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James Baller

Big Broadband Stimulus Grants for Middle-Mile Networks in N.C. and Michigan

in Broadband Stimulus by

WASHINGTON, January 20, 2010 – The National Telecommunications and Information Administration on Wednesday continued its rolling award of broadband stimulus grants, doling out $63 million for four broadband grants in Massachusetts, Michigan and North Carolina.

With the announcements, the NTIA and the Rural Utilities Service have awarded $253 million in broadband stimulus grants, or about 3.5 percent of the total broadband stimulus funds. The money has been spent on 23 projects so far, or an average of $11 million per grant.

The largest winners in Tuesday’s announcements were the Merit Network in Michigan, which won $33 million; and MCNC in North Carolina, which won $28.2 million. Both were for infrastructure grants to build fiber-optic networks within their states, connecting households and anchor institutions to broadband facilities.

The University of Massachusetts at Lowell won a broadband adoption grant of $780,000 to connect Cambodian immigrants and seniors to broadband facilities in Lowell and Merrimack Valley; and Michigan State University won $895,000 in a public computing center grant.

Separately, the NTIA confirmed that it will also begin disclosing “losers” as well as “winners” in broadband stimulus applications – once applicants have begun to receive their rejection letters.

On the NTIA’s searchable database, under the “status” window, individuals may currently search projects by these categories: “Awarded,” “Ineligible,” “Withdrawn” and “Received.”

In North Carolina, MCNC CEO Joe Freddoso said that the grant “was everything that we asked for.”

“Our application was to scale to meet the needs of educational institutions,” said Feddoso. “We also saw the opportunity to work with the private sector to help catalyze opportunities.”

MCNC’s $28.2 million infrastructure grant was submitted with an additional $11.7 million in matching funds and in-kind contributions to build a 494-mile middle-mile broadband network passing almost half the population of North Carolina in 37 counties.

Of the $11.7 million, $4 million was invested from the portfolio of MCNC, a non-profit organization, and $4 million was invested by the project’s for-profit partner, FRC, said Freddoso.

FRC is a subsidiary of Scana, a publicly-traded electricity and natural gas provider. These utilities have access to extensive fiber-optic lines used to help monitor electrical grids, said Freddoso.

The MCNC network will build new rings in the western and eastern regions of the state, which will connect to 685 miles of existing infrastructure in the urbanized central region, expanding the reach of the North Carolina Research and Education Network (NCREN), an established broadband service for community anchor institutions in the state.

In Michigan, the Merit Network’s $33.3 million infrastructure grant was supplemented by an additional $8.3 million in matching funds to build a 955-mile advanced fiber-optic network through 32 counties in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, said NTIA.

The Michigan project also intends to directly connect 44 community anchor institutions and will serve an area covering 886,000 households, 45,800 businesses, and an additional 378 anchor institutions.

On Friday, NTIA announced a second round of broadband stimulus applications will be accepted through March 15, 2010. The rules for applying to this funding round have been modified to make the application process more user-friendly and better target program resources, said NTIA.

“High-speed Internet access is the lifeblood of today’s economy,” Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said in a statement. “These grants are an important step toward expanding high-speed Internet access into the unserved and underserved areas of the country.”

“The level of interest in this program has been extraordinary, and is yet another indicator of the critical role broadband plays in achieving durable, sustainable economic growth,” said Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator Lawrence Strickling.

“Like the grants announced today, the strongest proposals are the ones that have taken a truly comprehensive view of the communities to be served and have engaged as many key members of the communities as possible in developing the projects,” said Strickling.

At least one broadband expert said that critics of the NTIA and RUS may be proved wrong.

“All of NTIA’s stimulus awards so far have been for very impressive projects, and many more are in the pipeline,” said attorney James Baller of Baller Herbst.  ”Within a few weeks, some of the most vocal critics of NTIA may be eating their words.”

