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* Posts by Barrie Shepherd

128 posts • joined 6 Feb 2008

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Oz metadata retention won't include URLs: report

Barrie Shepherd

As I see it they are trying to hose down the public outrage.

They don't need to know from your ISP that you visited www.naughtysite.com IF they have a warrant to monitor the traffic of www.naughtysite.com.

They know from the legal monitoring of www.naughtysite.com what IP addresses accessed it, so it's simple to trawl their ISP stored "free access" metadata to find out who that naughty person was.

In other words so long as they monitor the IPs of connections made to a site for which they have a legal interception warrant they will know who accessed it. Sort of reverse engineering!

No amount of hosing down will change this.

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New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records

Barrie Shepherd

Re: Curious?

They don't trust anyone who doesn't speak American as a native language.

Fixed it!

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British Lords: Euro 'right to be forgotten' ruling 'unreasonable and unworkable'

Barrie Shepherd

Re: so..

Equally (currently) you could just type his name into Google-dot-another country or just com.

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Barrie Shepherd

More common sense than the other House

+1 to the un-elected house.

Not tarred with the need to garner votes or bend to influence from corporations and other world governments they have made a very common sense statement. Lets hope the lot at the other end of the corridor take heed.

Lord Denning, and his friend on the Clapham Omnibus, would be impressed.

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Report: American tech firms charge Britons a thumping nationality tax

Barrie Shepherd

BIgMac comparison

When comparing product cost between countries it may be better to compare in BigMacs i.e. the local price of the product divided by the local price of a BigMac. :-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Mac_Index

Problem is easily getting the daily cost of a BigMac (without visiting an outlet) is not easy as they have not yet got onto the financial commodity market lists.

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Facebook goes TITSUP across WORLD! Who will look at your cousin's baby NOW?

Barrie Shepherd

They had to replace their routers as the old ones did not have a wide enough NSA back door.

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'Good job, NSA! You turned Yahoo! into an encryption beast'

Barrie Shepherd

ha Ha Ha

All the naughty boys are now using Yahoo to avoid the NSA Hahaha - the NSA are already there waiting with the decrypt keys.

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Three's money man reveals UK mobe firms' DARK PRICING dealings

Barrie Shepherd

Seperate contracts

I seem to remember that the handset subsidy was allowed by the the Regulator at the start up of mobile phone Networks. Handsets were so expensive, as portion of average monthly earnings, that there would be very slow uptake and carriers would effectively have no business model.

That has now changed and handsets are far less expensive but carriers have held onto the subsidy model so they can capture punters with contracts for the "latest and greatest" - effectively distracting punters from assessing the best airtime deals around.

This is now distorting the business as those who don't bother to upgrade to the latest iThingy are still paying for the privilege (through airtime costs) of others who do upgrade through the inflated call costs under pinning the subsidy. Carriers are not charities they just off set the cost of subsidy over the airtime costs to all. Ask yourself why if you go for a SIM only deal do you still pay the same per minute as others who have a new iThingy subsidised handset?

In my view carriers should offer airtime contracts not tied to handset purchase (after all that's all the current arrangements are) then we will see competition in the airtime costs as opposed to the current "I give you the latest and greatest" selling rather than the cost of operating the phone.

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Mens sana in fibro sano: Virgin Media network-level smut filters are ON

Barrie Shepherd

"But you already have an account with them, therefore you won't be subject to having a filter pre-configured to 'On'. And even if you did, the answer is as simple as clicking 'Off'."

Not what their email says - I have to go and manager the B thing. While to you it might be as simple as "turning it off" to me it's an unnecessary imposition on me because of other people failings. People should be free to opt in NOT have to opt out.

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Barrie Shepherd

Absolutely correct!

I want Sky to know that a policy of applying the filter in a preconfigured "On" state and then expecting me to "manage" it is absolutely abhorrent. I'm an adult and should not have to be inconvenienced by others bad parenting skills.

More importantly I am totally opposed to government censorship or censorship by any other "well meaning" groups as none of these organisations can be trusted and scope creep is inevitable.

Increasingly the only avenue left to us is to vote with our pound and leave.

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Barrie Shepherd

How do I find an ISP that does not impose this unwanted filter? I want to move away from Sky ASAP

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Scotland to test mobe signals slammer jammer

Barrie Shepherd

Re: Microcell

All Networks would have a presence on the box.

