Would you pay for a "Skype Nanny?"

Would you pay for a "Skype Nanny?"

Summary: Network World's Steve Taylor and Larry Hettick put forth an interesting "devil's advocate" proposition with reference to Skype.Their essential point is that because Skype gets updated often, doesn't offer customer support, guaranteed QoS or proactive (as compared to reactive) security monitoring and related information accessible to the subscriber, wouldn't you be better off getting your VoIP service from a VoIP service provider able to offer you all of the above?

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TOPICS: Networking
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Network World's Steve Taylor and Larry Hettick put forth an interesting "devil's advocate" proposition with reference to Skype.

Their essential point is that because Skype gets updated often, doesn't offer customer support, guaranteed QoS or proactive (as compared to reactive) security monitoring and related information accessible to the subscriber, wouldn't you be better off getting your VoIP service from a VoIP service provider able to offer you all of the above?

Failing that- and this is my term- what about a Skype Nanny to monitor your Skype service, watch out for security alerts, perform tweaks,download and install patches, updates, cool third-party apps?

 Taylor and Hettick cite points made at the recent Next Generations Networks conference by Sonus Networks CTO and founder Mike Hluchyj. They note that Hluchyj expressed a preference for " a service provider to make sure that software programs such as Skype are secure and that they provide the quality of service he expects with his voice calls. And equally important, Hluchyj pointed out that he wants a person to call to fix the problem if something goes wrong."

The authors then add their own point. "And while most Microsoft users are accustomed to check for 'critical patch' updates each time they log on to their personal computers,we're not sure the same comfort levelor user discipline applies to Skype."

Now as to "user discipline," I would change the term to "user responsibility." Yes, Skype is cheap, but for that "cheap," you implicitly assume some of the onus for making sure you download those patches, watch out for security alerts and perform your own updates.

To me, Taylor and Hettick seem to be advancing the case of a "Skype Nanny."

While that could be a good business, I can manage my own Skype just fine, thank you.

What do you think? Would you pay, say $10 bucks a month for a Skype Nanny? Maybe $5 bucks a month? Let's get some TalkBacks going here. 

Topic: Networking

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3 comments
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  • My Skype is a Little Baby and Needs a Nanny (NOT)

    I think they give potential Federal employees for the Social Security Administration an IQ test and if they "pass it" they are denied employment! They simply have no intellect, no creativity, no compassion, no caring, no sense of humor, no ethics. They are meat-automatons, following 'rules' they dimly understand. Stupid, arrogant, with weirdly flat voices, showing no interest or concern for older Americans.
    It is a total shame. "Compassionate Conservatives" ... have you heard that lying phrase from our lying arrogant rich uncaring president? Is that like "military intelligence"? One of those phrases which are self-contradictory.

    So I Skype my friends and prevent any idiots who want to contact me because they have nothing better to do with themselves. Mostly from the Phillipines or Croatia or some such place, they're trying to con us all into Sending money to the Nigerian Governmental Tax the Americans Thru the Widow of the Dictator Scam Program.
    republicanseattheirdead
    • thats one point of view

      all creative language aside, are you an english teacher republicanSeaTTheirDead ?

      But the other side is perhaps that skype is a good program and it does offer a good service, I strongly believe that one day we will have a universal distributed way of secure open communications for all. Is skype that avenue? I do not think so; it's a nice product for computer savvy people.

      How ever it would be Stupid and arrogant, to believe that all of "US population" or "worlds Population" or even 20% of those populations are computer savvy or even have the will to learn how to do some things that some "arrogant " people consider simple. Many of my clients simply do not want to learn something new, they have too many things going on, and that is what I am there for.


      Now keep in mind that some people are willing to read the complete support documentation and learn their new app in & out. Others simply can open a new app and look through the options and pick it right up right away, but my experience says that those individuals are few and far between.

      So a Skype Nanny may not be a bad idea, in fact I think it would aid in the acceptance of skype as well as other decentralized communications portals. Until that time comes users especially business users will, in my opinion choose to use a service that provides the support and security that comes with a paid Provider whether.

      On a side note, recently SBC CEO said that he wants Voip service providers to pay to send data through his ?pipes?. Will he expect Skype users to pay if they are calling a Skype user that is connected through an SBC broadband service? Who would he send the bill too?
      BuckRogers_z
  • Skype nanny and ebay

    Well this is an interesting time in the world of VoIP, we have Ebay?s purchase of Skype and now the idea of 3rd party apps that will enhance Skype and/or make it more secure, or maybe some type of spyware that is associated with a 3rd party Skype apps.

    Lets first look at this Ebay now owns Skype and has the intention of having regular ebay sellers pay to have a Skype number linked to their sellers profile or Ebay store or something to that nature.

    How does Ebay entice its sellers to pay for a service? This can be answered many different ways via a few different methods; I will touch on a few.

    First and foremost make Skype as popular as apple pie, or unfortunately in today?s times Paris Hilton (I just don?t see why people like her). Who does it need to be popular with my guess is their largest customer base probably people from 20 ? 45 lower to middle income levels. How to achieve this?..hmmm the million dollar question, I think take an 80?s style approach and brand the ?heck? out of it.

    I was going to take a step forward but before the above create a new Skype that takes care of its current short comings. Incorporate the ?Nanny? right into the core source code, automate updates. Allow you to screen calls based on county regions or IP ranges (this maybe already available). Now do the above.

    Create a mozilla / firefox / explorer plug-in allowing you to simply click call this person that would bring up your skype client and connect to the party that you wish to contact.

    I really needs to be made extremely easy to use, and perhaps give away pstn connectivity until there is no more demand for it? If the majority of people are using skype why would you need to connect to the pstn at all, but then again what about 911, Skype and 911 should Ebay be mandated to allow its users to call 911 from where ever they maybe if they are using it in the USA or should people simply not choose a service that doesn?t offer it?

    Who knows right, ever time the Government tries to leave things unregulated to spur growth among new companies and redistribute wealth through competitive business, not taxes a tragedy happens the lawyers get involved, then activist start complaining and then the regulation comes in and makes entry into a market all that much harder for the common human being. (Big Players have much bigger pockets to meet regulations then Little Players) Ironically the people who complain about big brother the most are the ones that most often end up increasing it.
    BuckRogers_z