President Muhammadu Buhari.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari is making moves to stop the country’s data from being hosted overseas as soon as indigenous data centres have enough capacity locally to handle data generated within Nigeria”; the Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, stated this during an official visit to Rack Centre, a Tier lll data centre in Lagos. Shittu said he was amazed at the “world-class” infrastructure at Rack Centre, adding that “I am happy that the company’s Managing Director, Mr. Ayotunde Coker. He said that Rack Centre could compete with the best in the world”. He futher stated that if the local capacity could be met within a year from now, “the President will compel the Ministries, Departments and Agencies to host locally.”
Shittu said that Buhari was passionate about local data, saying, “As soon as we have capacity, all our data will be hosted within. We just have to be sure that we have capacity.”
He said there would be no challenge in implementing the local content policy, as the policy already specified that for data centre facilities available in the country, government agencies were duty bound to patronise them.
“It is easy, we have a local content policy that says that for every data centre facility available in Nigeria, industries and government agencies must patronise them and more especially when we have a facility like Rack Centre that can compete with any other in any part of the world,” the minister said.
He said, “It is not logical for the Nigerian government or the private sector to keep patronising the foreign facilities. The plan we have agreed on is that once we have capacity; we will only resort to buying outside the shores only if the capacity is not there.”
Shittu said that the Buhari-led government was committed to creating an enabling environment for the private sector to thrive.
“As a government, we need to encourage all private investors that are investing in the Nigerian economy in a bid to ensure that Information Technology firms grow to satisfactory levels and contribute their fair share to the Gross Domestic Product.”
The Managing Director of Rack Centre, Ayotunde Coker, said that the data centre co-location provider had doubled its capacity from 119 racks to 255 racks within seven months.
According to him, the company is working towards the objective of meeting local demand.
He said, “We intend to build that capacity. We have the blueprint and we have proved that it can be done by our doubling the capacity of the centre within just seven months ahead of time and within the budget.
“The capacity can be increased again to 600 racks within another seven months once it is identified that the market exists for the expansion.”
IN OTHER NEWS:
Shortly after popular music pirating site mp3skull was taken down after loosing a lawsuit that ran into several millions on copyright infringements, a group of prominent U.S. record labels are going after the jugular of online radios by filing a lawsuit against the DIY online radio platform Radionomy, which also owns Winamp and Shoutcast. In their complaint the labels accused Radionomy of promoting and facilitating mass copyright infringement by hosting ‘pirate’ radio stations of its users.
“It can be recalled that IPOB- the separatist group and pirate radio director Nnambdi KANU of Radio Biafra was arrested in Nigeria in October 2015.
Nnamdi Kanu-Director Radio Biafra.
IPOB is a separatist movement that call for the independence of Nigeria’s former Eastern Region.
In recent years the music industry‘s battle against piracy mostly focused on torrent sites, cyberlockers and unauthorized MP3 indexes. However, those are certainly not the only ‘threats’ it faces. Online radio stations, often operated by hobbyists, also remain a concern. This has prompted a coalition of record labels to file a lawsuit against Radionomy, a platform that allows users to start their own online radio stations.
In their complaint filed at a California federal court earlier this year, Arista Records, LaFace Records, Sony Music Entertainment and Zomba Recording accuse the service of several forms of copyright infringement.
Radionomy, which also owns Winamp and Shoutcast, serves between 30,000 and 50,000 radio stations which are controlled by its users. These stations are freely broadcasted online through a variety of sites and apps.
“Defendants operate an online music service through which users can listen to music stations, or create stations, that Defendants stream to listeners worldwide,” the complaint reads.
“To program music stations on Defendants’ service, users can upload music from their own collection or use music from Defendants’ library of popular music and podcasts.”
In addition to picking tracks from the Radionomy library, users can also upload their own tracks and stream these online. Listeners from all over the world can then tune in by searching for stations by theme, genre or even artists.
While many users and listeners enjoy the service, the record labels point out that Radionomy fails to pay the proper licenses. As such, they argue that it’s promoting and facilitating widespread copyright infringement.
The labels list hundreds of tracks that were used without permission on Radionomy including works from Adele, Bob, Dylan, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Elvis Presley, John Mayer, Michael Jackson, One Direction, Pink Floyd and Shakira.
“On January 12, 2016 a station on Defendants’ service, named ‘One Direction The Radio,’ played the recordings ‘Nobody Compares’ and ‘Something Great’ by One Direction, both of which are Plaintiffs’ owned or exclusively licensed copyrighted works,” one of the examples reads.
As an example, the labels further mention that Radionomy encourages its users to start popular stations offering rewards for the number of listeners they attract, while canceling the least popular stations.
“Defendants encourage users to include popular copyrighted recordings in programmed stations by offering to ‘reward’ users with cash payments if they create a station that reaches a large audience and threatening to deactivate users that fail to reach ‘minimum audience’ requirements,” the complaint reads.
Late last year the labels reached out to Radionomy, which is owned by the entertainment industry mogul Vivendi, (owner of Universal Music Group, Canal+ and Dailymotion) who reportedly admitted that they had not paid royalties to SoundExchange since 2014. Despite these talks, no agreement was reached on the issue.
The music companies now hope to get help from the court and are requesting a permanent injunction against the radio service, as well as damages which can easily add up to dozens of millions of dollars.
We will keep you posted as the court rulings proceed.
Compiled, edited by:
Jimmy Adesanya (Facebook.com/LinkedIn).
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