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Speaking in Tech: Social media, big brands, smut. Never mix these three!

speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise Hosted by Greg Knieriemen, Ed Saipetch and Sarah Vela. This week, the whole crew is together to... er, get social. This week we discuss... Did you see THAT porn pic tweeted by US Airways a few days ago in response to an irate customer? If you didn't you might have been …
Team Register, 16 Apr 2014

Virgin Media sales flat: Firm bags fewer winter sign-ups than last year

Virgin Media watched subscriptions to its broadband service plummet during its final quarter, compared with the same three-month period a year earlier. The telco, which is owned by US cable giant Liberty Global, crumbled up against strong competition from rivals BT and BSkyB. It pulled in just over 39,000 broadband customers in …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Feb 2014

Virgin Media spanked by ad watchdog over 'in your neighbourhood' fibs

Virgin Media is on the naughty step with the UK's advertising watchdog, after wrongly claiming in two separate circulars that its broadband service was available in areas where the ad was posted through people's letterboxes. Two complainants successfully refuted the telco's fibs, after taking their gripes to the Advertising …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 Jan 2014

Virgin Media so, so SORRY for turning spam fire-hose on its punters

Virgin Media has apologised for a blunder that resulted in some of its customers being bombarded with a deluge of emails. The broadband biz emailed Brits who use its virgin.net email service, which is provided by Google, to warn them of some changes: from the end of April, Virgin Broadband customers won't be able to log into …
Comedy porn citrus fruit

Mens sana in fibro sano: Virgin Media network-level smut filters are ON

Virgin Media joined the big boys' club today by switching on network-level filters which allow subscribers to prevent perfectly legal material such as pornography from being accessed on their broadband connections. The cable company's rivals BT, BSkyB and TalkTalk have implemented similar censorship blockers on their networks …
Kelly Fiveash, 28 Feb 2014

Virgin Media to hike broadband prices by nearly 7 per cent

Virgin Media is set to jack up its broadband prices early next year by nearly 7 per cent. The telco said it was writing to subscribers now to warn them that costs will rise by 6.7 per cent on average from February 2014. It said that the price hike does not affect services such as Virgin Media's home phone talk plans. In an …
Kelly Fiveash, 12 Nov 2013
The Register breaking news

TDK calls it quits on tape media thanks to 'difficult environment'

Japan's TDK Corporation has seen the writing on the wall and decided to get out of the LTO tape media manufacturing business. The company's statement says: "In recent years, however, the data storage market has been contracting, creating a difficult business environment … TDK has decided to withdraw from the data tape business …
Chris Mellor, 03 Sep 2013

Virgin Media's 'little(ish)' book of deals contained BIG FIBS, rules ad watchdog

Virgin Media has been walloped by Britain's advertising watchdog for failing to clearly explain that a half-price deal it was flogging did not apply to line rental. A complaint about a direct mailing promotion that came loaded with a "little(ish) book" of offers was upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority, which concluded …
Kelly Fiveash, 22 Jan 2014

Virgin Media's flaky broadband network turns Bolton off

Virgin Media customers in Bolton have been moaning about the telco's network since late last year, with some subscribers in the area claiming that the firm's techies have ignored the complaints or blamed the connection problems on individual routers. But – for once, perhaps – the SuperHub, which has been cheekily dubbed the …
Kelly Fiveash, 06 Feb 2014

Australia floats plan for national social media regulator

Australia has floated a plan to regulate social media at a federal level. The idea's not new: the Liberal/National coalition took it to the nation's 2013 election as a policy that, in part, it used to show that someone was thinking of the children, especially in the context of cyber-bullying and youth suicides felt to have been …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Jan 2014

Axe falls: Virgin Media plans to kill 600 management jobs

Virgin Media is shedding up to 600 management jobs in the wake of Liberty Global's takeover of the British telco. The Register understands that the cost-cutting restructure is intended to help the company focus on growth. A source close to the situation told us that, in the coming months, most of the other UK-based positions – …
Kelly Fiveash, 20 Sep 2013
Red Dead Redemption

Virgin Media suffers growing pains as Cable Cowboy daddy settles in

Virgin Media reported flat sales and an operating loss to the City this morning as the telco adjusts to living under the roof of cable giant Liberty Global. It said revenue stood at £1.02bn during the company's third quarter ended 30 September 2013, while restructuring costs relating to Liberty's summer takeover of Virgin Media …
Kelly Fiveash, 06 Nov 2013
Wide Tivo Logo

Virgin Media gives TiVo users access to Netflix

Virgin Media is planning to let Netflix subscribers watch the video-on-demand service through their set-top TiVo boxes. The cable company announced that the Netflix app would be coming to 1.7 million TiVo homes this year, starting with a pilot rollout this week. Around 40,000 customers have been chosen for the pilot scheme, …
The Register breaking news

