We reported this past week on FYX, the new ISP in New Zealand that offered a “Global Mode” that would have let its users access geo-blocked content like Netflix. Those plans have been dialed back as FYX rescinds the service only 48 hours after it went live.
The Register is reporting that FYX pulled the option even though the whole idea behind the ISP was to offer its citizens a legal way around the unnecessary content blocks in the country. Without its advertised “Global Mode,” the ISP really has nothing that sets it apart from the other ISPs in the nation. It doesn’t seem that it’s gone for good though. It’s more like the service has gone into hiding while it works out all the legal ramifications.
A statement on the Web site entitled, “FYX stop global mode. For now…” had this to say on the matter:
FYX has a made a decision to withdraw its popular ‘global mode’ service from the market for the time being.
FYX sincerely apologises to our customers and the New Zealand internet community for putting a halt to ‘global mode,’ which will happen tonight at 11.59pm.
While legal opinions have supported FYX’s global mode under New Zealand law, there are matters that require further consideration before continuing the service.
It’s true that the service is technically legal according to New Zealand law, but that didn’t stop the U.S. from breaking into a private New Zealand resident’s house under an unlawful court order because Big Media said he infringed on their copyright.
I assume that FYX is probably going to bring back “Global Mode” but on a much more limited scale. It would appear that consumers wanting to legally watch programs on Netflix and the like are going to have to stick to using proxies or use the overpriced, monopolistic video delivery service offered by local ISPs.
In perhaps an attempt to at least retain or attract customers after losing its only worthwhile service, FYX has lowered its price to $30.30 a month with $0.30 per GB. The ISP claims it will “continue to work for the benefit of New Zealand consumers.”
“Global Mode” would have been to the benefit of New Zealand customers as they, alongside Australia, have to put up with higher fees for digital content that other nations get for less. Here’s hoping that FYX is able to offer “Global Mode” again sooner rather than later. Not everybody knows how to set up a proxy.