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£50 a year for Virgin Media? – more than enough: Digital Voices 28/04/2012

We love it when our stories stir up a controversy, but why let those juicy comments go stale?

Welcome to #digitalvoices for April 28, 2012, and if you want to add your voice to the story, just follow the links.

keys by footloosietyPithy comment of the week

This special award goes to Niki, who dug up an old story on Virgin’s trials of high speed WiFi-style public broadband in London:

Our headline “Virgin plots super-fast wireless broadband” was turned on itself to become:
“Virgin would do better if they plot some customer service.”

There’s an unhappy story waiting to be told there, we’re certain.

Tesco’s £2.50 unlimited broadband: what’s it worth?

Our most successful story ever is still the launch of Tesco’s cheap-as-chips broadband package, which really brings out the passion for and against UK broadband providers.

Fred Monaghan must have been online for a while if he’s still with AOL, and he told us why: “I’ve been with AOL for 12 years and won’t change. AOL allows me to receive emails with attachments up to 30MB, I don’t know of any other service provider that does that?”

Dazza10101 chuckled: “That made me laugh out loud. Bless you Fred.”

Ah Dazza, you cheeky scamp.

Virgin TV pirates’ ringleader stripped of more than £7,000 in illegal earnings

Crime and punishment are evergreen topics, but there weren’t uniform dries of “hang ‘em high” when the leader of a Virgin TV pirating operation was stripped of his ill-gotten gains.

Jason Gary Sewell wrote: “If greedy companies like Virgin didn’t ask for ‘take the dinner off the table’ prices in the first place, there would be no such thing as cable TV theft. I think it’s sad that they don’t see what is obvious and lower their prices.

“Instead they waste £1,000’s more on chasing the modern day Robin Hood and his Merry Men to secure a conviction, which now deprives countless poor households into not being able to watch TV.

“TV should cost no more than £50 per annum, especially when you consider the crap they show. At a pound a week Virgin should be satisfied based on value for money and quality of service they provide. “

Crikey Jason, even the TV licence is more than £150 a year and that’s just for the Beeb, a sentiment echoed by Robert Will Brown: “You know that you don’t ‘need’ to buy cable TV?”

And Paul Wharmby pointed out that Virgin is still paying for the cable network built 30 years ago: “Modern day Robin hood? Virgin and its predecessors spent £13billion laying the cable network. Virgin’s debt stands at £5.5billion and they pay £35million a month in interest.

“They stole from Virgin, and they stole from the people who bought the boxes. The Korean bloke seems to be the only winner. Some Robin Hood!”

Mark Jones wondered just where all the only had gone: “This guy must be the worst businessman in history or has buried a lot of money in his garden! 44,000 boxes at £120 each is a lot of revenue for only £7K worth of profit!”

BT’s killer RABIT foils copper cable thieves

Copper cable theft is a serious problem, but when BT announced new technology to tackle attacks on their network, it caused a frenzy of calls for rough justice.

One of the more moderate comments came from Joe Bloggs (really? really?), who wrote: “As far as I know if the thieves are caught they can only be charged with stealing the scrap-value of the metal.

“This quirk of the law ought to be changed so that the thieves can be charged with Criminal Damage i.e. putting right the damage that they have done AND the consequential losses incurred.

“If the criminals are not British citizens they should be deported after doing time (half time isn’t it?) and told that they will do the other half of their sentence in solitary if they ever return. How can this not be fair?”

White space wireless trial points the way to smart dustbins and faster rural broadband

Big steps towards using gaps in Freeview coverage for delivering wireless broadband to rural users sounded like a winner to us.

Maybe it’s not fibre broadband, but 20Mbps is a big step up from narrowband speeds…unless you’re commenter Gil Druart:

“Oh, whoopee! Pony up another 100 notes and another £30/month to BT to get what our urban counterparts already get for nothing extra (subsidised in part by the high charge/MB we pay). We can hardly wait.”

Image: footloosiety/Flickr