Last year, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) recognized the role of technology in strengthening this country’s economy by investing 7.2 million in funding into technology and broadband adoption initiatives through the Broadband Technology Opportunity Program (BTOP). Through this funding the United States can build technology infrastructures and bring low-income residents online for the first time. However, technology in and of itself is not what is important. What is important is how people, families and communities use that technology to improve their lives. What will drive adoption and sustainability? Why will someone come online for the first time? What did we learn as an industry and society in bringing the first 100M on line that can help us in bringing the last 100M online? What is the real cost benefit analysis on people having access to information that directly impacts the way they manage their health, educate their children or plan for their financial future. I challenge all of us not to look at the cost of building these networks – but rather the cost of not building it.
ARLINGTON, Va., June 19, 2009 – The Broadband Technology Opportunities Program is a “jump start” for President Obama’s broadband vision for communities to use information technology to expand and enrich their infrastructure to help revive a slowing economy, said Mark Seifert, Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Seifert delivered the morning keynote on the second day of Pike and Fischer’s Broadband Policy Summit.