299 posts • joined 24 Dec 2011
Re: All about build quality
My 8-year-old Nokia 61 has been dropped on concrete so many times, that there are more chipped/scratched bits on the metal casing, than smooth bits, and each time it just bounces. A year ago there developed a small scratch on the screen.
It even survived being under several inches of water and the screen visibly filling up before powering itself off... two weeks in the airing cupboard with some silica gel and it's still fine.
"In fact studies have shown that free copying makes near zero impact on DRM infected purchases."
First of all DRMed purchases are only a subset of paid-for or what would have been paid-for creative output.
Secondly, "studies have shown" means a study has argued. I don't agree with every argument I hear. Do you? Perhaps you'd give a citation and tell us which bit you support. Because it seems to me trite economics, virtually beneath saying, that providing something for free destroys the market for it.
You also say there is "zero evidence that [advertising] is at the expense of purchases via the copyright cartels" - which seems to me incorrect, utterly, because the advertising money helps fund and incentivise the locker which destroys the market for goods. And in any case it's a form of profiting from theft.
Finally, you write that there is "zero evidence"; yet as I say, not only is it trite economics, as I mentioned above, but also in part counterfactual, owing not least to the incommensurability of today's market with one un-wrecked by digital copyright theft of 18 years ago - but counterfactual or not we can still make arguments and dismiss others. Methodologically, "zero evidence" claims seem to me deeply iffy in this case - you just mean you don't have any, which given how little you've thought about in a rounded way seems unsurprising.
Re: Would Huawei exist without being propped up by the Chinese government?
So true, but then it's all a question of degree: we subsidise credit and throughput in our economies in the West through insuring banks, and through a wide variety of mechanisms, e.g. redistribution, automatic stabilisers, infrastructure builds, socialisation of healthcare to keep costs down, etc etc.
Granted, China take it to an astonishing degree.
You had string? You were LUCKY. When I were a lad, we had to bang pan on the coal stove in morse code if we wanted to communicate owt.
Re: If Huawei are the future....
I've had to revive my Huawei G300 Ascend, for complicated financial reasons. Nobody can understand a word I say on it, at all, the voice quality is that bad. Put the SIM in a 13 year old Nokia, no problem. 512mb RAM also rules out a whooole lot of software, even the latest Gmail update. It's pretty painful to use.
Re: Seems clear to me
The question isn't the revenue, the question is what portion of the revenue they were willing or even able to give to EE, given P4U's very large liabilities it had to service..
Re: "offered repeated opportunities to propose competitive ... terms"
Until you see the figures you don't know what it translates as. It could mean just what it says.
Re: The key point
I don't think it's got any assets, just liabilities. Its premises seem to have all been sold to a third party on leaseback arrangements in order to create a windfall for BC Partners.
Re: MOST IMPORTANT!!!!!!!
Right, because people in India like to lick and eat their phones.
Re: Stating the ovbvious - Rip Off Britain and West
No I think the equivalent phone in the UK is about £80 or at most £130 (Motorola Moto G). The higher end phones you're talking about have 2gb ram, 2.3ghz quadcore processors, 8mp-20mp cameras, and other snazzy bits.
Re: Downvotes on an Obituary?
I don't know, nor do I know why you got three downvotes in response to that question, as opposed to an actual comment which surely wouldn't have been much more difficult.
The downvoting reminds me of what Peter Dinklage's character describes in GoT, of a third party offscreen who would take pleasure in nothing except bashing beetles with a rock and going "ugh, ugh, ugh", merely because he could.
Re: That was a good article @Sandtitz
Hi Sandtitz, no it's not completely legal; where the parties are not equally sophisticated, then any onerous or unusual terms cannot be incorporated unless they are appropriately brought to the attention of the customer - both under the Spurling v Bradshaw red hand rule (an onerous and unusual term must be brought to the attention of the offeree to be incorporated as a term); and under the snapping up rule, that where someone has not understood the price, and the price is dramatically at variance with what is normal, then the requisite intention to create legal relations does not exist - Hartog v Colin Shields.