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Barrie Shepherd

....configurer one or more base stations as needed, which one controls, so that they provide good coverage of the protected area.

This would require the operator to hold a license for the spectrum - which is owned by the carriers who would not be keen on releasing spectrum for the purpose of a company blocking their signals.

If there was suitable spectrum then a GSM in a box installation like http://openbsc.osmocom.org/trac/ would suffice.

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Barrie Shepherd

I would have thought that a credible solution would be for the mobile carriers to install a base station in the prison (with Tx's serving each carrier) and for the carriers equipment to advise the prison authorities when a phone within the cell coverage was in use. This would allow more phones to be detected.

Carriers should also be able to arrange for calls from mobiles via the cell to be blocked from connection to the PSTN or just rerouted to the NAS/GCHQ :-)

A white list would allow official Warders phone through.

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Coca Cola slurps millions of MAC addresses

Barrie Shepherd

Re: More than just monitoring machines

Sure they still do AND some serve WiFi out if you buy a drink from them. The one on North Sydney station platform would serve free movie clips and I think WiFi access (for a short period). Not sure if it's still doing it at present

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Telstra tries to hose down “network management snooping” story

Barrie Shepherd

Corrections to the Telstra Statement (i.e. Guilt by omission)

“Telstra does not routinely collect or store our customers’ telecommunications data to undertake mass surveillance on behalf of Australian national security agencies." - we leave that to the Security Agencies that we permit to access our equipment.

"Telstra does not use any traffic monitoring system to conduct mass surveillance on behalf of Australian national security agencies." - We let them collect the data themselves using the equipment we have installed.

"We comply with the law and only collect and disclose information to these agencies only when we are legally required or permitted to do so." - which enables the Agency to present the information they have previously harvested as legally obtained evidence

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Amazon wants in on single-credit-card biz

Barrie Shepherd

A little late

The magnetic strip is very much on the way out - replaced by the chip - I doubt that the financial institutions will "facilitate" transfer of the chip coding to a multi vendor card arrangement.

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Digital radio may replace FM altogether - even though nobody wants it

Barrie Shepherd

I'm in the DAB+ world of Sydney and while the paper comparison says DAB+ is better than DAB it's still worse than FM and even MW!! On a clear day I could see the top of the DAB transmission tower for Sydney yet the DAB+ signal is far from error free. It drops out and error distorts if I have the receiver anywhere but by the window.

Sydney Talkback stations are on MW (and AM Stereo - but I've never seen a receiver!) which at least is a stable signal even when the set is in the bathroom for the morning swill - something the DAB set cannot deliver.

As for portable use waste of time - batteries give up sooner than the next advert break - maybe the real advocates of DAB are Duracell / EverReady?.

As others have said the use of FM is probably more in cars than homes and the UK's excellent RDS Traffic service should not be lost - on the rare occasions I drive in the Sydney rush hour I wish we had it here!!!

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Oz government knew about PRISM BEFORE Snowden leaks

Barrie Shepherd

"Documents obtained by the ABC also reveal that the Attorney-General at the time, Mark Dreyfus, was advised that the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) does not have backdoor access to the National Broadband Network."

"I see pigs flying overhead - no wait - they don't need backdoor access if the NSA and China already have it.

Ground the pigs!

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Screw you, Brits, says Google: We are ABOVE UK privacy law

Barrie Shepherd

That's correct -- everyone in the World is subject to American Laws, and the UK Authorities are happy to oblige with enforcement.

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Feds arrest rogue trucker after GPS jamming borks New Jersey airport test

Barrie Shepherd

Re: The new battlefield...

".......which limits the speed to 25mph when there's no valid GPS signal ......."

How would that work in a road tunnel? Traffic would come to a virtual standstill.

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Google erases G8 venue from Earth: Microsoft doesn't

Barrie Shepherd

Just move your street view man onto the road shadow and miraculously the building appear - Bad google!

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If you've bought DRM'd film files from Acetrax, here's the bad news

Barrie Shepherd

Re: Billy Bookshelf...

