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  • drdianehamilton 10:59 am on October 12, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Alexa, Compete, Crazy Egg, , , , Log Analysis, Quantcast, Site Management, Web analytics, Yahoo   

    Top Links for Help with Deciphering Web Analytics 

    Sites like Alexa, Compete, Google Analytics and Quantcast can give some important data about website visitors.  If these were the only choices available, it might not be so difficult to choose the best tools for web analytics.  However, there are a lot of sites out there.  They may also have some techy jargon. Some terms that may be confusing to some who are trying to decipher the data include:

    To explain the importance of the type of visitor, check out the article: Total or Unique Visitors:   What is the Difference? While many people focus on unique visitors, in an article titled Unique Visitors are not Everything, Jakob Nielson was quoted as saying, “Chasing higher unique-visitor counts will undermine your long-term positioning because you’ll design gimmicks rather than build features that bring people back and turn them into devotees and customers.”

    To try and keep it all straight and pick the correct site based on individual needs, check out the following top 10 links with information about web analytics, explanations of popular tools and what they measure:

    1. Web Analytics Demystified – Unique visitors ONLY come in one size.
    2. Alexa Analytics Explained – Take a tour of Alexa’s analytics.
    3. Compete Analytics Explained – Where they get their data and PDF of methodology.
    4. Google Analytics Explained – FAQ for all Google Analytics issues.
    5. Quantcast Analytics Explained – FAQ for all Quantcast Analytic issues.
    6. Top 24 Web Analytics Software Packages – Top software packages explained.
    7. 11 Best Web Analytic Tools – Includes Google, Yahoo, Crazy Egg, Compete, and more.
    8. Alltop Web Analytic News – News about all analytic issues.
    9. Web Analytics Review – Side by side comparison of top web analytic tools.
    10. Yahoo! Analytics Explained – FAQ for all Yahoo! Analytics issues.

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  • drdianehamilton 4:27 pm on September 13, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Code of conduct, , Ethical code, , , Intel, , , Philosophy, , , , , Yahoo   

    Top 10 Companies’ Code of Ethics and Conduct 

    Companies have something called a code of ethics that outlines how they will run their business.  Sometimes they refer to this as their code of conduct. There aren’t always laws to govern things like ethics.  Therefore, it is up to companies to define some of their ethical behavior.

    via searchenginewatch.com – Google a Little Evil

    According to the International Labor Organization, “Unlike labor law, corporate codes of conduct do not have any authorized definition. The concept “corporate code of conduct” refers to companies’ policy statements that define ethical standards for their conduct. There is a great variance in the ways these statements are drafted. Corporate codes of conduct are completely voluntary. They can take a number of formats and address any issue – workplace issues and workers’ rights being just one possible category. Also, their implementation depends totally on the company concerned.”

    Click here for an article on the difference between laws and ethics.

    The following is a list of some major companies and their code of ethics:

    In researching these companies, it was interesting that Facebook didn’t have a clearly defined code of ethics listed in the same way other companies did.  For more about Facebook, check out the Wall Street Journal article:  Facebook Agrees to Work With Government on Germany Privacy Code.

    Related Articles

     
  • drdianehamilton 8:15 pm on May 10, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Andreessen Horowitz, AQuantive, , EBay, , Janus Friis, , , Voice over IP, Yahoo   

    Microsoft Buys Skype 

    NEW YORK — Microsoft Corp. said Tuesday that it has agreed to buy the popular Internet telephone service Skype SA for $8.5 billion in the biggest deal in the software maker’s 36-year history.

    Buying Skype gives Microsoft access to a user base of about 170 million people who log in to Skype every month, using the Internet and Skype usernames as a complement to the traditional phone network and its phone numbers.

    For the rest of the article see: huffingtonpost.com
     
     
     
  • drdianehamilton 3:35 pm on November 12, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Email client, , Facebook email, , gmail killer, , , Yahoo, Yahoo Mail   

    New Email Program is the Big Secret that Facebook has Been Keeping … Dubbed Gmail Killer 

     

    image via blogs.bgsu.edu

    Dubbed the Gmail killer, Facebook’s new email program is to launch on Monday.  There has been talk about a secret product from Facebook and this appears to be the secret.  As people are jumping from the AOL ship, Google, Yahoo and other email providers are concerned that Facebook could take away their business.