Who's the daddy of Virgin Media now? That would be Liberty Global

US cable giant Liberty Global has completed its takeover of Virgin Media in a $24bn (£15.5bn) cash deal. VM boss Neil Berkett - now £42m richer - has been replaced by one-time News Corp man Tom Mockridge. The telco's new CEO told the city that he was glad to be "joining the company at this important inflection point in its …
Kelly Fiveash, 10 Jun 2013
traffic lights

Virgin Media only puts limited limits on its Unlimited service

Earlier this year the UK's advertising watchdog made the "unlimited" term used by broadband providers redundant, by confirming that moderate restrictions could be applied to network traffic, all the while letting the telcos continue to make "no caps" claims to subscribers. That surprise decision came in a ruling from the …
Kelly Fiveash, 30 Oct 2013
 photo by kudomomo http://www.flickr.com/photos/kudumomo/

Facebook tramples Twitter's turf with media-friendly tracking

Facebook is adding a couple of APIs that will let certain media organizations track what's trending on the social network. Certain media partners, such as Buzzfeed, CNN, NBC's Today Show, BSkyB, and Slate (as well as social media marketing firm Mass Relevance) will be getting access to a Public Feed API that allows them to see a …
Iain Thomson, 10 Sep 2013
Virgin Media Digital Media Centre

Got a Netgear router from Virgin Media? Change your admin password NOW

A Wi-Fi security flaw leaves Virgin Media subscribers' wireless connections vulnerable to takeover by hackers. The vulnerability, identified by IT consultant Paul Moore, means Virgin Media Superhub router/modem combo devices leak users' passwords every time they reboot. The issue arises because the Netgear-manufactured device …
John Leyden, 10 Mar 2014
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media slides fat 10Gbps pipes into Murdoch's BSkyB

The business end of Virgin Media has revealed more details about a £49m deal to beef up BSkyB's broadband network. Virgin Media announced last month - in what is likely to be its final quarterly report to the City before being acquired by US cable giant Liberty Global - that it had bagged "major backhaul contract wins" from …
Kelly Fiveash, 23 May 2013
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media blames scruffy students for HUGE drop in cable subscribers

Virgin Media reported flat second quarter revenue this morning as it presented its first results since falling into the clutches of US cable giant Liberty Global. The telco attributed its tiny 0.6 per cent sales growth (£1.03bn) during the period ended 30 June to VM's decision to jack up prices for its cable business earlier …
Kelly Fiveash, 02 Aug 2013

NSA reporter leaves paper for eBay billionaire backed media biz

Glenn Greenwald, the reporter who broke the NSA surveillance story, is leaving British daily The Guardian to join a mysterious new eBay billionaire-backed publication. The American journalist has been a thorn in the NSA's side ever since he worked on the release of documents leaked by its contracted sysadmin Edward Snowden, who …
Jasper Hamill, 17 Oct 2013
Barack Obama in the Oval Office

Syrian Electronic Army claims Obama social media hijacking

The Syrian Electronic Army has been up to its old tricks again, this time claiming to have infiltrated president Barack Obama’s official Twitter and Facebook accounts, and re-election web site. A series of tweets were sent from @BarackObama account and updates were made to the president’s Facebook account on Monday linking to a …
Phil Muncaster, 29 Oct 2013
anonymous logo

Anonymous: Sign this petition or we'll … get mad about the media?

Entities using the name and iconography often associated with hacktivist collective Anonymous and declaring themselves the Brisbane outpost of the non-organisation have taken a step in a new direction: winning support for convicted drug trafficker Schapelle Corby. Corby was convicted of importing marijuana to Indonesia, but her …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Jan 2014
The Register breaking news

Ex-Murdoch man given new CEO seat at Virgin Media

A veteran News Corp exec is to become the next chief of Virgin Media once US cable giant completes its acquisition of the telco. Tom Mockridge briefly held the CEO job at News International following Rebekah Brooks' scandal-hit exit from the one-time News of the World publisher. He will replace Neil Berkett, who confirmed he …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 May 2013
Fifa 13

Virgin Media signs 3-year telly deal with BT Sport

BT has inked a three-year wholesale deal with Virgin Media to allow the cable company to serve BT Sport television channels to its customers. Financial terms of the agreement were kept secret. It comes just days before the kickoff of the new Premier League season and is a clear move to gently lean on pay-TV behemoth BSkyB. BT …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Brussels clears Liberty Global's £15bn Virgin Media takeover

US billionaire John Malone's company Liberty Global saw its £15bn bid to buy UK telco Virgin Media cleared by competition officials in Europe today. The takeover was waved through completely unchallenged by the European Commission, after the cable giant confirmed it wanted to acquire Virgin Media in February. The antitrust wing …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Apr 2013

