Fast, affordable Internet access for all.
Content tagged with "muni"Displaying 951 - 960 of 975
Chattanooga Launches Nations Largest Public Full Fiber Network
Prices and Options
All broadband speeds are symmetrical; prices by month
|15 Mbps and basic phone||$68.83|
|15 Mbps / basic phone / basic cable||$92.97|
|15 Mbps/ phone & 120 min long distance / 77 Channels||$117.24|
Caveats: an extra $5.99 a month for HD Capability on the TV, but even the basic phone package comes with caller ID and 3-way calling
Muni Fiber in San Francisco Eats into Digital Divide
San Francisco has leveraged its municipally-owned fiber in a program to overcome the digital divide. Projects like this are a good early step for larger communities. First, invest in fiber to public buildings, schools, etc., to cut costs from leased lines (often, while upgrading capacity). Second, begin to leverage that fiber to increase affordable broadband availability in the community. Expand until community needs are met.
Muni Projects Lead in Europe
Roland Montagne also says that competition has been driving new FTTH/FTTB projects. He mentioned that more that 56% of the FTTH/B projects were conducted by public entities such as municipalities and utilities. Incumbents originated only 10.8% of the projects.If we want to see competition in telecommunications, we need public ownership of networks. Private networks tend toward monopoly markets, communities should build a network to ensure competition, especially the robust competition that can only come with open access full fiber-optic networks.
Ranking Broadband Stimulus Applications in Minnesota
Longmont, Colorado, Considers Muni Broadband
But others argued that it’s not about whether the city will jump into the cable or Internet business; it’s about giving the city options and giving voters a choice.Longmont, Colorado, will have a question on its November ballot asking whether the city should have the right to offer retail broadband services. This referendum is a requirement of Colorado state law (passed in June 2005 -- more details about that law from Baller.com [pdf]) for communities that want to offer such services to their community. A number of people spoke at the city council meeting before they unanimously voted to put the question on the ballot. Responding to some who opposed giving citizens a chance to choose, one Council Member came up with quite the apt phrase:
Councilman Sean McCoy said the Comcast representatives and Denver attorneys who spoke against the ballot question tried to “put a shadow of a doubt” on it by using “red herring” issues. “I believe the concerns are more of an issue of ’not in my monopoly’ more than anything else,” he said.Longmont has given the private sector plenty of chances to offer the broadband that citizens want - but they have failed to meet community needs. A number of private companies have tried to use the city's assets to build a wireless network: As detailed here, Kite Networks contracted with the city in 2006 to build a wireless network but ran out of money. In 2007, Gobility gave it a shot but also ran out of money. In stepped DHB, who completed the network. It is not clear what has happened to DHB, but this suggests that many remain dissatisfied:
All council members supported the ballot question, although Mayor Roger Lange and Councilwoman Mary Blue questioned what the city may choose to do in the future.
Johnson City, Tennessee, Considers Network
Lafayette Plans Faster Growth; US BB Embarrasses; Seattle Needs Volunteers
An article from the Lafayette Advertiser notes: LUS Fiber plans faster rollout. Community networks are frequently attacked by incumbent groups and private providers for failing to immediately turn a profit after launching a network (something we have addressed here). LUS Fiber wisely started slow and will now start to ramp up the number of customers as they progress further along the learning curve of running the fiber-optic network.
As LUS Fiber passes the six-month mark, officials are planning to significantly increase the number of customers and areas that receive television, telephone and Internet service.
The system launched in some areas of the city in February, and thus far, the rollout has been somewhat slower than many anticipated. Lafayette Utilities System Director Terry Huval said the process hasn't gone faster because of a desire to focus on providing high-quality customer service.
"This is a new business," Huval said. "I intentionally held back because I wanted to make sure that every attempt we made to serve a customer was the best we could deliver. Now, we can start really accelerating."
A commentary worth reading: American broadband infrastructure: A national embarrassment
Several months ago, I visited the Netherlands and had the rare opportunity to be personally embarrassed by our terrible broadband infrastructure. The Dutch were literally making fun of me. The fact that our country, with its vast resources and its illustrious history -- Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, Steve Jobs -- has such terrible internet service should be an outright national scandal.
More Short Shots
How did Sweden get so connected? BuddeBlog took a look at how Sweden has invested so greatly into advanced fiber networks. This short post looks at factors from geography to government policy that have helped.
Andrew Cohill, an advocate of both fiber and wireless networks, offers a simple explanation for why wireless can only be part of the solution to the problem of universal broadband. Wireless just cannot provide the same high reliability and speeds of wired connections.
Following up on yesterday's call on the FCC to stop ignoring muni broadband, Karl Bode observes:
Interestingly, of the 51 "constituents" brought in for the 8 most recent workshops, just five don't work for a corporation -- and zero of them act as witnesses for consumer interests (so clearly, you've got your work cut out for you).
And finally, Timothy Karr at Free Press has been unmasking astroturf groups funded by major carriers. Learn more with this fun widget (available here).
Indeed, FCC, Stop Ignoring Muni Broadband!
There are communities across the country that have found success building and operating their own broadband networks. Despite the caricature that municipal broadband invariably leads to boondoggles, that's just simply not the reality. That's part of the reason why I think the FCC needed to include municipal representation on these panels. There's a lot of fear, uncertainty, and doubt that's built up around municipal broadband that the FCC needs to be addressing on a factual basis. By not including municipal broadband on these panels I couldn't help but wonder if either the FCC was buying into these falsehoods or if they just didn't think municipal broadband was a significant enough player to include.The current FCC approach is akin to starting the Interstate Highway system with a series of workshops featuring horse breeders. In the meantime, the Economist has recognized the need for US regulators to get with the times. Fiber is the future - if it weren't for profit-maximizing companies and their lobbyists, talk of DSL would be followed by laughs.
With broadband networks, the role of the state has less to do with limiting handouts than increasing choice. Fibre-optic networks can be run like any other public infrastructure: government, municipalities or utilities lay the cables and let private firms compete to offer services, just as public roadways are used by private logistics firms. In Stockholm, a pioneer of this system, it takes 30 minutes to change your broadband provider. Australia’s new $30 billion all-fibre network will use a similar model.
Virginia County Looks to Wilson for Muni Network Inspiration
Charter requires that an area have a density of at least 30 rooftops per square mile in order to offer service, which leaves large swaths of the county, especially southern and western areas, without access.Sounds like a good opportunity to investigate a publicly owned network.