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NTIA's Broadband Data Collection Efforts to Combine With Census Bureau Questions

in Broadband Data/NTIA/Recovery Act by

WASHINGTON, October 30, 2009 – At a Friday workshop that the National Telecommunications and Information Administration held on data collection and the broadband stimulus, NTIA announced that the agency will be collecting large amounts of data through the Census Bureau that they would like to make more broadly available.

Researchers and other government agencies will also be using the data collected to create new programs and create predictive models, agency officials said.

In addition to gathering data from the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program applications and from maps funded by the broadband stimulus program, NTIA has been able to work with the Census Bureau to add questions to the Current Population Survey as a supplement.

The Current Population Survey is one of the largest national surveys conducted by the Census Bureau in conjunction with the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The following five questions are going to be asked:

  • Do you/does anyone in this household use the Internet at any location?
  • Who is that?
  • Do you/does anyone in this household connect to the Internet from home?
  • Do you currently access the Internet at home using dial-up or broadband?
  • What is the main reason that you do not have high-speed Internet access at home?

At the event on Friday, the major complaint presented by academics present was that the data given to the public was not granular enough to create solid correlations. These researchers presented, as an alternative, allowing researchers to work within the Census Bureau through Census Information Centers to access and manipulate data – but leave the facility with only results and not the raw data.

About was launched in January 2008, and uses “crowdsourcing” to collect the Broadband SPARC: Speeds, Prices, Availability, Reliability and Competition. The news on is produced by Broadband Census News LLC, a subsidiary of Broadband Census LLC that was created in July 2009.

A recent split of operations helps to clarify the mission of Broadband Census Data LLC offers commercial broadband verification services to cities, states, carriers and broadband users. Created in July 2009, Broadband Census Data LLC produced a joint application in the NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program with Virginia Tech’s eCorridors Program. In August 2009, released a beta map of Columbia, South Carolina, in partnership with Benedict-Allen Community Development Corporation.

Broadband Census News LLC offers daily and weekly reporting, as well as the Broadband Breakfast Club. The Broadband Breakfast Club has been inviting top experts and policy-makers to share breakfast and perspectives on broadband technology and internet policy since October 2008. Both Broadband Census News LLC and Broadband Census Data LLC are subsidiaries of Broadband Census LLC, and are organized in the Commonwealth of Virginia. About

Rahul Gaitonde has been writing for since the fall of 2009, and in May of 2010 he became Deputy Editor. He was a fellow at George Mason University’s Long Term Governance Project, a researcher at the International Center for Applied Studies in Information Technology and worked at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. He holds a Masters of Public Policy from George Mason University, where his research focused on the economic and social benefits of broadband expansion. He has written extensively about Universal Service Fund reform, the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program and the Broadband Data Improvement Act

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