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Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

Welcome to Research Rewind, a weekly recap of published telecom research and blogs from Pyramid Research and Heavy Reading.

This week we look at Ethernet, illegal networks in AME, fixed vs. mobile in Latin America, Romania's telecom future, management trends and IPsec. It's all in this edition of Research Rewind.



That's Research Rewind for this week. Until next Friday, we'll see you online at Pyramid Research and Heavy Reading. May the telecom be with you!

— Matt Donnelly, Managing Editor, Pyramid Research

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DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 5:01:52 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

Learning From Illegal Networks

fgoldstein 12/5/2012 | 5:01:51 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

The mere notion that an ISP is "illegal" is offensive.  Information should not be controlled by the state, or by the monopoly granted to the president-for-life's brother-in-law.  We should be encouraging neighborhood networks and other alternative infrastructure; it's all that these countries can afford, and it's what they need to overcome the damage done to their economies by monopolies.

paolo.franzoi 12/5/2012 | 5:01:51 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

 


I am not sure illegal is the right word, unlicensed and violating the EULA maybe.


seven


 

DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 5:01:49 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

"Illegal" is not a morality argument, silly. If something is against a country's law, it's illegal. 


Now you may hate the country or government enforcing the law, you may think the law is wrong, but illegal just refers to legality, not righteousness.


That said, I do think illegal networks are helping shape how these telcos are dealing with customers. That may, even indirectly, influence policy and that's a good thing.

paolo.franzoi 12/5/2012 | 5:01:48 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME <div></div>
<div>The reason I say what I did is that a local WiFi net in the US that you sold to others would not be illegal. &nbsp;It would violate the contract with the ISP. &nbsp;You are saying that in these other countries that billing (instead of letting other folks use for free) some of your bandwidth is illegal. &nbsp;I am betting that the laws here are not consistent. &nbsp;That's why I wonder if they are actually illegal or just against contract (i.e. is it a civil or a criminal action). &nbsp;Any idea of what the jail time or the fine is for running an illegal network?</div>
<div></div>
<div>seven</div>
<div></div>
fgoldstein 12/5/2012 | 5:01:36 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

Seven,


&nbsp;


In most of these countries, there is only a vague notion of "rule of law".&nbsp; While that has been eroded severely in the US in recent years, it is not totally dead.&nbsp; In much of the AME zone, though, "law" is merely the whim of the current warlord or chieftan that occupies the Palace.&nbsp; So a legal network by definition is owned by the government/warlord or by a designee, and its content is filtered by the same.&nbsp; The US govt. is spending money on censorship-blocking tools for the rest of the world, to help get around these problems.

bkechiche 12/5/2012 | 5:01:32 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

To Phil's (and Hussam's) credit, the report points out that these networks, even if we disagree about the terminology, are teaching operators interesting lessons on how to move forwards and better respond to the needs of their customers.


On the subject of terminology, the point made is that the networks are informal. By the way, these networks do not add any additional capabilities to bypass government controls beyond those avallabale to subscribers to legal ISP service, since at the end of the day, these 'illegal networks' are merely redistributing legally purchased capacity to multiple unregistered users (so no connection here to US effort in the region to promote free speech and unrestrained internet access)


Finally, I would disagree with the flagrant misconception and crude generalization made in comments about the telecons law and regulation in the reigon. some regulators in AME are at the forefront of setting up best practice regulation that has adapted to the local needs to improve competition, innovation, coverage and quality of service.

paolo.franzoi 12/5/2012 | 5:01:31 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

mendyk,


Legally binding with potential fines is very likely.&nbsp; That is like any other contract.&nbsp; Legally binding with criminal penalties (aka Jail or Fines) probably not.&nbsp;


Would be hard for the ISP in a WiFi scenario....people share WiFi with guests all the time.


seven


&nbsp;

shygye75 12/5/2012 | 5:01:31 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

Don't most telecom services have terms-of-use restrictions that are legally binding? For instance, I can't take video service from a cable operator and then make it available to my neighbors. And dismissing regulatory agencies with generic insults is irrelevant to the concept of what is legal and what is not.

fgoldstein 12/5/2012 | 5:01:31 PM
re: Operators Stymied by Illegal Networks in AME

If the network are redistributing egally-purchased capacity to "unregistered" users, what is "illegal" about them?&nbsp; That the government doesn't get a log of who went to what web site, or who sent what webmail?&nbsp; All that seems to be illegal is a breach of the government's monopoly over the distribution information.


And while there are countries int he AME region whose regulators are not corrupt hacks, it's unfair to generalze that none are.&nbsp; If ISP service is "illegal" because it's not provided by the government monopoly, then essentially by definition that regulator is a hack.


The superior customer service offered by "illegal" networks is simple to explain.&nbsp; The primary goal of the monopoly is not to serve customers.&nbsp; It's to extract monopoly rents.&nbsp; We get that in the US all the time -- just look up "Special Access" and "Switched Access"!&nbsp;&nbsp; The secondary goal of these monopolies is to control and monitor the flow of information, by acting as a branch of the government "security services".&nbsp; Not that it hasn't happened in the US too, but the rule of law is more of a historical concept here.

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