John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

We Wanted the BlackBerry Server in Indonesia, Not Singapore, You Idiots

Research In Motion is on the outs with another foreign government.

This time it’s Indonesia, which is threatening to cut off BlackBerry data services if Research In Motion doesn’t locate a data server in the country as it promised earlier this year.

A bit of background: Back in January, RIM made four commitments to the Badan Regulasi Telekomunikasi Indonesia (BRTI), Indonesia’s telecommunications regulator:

  • That it would establish a network of over 50 BlackBerry Expert Centers throughout Indonesia
  • That it would work with Indonesian law enforcement to provide lawful access to messages and emails from suspected criminals
  • That it would restrict access to pornography on its network
  • That it would establish a “regional network aggregator” or server to which Indonesian carriers could connect to ensure they’re getting good data speeds

RIM delivered on all four. But evidently it didn’t carry out the fourth in quite the way the BRTI wanted. It put the data center in Singapore, which is not geographically all that far, but a different country and not nearly as “regional” as the BRTI would like. Aggravating matters further, Indonesia has been asking for a local server for nearly three years.

In other words, the BRTI is not at all happy with RIM right now. Apparently it’s outraged enough that it told IDG it plans to make a local server a precondition of RIM’s continued operation in Indonesia. BRTI commissioner Heru Sutadi told the publication that RIM must provide the local server if it wants to continue to operate its BlackBerry Internet Service and BlackBerry Messenger in the country. If it doesn’t do as BRTI asks, those services could end up being cut off.

Reached for comment, a RIM spokesperson said that while the company has been working closely with the Indonesian government, it has not been advised of any specific requirements extending beyond what it has already done. The statement in full, below:

RIM has been working closely with government bodies in Indonesia , but has not been advised of any specific requirements extending beyond what it has already satisfied in writing to the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MOCI) on September 23, 2011.

RIM continues to discuss a new, potential investment in Indonesia that would support the growth and expansion of the country’s software development industry and RIM expects to provide further details at a future date.

On September 23, RIM notified the MOCI in writing that it has fully addressed all of the requests made to it by MOCI in January of this year. This included notification that:

1. RIM has established a network of 50+ BlackBerry Expert Centers throughout Indonesia which are detailed on: and provide customers with superior after sales support

2. RIM is working with Law Enforcement Agencies in Indonesia for the provision of Lawful Access as stipulated by national law

3. RIM has completed the establishment of a regional network aggregator. Many Indonesian carriers are now connected, addressing the specific stated concern of MOCI, which applied strictly to the speed of data flows.

4. RIM has established a content filtering system, per the requirements outlined by the government.

BlackBerry continues to provide safe, secure and reliable communications for its users.

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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus