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Hungary To Tax Internet Traffic 120

Posted by Soulskill
from the how-to-kill-your-youtube-habit dept.
An anonymous reader writes: The Hungarian government has announced a new tax on internet traffic: 150 HUF ($0.62 USD) per gigabyte. In Hungary, a monthly internet subscription costs around 4,000-10,000 HUF ($17-$41), so it could really put a constraint on different service providers, especially for streaming media. This kind of tax could set back the country's technological development by some 20 years — to the pre-internet age. As a side note, the Hungarian government's budget is running at a serious deficit. The internet tax is officially expected to bring in about 20 billion HUF in income, though a quick look at the BIX (Budapest Internet Exchange) and a bit of math suggests a better estimate of the income would probably be an order of magnitude higher.

Comment: Re:WTF, the antarctic gets FO before me? (Score 0, Troll) 54

by Jane Q. Public (#48201679) Attached to: Fiber Optics In Antarctica Will Monitor Ice Sheet Melting
If you don't believe, try looking HERE, and HERE.

I have quite a collection of official government raw data that show a very different truth than what NOAA claims.

Hell, even the majority of climate scientists admit that it hasn't really warmed for 16 years or more now. Their last best hope for explaining why their CO2-warming climate models didn't correspond with reality was that the "missing heat" was hiding in the deep ocean.

Alas, THIS PAIR OF PAPERS shows rather solidly that there isn't any "missing heat" being stored in the deep oceans.

Too bad, so sad. Which is sarcasm, of course. People should be celebrating (and some are). But too many are so caught up in their ties to research grants or their "CO2 religion" to admit they're looking more foolish by the day.

Comment: Re:WTF, the antarctic gets FO before me? (Score 1, Informative) 54

by Jane Q. Public (#48201645) Attached to: Fiber Optics In Antarctica Will Monitor Ice Sheet Melting

The last 6 months were the warmest on record for the NOAA and the GISTEMP data sets, so I think that the hiatus may have finished.

NOAA ignores its own satellite records (which it previously claimed were more accurate than surface temperature measurements) to make that claim.

And it's just like them to do so. They choose whichever dataset that supports their pre-formed conclusions. The satellite record has shown a slight but real cooling trend for a decade and a half, and a year that has actually been one of the COOLEST on record. Not the coldest ever, but right down there in the bottom 10.

Also, sea level is not rising. That is to say, it isn't rising any faster today than it has for the last couple of hundred years. About 1-1.5 mm per year, on average.

The amount of fudging that NOAA and its NCDC have to accomplish to make this year actually look warm, much less a record, is nothing short of incredible. I mean that word literally: in-credible.

Comment: Re:Aero yet (Score 4, Insightful) 91

by lgw (#48200753) Attached to: Microsoft Introduces Build Cadence Selection With Windows 10

Tabs suck - switching between explorers using the task bar (when set up properly to not combine windows on the taskbar) is good.

What explorer has lacked since Windows 3.1 is two panes in explorer, to simplify moving/sorting stuff between directories. Yeah, you can snap an explorer to each side of the desktop these days but that only works properly if you have just 1 monitor. If I could easily tile explorers on one monitor in a multi-mon setup, that would be far less annoying.

Comment: Re:Let's start by closing the front door (Score 3, Informative) 299

I was just arguing that this is pointless. When I traveled to Israel, I requested that my visa be stamped on a removable sheet of paper to be stapled into my passport. I did this because I didn't want evidence of a trip to Israel when one of my next stops was Malaysia. If someone is trying to get from Liberia to the US, they will do so with no evidence of recently having been in Liberia.

It's not as if there are huge numbers of flights to and from Liberia.

Comment: Re: Moral Imperialism (Score 1) 458

by Jane Q. Public (#48199703) Attached to: Manga Images Depicting Children Lead to Conviction in UK

But as far as I know, obscenity laws are completely different from the law/s against child pornography. The difference being that obscenity laws do not regulate possession, only distribution. You can't be prosecuted for owning something that is obscene, only for distributing it.

In the U.S. they are different. But this statute is trying to link them, and I'm not sure that would stand up to a Constitutional test.

One thing our Supreme Court established long ago is that government cannot establish what is obscene by statute. It must be determined on a case-by-case basis. Look up the Miller Test.

And that is why they worded it this way. They aren't making artificial depictions of child pornography illegal; they're simply making them illegal *IF* they fail the Miller Test. But that's redundant, because things that fail the Miller Test are already, by definition, obscene.

So it's a law with no apparent purpose except grandstanding. Unless its purpose was to change the punishment for this particular obscene material.

I am not defending child pornography. But any responsible statute has to balance the good it does with the potential harm (because there is almost always some of both). Freedom of speech is an area in which legislators are obliged to tread very carefully.

Comment: Re: Moral Imperialism (Score 1) 458

by Jane Q. Public (#48199671) Attached to: Manga Images Depicting Children Lead to Conviction in UK

Seriously. Even if it's not obscene, however that works, you still risk being called a pedophile given that trials are on the record, right?

This kind of argument deserves to be taken out behind the woodshed and shot dead.

The question here wasn't what someone is willing to risk. It was about what is LEGAL. And to answer your question: YES, as long as something I do is LEGAL, I am not going to cower in a corner and be afraid of the damage false prosecution would do to my perceived character. To do so would be abject cowardice.

Having said that, I do not intentionally involve myself in any way with ANY kind of depictions of child pornography, real or fake, simply because I find it morally objectionable. But in a free and rational society, morality informs the law, not the other way around. They are two very different things.

Comment: Re:Is Google Losing It? (Score 1) 151

by Jane Q. Public (#48199603) Attached to: Google Changes 'To Fight Piracy' By Highlighting Legal Sites

Google doesn't really change anything.

YES, they ARE! It's a search engine. Changing the order of the search results changes EVERYTHING.

And by their own admission, they're doing based on [A] payment, and [B] their subjective perception of whether the content is real.

I repeat: that *IS* modifying search results, and they're doing it for money.

When I search, I'm not searching for the highest bidder.

This is why I am using Google less and less now. I have actually started using Bing (which in some ways isn't much better), and I'm giving DuckDuckGo a serious try.

"We are on the verge: Today our program proved Fermat's next-to-last theorem." -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982