Latest Blog Entries

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I presented a lecture in the Lake District on the 23 March to a group of university alumni, many of whom were retired or of retirement age, and living in Cumbria, near the home(s) of William Wordsworth (Notice the Wifi router on the top of William Wordsworth’s desk? - right).

RURAL ACCESS

Rural idyll isn't ideal for broadband
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Ofcom faces a real challenge in regulating unsolicited calls, yet it needs to do more, much more.

From the telephone being one of our finest inventions and an instrument of great convenience and advantage, it is rapidly, and for all too many, becoming the bane of their lives. 

UNACCEPTABLE

Whatever the motive, and however genuine each individual call may be, the aggregate effect of the use of telephone for unsolicited calls has reached completely unacceptable levels. In this there lie several dilemmas for the policy makers.

Ofcom needs to do much, much more
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In Scotland, questions are being posed regarding the future regulatory regime for media and communications. In February, the Scottish Government published a report titled Economic and Competition Regulation in an Independent Scotland and this warrants attention.

Ofcom's performance questioned
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OFCOM NEWS

Two new members have been appointed to Ofcom’s Advisory Committee for Scotland.

Ofcom's Advisory Committees in each of the UK nations offer information and advice to Ofcom on aspects of its work, and of communications in general.

The full membership of each of the Advisory Committees represents a wide range of previous experience and skills.

The two new appointments to the Advisory Committee for Scotland (ACS) are:

Liz Leonard

OFCOM NEWS
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OFCOM NEWS

Ofcom has today published a report for the Government on the coverage, take-up, usage, price and choice of fixed and mobile broadband services in the UK, relative to other European countries.

The ‘European Broadband Scorecard’ was proposed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, to allow the Government to measure progress towards its ambition that the UK should have the best superfast broadband network of any major European country by 2015.

OFCOM NEWS
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For a year or more already, members of the Consumer Forum for Communications(CFC) have been discussing measures to stem the flood of nuisance calls and texts.

Concerns for privacy and personal data
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I am sitting in an interesting session at the UNESCO conference in Paris entitled Towards Knowledge Societies (25-27 February 2013), which is a review of the 10 years since the World Summit on the Informaiton Society (WSIS+10).

The session was focused on ‘cultural and linguistic diversity: exporing economic and educational aspects of local content’. The panel dealt with general issues about the Internet and local content, but also touched on the UK, particularly Scotland and Wales.

Infrastructure

Local content improves with internet infrastructure
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The Chair of Ofcom’s national Advisory Committee for Scotland (ACS), Professor Philip Schlesinger, has written an informative book review of Media Regulation: Governance and the Interests of Citizens and Consumers by Peter Lunt and Sonia Livingstone (London: Sage, 2012).

New book looks at the challenges facing regulators
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Are we focussing enough on the role of cities as prime drivers of social and economic hope and growth, rather than as sinks of deprivation and division?

In terms of communications delivery and policy the historic debate has often crystallised into comparisons between urban and rural; the advantaged and the disadvantaged; the under-served and super-served. Comparisons which looked at rural areas as very dispersed communities and cities as very concentrated communities.

The rush to the cities

Cities are the main economic drivers
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The online media complaints portal –ParentPort– has launched a one-stop shop for parents to help them keep children safe when online, watching films and playing video games.

Despite a large volume of useful tips and online safety advice already being available online, this information is often fragmented and difficult to find.

OFCOM NEWS