These are common law rules but I have no doubt whatever they are norms of contract law replicated in civil jurisdictions. Europe has been looking after consumers since the days of Rome when dodgy charioteers would have tried it on and I have no doubt that a contract would not subsist in these situations. If a person chooses to pay that is another matter.
Re: NFC woes to come
"I can see the banks jumping onto Apple Pay, and leaving Android handsets with NFC by the wayside as they have been doing since 2010."
Does not being able to pay by NFC really leave a handset "by the wayside"? My Moto G at least does swipey-text, has easy file transfer, and is actually affordable - these are much more valuable to me than being able to pay by NFC, a benefit by the way which seems to me is solely for retailers who can save five seconds per purchase (big deal...) rather than consumers who will likely be paying much more for the privilege, when all costs are apportioned.
Re: I'm going to catch hell for this...
"Or , if allergic to dogs, don't work in a job that has a legal requirement to carry assistance dogs."
Let me get right what you've just said: "if you're disabled, don't work in a job which as a legal requirement to do things which your disability prevents you from performing".
I think you're misunderstanding the nature of the "legal requirement". It's not absolute. It just typically requires that you make reasonable adjustments.
Re: Ought to be so easy...
"a lot of rotten/uncivil/evil behavior seems to be excused under "cultural values" and "ethnicity" in Europe and America these days. "
Fuck off back to the Daily Mail and Telegraph.
Re: Step in the right direction - BUT
The Redmi 1S looks great but no 4G :-(
Re: Moto X Expensive!
Yeah I think he's mixing up the G and the X - having "memory issues" with 2 gigs of RAM in the X is a bit unlikely unless he's managed to port a Windows or OSX virtual machine onto it or something...
Re: EU law proportionality test
"Sorry, but no.
The law is there to protect the consumer and the driver. "
Well, no, the protection of producers' positions is not the objective of EU law. It is the creation of an efficient market which protects consumers, and through efficiency allocates resources best (thus increasing prosperity and raising the living standards of workers, supposedly). It tends to look down on producer-welfarism.
The minimum wage issue you mention is quite interesting in EU law terms - whether local sectoral minimum wage requirements (including a sectoral or guild-based requirement to pay for health insurance) trump freedom to provide services. Seems to me a question of fact as to the Luxembourg position. I instinctively think customer benefit should trump protectionism here - but my rationale is weak, because on the other hand you have fixed-price guilds for German legal work, and that system works very well indeed.
Whether an outright ban of Uber is the least restrictive option in fulfilling those of the objectives you mention which are legitimate under the Treaties, I very much doubt. I don't see why Uber can't increase its driver checks and require health checks.
As for liability insurance, that issue arises solely from the possibly illegitimate ban by the regional court just now - obviously Uber drivers wouldn't be permitted by Uber to drive without being fully insured.
Re: EU law proportionality test @ Ledswinger
This isn't a political question, it's a legal question solely concerning economic rights - no fundamental rights, no human rights, no free association or speech, no protection of consumers, no special strategic rationale for resource security, no special cultural protection rationales, no public health, nothing like that.
It's just old economy vs new economy. And the entire history of the caselaw affirms that where only economic rights are concerned then the Treaties apply.
Germany knows the jurisprudence on free movement of services, this is pretty standard stuff. They banned Cassis de Dijon liquer in 61 I think because "it wasn't strong enough for the German drinker..." And that was overturned in a trice by the CJEU, it's par for the course.
Truly, any EU lawyer is very familiar with the silly justifications for local protectionism which member states put forward on political grounds.
EU law proportionality test
Free movement of services TFEU Article 56 http://euwiki.org/TFEU#Article_56 (Uber is based in NL), this is a classic case where the restriction on trade has no legitimate object permitted by the treaties (or by the Luxembourg court's jurisprudence). It claims to be for the defence of the consumer (which is a permitted object), however, we know that these restrictions on Uber are for the defence of the provider, i.e. existing taxi drivers!
