Occasionally I remember it seems like a small world on our PC’s and
(bleugh!) MAC’s . However much we think we know there are millions of people out there hooked up to same place we are, it rarely registers – we are always “visiting”. That is why we are always downloading, as if frantically picking up as many souvenirs as we can before it “disappears”. We are all one terminal amongst hundreds of millions are on the same network at the same time – so why bother trying to backing up the www on your pc? This question has been in my head a thousand times. Even the paltry WAP open source I submitted in 2002 to a few php script sites are STILL easy to find. After being on the web 15 years I have realised that nothing goes away (though I struggle to re-find things sometimes!).
I think the term unlimited should be revised, as now expectations are totally unrealistic, and pandering to our “visitor” mentality. Does anyone really believe “unlimited”? You would think so judging from the quantity of downloading going on. I started to think about this, because I have been using mobile broadband for last few months, which is a pay per GB system. All of a sudden I went from x-downloads-a-day, to only carefully selected items. And weirdly, my life didnt change that much, and still works out cheaper than BT/Virgin Media/Etc. It is still not reliable or fast enough, but that is changing all the time. The panic amongst music and film industry over illegal downloads, was a reaction to a broadband user madness – it wasn’t real. I have collected so much sh*t over the years, purely because when you sign up to an unlimited broadband service, you just think “might as well”. Multiply that by a few x-million, and that is a serious load of Terabyte traffic – and constant.
Anyway, I recently purchased a digital download of an album. Then suddenly realised I was (sort of!) paying twice – once for the charge from the site, then of course data charge for the download of the album.
We have all got used to free stuff (legitimate and non-legitimate) for so long. People will always buy music they want because vast majority of people, even at cost, because we at least need the download, so we feel that we properly “own it”. So theoretically it is reasonably easy to charge. Though it means that ANY download would cost you, but possible to enforce higher rate for media files which would include the cost of media file(s). Bit simplistic, but I dont claim to have worked out a big scheme. I think mobile companies are far richer than they deserve, and actually are making money quite happily from illegal downloads. They dont want regulation.
I am not suggest WE pay more, I am suggesting mobile companies pay a share (I am assuming here that ultimately wireless is only way forward for BB). But I suppose from the same principle, other ISP’s should also follow. They should only be getting revenue from data download as a result of browsing, not downloading music, films, or other chargeable work. They are in fact the invisible “freeloaders”. I just think the biggest benefit of bringing in restriction though, is freeing up the www from download traffic basically consistent of files people never play, or use – just downloading on off-chance they might do at some point, and 95% of the time never do. I was one of that percentage, and sometime still drift into it! I just try and think twice before I download these days – pretty sick of always tidying up drives anyway …