     
  • drdianehamilton 1:12 pm on October 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , BellSouth, Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox, Earthlink, , , Internet service provider, Mail, Optimum, Road Runner, Server, Simple Mail Transfer Protocol, , , Yahoo   

    Email Attachment and Sending Limits for Google, Yahoo, AOL and a Lot More Providers 

     

    I use AOL a lot so I don’t run into file size limits very often as they allow up to 16 MB attachments.  However, I noticed that when I try to send files to some of my friends and family, they have difficulty receiving the larger files. I decided to do some research to see what other providers offer in terms of maximum file sending size.  Check out this article by altrue.com.  They do an excellent job of explaining the limits established by some of the top providers.

    Major Internet Service Providers – Email sending limits

    This article contains information about the email send limits (rate limit) of most important Internet Service Providers, as we collected it from our Easy Mail Merge customers, web resources or directly from the support desk of ISPs.  The information is intended as a guide only.  Your ISP can change its outbound email policy at any time without any prior notification.  It is always a good idea to contact your email account provider and ask about the email send rate, before proceeding with a mass email campaign.

    This article was last updated in November 2007 and it displays the SMTP email send limit (or rate limit) for the following Internet providers: Verizon, Comcast, EarthLink, Cablevision/Optimum, Road Runner, Cox, AT&T Yahoo!, Charter, BellSouth.

    Verizon Email Send & SMTP Limits
    The following restrictions apply when sending emails from a verizon.net email account:

    • Verizon email send limit – no more than 100 recipients per email message AND max 500 emails (recipients) per hour
    • Verizon other SMTP limits – max 2mb per message
    • Verizon email-outbound policy – http://www2.verizon.net/policies/email.asp
    • Verizon SMTP restriction expiry method – the restriction is automatically lifted 24 hours after the email send limit was reached.

    Comcast Email Send & SMTP Limits
    Below you can find the Comcast email send or rate limit for Comcast high speed internet customers. Please note that Comcast can also block port 25 for your connection (triggering the error message: “Error #1: Port25.Secure(SSL); no Socket Error: 10053. Error Number 0x800CC0F”), in order to prevent you (or viruses on your computer) from sending emails using your own SMTP agent:

    • Comcast email send limit – no more than 1000 recipients per day
    • Comcast other SMTP limits – max 10mb per message
    • Comcast email-outbound policy – http://www.comcast.net/help/faq/index.jsp?faq=SecuritySpam17867
    • Comcast SMTP restriction expiry method – the restriction is automatically lifted 24 hours after the email send limit was reached.

    EarthLink Email Send & SMTP Limits (“SMTP Rate Limiting”)
    When you reached your EarthLink email send limit, you will receive the following error message from the EarthLink SMTP server: “error 554: http://www.earthlink.net/go/bulk – Outbound message limit exceeded”. The following restrictions apply when sending emails from an EarthLink internet connection:

    • EarthLink email send limit – max 1000 recipients per day
    • EarthLink other SMTP limits – N/A
    • EarthLink email-outbound policy – http://kb.earthlink.net/case.asp?article=85283
    • EarthLink SMTP restriction expiry method – A member of EarthLink ‘s Abuse team will investigate the circumstances that led to your SMTP privileges being suspended. If it is deemed that your use was legitimate, then your SMTP privileges will be reactivated within 24 hours.

    Cablevision Email Send & SMTP Limits (Optimum – OOL)
    Cablevision / Optimum does NOT allow customers to send emails using an email client program or SMTP mail server, unless the customer subscribed to “Optimum Online Boost” or “Optimum Online for Business”.

    • Cablevision/Optimum (OOL) email send limit – maximum 50 recipients at one time
    • Cablevision other SMTP limits – max 20mb per outgoing message
    • Cablevision/Optimum email-outbound policy – http://www.optimum.net/Article/Terms
    • Cablevision SMTP restriction expiry method – N/A.