Nor is it a proportionate measure rationally connected with any such acceptable object, nor is it the least restrictive option in obtaining such an object.
So expect the CJEU to urinate noisily all over the German law in question.
@ Mike Bell "A unit that is warranted in its entirety"
Actually all consumer purchases are "warranted" in the UK for up to six years under the Sale of Goods Act 1979, depending on how much you paid for it and thus what would in theory be just for a small claims judge to hold "reasonable durability" requires. Apple's gratuitous warranty and ridiculous Applecare is on top of that much more weighty obligation which you've already paid for, and it replicates it and (in the case of Applecare) charges you twice for it.
A term purporting to exclude batteries from the warranty only applies to the gratuitous "warranty" which the firm applies on top of your statutory rights. Even if it claims to exclude statutory liability, explicitly, such a clause will tend to be void under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999, depending on what seems just in a given case (the test for an unfair term is "creates an imbalance in the rights and obligations of the parties, to the detriment of the consumer, and contrary to the requirements of good faith.") So the more you pay for the phone, the more likely it is your battery ought to last a veery long time.
I saw someone
Using a Vertu phone the other day. A leather-coated Nokia s40 machine. Similar waste of money on a phone with lesser functionality than what's cheaper.
Re: Acidity ...
Which cheap ones would you say were least acid? Sadly I have chronic gastritis so can tolerate literally about two coffees a year, would like to be able to have more as it can really help awakeness etc.
Oh he's got an ethic alright, it's called egotism. It runs something like this. "Actions which please me are morally more preferable than those which do not".
It's pretty medieval. It's also false.
Re: True, but...
"The UK's not exactly a shining example of an empowered populace, either. Easily distracted by 'Bread & Circuses'..."
I think you're mistakenly confusing the presence of slobs within a populace, with the absence of a rich set of political liberties.
Dead Steve Jobs
You've just given me the perfect idea for a Halloween costume...
Is that going to lose me friends? (assuming I have any..)
Re: Can't beat the original
I can still remember the sound of the things loading.
(high pitched hum followed by quick chirp several tones higher)
(same high pitched hum followed by succession of high-pitched chirps like crashing waves of sound, continuing till almost loaded)
Several minutes later - crashes at end of recording.
Repeat for several hours until bootleg game loaded.
Re: Wrong way?
I'd do it with a Lenovo Yoga because it's a glorious piece of kit.
Re: Why Special Treatment for Utility Suppliers?
I agree, the reasons are severalfold.
Mainly that our legal system is complex, jargon-ridden, and costly and time-consuming to use; consumers don't have standing to injunct utilities to desist in using certain practices with other consumers (so the utility just settles, or pays up in small claims, no precedent is set). Even were a precedent set, nobody would know how to use it. The regulators don't even use the ordinary rules of contract formation to guide their regulatory instructions. The law views the disutility (or displeasure) of a breach of contract as relating to that individual alone, in consumer cases - rather than looking at aggregated disutility. I could go on and on.
But it's a problem with the nature of consumer law in the UK, and the ordinary norms of the law of contract not applying to it because of collective action problems, and structural problems with our legal and regulatory systems.
Re: BT Retail used to be masters at this
BT's business model: offer people expensive, uncompetitive contracts, because they don't trust other brands.
Actually ironically BT own plusnet I gather, who offer the same at vastly reduced prices - which goes to show there's price-reference-point marketing going on too.
I think there are new Ofcom regs which preclude the 12-month auto-rollover contracts since a few months ago. But yeah you're right it has been extraordinary - and likely not enforceable under the ordinary rules of contract formation.
Mother in law etc
Good one that, made me smile. But if Winphone is a "cash-drainer" (right), what isn't in the Smartmobe stakes, OS-wise? That's the problem Andrew rightly identifies.
Winphone - out (+ cash-drainer as you say).
