Fast Breaks Newsfront: January 15, 2001

By eweek  |  Posted 2001-01-15

Spam Action

Theyre off on Capitol Hill, and one of the first Internet-related issues that legislators will wrestle with is unsolicited commercial e-mail. Already, Rep. Gene Green, R-Texas, has introduced a bill, and Rep. Heather Wilson, R-N.M., plans to reintroduce her spam bill, which was passed last year by the House but stalled in the Senate. Wilsons bill criminalizes the sending of spam with deceptive address information; requires all spam to contain e-mail addresses to which recipients can respond and demand no further e-mails; and forces spammers to identify spam as spam.

Big Layoffs

Gateway said it would lay off 3,000 workers — 12.5 percent of its work force — because of lower than expected sales of its personal computers. Gateway said fourth-quarter sales dropped 15 percent from year-earlier levels. Meanwhile, optical networking giant Nortel Networks said it plans to cut about 4,000 jobs in slower growing operations, but expects to continue hiring in stronger areas. Content players were not immune, with AOL Time Warners CNN News Group expected to lay off hundreds of people, with deep cuts expected at CNNs interactive operations.

Merger Axed

After considering its options for slightly more than a week, Western Multiplex decided to terminate its planned merger with Adaptive Broad-band. The decision comes after a Jan. 2 announcement from Adaptive Broadband that earnings would be lower than expected, and quashes the combination of two leading fixed wireless players.

Export Rules Unchanged

The Clinton administration said last week that most restrictions on computer exports should be dropped because there is no "meaningful or effective" way to control the spread of such technology. The White House, however, is blocked by law from taking such action.

Sharing Rings

360networks and Telseon are creating the nations first end-to-end Gigabit Ethernet network, agreeing last week to share their rings, fiber and expertise in the metro and long-haul markets with each other.

Rocket Fuel