House Appropriations Committee Seeks $6 Billion for Broadband, Would Impose Speed Requirements Upon Most Grant Recipients

in Broadband Stimulus by

Editor’s Note: Visit BroadbandCensus.com’s Broadband Wiki for a catalogue of the various broadband-related stimulus proposals, at http://development.broadbandcensus.com/zipcodes/states.

WASHINGTON, January 16, 2009 – The House Appropriations Committee on Thursday released draft legislation (PDF) that would provide $6 billion to expand broadband access, both in rural areas and in areas that are generally “underserved” by broadband providers.

The draft legislation would split the $6 billion into two pools of $2.85 billion, with one administered by the Rural Utility Service of the Agriculture Department, and the other by the National Telecommunications and Information Agency of the Commerce Department.

An additional $350 million would be allocated to NTIA’s budget to fund the administration of broadband-related activities, according to the draft.

Several non-profit advocacy organizations expressed satisfaction that the broadband stimulus measures do not appear designed to primarily provide financial benefits for incumbent telecommunications providers.

“We urge that these dollars be tied to clear public service principles and concrete administrative accountability,” said Ben Scott, policy director of Free Press, in a Thursday letter to David Obey, D-Wis., Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. “Broadband as economic recovery should be ‘build-out,’ not ‘bail-out.’”

In the debate over broadband stimulus, one emerging dividing line separating industry-focused groups from other broadband advocates is the former’s emphasis on tax credits as a means to immediately effectuate broadband-related investments.

The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, for example, had urged that a proposed $10 billion investment in broadband-related activities be split evenly between tax credits and broadband grants.

Other industry-focused groups have also urged the tax credit approach.

Free Press, by contrast, proposed that $30 billion of its $38 billion in stimulating broadband supply be channeled through grants. EDUCAUSE and other groups have also focused on grant programs so that municipalities and non-profit entities can take advantage of such investments.

Additionally, the draft legislation appears to favor high-speed variants of broadband. The Federal Communications Commission currently defines “broadband” as communications at speeds of 768 kilobits per second (Kbps) or greater. In June, the FCC raised that threshold from 200 Kbps.

As a practical matter, most of the major wire-based broadband-related services offer actual download speeds in the 2 Mpbs to 6 Mpbs range.

For example, tests conducted by users of BroadbandCensus.com show that home users of fiber-optic services enjoyed an average download speed of 6.48 Mbps, that cable modem users experienced an average download speed of 4.44 Mbps, and that digital subscriber line (DSL) service averaged 1.7 Mbps.

Among all takers of the Broadband Census and speed test, the average download speed for home internet users was 3.58 Mbps (average upload speed was 1.0 Mbps). The median download speed among home internet users was 2.19 Mbps (median upload speed was 643 Kbps).

But the draft stimulus bill of the House Appropriations Committee seeks to spur investment in broadband of a far higher caliber.

Of the $2.85 billion portion to be administered by NTIA, for example, $1.85 billion would go to wireline-based broadband, and $1 billion would to wireless services.

For the $1.85 billion in wireline-based broadband, the NTIA would award grants “to the extent possible” such that 75 percent of funds would go to eligible entities providing broadband of at least 45 Mpbs for downloads and 15 Mbps for uploads, to areas that are “underserved.”

The remaining 25 percent of that pool would go to providers offering “basic broadband service” – which the legislation defines as 5 Mpbs for downloads and 1 Mpbs for uploads – to areas currently “unserved” by existing broadband providers.

Both terms – “underserved” and “unserved” –  are left to be defined by the FCC, within 45 days of the act’s passage.

However, the draft bill does require that NTIA’s stimulus-related funds go to either “unserved” or “underserved” areas, and that no more than 20 percent of a state’s population or geography may fall into such areas.

The $1 billion pool for wireless broadband would be similarly bisected: 75 percent going to providers of “advanced wireless broadband service” – defined as 3 Mbps for downloads and 1 Mbps for uploads – in underserved areas.

The remaining 25 percent would go to entities providing wireless voice services in unserved areas.