Symbian s90 2015 edition - great but as with all custom OSs, no app ecosystem, doomed
Android - too much competition, much of it pulling in massive Chinese govt subsidy. So it's this last option that is the only possibility and yet possibly not even one where a business case can be made.
I think Nokia should have continued their project to make mobile cellular security cameras based on the 3310 phone long ago!
Re: Please tell me I'm wrong...
Yes Bronek I think you've basically seen the big picture there, that's very well summed-up.
That's the strongest argument I can think of why this part of the pact is utterly objectionable.
Re: Please tell me I'm wrong...
I disagree, if you look at the history of the English law of contract, judges have been looking after the little guy on and off since long before the Sale of Goods Act was passed in, wait for it, 1893... now thanks to EU law, companies can't use any terms with consumers, which would be unfair and create imbalances of rights and duties contrary to the requirements of good faith.
If you're talking about industrial sectors having political influence then that's a different question, of politics not law, and you're free to lobby policymakers too, it just happens that you don't have time and you probably can't claim to be an employer of tens of thousands.
Re: Oh really
"apart from the tiny icons", eh? Honestly if I want to look at a Windows 7/XP style desktop and start menu through the wrong end of a telescope I can do that from my home.
Then trying to actually pick out the correct liliputian menu option requires another further Superman-style feat.
This isn't a bug, it's something completely misconceived.
I bought an 8 inch windows 8 tablet, and had to reject it, reject as in the contract law term of art, because it wasn't fit for purpose. the icons were teeeeny, and i couldn't get the onscreen keyboard to reliably come up, plus there is no swype type keyboard on windows 8. frequently, the keyboard would obscure the field i was typing into, something which manipulating the webpage behind would not alleviate, as it would snap back behind the keyboard as soon as i began to type again. as for intel atom processors, for the birds...
crap. so i wonder if 8 inch windows 8 is just shite as a concept.
Re: What about the authors?
"Only heavy readers are likely to spend more than $10/month on books. "
1) If that's true, then those heavy readers may be keeping the publishing industry, and thus writing, afloat. Allow them to pay $10 only and both may sink.
2) I spend about $100 a month on books, and don't consider myself a heavy reader. But I am a student.
@Anonymous Dutch Coward
How did you do that with your fonts???
It's like putting a twin-turbo V8 in a milkfloat and leaving the 15mph speed limiter on.
Re: Bread. Butter.
I think it's pretty poor form of you to just accuse him of being a shill.
When he says that the 'US govt is hanging out the tech industry to dry', I think he means they're not any longer encouraging as much as they ought, the work of the NSA in detecting and stopping e.g. Chinese industrial espionage and technology theft, such as diminishes US industrial and thus taxation revenues. The interests of the US people just like your interests are necessarily tied up with the health of the economy and government revenues wherever you live. Barring some extraordinary moral wrong involved in it, you'd do well to support that health. I don't think 'snooping' is such an extraordinary moral wrong, and if it is, there are numerous extraordinary circumstances (the threat of terrorism and said espionage) which call for it.
So when he says he knows what side his bread is buttered on, I think he's talking about all of your bread(s), unless of course you live in China or some other techno-kleptocracy.
Great but poison for RSI sufferer
Having just enjoyed a tablet for the last three weeks I can say the specs sound great and yet it's utterly, utterly useless for me as an RSI-sufferer, I'm having the most whopping pain flare-up I've had in years after reading a few pdf e-books on an ipad, so until they invent a tablet which can be controlled very easily and totally by voice (which in reality is impractical because the voice gets tired so quickly) it's all just shite shite shite to me.
but if i wasn't suffering from this i would choose the xperia z2, it sounds like the best thing on the market tabletwise.
Re: They have learned actually
"...and you're a cultural marxist."
Wow, I never realised the Torygraph/Stormfront demographic pitched up here.