    Road Runner Email Send & SMTP Limits
    If your account has reached the email send limit, you will receive the following error message: “ERROR:5.7.1:550 Outbound Mail Refused – YOUR_IP_ADDRESS”. The following restrictions apply when sending emails from a Road Runner internet connection:

    • Road Runner email send limit – max 1,000 recipients per day per IP
    • Road Runner other SMTP limits – max 5mb per message
    • Road Runner email-outbound policy – http://help.rr.com/HMSFaqs/e_outbound_email_policy.aspx
    • Road Runner SMTP restriction expiry method – the suspension is automatically lifted after 24 hours

    Cox Email Send & SMTP Limits
    Cox did not publish the official email send limit for Cox High Speed Internet subscribers. According to the Cox web site: “Specific email sending limits are not published because they vary from time to time depending on a variety of factors“. We strongly advise you to contact the Cox support department before sending out large amounts of emails.

    AT&T Yahoo! Email Send & SMTP Limits
    Please note that, according to the AT&T Yahoo! Membership Agreement, AT&T Yahoo! can assess a charge of $50.00 per day for unintentional violations or $500.00 per day for deliberate violations of their unsolicited email policy. The following restrictions apply when sending emails from an AT&T Yahoo! Internet/email connection:

    • AT&T Yahoo! email send limit – no more than 100 recipients per email message
    • AT&T Yahoo! other SMTP limits – max 20mb per message, max 50 file attachments
    • AT&T Yaho0! email-outbound policy – http://edit.client.yahoo.com/cspcommon/static?page=tos
    • AT&T Yahoo! SMTP restriction expiry method – penalty charges may apply

    Charter Email Rate Limits
    If you are a Charter Internet access residential customer and you receive the following error message when trying to send emails: “421 Connection Refused – Customer has exceeded the maximum number of messages allowed per hour”, it means your account SMTP access was temporarily blocked. The following restrictions apply when emailing from a Charter connection:

    • Charter email send limit – maximum 50 recipients / emails per hour
    • Charter other SMTP limits – max 10mb per message
    • Charter email-outbound policy – http://www.charter.com/Visitors/Policies.aspx?Policy=6
    • Charter SMTP restriction expiry method – wait an hour to send additional emails or brake up the recipients number into smaller groups.

    BellSouth Email Send & Rate Limits
    BellSouth does not publish a clear email send limit: “Sending mass, unsolicited e-mail by Service users is prohibited. BellSouth Internet Services reserves the right, in BellSouth’s sole discretion, to determine whether such email constitutes unsolicited messages or transmission. Sending large volumes of unsolicited e-mail to a single user, or group of users, commercial or otherwise, by Service users is prohibited.”.

    • BellSouth email send limit – BellSouth’s sole discretion
    • BellSouth other SMTP limits – max 10mb per message
    • BellSouth email-outbound policy – Acceptable Use Policies
    • BellSouth SMTP restriction expiry method – BellSouth Internet Services may immediately terminate any account which it determines, in its sole discretion, is transmitting or is otherwise connected with any ‘spam’ or other unsolicited bulk email. In addition, because damages are often difficult to quantify, if actual damages cannot be reasonably calculated then BellSouth Internet Services may seek liquidated damages of five dollars (US$5.00) for each piece of ‘spam’ or unsolicited bulk email transmitted from or otherwise connected with your account.

     


     

    Web Email Account Providers – Email sending limits

    Important note: This information is intended as a guide only.  Your email account provider can change its email policy at any time without any prior notification.  It is always a good idea to contact your email account provider and ask about the email send rate, before proceeding with a mass email campaign.
     