Whodathunkit? Media barons slit own throats in anti-freetard crackdowns

Hollywood could slash piracy rates by simply making its content easily and legally available, rather than trying legal and technological hacks to sustain its current business model. That's according to researchers from libertarian think tank the Mercatus Center. The team analyzed file-sharing news website TorrentFreak's weekly …
Iain Thomson, 15 Oct 2013
Dunce

One good thing from the Flappy Birds crapp flap: It's a handy 'tech' media rating system

So, you're a Register reader and despite the fact that Flappy Bird has been withdrawn from app stores, you know how to obtain it for free on your phone in moments*. So you're probably a bit mystified by the all the headlines surrounding this. So are we – so far we've confined ourselves to noting its withdrawal from app stores, …
Team Register, 11 Feb 2014
The Register breaking news

Microsoft: We're SO SORRY for Media Center TV guide titsup

Microsoft has apologised for deleting TV guides on Windows Media Center. The data wipe left customers in the UK and Ireland "distraught" and struggling to record their favourite shows. After The Register raised the issue yesterday, Microsoft has now restored the programme guides in the UK and said it will tackle Ireland next. …
Anna Leach, 04 Jan 2013

Samsung GROVELS ABJECTLY to Chinese state media

Samsung has apologised to China following an investigation by amusingly-named state telly channel CCTV, showing the South Korean firm's deference to the world's biggest market. The problem outlined on the programme appears to affect Samsung models including the Galaxy S3 and Note 2, apparently damaging the storage memory …
Bill Ray, 24 Oct 2013

Study accuses media companies of cooking the books on piracy losses

A study by the London School of Economics and Political Science has found that media companies are overstating their losses to piracy, that policies to cut off internet users for copyright infringement don't work, and finds that those industry sectors that have embraced digital sharing are growing as a result. "Neither the …
Iain Thomson, 03 Oct 2013
G-RAID Studio

G-Tech intros glossy HHD box: Because media 4Kers need external storage too

G-Technology goes for 4K workstation external storage at NAB with glossy curvy and black hard drive boxes plus a portable SSD to round out its product set. Digital media workstation users are the new elite and 4K workflows are the driver for higher capacity and higher-speed storage to feed the cylindrical cool for workstation …
Chris Mellor, 10 Apr 2014
Prison window

Four teachers indicted in Steubenville social media rape case

Ohio's attorney general has announced that four more school staff, including a supervisor, have been indicted for interfering with the investigation of a teenager who was raped in Steubenville last year, attracting the attention of hackers from Anonymous. The investigation by the state began after a 16 year-old girl was sexually …
Iain Thomson, 26 Nov 2013
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media revs up for Liberty Global merger

Virgin Media - which is imminently set to be scooped up by US cable giant Liberty Global - reported a good start to its financial year this morning. It told the City that revenue had climbed to £1.04bn for the three months ended 31 March 2013 - up 3.6 per cent from £1.01bn for the same period a year earlier. The telco said it …
Kelly Fiveash, 24 Apr 2013
The Register breaking news

What a Liberty: Virgin Media in buyout talks with telecoms giant

Virgin Media confirmed this morning that it is in buyout talks with cable giant Liberty Global. In a brief statement to the City ahead of it full-year results tomorrow, Virgin Media announced: Virgin Media confirms that it is in discussions with Liberty Global, Inc., a leading international cable company, concerning a possible …
Kelly Fiveash, 05 Feb 2013
The Register breaking news

Seven Media mulls IPTV service

Having effectively killed off TiVo in Australia, TV broadcaster Seven West Media is considering its IPTV options, telling investors it has plans to create a “broadcast to broadband” operation in 2014. While Australia's free-to-air broadcasters have embraced the Internet for program catch-ups, they have mostly responded to the …

Recession? Pah! Check out our swollen digits - CCS Media

CCS Media is laughing all the way to the bank after reporting soaring profits for calendar 2012 in spite of rocketing costs and biting economic conditions. The Chesterfield-headquartered reseller reported operating profit of £1.38m compared to £669,000 in the previous year, and net profit moved up to £1.07m from £468,000. Sales …
Paul Kunert, 21 May 2013
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media hangs from traffic lights, hands out free Wi-Fi to Brummies

Virgin Media plans to get mobile operators to pay for free Birmingham-wide Wi-Fi in a deal which could see every traffic light in the city turned unto a 4G cell base station. The free Wi-Fi is set to go live in September, and comes as part of the government's Super Connected Cities Digital Birmingham's Smart City initiative*. …
Bill Ray, 24 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media keeps mum as punters fume at crippled web access