About BroadbandCensus.com

BroadbandCensus.com is a free information and news service providing information about local broadband speeds, prices, availability, reliability and competition. Take the Broadband Census at http://broadbandcensus.com/census/form

BroadbandCensus.com is a participant in the National Broadband Strategy ‘Call to Action’ being shepherded by James Baller, of Baller Herbst Law Group. Drew Clark, Editor and Executive Director of BroadbandCensus.com, is co-chair of the “Metrics Working Group,” together with ITIF President Robert Atkinson.

BroadbandCensus.com to Co-Chair 'Metrics' Working Group of National Broadband Strategy Group

in Press Releases by

BroadbandCensus.com Executive Director Drew Clark to Co-Chair Working Group with Robert Atkinson of Information Technology & Innovation Foundation; Other Groups Announced

Press Release

WASHINGTON, January 10, 2009 – The National Broadband Strategy “Call to Action” on Friday announced the co-chairs of six working groups that are seeking to craft national policies to help promote universal broadband throughout the United States.

BroadbandCensus.com Executive Director Drew Clark will co-chair the working group on “Metrics” together with Robert Atkinson, President of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.

Since its launch in January 2008, BroadbandCensus.com has been at the forefront of ensuring that information about local broadband deployment, competition, speeds and quality of service is available and publicly usable.

The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation think tank has been been a key player in the effort to formulate and promote public policies advancing technological innovation and productivity.

The National Broadband Strategy initiative has has been described as “an unprecedented display of consensus, a broad and diverse array of groups concerned about America’s broadband future,” and an effort aimed at “providing President-elect Obama and the incoming Congress a policy framework for a comprehensive national broadband strategy.”

The Working Group on “Metrics” has the following charge:

Timely, accurate, and trustworthy data on current and future deployment, adoption, and use of broadband connections to the Internet are essential at every step in the process of developing and implementing a National Broadband Strategy.  Good data are necessary to establish meaningful goals, to evaluate how well we are doing in meeting these goals, to make appropriate policy adjustments if we are not, to ensure accountability, and to compare our performance with that of other leading nations in an increasingly competitive global economy.  Service providers and investors need good data to make sound investments.  Users of broadband connections need good data to make wise choices among available options.  The mission of the Working Group on Metrics is to develop as much agreement as possible on the nature, quality, and timeliness of the data needed for all of these purposes, and on how such data should be collected and disseminated.

Co-Chairs:  Robert Atkinson (Information Technology and Innovation Foundation) and Drew Clark (Broadband Census)

The other working groups are on the need for a national broadband strategy, the goals of such a call to action, the national availability of broadband, adoption and use of broadband technologies, and implementation of a broadband policy.

The chairs of each groups are as follows:

  • The Need for a National Broadband Strategy. Co-Chairs:  Jeff Campbell (Cisco) and Jonathan Rintels (Center for Creative Voices in the Media)
  • Goals. Co-Chairs: Rick Cimerman (National Cable & Telecommunications Association) and John Windhausen (EDUCAUSE and American Library Association)
  • Metrics. Co-Chairs:  Robert Atkinson (Information Technology and Innovation Foundation) and Drew Clark (Broadband Census)
  • Availability. Co-Chairs:  Brent Olson (AT&T) and Ben Scott (Free Press)
  • Adoption and Use. Co-Chairs: Charles Benton (Benton Foundation) and Link Hoewing (Verizon)
  • Implementation. Co-Chairs:  Diane Duffy (Telcordia) and Geoff Daily (App-Rising)

The “Metrics” working group will seek to identify the best criteria to measure availability, adoption, cost, speed, etc., in order to establish a current baseline and measure progress in reaching goals/targets. The group will also analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the broadband data collection and dissemination practices in the United States and abroad.

The group will also recommend techniques to collect, analyze, present, and disseminate data on broadband connectivity, and prepare for and participate in the Coalition’s event to be held in the Spring or early Summer of 2009.

Signatories to the National Broadband Strategy “Call for Action” will be invited to participate in the working groups. The strategy is being shepherded by James Baller of the Baller Herbst Law Group.

