The second, more important discovery was that the update wiped out users installations of the Homebrew Channel and possibly other system hacks as well.
for the Wii this is incorrect. i went and read the source linked in the article and the source is also incorrect.
the Wii 4.3b update does not remove homebrew channel, does not disable the homebrew channel, does not prevent backups from running, does not prevent USB loaders and does not remove or prevent any currently installed homebrew applications of any sort.
the wii 4.3b update does install a new version of shop channel and install an unusable versions of cIOS249 and everyother IOS, one of which is IOS41. IOS41 was the IOS used by such apps as Trucha Bug Restorer. TBR is used to install a modified IOS, which are then used for everything else.
however there are other exploits available to reinstall the necessary cIOS. so the update does not actually accomplish anything significant.
the only so called "improvement" is the wii shop channel. which can be updated using other methods.
also would like to add, Zod is correct, the Wii does not automatically update. there is always a confirmation giving you the option to decline. if there is an update partition on a game disc, there is no internet connection required.