    Google Gmail Email Send Rate Limit & Restrictions
    The following restrictions apply when sending emails from a Google Gmail account:

    • Gmail email send limit – no more than 500 recipients per message for the Gmail web interface, or max 100 recipients if you are using an email client software.
    • Gmail other SMTP limits – outgoing messages sent via Google Gmail can not exceed 10Mb per email (including attachments)
    • Google Mail Policy – http://www.google.com/mail/help/program_policies.html
    • Google Mail SMTP restriction expiry method – the restriction is automatically removed within 24 hours after the limit was reached.

    MSN Hotmail Email Send Rate Limit & Restrictions
    The following restrictions apply when sending emails from a Hotmail account:

    • Hotmail email send limit – no more than 100 recipients per day.
    • Hotmail other SMTP limits – outgoing messages sent via Hotmail can not exceed 10Mb per email (including attachments)

    Yahoo Mail – Email Send Rate Limits & Other Email Restrictions
    The following restrictions apply when sending emails from a Yahoo Mail account:

    • Yahoo Mail email send limit – no more than 100 emails or recipients per hour
    • Yahoo Mail other SMTP limits – max 10Mb per message for the free Yahoo Mail Service, or 20Mb per message for Yahoo! Mail Plus
    • Yahoo! Anti-Spam Policy – http://docs.yahoo.com/info/guidelines/spam.html
    • Yahoo Mail SMTP restriction expiry method – N/A

    Lycos Mail – Email Send Limits & Restrictions
    The following restrictions apply when sending emails from a Lycos Mail account:

    • Lycos Mail email send limit – max 25 recipients per message and max 250 emails per day
    • Lycos Mail other SMTP limits – Lycos Mail does not have a limit to the attachment file size at this time.
    • Lycos Email Policy – http://info.lycos.com/legal/mail_terms.html

    AOL Email Send (Rate) Limits
    AOL imposes a rate limit on an AOL member when a member exceeds the acceptable number of email messages sent in a given time period. The following restrictions apply when sending emails from an AOL connection:

    • AOL email send limit – no more than 100 recipients per message or 500 recipients per connection
    • AOL other SMTP limits – max 16mb per message
    • AOL email-outbound policy – http://postmaster-us.info.aol.com/ipt/
    • AOL SMTP restriction expiry method – N/A

     

     
  • drdianehamilton 1:29 pm on October 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , AdWords, , , , , , , Yahoo   

    How does advertising with Yahoo differ from Google? 

    [YAHOO]

    image via online.wsj.com

    I saw the above chart today from eMarketer and it surprised me a bit.  I hear so much about Google adwords that I expected their income from ads to be higher.

    How does advertising with Yahoo differ from Google?  I found an interesting comparison from mybesttradingwebhosting.com that showed some comparisons between advertising with each of the sites:

    Yahoo! Advertising

    Yahoo! Advertising gives its advertisers custom solutions to choose from that allow for brand building and response drives.

    The more popular solution is the company’s sponsored search solution. This program allows advertisers to control the overall marketing cost by setting a daily budget. Advertisers can also set the amount they wish to pay each time an advertisement is clicked and payments are only made for those ads clicked upon. Additionally, advertisers can stop specific ads and completely close out their advertising account at any time, no questions asked.

    The Yahoo sponsored search solution has a reach of over 2.3 billion potential clients and customers. To even further narrow an advertising customer base, advertisers can utilize the company’s geo-targeting feature – allowing for very specifically targeted marketing. Created ads can also be rotated to see which message garners the most traffic. In-depth reporting is part of the program and offers the ability for advertisers to see results in real-time.

    Google AdWords

    Google AdWords allows advertisers the ability to choose keywords related to their business or service and create ads based on these selections.

    Just like its counterpart, Google AdWords allows for setting a specified budget and advertisers only pay for actual clicks on their ads rather than any set daily or monthly amount. Advertisements can be placed on hold or removed entirely when it is found that some ads are garnering more traffic and customers than other ads.

    As one of the most used search engines, Google AdWords can offer an extremely large base of potential customers. For local businesses wishing to target a more specialized and specific audience, Google AdWords offers the ability to narrow advertising regions to a particular region, state or even city. Customers can be targeted to within 20 miles of a business’ front door. Additionally, ads can be set to show a business’ location when searchers are seeking data within Google.com and Google Maps.