Re: @Condiment At Last !
the scholarly convention is to speak of the activity of the union during its entire history, as being the activity of the union, not the eec, nor the ecsc, or anything like that. which you'd know if you knew what you were talking about.
the equal pay act 1970 was barbara castle's random act of doing good, against the wishes of her prime minister who was on holiday and unreachable. it wasn't a requirement of eu law unlike all the post-1972 law.
@Condiment Re: At Last !
And where did those laws come from? That's right - the EU. Article 119 of the 1957 Treaty of Rome. "Each Member State shall during the first stage ensure and subsequently maintain the application of the principle that men and women should receive equal pay for equal work."
We signed up in 1972 not in 1993. From that date on, thanks to the European Communities Act 1972 s 2(1) all our courts were obliged to enforce domestically ALL Treaty provisions and CJEU rulings on non-discrimination, and hold the state itself liable where it had failed to implement directives.
@Rikkeh Re: Good!
Spot on except for a little warning which needs tagging on to your good history lesson.
The Charter rights - I'm not sure if they can found a cause of action on their own - but even if they can, they are only invocable when one of the EU institutions or Member States is applying EU law, and *weighed*, at that, in a balancing exercise alongside the other objectives of the measure which are at stake. They're not absolute rights, they're all very qualified inotherwords, and invocable under limited circumstances. Which is a shame as some of them are quite good, e.g. the right to competent administration!
Re: At Last !
Outlawed sex discrimination in employment terms and conditions including pay and pensions.
Re: Poor Nigel Farage
"You may have missed that it was the EU that created this problem in the first place, they are only rectifying the previous mistake now!"
I see so you want to ban "mistake[s]"? As long as you have mechanisms for continually refining and revising a legal order, which the EU seems to have, then it seems to me either you should take issue with the underlying legal order (the free movement of factors of production), or you should propose refinements, or you should shut up, but to just say that because there was a regulatory policy you disagree with (without even saying why) then the EU should not exist, seems to me a very a weak argument.
"Well the court clearly said that the directive violates Euro Human Rights law"
OK the Court of Justice of the European Union is not any kind of authority on human rights law - that role is for the ECtHR in Strasbourg which is an entirely unrelated entity to the EU. The CJEU ruling does not bear upon the UK's Human Rights Act s 6(1) or s 19 obligations (to comply with ECtHR rulings) or its general ECHR obligations. I think it's entirely possible the Strasbourg Court would take a different view. The CJEU is under all sorts of massive political pressure because of the incredible unpopularity of the EU as an entity within some electorates. The ECtHR is under no such pressure and can take a much longer view in theory.
"Of course someone is still going to have to take UK Gov to court to force them to obey."
The European Commission will do that if it's an important enough case, however, even Joe Bloggs can do that in his local county court afaik, thanks to s 2(1) of the ECA 1972
Re: ARM vs x86?
"we would see no reason for Apple not to begin using the A8 in its laptops"
Quite so re the x86s - there is a very good reason why Apple might not begin using the A8 in laptops and that's Boot Camp. At the moment nobody has to make much of a decision between Windows and Mac - buying a Mac allows both. But the A8 wouldn't allow that. There are important applications where the Mac versions are very inferior to the Windows, e.g. Dragon Naturallyspeaking Legal.
@MrDamage Re: I find it amusing
"Most movies "fail to recoup", not due to piracy, or being bad, but by this wonderful little device called "Hollywood Accounting"."
While tax losses can indeed be valuable to some companies, and there have indeed been known to be some dubious arrangements involving investment banks, these are actually ways of injecting MORE actual revenue and investment into the industry, rather than less - the expenditures they incur, do genuinely go to hiring people to master their art, pay their bills, and keep their skills up for another day when they'll make the next masterpiece which will give you joy at the movie theatre. The accounting trick is to show that a loss was made.
However PIRACY is a different matter. It can only divert revenue away from the industry and the very real jobs it creates. The truth about business is when you're in it, revenue broadly must match investment in the long run. If there is some additional injection from investment banks trying to make a deliberate loss, that's a bonus, but at the end of the day, you can't buck the market, and the market needs buyers.
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