National Broadband Strategy References

President-Elect Obama Urges 'Expanding Broadband' and Stimulus Proposals Proliferate

in Broadband Stimulus by

WASHINGTON, January 8, 2009 – President-elect Barack Obama said Thursday that “expanding broadband lines across America” was a key component of the economic plan that he is putting together and for which he is seeking Congressional passage.

The announcement came on top of several detailed and specific proposals to include broadband-related investments to the stimulus package currently being considered by legislators and the incoming Obama administration.

On Wednesday, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation released its own eagerly-awaited proposal about the economic benefits of a broadband stimulus plan. It found that $30 billion technology investment would generate 949,000 jobs.

The 22-page report, “The Digital Road to Recovery,” linked investment in broadband networks, health information technology and a “smart power grid,” and attempted to estimate job creation based upon a “network effect multiplier.”

Some critics took aim at the proposal’s apparent emphasis on tax credits, as opposed to government grants, to undertake a massive deployment of fiber-optic technologies.

Others suggested that in attempting to be technology-neutral, and not endorse a specific technology – like fiber-optics – ITIF’s proposal would lead to lower-grade broadband like cable modems or Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) modems.

The ITIF report found that a $10 billion investment in broadband would generate about 498,000 jobs, according to the study: 50,000 in the telecommunications industry, 14,000 in direct capital equipment, 166,000 in “indirect and induced jobs,” and 268,000 because of the “network effect.” The other jobs would come through similar investments in health IT and energy grids.

The think tank, which has generally be aligned with the information technology industry, proposed broadband investments aimed at three primary goals: getting broadband to unserved areas, expanding network speeds beyond “first generation broadband” of 3 megabits per second (Mbps) or less, and spurring increased adoption of broadband by households.

In the study, ITIF said there were 10 million homes and businesses without broadband access. Of those underserved individuals, 90 percent of them could be connected with $3.6 billion in tax incentives to telecom companies, and up to $5 billion in grants for higher-cost areas.

ITIF also supported “federal funding to map broadband speeds throughout the country,” and allowing expenses related to purchases of computers and monthly broadband service to qualify for existing lifeline programs aimed to ensure universal telephone service.

“Increased investment I one of the best tools to stimulate aggregate demand and quickly get American workers back on the payrolls,” concluded the report, authored by Robert Atkinson, President of ITIF, and ITIF Senior Analysts Daniel Castro and Stephen Ezell.

“Spurring investments in IT infrastructure not only can provide an important short-term boost to the U.S. economy; it also can lay the groundwork for long-term economic growth [and] international competitiveness,” said ITIF.

Critics taking aim at the proposal’s apparent emphasis on tax credits included Jim Baller, an attorney who has been shepherded a broad consensus of industry and nonprofit groups around a National Broadband Strategy.

The ITIF proposal “relies almost entirely on tax credits, particularly for high-capacity networks, which benefit only the private sector,” said Baller. “He would apparently use grants only to support low-capacity networks in the most sparsely populated areas or to upgrade networks for schools, libraries, hospitals, and government buildings.”

“Tax credits can be helpful, but it only helps those companies that make profits,” said John Windhausen, President of Telepoly Consulting, and the author the EDUCAUSE report, “A Blueprint for Big Broadband.”

Additionally, said Windhausen, “with a tax incentive program, it is very hard to know what investment has been incented by the tax credit.”

The extent of Verizon Communications’ investment – the company says it has invested $23 billion in fiber-optic networks – makes it hard to assess which additional investments would have been made anyway, in the event of a broadband stimulus package.

Atkinson replied that up to $5 billion of the proposed $10 billion for broadband investment would be through grants, as opposed to tax credits.

Windhausen advocated that any stimulus funds be directed exclusively to federal grants to areas that need broadband. At least three categories of organizations that would benefit from such grants – municipalities, non-profit rural cooperatives and competitive telephone companies –wouldn’t benefit from a credit because they haven’t made profits.

The EDUCAUSE proposal, released in January 2008, sought $32 billion in federal funding over four years, seeks to build out 100 Mbps service to every home in the country. The original proposal sought one-third funding from federal government, the states, and the private sector – bringing the total investment to nearly $100 billion.