    Excerpt only – to read the rest of the article go to:  mybestratedwebhosting.com
     
  • drdianehamilton 3:13 pm on October 13, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , SearchIgnite, , Yahoo,   

    Search Engine War: AOL, Google, Yahoo, and Bing 

    I use AOL and I am a big fan of Google.  If you use AOL, you may have noticed the search screen says:  AOL Search Enhanced by Google. 

    AOL and Google have a continuing relationship that they have extended for another 5 years.  Part of that relationship includes: 

    1. Google provides AOL with additional features and enhancements to improve their search function.
    2. Google provides AOL with ad formats.
    3. AOL and Google work together to focus on mobile apps.
    4. This relationship allows AOL to have a content partnership with YouTube
    5. This relationship improves the international scope of AOL’s audience.

    I was curious to see if there was a big difference between the results by searching within AOL vs. going to Google to search. AOL included a few local addresses at the beginning but otherwise the results were similar.

    I have to admit I don’t use Yahoo and Bing very often.  I noticed when searching for my press releases, that Yahoo and Bing do not pick up the information nearly as well as Google and AOL do.  However, I am interested to see if their future relationship may change things.  Today’s Wall Street Journal had an article about how Bing and Yahoo were going to join forces.  Google may have some competition with that.  WSJ stated, “With the integration of Yahoo’s and Microsoft’s search businesses now well advanced—Yahoo searches are using Microsoft’s Bing engine and its search ads will increasingly go through Microsoft’s adCenter platform—the duo have a better chance to take on Google.”  Google is hardly hurting though, “Digital-marketing firm SearchIgnite estimates Google’s share of U.S. ad spending rose nearly two percentage points to 80.2% in the third quarter, with Yahoo dropping two points to 13.4%. Bing had 6.4%.”

    The search engine war and capturing unique visitors continues to be big business.  Check out the following chart to see how the search engines and social networking sites compare in terms of revenue per unique visitors:

    chart of the day, revenue per unique visitor, google, aol, twitter, facebook

     
  • drdianehamilton 12:20 pm on September 13, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: AddressBookONE, , , , , Plaxo, , , Yahoo   

    Can AddressBookONE Unite Social Networking? 

    Do you have contact information scattered throughout several social networking platforms?  AddressBookONE may be a solution for you. AddressBookONE makes LIVE ongoing connections with your ever-changing external contact resources. It includes automatically updating to ensure that the most recent data is always available. As your contacts’ world changes, so will AddressBookONE.

    Their site claims AddressBookOne can handle:

    Single Point of Management: Bringing all your contact data together in one easy to manage, intuitive user interface.

    Contact Merge: Merges multiple instances of the same contact to give a more complete single view for each contact record and eliminates duplicate data.

    Mobile Device Sync: Synchronizes AddressBookOne with almost any mobile phone or PDA. Allowing you to manage your mobile contacts and putting all other desired contact data in the palm of your hand.

    Social Contact Connections: Share your AddressBookOne contact profile with other users.

    Feature Rich Contacts Manager: Edit existing contacts and add new ones, organize contacts by single or multiple groups, star and hide contacts and filter data displayed.

    Read today’s press release for more information about how AddressBookONE pulls information from multiple sources including Gmail, Exchange, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, GroupWise and Plaxo, among others, overlaying the data from each resource to provide a comprehensive view of each contacts data. Upgrading to a Premium account allows you to synchronize your mobile phone to AddressBookONE, enabling you to manage your phone contacts alongside all other contact data as well as offering a full backup and restore.

     
  • drdianehamilton 9:52 pm on August 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , Online Course Terminology, rubric, , Terminology Explained, Yahoo   

    Top 50 Online Buzz Words Explained 

    If you are considering taking an online college course and feel intimated by the terminology, here are 50 of the top buzz words and terminology you will hear in the online environment. If you are wondering what a rubric is . . . you are not alone.  I have alphabetized them to make definitions easier to find.  To find information like this plus a whole lot more, check out The Online Student’s User Manual by clicking here

    1.     Accreditation – Quality of the education provided meets the U.S. Dept. of Education standards. There are nationally recognized agencies that the U.S. Dept. of Education recognizes that accredit universities.

