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[News] Anti-Linux BBC Drone Flies Over to Microsoft

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Highfield joins Microsoft after just four months at Project Kangaroo

,----[ Quote ]
| As director of future media and technology, Highfield cut a controversial 
| figure at the BBC. Reg sources blamed him for the culture of commitees and 
| waste that saw iPlayer development take several years and run millions 
| over-budget. In the last months of his reign a new management team was 
| brought in to rapidly develop a streaming version that has proved much more 
| successful than the unwieldy P2P client he oversaw.     
| Open source advocates also accused him of being too close to Microsoft... 


Ashley Highfield Goes to...Guess Where?

,----[ Quote ]
| Microsoft. 
| At least it's symmetric: Erik Huggers goes from Microsoft to the BBC, and 
| Highfield goes from the BBC to Microsoft, via Kangaroo. Let's keep it cosy, 
| eh?  



iPlayer coming to Macs... but no word on Linux

,----[ Quote ]
| Highlighting the marginal Linux audience is a risky move for Thomson, after 
| his director of future media and technology, Ashley Highfield, got himself 
| into hot water with open-source advocates last year by declaring the BBC 
| website had only 400-600 Linux users every week.    


BBC to put shows on iTunes 'next week'

,----[ Quote ]
| Worldwide services are distinct from the BBC iPlayer, which offers programmes 
| broadcast in the last seven days online for free. Ashley Highfield, the man 
| with ultimate responsibility for the BBC's online efforts, has indicated 
| iPlayer will be available via the AppleTV set-top box, however.   



Status Quo: Can't watch the news in Linux

,----[ Quote ]
| As you can see, we had one site that improved (CBS News) and one site that 
| has actually gotten worse (BBC News). Congratulations to CBS news for joining 
| the 21-century. I am not sure what to say about BBC News. Apparently, the BBC 
| is now using a new video player called the "BBC iPlayer", which only supports 
| Microsoft Windows operating systems. Because of this, there was a lot of 
| controversy about the highly restricted player, including this petition.     


BBC Director General grilled by MPs on iPlayer

,----[ Quote ]
| During the meeting there is discussion of iPlayer’s total cost to the licence 
| fee-payer - the BBC representatives are unable to give a figure, but start 
| the bidding at £20m, excluding staff costs. Thomson gives incorrect 
| information - that Mac and Linux versions of iPlayer have the same 
| functionality as Windows versions - and has to change his evidence at the 
| end. Perhaps it was this confusion that prompted Dr John Pugh MP to follow up 
| the encounter with a letter direct to Mark Thomson today discussing platform 
| neutrality in greater detail. A copy of this letter has been passed to the 
| Open Rights Group.        


BBC Corrupted

,----[ Quote ]
| Today the BBC made it official -- they have been corrupted by Microsoft. With 
| today's launch of the iPlayer, the BBC Trust has failed in its most basic of 
| duties and handed over to Microsoft sole control of the on-line distribution 
| of BBC programming. From today, you will need to own a Microsoft operating 
| system to view BBC programming on the web. This is akin to saying you must 
| own a Sony TV set to watch BBC TV. And you must accept the Digital  
| Restrictions Management (DRM) that the iPlayer imposes. You simply cannot be 
| allowed to be in control of your computer according to the BBC.      


BBC iPlayer Protests 

,----[ Quote ]
| Who are the people responsible for creating this mess?
|     * Mark Thompson, BBC director general (DG)
|     * Erik Huggers, group controller at BBC Future Media & Technology
|     * Ashley Highfield, director of new media and technology
| Right now, there is very considerable concern within the BBC that the actions 
| of the Director General and his team are sending the corporation in the wrong 
| direction. The BBC has been embroiled in a number of recent controversies, 
| all linked back to the DG's leadership.   


Why Linux Users Should Be Furious At BBC

,----[ Quote ]
| Recently the BBC had a bit of a wake up call regarding numbers and how many 
| Linux users were really out there. Why does any of this matter? It has to do 
| with something the BBC provides called the iPlayer. Seriously, relying on 
| ActiveX is so "1990's" that it's painful, and as luck would have it, the 
| Linux users who wish to use this BBC player made sure that the BBC knew that 
| they were making the sought after content inaccessible to those people using 
| Linux.      
| No iPlayer for Linux Users, But There Will Be An Alternative. Based on what I 
| have been able to gather thus far, it looks like we will see an Adobe Flash 
| option coming out soon. Then again, who really cares? Seriously, if the BBC 
| is this foolish to ignore how much Linux growth is taking place both in the 
| UK as well as the surrounding countries, then maybe people ought to be 
| looking elsewhere? Is it because this is indeed, the BBC? So there is the 
| belief that this is the people's media? Up until now, I enjoyed much of what 
| the BBC had to offer, but this entire thing is enough to have pushed me away.       


Beeb slammed for 'fawning' to Bill Gates 

,----[ Quote ]
| BBC viewers have flooded the corporation with complaints over how it
| covered the launch of Microsoft Vista earlier this week.
| In one cringingly servile interview worthy of Uriah Heep, the
| Beeb's news presenter Hugh Edwards even thanked Gates at the
| end of it, presumably in appreciation at being allowed to give
| the Vole vast coverage for free.
| In other TV news items presenters excitedly explained how Vistac
| ould be obtained and installed - details courtesy of the BBC's
| website.
| But British viewers, currently forced to pay a £131.50 licence
| fee to maintain the BBC's "impartiality", were less than impressed.
| Scores got in touch to complain that so much was Auntie up Bill's
| bum that you could barely see her corset.



BBC: Death by a thousand top-slices

,----[ Quoet ]
| So it looks like the end of the unique, state-centric model for funding the 
| BBC. An incoming Conservative administration is unlikely to be more 
| sympathetic to the BBC, with its stifling bureucracy and monopoly control 
| over a compulsory tax.   

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