But Windausen said that the dire financial condition of state governments meant that municipalities and other seeking to create fiber-optic deployments should have greater flexibility in the funding sources to which they turn for development dollars.

In its own stimulus proposal, released in December, the advocacy group Free Press called for $30 billion in grant- and loan-based deployment of broadband, with an additional $8 billion devoted to tax credits.

Free Press also seeks an additional $6 billion aimed at measures designed to stimulate demand for broadband.

Of the $30 billion of direct federal investment, the Free Press proposal would create a $15 billion Universal Broadband Infrastructure fund, a $5 billion Universal Broadband Mobile Infrastructure fund, and allocated up to $10 billion in bond program for investment by non-incumbents.

Of the $8 billion that Free Press allocated for tax credits, $5 billion would go to the creation of a “Competitive Fiber Tax Incentive” program that would government in the decision-makers seat about many of the rules by which these fiber-optic networks would be built.

The ITIF report was released at a packed event at the National Press Club.

In addition to EDUCAUSE and Free Press, other groups with fiber-focused broadband-related stimulus plans include Broadband Properties magazine, the Fiber to the Home Council, and a group promoting a Rural Fiber Fund. Others with reports include the Benton Foundation, the Communications Workers of America, the Brookings Institution and the Center for American Progress. Editor’s Note: BroadbandCensus.com has received financial support from the Benton Foundation.

Industry groups including the Telecommunications Industry Association have also weighed in with specific policy recommendations.

As a public service to facilitate understanding and comparison of these proposals, BroadbandCensus.com – a free information and news site about local broadband speeds, prices, availability, reliability and competition – on Thursday publicly launched a wiki cataloging broadband-related proposals.

The wiki is available at http://development.broadbandcensus.com/zipcodes/states.

In the future, a BroadbandCensus.com user login will be required to make additions to the wiki. In the interest of getting this wiki page up and running, the login requirement has been temporarily lifted.

Additional funding for BroadbandCensus.com is required to complete the functionality of the wiki.

Broadband Breakfast Club

January Meeting: What Will Broadband Do to the Universal Service Fund?

BroadbandCensus.com presents the January meeting of the Broadband Breakfast Club at Old Ebbitt Grill on Tuesday, January 13, 2009, at 8 a.m.

  • Jay Driscoll, Director, Government Affairs, CTIA – The Wireless Association
  • Gregory Rohde, Executive Director, E-Copernicus/E9-1-1 Institute
  • Jennifer Schneider, Legislative Counsel, Office of Rep. Rick Boucher, D-Va., Incoming Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Telecommunications and the Internet Subcommittee
  • Curt Stamp, President, Independent Telephone and Telecommunications Alliance

Why BroadbandCensus.com Supports the National Broadband Strategy Statement

in Expert Opinion by

Blog Entries

Editor’s Note: This blog entry was originally posted as a response to a post on the Open Infrastructure Alliance listserv, about the National Broadband Strategy effort that Jim Baller, of Baller Herbst Law Group, has been shepherding.

WASHINGTON, December 5 – I founded BroadbandCensus.com in January 2008 after my experience of trying to use the Freedom of Information Act to obtain some very basic broadband information: the names of the carriers operating in each ZIP code. We have not yet succeeded in this task.

We don’t pretend that this data is in itself crucial or even important broadband information. Rather, it is a simple building block upon which citizen-users are empowered to build, through crowdsourcing, new layers of public information about speed, price, availability, reliability and competition.

The fight to get data is still important, and it shouldn’t be abandoned. Indeed, the possibility of getting this kind of data is the very reason that I am optimistic about the momentum that Jim Baller has been building behind this national broadband strategy. This is one key reason that BroadbandCensus.com is a proud signatory of the strategy statement.

At the event on Tuesday, I stood up and asked Larry Cohen, head of the Communications Workers of America and its speedmatters.org web site, whether he would be willing to also include carrier-specific information (i.e. whether a particular speed tester is using Comcast, Verizon Communications, or someone else). He said yes. (CWA has been very involved in Jim’s coalition-building.)