No :-)

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Feds want to fine companies that refuse wiretap requests

Barrie Shepherd

More Scope Creep

"Federal forces protest that they have been outfoxed by moves such as the shift to https and messaging encryption,"

And they will continue to be so. If if they are outfoxed what is the point of additional laws? The crims they are after will always be one step ahead and the "Federal Forces" know that - but it seems like a good excuse for having laws which will scope creep so that the whole, nominally law abiding population, can be monitored and their privacy invaded..

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Who's a Siri boy, then? Apple hoards your voices for TWO years

Barrie Shepherd

Re: Perhaps you can point us in the direction of this magic software

Start at http://www.nuance.com/for-business/by-solution/customer-service-solutions/solutions-services/inbound-solutions/voice-authentication-biometrics/spid/index.htm

"Nuance S.P.I.D. (Speaker Identification and Detection) is a comprehensive audio processing system that efficiently searches for a target’s voice within a large volume of intercepted calls, "

Not magic and if this much information can be published on the interwebs you can bet that more sophisticated tools are available at GCHQ.

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Barrie Shepherd

Ignoring the obvious why do they need to keep it for so long just how can Apple claim that the data is anonymised?

They may not store metadata with it like the IMEI / IP you were using but given the advances in voice recognition there will always be the ability to scan the data looking for conversations that match Joe Bloggs voice print.

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Magic mystery malware menaces many UK machines - new claim

Barrie Shepherd

"It initially phones home to its masters by establishing a HTTP connection to what appear to be a command-and-control server. "

So who is at the end of the address it phones home to?

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Smart metering will disrupt weather forecasts, warns Met Office

Barrie Shepherd

Saving?

Smart meters or not joe public will not save money as the supply companies will not want to see current revenue decrease. So the cost per kW will just rise to match the reduction in consumption. In other words it's heads they win tails we loose

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Remember Streetmap? It's suing Google in a UK court

Barrie Shepherd

Well there is another problem with Streetmaps the links don't link to what you have on the screen. I was trying to show how bad Streetmaps was at showing where Park West Place, London, City of Westminster, UK was.

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Barrie Shepherd

Horses for Courses

I grew up with OS 1:50,000 maps they are clear and easy to use (and I used Streetmaps to view them) but they don't have individual street names. Streetmaps then zooms into other maps which just don't cut it for me.

When you are looking for particular streets Google are "streets ahead". As an example find Park W Place on Google - clearly visible

http://streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=531500&y=179500&z=120&sv=waterloo&st=3&tl=Map+of+Waterloo+Sta,+Lambeth+&searchp=ids

as opposed to Streetmaps

http://streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=531500&y=179500&z=120&sv=waterloo&st=3&tl=Map+of+Waterloo+Sta,+Lambeth+&searchp=ids

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Movie bosses demand Google take down takedown notices

Barrie Shepherd

Every DMCA request should require a physical seal/stamp or similar to demonstrate that it has been generated by a human after a due diligence process has been completed.

Having a robot trawl through the interweb results of a search engine and throwing millions of DMCA requests out is plain wrong. Using the DCMA process to censor a transparency report is also wrong and sets a dangerous precedent for governments to use similar tactics to hide their ever increasing surveillance/monitoring of our activities.

While I'm at it the crime is copyright theft or similar is not "piracy" - I wish the enlightened (i.e. not in studios pockets) Press would start using that term as the studios have "pirated" the term to add a touch of evil to the crime. IMHO each individual act of copyright theft is a minor civil offence (and should be treated as such) but I agree that the collective impact of a number of acts may damage an industry - to date I think that "Cried wolf too much" gives a better understanding however.

I wonder if the banks will send out DMCA requests to Google claiming that even mentioning their name and addresses (never mind street view issues) encourages bank robbers to steal from them??

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This 320-gigapixel snap of London is size of Buckingham Palace

Barrie Shepherd

What has happened just to the south of Kings Cross St Pancras? - a load of houses look as though the ground has folded up around them taking the foundations with them.

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John Lennon's lesson for public-domain innovation

Barrie Shepherd

"........he's almost certainly wrong, humankind being humankind. "

Do we really need this level of Political Correctness in a technical article? The word MAN (Hu man kind) is still in it so it still presents an insult to those who have issues with (their view) sexist language - mankind has served us well lets keep it going.

Leave the English language alone lest we all fall down a humanhole in the road.

End of PC rant.

