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YEAR IN REVIEW: Governments vs the Internet

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In 2012, the Internet has been the centre of some of the most controversial laws that were passed, attempted to be passed or are in the works by governments. We started the year with SOPA and PIPA, American legislation that aimed to legitimised censorship to protect copyright owners; and ended the year with countries such as China and Russia getting the ITU involved in the regulation of the Internet. This [...]

YEAR IN REVIEW: The Most Popular Posts of 2012

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It’s nearly the end of 2012, and now its time to see and find out what Google Analytics say were the top ten posts of the year (well, technically the 25th of December last year to the 29th December this year). We do this to see some interesting trends what you, our readers, click on our site – but also because there is this unspoken competition on the site. You [...]

RUMOUR MILL: Apple to release lighter, thinner fifth-gen iPad in March

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So, just when you thought it was safe to get an iPad, an Apple blog is claiming that there will be another refresh of the line coming up in March – despite we already having a refresh back a few months ago that saw the launch of a proper 4G iPad and the iPad mini. But however, citing people familiar with the matter,┬áMacOtakara says that this new model will be [...]

Facebook brings out “Privacy Shortcuts” – now making it easier to control your privacy

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Want an easier way to manage your privacy on Facebook? The social network has now introduced a new icon on the header called “Privacy Shortcuts”. Wedged between the settings icon and the Home link, you can now find the most common (and basic) privacy options so you don’t have to go through long and often complicated boxes to control what you share online. In the panel, you can control who [...]

Australia joins US, UK in not signing new WCIT treaty

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Australia has joined its allies the United States and the United Kingdom in not signing the new ITU treaty; after a vote at the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) saw the inclusion of calls that the UN be given a greater role on regulating the Internet. “It is greatly disappointing that a consensus could not be reached,” Senator Stephen Conroy, the Communications Minister, said. “Australia worked hard to develop [...]

Tumblr goes down after “network issue”

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Don’t panic, your internet has not been cut. Tumblr has been hit with another outage, making the entire site inaccessible to all users for the past couple of hours. The problem, according to Tumblr, is network issues when trying to fix intermittent errors. “Tumblr has taken the site down in order to resolve a network issue. We will update as we know more,” the company tweeted. [blackbirdpie url="http://twitter.com/tumblr/status/278974197772988416"] [blackbirdpie url="http://twitter.com/tumblr/status/279000741706878976"] [...]

Victoria Police: Don’t, whatever you do, use Apple Maps (no, seriously)

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In what may be the weirdest press release today, Victoria Police has issued a warning telling motorists that they should not be relying on Apple Maps. We all know it sucks really badly (with all of its incorrect map data), but do we really need a police warning? Turns out, we do. Mildura Police have been called in to assist motorists who have become stranded within the Murray-Sunset National Park [...]

Group claiming to be Anonymous targets 2Day FM after prank call

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Image: gaelx/Flickr (Creative Commons) A message posted on YouTube claiming to be from Anonymous has threatened 2Day FM – the station which broadcast a prank call which then led to the tragic events last weekend that saw the nurse apparently take her own life. “You are directly responsible for the death of another human being… We have found you guilty of murder,” Anonymous said in the video. “You have placed [...]

Yahoo to stream Rolling Stones concert; the catch is you have to pay $32 for access

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Yahoo has announced that it will live stream the the 50th anniversary concert by the Rolling Stones on Sunday 16th December at 1pm (Sydney time). But there is a catch – you’ll have to pay US$32 just to access the stream. For Australian fans, this will be through Yahoo!7 via Who Magazine. Of course, if you are a Foxtel subscriber, you can also order this through Main Event. Those who [...]

YouTube rolls out a brand new look with video, not subscriptions, the new focus

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YouTube is about to roll out a brand new design today, reducing some clutter and making the video the main focus point, with everything else now moved below the video – including the metadata, like, and subscribing to the user’s video. “The video is right at the top of the page and the subscribe button, social actions and video information are all combined directly below the player,” according to Josh [...]

Thousands of Myki cards to be “deactiviated” as Metcard is to be scrapped on December 29

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Having a smartcard like London’s Oyster Card for an transport system is helpful – you don’t have to wait in line and keep purchasing paper tickets. But let’s say, your system is constantly plagued with problems, then it might be cheaper in the long run to actually build a new system that actually doesn’t have any of these stupid problems. Yes, we are talking about Myki and in the long [...]

GIVEAWAY: Win a copy of Bitdefender Antivirus 2013

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As part of our end-of-the-year celebrations, we usually hold giveaways at this time. This year, we are kicking this off by giving you a chance to win one of ten copies of Bitdefender Antivirus 2013 (worth $75). Bitdefender is known for being the best in performance compared to other antivirus systems, with independent testing from AV-Test showing that Bitdefender topping its competitors. And what you get includes antivirus, antimalware and [...]

Conroy introduces quotas on digital channels, declares no fourth free-to-air network

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Image: espensorvik/Flickr (Creative Commons) Communications Minister Senator Stephen Conroy has announced that first part of implementing the Convergence Review. This will include the introduction of Australian content quotas on digital channels, and has declared that there will no fourth free-to-air network on the so-called “sixth channel”. Digital channels by Seven, Nine and Ten must broadcast 730 hours of Australian content in 2013; before increasing to 1095 hours in 2014 and [...]

Optus starts taking preorders for the Lumia 820, Windows Phone 8S

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Optus has today announced that its two Windows Phone 8 devices – Windows Phone 8S by HTC and the Nokia Lumia 820 – are now available for pre-order. The Windows Phone 8S will be available for $0 upfront from its $35 plan (200MB of data, unlimited text and $200 worth of calls) and up. The phone features a 4-inch super LCD display, 5-megapixel camera, a dual-core 1GHz processor, 4GB of [...]

Twitter: Users soon able to download entire archive; will talk to China but no compromises

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Twitter’s CEO Dick Costolo has said that he hopes to give users the option to download their entire archive of tweets by the end of the year. Costolo’s announcement was a response to a question at a talk where he discussed the future of communication and access to information at the University of Michigan. We say “hopes” because it appears that the engineers do not like the deadline set. “I [...]