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<nettime> EU Leaders confront growing bit crisis
Carl Guderian on 12 Sep 2000 15:39:24 -0000


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<nettime> EU Leaders confront growing bit crisis


(Reuters)

EU leaders today called an emergency meeting in Strasbourg to head off a
bit shortage that has become a full-blown crisis. Internet service
providers (ISPs) in Brussels, London, Frankfurt and Paris estimate they
will run out of bits within the next 24 hours.

In Amsterdam, Premier Wim Kok asked users not to download or mail files
larger than 40K, but this measure may be too little, too late. Dutch
provider OranjeNet reports users frantically downloading mp3 sound files
and pornographic video clips in anticipation of the shortage.

Meanwhile, French spammers have choked backbone links with e-mailed
protests against the modem tax, which they says is forcing them to operate
at a loss.
 
In Rot-op-Zee, the Netherlands, a man was arrested while allegedly
siphoning bits from a router in the local telephone office. Police
arrested O. Henk (36) and confiscated smartcards with a total capacity of
20 gigabits, which he allegedly used for storing the stolen data. The
arrest suggests a black market in bits has arisen overnight.

Police and emergency services worry they might not have enough bits to do
their jobs.UK Prime Minister Tony Blair has appealed to citizens to donate
the contents of their browser caches and temp files to aid organizations.
Their used emails are not needed, since MI5 already has those.




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