    2.     ACT – American College Testing Program – test given to high school students to measure education and ability to do well in college.

    3.     APA Format – American Psychological Association Format is a guide for formatting students’ papers, including how margins, fonts, citations, etc. should look.

    4.     Asynchronous – Not at the same time. In college courses, if a course is asynchronous it means that everybody does not have to participate at the same time.

    5.     Attaching Files – When submitting assignments, attaching or uploading is similar to sending an email with an attachment or an uploaded file.

    6.     Attendance – Usually a student is considered in attendance on any given day should they post anything to any area of the classroom to show they were there.

    7.     Blackboard – Software that many schools use to access the classroom.

    8.     Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence – Learners express themselves through movement.

    9.    Chat Room – An area in the online classroom where students can talk about things as if they were in a hallway or relaxation area in a regular school. Topics must be clean but do not have to be related to the course.

    10.   Critical thinking – According to the Foundation for Critical Thinking (2010), critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.

    11.   Curriculum – Educational courses offered.

    12.   Diploma Mill – A higher-education institution that gives diplomas based on less-than-quality education for a financial return.

    13.   Discussion Board – Area in the online classroom where students post responses to questions posted by the professor.

    14.   Doc Share – An area within the software program eCollege where students can upload their documents so that others within the course can see and respond to them.

    15.   Dropbox – An area within the software program eCollege where students can upload their documents so that only the professor can see them.

    16.    eCollege – An online learning software platform used by colleges.

    17.    Emoticons – A group of characters used to convey intended tone, e.g. a smiley face.

    18.    e-Portfolio – An electronic way to assemble a collection of work you have done, including writings, pictures, blogs, etc.

    19.    Extension – In software, the extension is the part of the filename that comes after the period. For example, if a file is named “Sample.doc” then the extension is “.doc”.

    20.    Feedback Area – An area in software platforms such as Blackboard where students can see input from the instructor as to how they are doing in the class.

    21.    Font – The typeface that is chosen for a document.

    22.    Forum – An area within certain software packages such as OLS, which is like a classroom or place that a student will go to find information.

    23.    Grade Scale – Explanation for what percentages equivocate to certain grades. For example, 90% may be an A, 80% a B, and so on.

    24.    Grant – A way to finance your education, unlike loans in the fact that they do not have to be paid back.

    25.    Header – The area at the top of your paper where you might include details such as page numbers or other information about the assignment.

    26.    Logical-Mathematical Intelligence – Prefers to think with logic, reasoning and numbers.

    27.    MLA – Modern Language Association. A style of writing that schools may use. Most commonly, they use APA.

    28.    Musical Intelligence – When music and hearing help with learning, a student is said to have musical intelligence.

    29.    Naturalistic Intelligence – When being around outdoors, plants and animals helps with learning, a student is said to have naturalistic intelligence.

    30.    Netiquette – Combination of “Internet” and “etiquette”, meaning how to behave properly and not be rude in the online environment.

    31.    OLS – Online Learning System software offered by universities to allow students to access their online classes.

    32.    Participation – Posting something of substance in a course, usually in response to discussion questions posted by the instructor. Unlike attendance, there must be quality to the posting.

    33.    Peer-Reviewed – Peers of the writer of an article have reviewed the document.

    34.    Plagiarism – Taking someone else’s work and trying to submit it as your own.

    35.    Platform – Software that universities use for online courses to enable students to have access to classes.

    36.    Retention – The ability to retain or remember things.

    37.    Rubric – Rules for how one will be graded.

    38.    SAT – Scholastic Aptitude Test given to high school students to assess intelligence and readiness for college.

    39.    Search Engine – Software that searches the Internet for specific things. Examples include Google, Yahoo and Bing. Educational examples include ProQuest and EBSCOhost.

    40.    SQ3R – Stands for Survey, Question, Read, Recite and Review. It is a process that students can use to study and have better retention.

