw this banner pop up, I did know already because of ‘the news’: we will have a one day strike soon… will that halt the launch of the War Of Copyright Owners?

A discomforting thought is, that Wikipedia (the English version) can and will be blocked out in one move… Time to have a non-central, distributed version of this network that will be as difficult to ban, block or erase as ‘poisonous weeds’… I may have failed to follow Wikipedia networking technology, but my guess is that a distributive version, that keeps the functionality of debate and update, can be constructed.

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Received from an editor a file through YouSendIt today and I was confronted again with the aggressive SPAMMER tactics of this enterprise… Now they suggest you to NOT download anymore but keep files available on-line… “free” it says… but filling in their “free” form means being exposed to endless SPAM messages of their only so many days options. Now the classic download is almost hidden and sometimes the clickable download button does NOT work anymore… though savvy as I am, I use a Control Click which gives me a classic download.

the screen with the non designed download button that often does not respond

It is a shame, a service that is so aggressive and misleads its customers. I prefer the free low key service of wetransfer.com (up top 2 Gigabyte files, multiple files automatically zipped, no spam – until now) that shows only big advertisement pictures during up or download.


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SKYPE is OUT TODAY… wednesday 22 december 2010 around 18:00 hours Amsterdam time. A storm of notifying Twitters whirls over the Internet while millions of users are left to wonder.

Mercury plays his flute and makes the watchman Argus doze... detail from painting by Abraham Danielszoon Hondius 1627

Quick & Swift Messengers are no godlike beings like the god Mercuy or the all powerful Hanuman. Cable networks, data distribution centres and many more things  need to function perfectly to make the being here & there at the same time possible.

For those who took ubiquitous connectivity for granted, the land of failure is always in sight, right over the horizon and today we have a glimpse of a world without SKYPE…

Ardent lovers will not be affected they will switch over – with ease – to telepathy.


Note made a few hours later when SKYPE has been going on for a few seconds and off for many minutes several times and skimming the surface of SKYPotology and its technical feats & shortcomings, I bump into this dated article, taht still seems to point to a way to come to an insight. Let me quote and pass on the link + the interesting map all on ‘Accelerating The Internet‘ it is from 2007, but it may help to link to newer researches by these knowledgable people:

Problem Statement

Peer-to-peer (P2P) applications are consuming a significant fraction of the total bandwidth of Internet service providers (ISPs). The increasing P2P traffic is becoming a financial burden to the ISPs and if not well addressed may lead ISPs to block or put strict rate limits on P2P traffic.

An Interesting Idea: PCP Framework

PCP: ISP-compliant, Peer-friendly P2P

We address this important issue by proposing a new framework, PCP, for designing P2P applications that smoothly fit into the global Internet. In the framework, an ISP decides on how much of its bandwidth is to be allocated to P2P applications, and P2P nodes inside the network query the allocated bandwidth and adopt a peer-friendly algorithm to fairly share the allocated bandwidth.

How PCP can help both ISPs and P2P?

Using the typical percentile-based charging model widely used in the Internet and real traffic traces, we show that an ISP can allocate a large amount of bandwidth to P2P traffic without increasing its financial cost. We also show that a distributed, peer-friendly algorithm can be implemented to share the allocated P2P bandwidth.


A Detailed World Map of Skype Super-Nodes

What is wrong ?

It has been increasingly popular to build voiceoverIP (VoIP) applications based on peertopeer (P2P) networks in the Internet. However, many such VoIP applications freeride the network bandwidth of Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Thus their success may come at a cost to ISPs, especially those on the edge of the Internet. Their performance may degrade if ISPs take proactive measures to prevent freeriding.

Using largescale end-to-end measurements, we first conduct a systematic analysis of Skype supernode network. We then investigate the impacts of the access capacity constraint and the AS policy constraint on the VoIP quality of Skype. We show that even when freeriding is no longer possible for only 20% of supernodes that are located in stub ISPs, the overall VoIP quality of Skype degrades significantly, and a large percentage of VoIP sessions will have unacceptable quality. This result clearly demonstrates the potential danger of building VoIP applications based on P2P networks without taking into account operational models of the Internet.

How to make it right?

Time diversity in traffic patterns can be used to be (implicitly) ISP-compliant. We show that when using time diversity in traffic patterns in choosing supernodes, about 75% of supernodes in stub ASes can still be active after using time diversity in the experiment; as a result, about 15% of previously inactive supernodes become active, leading to approximately 60% increase in the relay capacity, which results in the observed VoIP quality improvement.


Another source that helped me a bit to understand what might be the problem with SKYPE is “A Brief Primer on the Tech Behind Skype, P2PSIP and P2P Networks” dating from November 2010. We may try to understand at least what the technology is we are using and at the same time make some sense of the fights over new regulations of the Internet in the USA that also touch on technologies described here…

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