Miro Internet TV Blog - Archive for December, 2008

Google Affirms Net Neutrality, Britannia Doesn’t

Friday, December 19th, 2008

Unless you’ve been stuck in an ice storm this week, you probably saw the Wall Street Journal article pronouncing Net Neutrality dead (and claiming that Google and Obama were dancing on its grave). The authors seemingly mixed up Net Neutrality with edge caching; it’s the difference between holding subscribers hostage —by charging creators for access to consumers—, and storing multiple copies of your website (or content) on servers around the world, so viewers can quickly fetch the nearest copy. The latter is not a violation of Net Neutrality principles.

Google shot down the WSJ article in a blog post, claiming that the article was just plain wrong. Much of the blogosphere joined in the fight, the majority being none too happy with WSJ’s article or their condescending response to the fiasco.

While the dispute received little mainstream coverage, it was still of use to the Net Neutrality movement. We reaffirmed the importance of Net Neutrality, reassessed our definitions, and made it clear that if there’s ever a serious breach of Net Neutrality, a lot of people will hit the ground running.

Meanwhile, over in the UK, Net Neutrality is mocked wholesale by the ISP’s themselves. Neil Berkett, CEO of Virgin Media (an ISP), has been quoted as saying, “This net neutrality thing is a load of bollocks.” Torrent Freak reports that Virgin Media, along with a slew of other British ISP’s, have opted to filter, throttle, or otherwise degrade certain protocols, notably Bittorrent.

This belligerent attitude, by the very people we pay to run our internet, is very disturbing, especially as the market becomes more consolidated. It’s one thing to be able to boycott your provider if you have a viable alternative, but entirely different when you’re dealing with a powerful duopoly or monopoly. Should UK internet users revolt? Seek regulation? Move to where the internet flows free (I’d like to go there too)?

Anyone from the UK (or elsewhere) care to weigh in here?

Media That Matters, Creative Commons, & Filmmakers

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

In collaboration with friends at Arts Engine, Creative Commons, and Intelligent Television, I was interviewed for a case study about filmmakers and Creative Commons licensing — scroll down to watch or download the video.

Arts Engine is the organization behind the Media that Matters Film Festival; an annual showcase of twelve short films that address some of the most pressing social issues of the day. This unique festival distributes its festival DVD with a Creative Commons license (BY-NC-ND). Participating filmmakers are obligated to choose open distribution and licensing, which is great because they’re exposed to concepts that might otherwise cross their cultural radar.

Furthermore, the ninth annual Media that Matters Film Festival is now accepting submissions of short pieces on social issues from all comers (finalists are awarded $1000 each). Hurry though, the deadline is January 9th!

Finally, Media that Matters is also distributed on Miro. You can subscribe with 1-click.


Media That Matters: A CC Case Study is available in several formats (thanks to Fred!):


Creative Commons License

Media That Matters: A CC Case Study is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license.



Video Production


Intelligent Television


David Frankfurt


Jonathan Smith


The Great Pumpkin (remix) instrumental” by Lens Tamana
2006 – Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution

Independence Day” by MC Jack in the Box
2006 – Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution

new comment system

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

We’re experimenting with the suddenly popular IntenseDebate comment system. We think it might be really useful on the Miro Guide someday, but want to try it here first. Unfortunately, it looks like it hides previous comments from before today… not sure if there’s a way to change that. Old comments should be syncing up in a couple hours.

So, what do you think about IntenseDebate for comments on this blog?

NRK Distributes Popular Kids Show via Bittorrent & Miro

Monday, December 8th, 2008

NRK, Norway’s public broadcaster, is distributing their original kids series, Kometkameratene, in full HD with Bittorrent. They recommend Miro as the easiest way for their viewers to subscribe (and give step-by-step instructions) on their blog post.

NRK isn’t a newcomer to Bittorrent; they’ve used it to distribute their shows before and saved serious hosting money in doing so.

I recently spoke with Eirik Solheim of NRK (the mastermind behind these projects), who says that they plan to release more series using Bittorrent and focus on making the user experience even better with Miro. They’re developing software to help them streamline the publishing process and to act as a web guide for users. We’ll put together a co-branded version of Miro for them.

This is truly revolutionary stuff; an established public broadcaster using a fully open source distribution chain with peer to peer delivery! I’ll be sure to keep you posted as new NRK series and projects emerge.

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