Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Geekstravaganza

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  • B Jones,

    Making assumptions about someone's technical ability based on their age or gender is a non-trivial issue - the IT industry has enough trouble with sexism without compounding it in the way it approaches the rest of the world. I still get angry when I think about buying a printer off a sales clerk who directed the answers to all my questions to my male companion.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 976 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Really? So rather than simply charge a reasonable rate for voice calls, they teach 'illiterate' 'Africans' a whole new written language so they have a use for cellphones? Surely the pinnacle of free market beneficence...

    I don't know what sort of structure cell phone providers have in most places, but in theory txt msgs are infinitely cheaper than voice calls. A txt message is... 160 characters plus a from and to phone number, plus some overhead? A one second voice call uses heaps more bandwidth than that.

    Maybe the reason they're using txt rather than voice is because the pricing structure is much better for them, because the company has reflected their costs.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    Duncan! just the man i wanted to talk to.

    when is orcon going to do what other providers don't, and string some central wellington apartment blocks with fibre?

    that's a market, surely?

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    Maybe the reason they're using txt rather than voice is because the pricing structure is much better for them, because the company has reflected their costs.

    and maybe the infrastructure is cheaper where the traffic is lower?

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Duncan Blair,

    What's the ETA for the roll out to Remuera? I switch to Orcon in a heartbeat!

    We should be live in Remuera in April. For a more complete list of the next suburbs to get access to the good stuff check the website: Orcon's next unbundled exchanges

    Cheers,
    Duncan Blair
    Group Product Manager
    Orcon

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    Re "your mum". Looking at the original quote...

    They're probably not deals for your mum, but for communications-happy households they're a welcome innovation.

    Ok, so "your mum" was being used a shorthand for a light internet user, but you know what's sort of strange about it? Well, mums normally comes with a dad. What about his internet?

    Yeah, there are divorcees and widows, but it's kind of strange to think that your mum would be on dial-up in one room and over in the next room your dad would have slick broadband. (And that would indicate a more internet savvy household than the original "your mum" quote intended).

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    can we retrospectively replace every occurence of "your mum" in this thread with "Yo' mama?"

    Since Nov 2006 • 2075 posts Report Reply

  • Duncan Blair,

    when is orcon going to do what other providers don't, and string some central wellington apartment blocks with fibre?

    With LLU we are doing what no one else is doing right now :)

    But to answer your question we are pretty excited about potential applications of FTTP in the future. The biggest problem is the massive investment required to get to any kind of scale whereby things become economically viable ($4 - $5 billion to reach 75% of the population according to David Skilling) .

    That's definitely not to say that it wont happen, just that it might take a wee while yet. We think delivering ADSL2+ and VDSL2 (once we are allowed to) is a step in the right direction.

    Cheers,
    Duncan Blair
    Group Product Manager
    Orcon

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Duncan Blair,

    I would also like to add that at Orcon we welcome your, or indeed anyones mum to join.

    Cheers,
    Duncan Blair
    Group Product Manager
    Orcon

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    I'm not intending to undermine the validity of the 'your mum' argument, but Joanne, do you see any sexist generalizations in this statement you made in another thread?

    I love love love the John Kirwan ads. They really speak to me, and apparently they're speaking to a whole lot of other NZers, especially men, because they're so real and relateable, and he's a fricking All Black, a god amongst men and even he needs help, and that's okay. I think they're pretty much the most helpful public service announcement I've ever seen.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4414 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    I still remember the day it dawned on me EMACS was a recursive acronym.


    P.S. Mr. brown - don't tell people where the exchanges are! they don't have signs on them for a reason.... What if Te Qaeda were reading???

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2217 posts Report Reply

  • scottatron,

    Summer Street you say? How convenient, I'm moving in there this week, bring on my ~24Mbps!

    Auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Stephen Crawford: I'm glad you took the time to go and dig that up. Obviously my 'apparently' wasn't a good enough indicator of the anecdotal nature of my post, and what I've read about that campaign's clear intentions to portray exactly that message in reaching exactly that audience.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Joanna, I apologize for misspelling your name it was unintentional.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4414 posts Report Reply

  • Hansel Dunlop,

    Ok, so "your mum" was being used a shorthand for a light internet user, but you know what's sort of strange about it? Well, mums normally comes with a dad. What about his internet?

    Well, using my parents as an example, mum is the light internet user. And dad... well... he knows how to use his cell phone. So I probably would say "not an internet plan for my mum" and not mean anything, even slightly, sexist by it.

    I think it's fairly silly to try and make Russell prostrate himself before this issue. Slipping a little bit of commonly used idiom into a paragraph is a far cry from saying that women can't use technology.

    Surely everyone should be allowed to speak or write using whatever forms of language that they want to. Anyone else is free to judge them on that content and perhaps ignore them if they choose. I know that misogynistic or misandric communication from people routinely lowers my opinion of the value of their message.