    41.    Syllabus – A summary of course requirements or expectations.

    42.    Synchronous – Attending class at the same time as your fellow students and instructors. 

    43.    Thread – A posting in class where students and the professor continue a conversation.

    44.    TOEFL – Test of English as a Foreign Language – Test to evaluate English skills.

    45.    TurnItIn – A software platform that colleges often use to test students’ papers for plagiarism.

    46.    Verbal-Linguistic Intelligence – When spoken or written words help students learn better they are said to have verbal-linguistic intelligence.

    47.   Virtual University – An online university.

    48.   Visual-Spatial Intelligence – When pictures or visual aids help students learn better they are said to have visual-spatial intelligence.

    49.    Wiki – A software platform that allows multiple users to input information.

    50.    Wikipedia – An online encyclopedia site where students can go to discover basic information. It is important to note is that this is a good place to start looking for information, but not a good source to use when you start to cite references. Because it is a wiki (see definition for wiki), the information on it can be manipulated by numerous users, and therefore can be unreliable.

     
  • drdianehamilton 11:28 am on August 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , common carriers, DSL Connection, FCC, , Google Verizon Deal, high speed access, MobyDisk, , Net Neutrality, podcasts, , Yahoo   

    Network Neutrality Explained 

    Repost from Mobydisk:

    Diane checks the internet. Her home page is Google, which is her favorite search engine. Today however, Diane’s system can’t connect to google.com. So she tries her next favorite search engine, MSN. msn.com seems to be working, but it is very slow. Diane has a DSL connection through her local phone company, Edison Telephone. Thinking there is a problem, she calls Edison Telephone’s tech support. They inform her that they have partnered with Yahoo as part of their “preferred portal program” so her connection to Yahoo should be twice as fast as it used to be. However, she will no longer be able to access Google, and other search engines such as msn.com and askjeeves.com will only be offered at a reduced speed. When Diane asks why this is, she is offered a $10 per month upgrade to Edison Telephone’s “universal” system which gives her full-speed access to any site on the web. As a bonus she can also stream podcasts to her iPod at high speed. When Diane points out that she was already able to stream audio just fine, they inform her that Apple has not paid for high speed access, so podcasts may skip or have lower quality.

    Infuriated, Diane cancels her service and chooses to switch to another provider. Ooops! There is only one telephone company in her area, and the cable internet service provider also has a “preferred portal program” that does the same exact thing.

    Does this sound silly? Until recently, this scenario was not possible. Telephone companies, internet service providers (ISPs), and transportation companies were defined as common carriers under U.S. law, which means that they must be neutral to whatever they carry. That means that UPS can’t prioritize packages sent by large companies or delay delivery to packages to smaller companies or individuals. It means that telephone companies can’t send higher-quality audio to customers who also use their cell-phone service. And internet service providers can’t insert ads into competitor’s web pages or slow-down data to competitor’s customers.

    Now this is all at risk. DSL service providers are no longer “common carriers” and the FCC rules on network neutrality allow loopholes that the telecommunications companies want to exploit. No one ever intended companies to start breaking the internet into pieces. Be aware that this only affects the U.S. – everyone else will have free and clear internet access.

    What is Network Neutrality?

    Network Neutrality is the basic idea that anyone carrying network traffic must treat all the data the same. They should not filter, prioritize, or alter the content in ways that are not desired by the customer.

    Network neutrality is fairly simple, but it has become a highly politicized issue since the telecoms have an opportunity to charge customers more for less. Fake grassroots efforts have been confusing the issue, making it difficult to see what network neutrality is, and what it is not.

    What isnt Network Neutrality?

    This is very important because there is significant misinformation on Network Neutrality.

