International Briefs

May 13


PC-TV Devices Likely to Make Only Small Impact in
European Market


Britain-based research company INTECO’s latest report on Internet trends
claims devices like WebTV will make a relatively small impact on the
British Internet market over the next few years.


The major area of Internet growth will continue to be people who own PCs.
There are currently around 1.5 million households in Britain accessing the
Internet through a PC; this is expected to rise to 4.6 million by the year
2001.


The trend seems to hold across Europe, with 6.8 million PC-based users in
Germany and only 1.6 million non-PC-based users.



Satellite Link Launched for Internet Access to
Ghana


Africa Online and Teleglobe Communications have launched a new satellite
Internet connection serving users in Ghana.


Service to Cote d’Ivoire and Kenya is planned later in the summer.


Africa Online, a subsidiary of
Prodigy, is the largest ISP in Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and Kenya, and recently
expanded to serve Egypt, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda.


Teleglobe runs a worldwide Internet backbone and IP routing service called
GlobeInternet.


(Web Vision, India; May 15, 1998)
Reduced Access Fees to Boost Internet in
Tunisia


Tunisia has cut the monthly charges and communication fees for subscribers
to the Internet to boost use of the network by individuals and businesses,
the communications ministry said.


The number of Internet subscribers has
risen to 3,500 at mid-April from just 83 at the end of 1986, officials at
the Agence Tunisienne de l’Internet (ATI) said.


The number of subscribers
is expected to rise to 10,000 at the end of 1998.


(Reuters News Agency; May 4, 1998)


Cisco to Set Up Internet Academies in
Asia-Pacific


Cisco Systems will be setting up institutes called Cisco Networking
Academies in Asia-Pacific countries over the next few years to train young
people for the Internet generation.


Cisco has set up such academies across
the U.S., and is starting to establish them in Japan and Australia, CEO
John Chambers said.


The next two decades will see the explosion of what
Chambers called an Internet economy. “In this new Internet economy, the
jobs are going to go to those countries where people know how to use the
Internet,” he said.


(Singapore Business Times; May 5, 1998)


Australian Government Plans Copyright Reform for
Internet Age


Australian Attorney-General Daryl Williams and Minister for Communications
Senator Richard Alston announced that the country’s planned changes to the
copyright act will ensure a technology-neutral protection regime for
creative works.


In a move that will be welcomed by ISPs, the government has
also indicated that the reforms to the act will exempt network carriers and
ISPs from the liability for copyright infringements caused by their
customers’ content.


(I-Net.com magazine, Australia; May 5, 1998)


Amazon.com Arrives in Britain, Booksellers Brace for
Price War


British booksellers and publishers are braced for the onslaught of a
U.S.-style online price war following Amazon.com’s arrival in Britain.


It offers more than 2.5 million titles at discounts of up to 40 percent. It
has just established a British base by buying Bookpages, Britain’s second
largest specialist Internet bookshop.


Amazon’s arrival in Britain is part of a European expansion programme that
includes the acquisition of Telebook, Germany’s biggest online specialist
bookseller.


(Financial Times, Britain; April 29, 1998)


Watchdog Agency Urges Asian Countries to Fight Online
Software Piracy


The piracy watchdog Business Software Alliance (BSA) launched efforts
in Asia to fight rising software piracy on the Internet.


“Unless the issues
of Internet piracy are addressed adequately and in a timely manner,
software theft over the Internet will undermine efforts to make the
Internet a safe place to conduct business,” said VP Robert Kruger.


Kruger called on Asian countries to curb the trend through educational
awareness programs, legislative action and enforcement.


In Asia, Web sites offering pirated products are easily accessible.


(Kyodo News Service, Japan; April 22, 1998)


Korean Firms Invest Less in Internet Services


Faced with increasing costs during the current financial crisis, Korea’s
online and Internet service companies have cut back investments this year.


Hyundai Information & Communication said it decided to invest 9.5 billion
won (US$6.8 million) in its Internet service in 1998, 18 percent less than
the previous year.


Chollian online service provider Dacom said it has frozen its investment at
last year’s 25 billion won. Samsung SDS said it reduced investment in its
Unitel service from 15 billion won last year to only 6 billion won this year.


(Maeil Business Newspaper, Korea; April 20, 1998)


Taiwanese Web Sites Help With International
Procurement Operations


The Taipei Computer Association (TCA) recently launched a Web site called
Electronics Online to help
international procurement offices of multinational clients access local
resources, thereby also marketing local products to global clients.


The Web site allows members to update product information, contact buyers
via e-mail, and display pictures of products.


Trade Point Taiwan is another
Web-based trade service set up by the China External Trade Development
Council.


(Commercial Times, Taiwan; April 14, 1998)

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