    I can see that is what Joanna was trying to achieve, warn Russell that the value of his message or general credibility, was being undermined by something he said. However the example that she decided to jump on just makes the person pointing it out look overly sensitive. You can't expect to control speech down to that level.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Nov 2006 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    do you see any sexist generalizations in this statement you made in another thread?

    No.

    There isn't even a comparison to be made. The whole point of Joanna's dug-up-and-requoted post is that people are *supposed* to see him as a god amongst men because he's an All Black, and that he might actually need help too. So in fact it's a post which *undermines* sexist stereotypes, and so does the ad. (Apparently. I haven't seen the ad, because I have MySky and ads are no longer a feature of my life, but... anyway.)

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    International Observer

    The thing is, in the current IPV4 world, addresses are a scarce resource and cost money to provide. Should the majority (who don't need one) subsidise the majority who do?

    I really don't buy this vis a vis DSL broadband. My router is always connected and taking up some IP. It's always been a total rort that static IPs came at any additional charge. They just do it because they can. And now they won't even give me one at all on my plan, for no reason that makes any sense to me. That's why I privately (and now publicly) surmise that it's all about kicking me in the peering goolies, something that I experimented with over a long time. Any time I had peering on, my connection mysteriously dropped that night and my IP changed. It could be coincidence, but I doubt it.

    Tom Beard

    Watching them now is a bit like watching a Shakespearean play where the plot hinges on a letter being dispatched on horseback.

    Now you're making me feel really, really old.

    Duncan

    I would also like to add that at Orcon we welcome your, or indeed anyones mum to join.

    I'm gonna tell my mum you said that tonight. Been trying to convince her to get broadband for ages, but when I lent her a Vodem it made her think that broadband was actually slower than dialup. They're in Herne Bay...how's that situated for high speed Orcon goodness?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    I think it's fairly silly to try and make Russell prostrate himself before this issue.....You can't expect to control speech down to that level.

    I wasn't trying to make anyone prostrate themselves, or try to control speech. If this wasn't a place I had a lot of respect for, I wouldn't have made the comment at all. But we have had discussions in the past about what factors influence whether there are women commentators or not, so I thought I would point out that what obviously a lot of people see as being a trivial detail isn't actually so trivial to a lot of other people.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    On a completely different note, I'm really liking that both Vodafone and Orcon are representing themselves in this discussion.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    On a completely different note, I'm really liking that both Vodafone and Orcon are representing themselves in this discussion.

    damn straight! duncan has just become my pin-up for "engaging with communities of interest".

    he'll be clearly indicated in my next talk to public servants about "how to make social media work for your business".

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2042 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Apropos of what Hansel said: my late mum would have given you an earful for that, which I will now channel for you.

    It precisely in trivial language that sexism manifests, and it is precisely its trivality and commonplaceness and consequent direct route to our unconscious that make it important to combat it.

    No, you can't control it, but you can point it out.

    Another point about stereotyping is that sterotypes need not be incorrect to be troublesome. If ethnic group X figures disproportionately in the crime figures, it is nonetheless wrong to speak as though Xes are all criminals.

    If I had said what Russell did where Mum could hear, she would have looked at me sternly and said "how do you know I wouldn't want high-speed broadband? That is very presumptuous of you." Russell is lucky she is not around to be a PAS poster any more. And she would have applauded (as I do) Joanne for having pointed it out.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    I wonder what Telstra's response will be. Their tip top cable package in Wellington sucks. Always dropping out, never seeming to reach promised speeds. No-one on the phone to take calls from irate customers. Oh, and they refuse to peer.

    *Everyone* I talk to on Telstra is unhappy, but we (as Paradise clients) got suckered into a long term deal.

    I love to hear from others whether they think there is a breach of contract going on here and whether they have stripped out that damned black cable and replaced it with, well, Orcon.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    No.

    OK

    There isn't even a comparison to be made.

    no comparisons asked for nor needed.

    The whole point of Joanna's dug-up-and-requoted post is that people are *supposed* to see him as a god amongst men because he's an All Black, and that he might actually need help too. So in fact it's a post which *undermines* sexist stereotypes, and so does the ad.

    No that wasn't the point

    (Apparently. I haven't seen the ad, because I have MySky and ads are no longer a feature of my life, but... anyway.)

    I don't have a Television.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4414 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    But we have had discussions in the past about what factors influence whether there are women commentators or not, so I thought I would point out that what obviously a lot of people see as being a trivial detail isn't actually so trivial to a lot of other people.

    I see the point you're trying to make Joanna. Not sure if I agree with you or not (I'm torn between the general principle, and the specific of my own mother, who is indeed more technically challenged than my father, but not my much), but the Mum references did slip by me without a thought, and you're right - we should think about these things.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    I'm gobsmacked that the high-ups came here and chatted, humour too! Thanks RB.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

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