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Mind out, Apple: Ericsson leads charge against the SIM

Barrie Shepherd

The advantage of being able to move the SIM from a broken phone (or one with a flat batter) to a working friends or second phone will be lost and I can't see the Networks being keen on allowing other Networks to be added to the hardware "SIM" in the phone.

Damn silly idea designed to give what little control consumers still have back to the networks.

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Oh, those crazy Frenchies: Facebook faces family photo tax in France

Barrie Shepherd
Happy

Re: I'm sorry...

czsaloco writes; "If France keeps this up they'll find themselves shut off to the modern world as companies refuse to talk to them anymore"

That is probably what the french government raelly want - it would halt the dilution of the french language/culture/way of life/values etc.

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Global mercury ban to hit electronics, plastics, power prices

Barrie Shepherd

Re: CMOS "Button cells"?

Mage say's "Mercury based thermometers and blood pressure are long obsolete."

Not at two GP's I visit or the ward of a Hospital on another visit for blood pressure monitoring. When I asked "why" I was told that it's a cheap, reliable, accurate instrument that does not need power, calibration or significant maintenance.

If you have tried one of the "cheap" home blood pressure monitors you will find it difficult to get 3/4 successive readings even approaching the same numbers.

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Ofcom looks at contract opt-outs as users rage over price hikes

Barrie Shepherd

Time for change

"Guaranteeing a price until 2015 is tough, but when that money is needed to subsidise the cost of the latest iThingy, it's even harder. "

"free/subsidised" handsets should be banned. The concept was designed 20 years ago to get people onto the new networks. As virtually everyone now has a handset there should be no need for linking into the service provision cost.

Networks should be forced to disconnect the costs of handset purchase from service provision - the current linking creates an unfair cross-subsidy for those on SIM only deals. If people really must have the newest iThingy then let them go get finance in the open market to buy it. There would also be the benefit of less old iThing's sitting in draws and maybe the iThingy manufacturers will think about getting their costs down to consumer acceptable levels as opposed to the inflated levels they can convince a network to pay - a Network that knows it can squeeze money without effort from the final customer.

While I'm ranting can the Register start a Save Our SIM (how does one start this on Facebook?) campaign to stop the American iThingy manufactures locking our phone to them and chosen Networks with wired in SIMs - I want to roam Europe and the world swapping my SIM as the plane lands - not having to negotiate with a walled garden about which carrier they will let me use.

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Clap Google, Amazon in irons to end tax shenanigans - MPs

Barrie Shepherd

Lower Corporation Tax but apply the new level to Gross revenue not Net then they can pay their Overseas minders whatever they like for the use of the Corporate Logo from what is left.

There is precious little I can offset against Income Tax so why should Corporations be any different?

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TVShack O’Dwyer strikes deal to avoid US extradition

Barrie Shepherd

Re: Touch down

In my experience (3 flights) the Check-in, Security, Immigration and South Yorks Police staff (yes they also check you out - when I flew at least) are more draconian and "Jobs Worth" than the TSA staff I came across earlier this year on a trip to New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

I have a mental note never to use Finningley (Robing Hood) Airport again - serves them right for stealing the name from Nottinghamshire!

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New Oz road rules forbid touching mobes

Barrie Shepherd

Enforcement

Enforcement in NSW will be simple - PC Plod will draw alongside you, request that you wind the window down and promptly tase you unless you are displaying a "I have a heart condition" sticker in which case you will be pepper sprayed. It's a Police state for those who don't live here.

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Want to know what 5G mobile is? Ask this British university

Barrie Shepherd

"The other problem is that LTE, the 4G technology of choice, is about as efficient as it can get: fitting more signals into the same frequency band just isn't possible."]

A brave statement or was it intended to be a challenge to the boffins?

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Lancashire man JAILED over April Jones Facebook posts

Barrie Shepherd

This guy is now totally alienated against society for what I believe to be an excessive abuse of power by the bench. If the bench applied the same degree of sentencing for crimes where peoples property was invaded, members of the public suffered physical harm and criminals (white and blue collar) caused people to loose hard earned savings I'd not complain. But my observation is that "prisons are too full" so cannot take these "minor" offences.

I hope the guy wins an appeal but that he suffers more public humiliation for his stupidity - NOT for posting, no matter how inappropriate, material on a website but for being a complete dimwit.