Some Virgin Media broadband customers have struggled for weeks to access a number of websites over the telco's network - but the company is keeping schtum on the exact cause. The Register has learned that a "sizeable" number of VM's subscribers are frustrated with the ISP for failing to offer a workaround to the ongoing …
Kelly Fiveash, 07 Mar 2013
The Register breaking news

Cable Cowboy lassoes Virgin Media with HUGE £15bn deal

The world's second biggest cable company - Liberty Global - has confirmed its plans to buy British ISP Virgin Media for $23bn (£15bn), after the telco said on Tuesday it was in talks with the corporation run by American billionaire John Malone. That stock and cash deal, which would gift Englewood, Colorado-based Liberty Global …
Kelly Fiveash, 06 Feb 2013
Massive Media

Massive Media dumps Amplidata, makes eyes at Caringo

Object storage supplier Amplidata has been replaced by fellow supplier Caringo at Massive Media, which bills itself as the world's largest social discovery site. Massive runs two social networking websites: Twoo, which was launched in 2011, and Netlog, which appears to share the same basic concept as Facebook. Between the two …
Chris Mellor, 25 Jun 2013
Great Wall of China

China's lifting of internet blockade denied by state media

Hopes that the Chinese government was about to relax its strict internet censorship regime in Shanghai appear to have been dashed after state-run media ran stories denying previous reports. An “exclusive” from Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post on Tuesday, referencing anonymous government sources, claimed that the Great …
Phil Muncaster, 26 Sep 2013
The Register breaking news

Google frenches Gallic media with €60m and some 'help'

Eric Schmidt, chairman of Google has dropped a little sweetener to the French media as Google's legal tussle over "a link tax" rumbles on. Schmidt announced a 60m euro fund for "innovation" in French journalism and "help" for French publishers using Google's advertising tools, in a joint announcement with the French President …
Anna Leach, 04 Feb 2013
The Register breaking news

Windows 8: Great for media PCs...

From time to time, we dip into El Reg Forums to highlight questions raised and experiences recounted by our commentards. Today we republish this post from Steve Knox, who writes: My media center PC at home was a discarded work PC with Windows Vista Business on it. It was slow and flaky, as Vista can be, but since an upgrade to …
Drew Cullen, 03 Dec 2012

IP rights are for the PRIVILEGED FEW – media studies bods

When it comes to creators' rights, the dividing line between activist zealots and impartial academics on creators and IP seems to have melted away long ago. A case in point: two of El Reg's favourite Media Studies lecturers, the LSE's Bart Cammaerts and Binchung Meng – who first featured here in 2011 – are back (along with one …
Andrew Orlowski, 07 Oct 2013
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media: SO SORRY we fined your dead dad £10 for unpaid bill

Virgin Media has apologised after charging a dead man £10 for being unable to pay his broadband bill. The bloke's son-in-law Jim Boyden posted a photo of the demand for the tenner on Facebook, along with an open letter accusing the UK internet provider's staff of a "special kind of meanness". Almost 100,000 people have now …
Jasper Hamill, 25 Apr 2013
The Register breaking news

Mother of All Whistlers: Virgin Media superhub. Listen to recordings

Virgin Media is resorting to sending its subscribers to Maplins and other electrical outlets to deal with its now long-standing whistling power supply problem that has blighted the company's troublesome* SuperHub modem/router combi kit. Netgear, which supplies the equipment to the telco, has failed to comment on what has gone …
Kelly Fiveash, 11 Dec 2012
The Register breaking news

Long-suffering Virgin Media victims see no end to vid PURGATORY

Here on the networks desk at Vulture Central our inbox runneth over with complaints from fed-up Virgin Media customers who feel that they are being roundly ignored by the telco, which is yet to fix a network peering problem with a mysterious third party. The major buffering glitch is causing havoc with punters who are …
Kelly Fiveash, 16 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Microsoft sharpens Azure media tools ahead of Olympics

Microsoft has announced the "preview" of Windows Azure Media Services, a set of tools to let media companies host, stream and encode content. Redmond used the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) 2012 conference in Las Vegas to unwrap the service package, which includes both hosting services within the Azure cloud and …
Iain Thomson, 16 Apr 2012
The Register breaking news

Virgin Media vid misery blamed on unnamed peering network

Virgin Media has blamed an unnamed peering network for crippling its broadband service, particularly at peak times, for some folk. The Register contacted the telco after a number of peeved VM punters complained of yet more problems when downloading data, leading to video streams and the like stuck on buffering. One reader told …
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Nov 2012
Sonos Play:1

Sonos and I: How home media playback just gets SO FRUSTRATING

Going through the installation of a couple of Sonos Play:1 speakers in a cottage lacking any form of Hi-Fi or video storage/playing devices got me thinking about just much existing Hi-Fi, TV and DVD systems suck - big time. My house has multiple variously incompatible devices stuck in time warps of point functionality. The …
Chris Mellor, 18 Nov 2013