    1. Network Neutrality is not new:The entire world currently has a neutral system in place today. The telecommunications companies want to change to a non-neutral system.
    2. Network Neutrality is not price fixing:Various articles have claimed that network neutrality involves fixing prices. This is not true.
    3. Network Neutrality is not regulation:Network Neutrality currently exists, and doesn’t require any special bodies to enforce, measure, or regulate it. There is no organization that checks to make sure there aren’t ads in your phone calls, or that call quality is the same. It just isn’t necessary.
    4. Network Neutrality has nothing to do with competition:Some phony grassroots organizations claim that the issue is neutrality -vs- competition. Competition is not affected by neutrality.
    5. Network Neutrality is not about a “tiered” network:Networks are already tiered. Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc. each pay more for their internet access than any individual person does.  They have special high-speed connections because they they serve so many more customers.
    6. Neutrality is not evil just because Microsoft supports it:Some articles point out specifically the Microsoft supports network neutrality as a way to draw people to emotionally conclude that neutrality is evil. Any company or individual that has a site on the internet is threatened if net neutrality is taken away.
    7. Network Neutrality has nothing to do with taxation:One organization hints that network neutrality involves some sort of taxation, which is not true.

    Who do I trust?

    Telecommunications companies do not want network neutrality. Neither do those companies that produce the telecom hardware. Both these groups stand to gain from eliminating network neutrality. On the other side of the issue is everyone else: consumers and corporations big and small. Anyone who has a web site wants the internet to remain neutral. The inventor of the world wide web, Professor Tim Burners-Lee, strongly supports network neutrality as summarized in this CNET news article.

    Be aware that there are some organizations that try to get people to write to their representatives against net neutrality. They are creating fake grassroots campaigns to confuse people. But it is easy to see who is involved by looking at their list of supporters which includes every major telecom company in the United States. The site even sports a big “Say no to government regulation” slogan, even though network neutrality is not regulation. Another such organization is netcompetition.org which is run by a telecom lobbying group who states their mission is to “…exploit emerging opportunities…”

    For accurate information, try some of the links below.

    References

    Examples

    Network neutrality violations are happening today. For example, NextGenTel in Norway limited the bandwidth of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation.

    Confusion in the press

    Even the press is very confused on network neutrality. Here are some examples of articles that fall for some of these myths:

    Chicago Sun-Times

    The Chicago Sun Times article on network neutrality makes some of the mistakes cited above. They believe that network neutrality might be a good thing, but that we don’t want government regulation unless absolutely necessary. They want to rely on the free market and wait until there are some real violations before imposing government regulation. They don’t want to stifle the telecom companies ability to provide higher speed access.

    Their reasoning is logical, but the authors are misinformed. They have fallen for some of the network neutrality myths listed above.

    1. The mistaken belief that network neutrality is new and that network neutrality is a form of government regulation.

      “…but we don’t think the government should get involved until there is clear evidence that involvement is needed…”

    The authors want to wait until network neutrality violations happen to confirm that the market cannot fix them before imposing the law. This would make sense except that we previously had network neutrality, and it was removed under pressure from telecoms who have publically announced plans for non-neutral features. The groundwork is already set, and violations have begun.

  • The mistaken belief that competition exists and can solve the problem.

    “…the market itself under existing laws, will provide the best solution to the problem…”

  • How many high-speed internet providers exist in most areas? Usually there are two: The local telecom company, and the local cable TV provider. Since both are arguing against network neutrality, there are no alternatives for people to switch to. Since there is no free market, the free market cannot solve the problem.

  • The mistaken belief that network neutrality is related to paying for higher speed access.

    “…If some companies, such as a seller of downloadable movies, want to pay an Internet provider more to guarantee speedier delivery, shouldn’t that be allowed?”

  • It certainly should, and this is allowable under network neutrality. But telecom companies want to eliminate network neutrality because they are not speeding-up internet movies, but slowing down everything else, then requiring customers to pay to speed them back up. The situation is similar to telecoms selling a service that blocks telephone solicitors, then selling the ability to get around those blocks back to the telecom solicitors.)

    With all of the talk about Net Neutrality in the news, I thought this site (Mobydisk.com) gave a pretty simple explanation. Also check out http://bit.ly/bIFgFv, the article titled How the FCC Bungling Led to Google-Verizon Net Neutrality Deal.

 
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