When I was at school "Sticks and stones may break my bones - but names will never hurt me" was what we were told when people said things that "hurt" us - wherever happened to these very good mantras?

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LASER STRIKES against US planes on the rise

Barrie Shepherd

In New South Wales These idiot's have spoilt it for those of us who just want a laser pointer for our own (inside) entertainment (have you seen a cat trying to catch the dot:-).

It's now a serious offence (read prohibited weapon, 14 years in clink for a class 3/4 device, $5000 fine class 1/2) - more serious than a shotgun - to carry one in public.

http://www.police.nsw.gov.au/about_us/structure/operations_command/firearms/laser_pointers

"Also be aware that if you obtained the laser pointer before 18 July 2008, you will not need to obtain a permit until 1 December 2008. Thereafter, if you wish to retain your laser pointer, you will need to obtain a permit through the Firearms Registry."

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Number-plate spycams riddled with flaws, top cop admits

Barrie Shepherd
WTF?

SO if the ANPR system is so good why;

- are there still many stolen vehicles not detected until they turn up burnt out in a country lanes?

- can my defense lawyer not ask for a listing of my movements, as detected by the APNR system, to demonstrate that it was unlikely that I committed a crime in Bristol, say, when I was driving towards Newcastle

- are untaxed vehicles still untaxed

ANPR will suffer (if has not already) scope creep towards the fully monitored population.

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Watchdog probes rules for naughty mobe fondling on flights

Barrie Shepherd

Re: if

Fuzz says;

"If there was a chance of anything bad happening then it would have happened because I'd guess most planes these days have at least one device that has been accidentally or unknowingly left on during take off."

This is a perfectly reasonable conclusion however lets say all passengers on an A380 have their Kindle /iPad 's on during take off - that's a potential 600 transmitters all trying to communicate with home. Unless significant testing demonstrates this will not upset aircraft navigation I'd rather people did the right thing and have a 15-20 minute holiday from their electronic world.

BTW I don't see any difference between a fondle slab and a phone - they are both using the same radio comms systems.

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Microsoft's new retro-flavoured logo channels Channel 4

Barrie Shepherd

For me the Channel 4 logo (and associated jingle) is probably one of the most successful (and pleasing) graphics of the last century - well done MS for catching up!!

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Assange granted asylum by Ecuador after US refused to rule out charges

Barrie Shepherd

Looks like we are in for a cat and mouse game with Assange finding a way out of the Embassy with a following car chase through London towards an, as yet, unidentified airfield. The chase will have the obvious flashing blue lights and unmarked vans all shadowed by the US G men, who have their own agenda, probably in helicopters disguised as News Crew.

Ultimately Assange will get to a plane which will take off - Britain will claim it did everything it could to arrest him and Ecuador will be doing some grandstanding.

Then the plot goes two ways;

a) The plane is intercepted in international airspace by a F1-11 which "escorts' it to a rendition friendly nation or;

b) Assange arrives in Ecuador to a hero's welcome but 6 months later Ecuador suddenly finds it'self in receipt of a dollop of US aid. Assange then mysteriously looses his Diplomatic status "new evidence of his serious crimes has been brought to the attention of the Ecuadorian Government" and a midnight flight lands on US soil with one passenger escorted by 20 marines. Ecuador and the US become the best of friends and Sweden bows out on the basis of "his crimes in the US are more serious (sic) than those he is only accused of in Sweden"

Whichever way the plot goes Assange is going to end up in US hands.

Justice will not have been done and I will forever think Sweden could have done it differently.

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Google, PayPal, banks, mobile networks in pay-by-bonk peace summit

Barrie Shepherd

Not for me

As PayPal are involved it looks like I will be avoiding whatever payment system eventuates.

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Why British TV drama is crap – and why this matters to tech firms

Barrie Shepherd

Re: British TV drama is NOT crap

If you want to see really crap TV drama then check out the Free to Air offerings on Australian TV - mind you it's hard to find a complete programme between all the adverts. If you do the Networks will make sure you miss chunks by never keeping to any published time schedule.

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Google ordered to censor 'torrent', 'megaupload' and more words

Barrie Shepherd

The day after then ban all searches for "Wine" that deliver non French sites.

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