In other words, once CWA implements what Cohen said it would – on speedmatters.org or elsewhere – the public would then know not only which areas of the country have the fastest and slowest speeds. It would also know which carriers, in all different parts of the country, have the fastest and slowest speeds. Additionally, as more carriers begin to implement bandwidth tiers and caps, the need for a variety of services to monitor the carriers’ behavior becomes all the more necessary.

There are so many players that could be involved in these efforts. Besides speedmatters.org, which does have an impressive collection of data, there is, of course, DSL Reports. And – dare I mention it – there is Connected Nation. For all the criticism that Connected Nation has been subject to, it is worth noting that they have assembled an impressive amount of location- and infrastructure-specific broadband information. All that needs to happen, now, is for that data to be linked back up to the carriers that provided it — so that citizen-consumers can take the data and make good use of it. The same holds true for data collected by states, like Massachusetts, California, North Carolina and Nebraska. Think of what the users of Google Earth add on top of a simple, physical map – whether that map is generated based upon resources of the federal government, state and local governments, or private sector actors.

Being involved in creating this kind of a public mashup of carrier-, government- and citizen-data is the very purpose of BroadbandCensus.com. And if CWA and others are willing to share and open up their information (for example, all of the content on BroadbandCensus.com is published under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License), there will be much better results than if any individual data aggregator was acting alone.

Jim Baller has been able to get all the key parties together. And as everyone has acknowledged that there needs to be some kind of a strategy, everyone has also acknowledged that there needs to be some kind of metrics, or ways of measuring true performance toward broadband objectives. I see the broadband mashup that I’ve outlined above as a crucial guardian of carrier accountability.

There will undoubted be many questions about where and how to undertake deployment decisions. Such decisions will not be made by a single actor, e.g. the federal government. They will instead be made by thousands of entities and individuals, including the feds, the state broadband and telco bodies, regional development officials, community broadband activists, owners of homes and apartments “with tails,” and, of course, individual carriers and customers. Many of these decisions – i.e. universal service fund deployment – cannot be made on an economically rational basis without this data.

However this all takes shape, the broadband marketplace will be better served by transparency about what is happening in the market – with speeds, with prices, with granularity measures of availability, with consumer ratings on reliability and quality, and, of course, with as complete information as possible on _who_ those competitors are.

This is why BroadbandCensus.com supports the national broadband strategy effort that Jim Baller has been piecing together, and why we are very encouraged by everyone talking about it together.

Broadband Breakfast Club:

Editor’s Note: Join the next Broadband Breakfast Club on Tuesday, December 9, on how broadband applications – including telemedicine – can harness demand for high-speed internet services. Register at http://broadbandbreakfast.eventbrite.com

National Broadband Strategy Week Begins Today, 10 a.m., in Dirksen Senate Building

in Broadband Stimulus by

WASHINGTON, December 2 – A total of 55 companies and non-profit organizations, including major corporate entities such as AT&T, Cisco Systems, Google, Intel and Verizon Communications, have signed on to a “call to action for a national broadband strategy.”

The document has been crafted by a wide range of parties over the past year under the stewardship of James Baller, senior principal of the Baller Herbst Law Group, and the final version was released late Monday.

Verizon was a last-minute addition to the group of signatories, having joined the list in between the first and the second public versions e-mailed by Baller.

Among the major trade groups that signed on to the “call to action” were the wireless association CTIA, the Telecommunications Industry Association, and the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, the Utilities Telecom Council, and the Wireless Communications Associations International

Among the major non-profit groups include American Library Association, Communications Workers of America, EDUCAUSE, Free Press, OneEconomy, Connected Nation, Internet2, Media Access Project, the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors, the New America Foundation and Public Knowledge.

BroadbandCensus.com is also a signatory to the “call to action.”

Baller released the final version in anticipation of a 10 a.m. press conference in room G-50 of the Dirkson Senate Office Building.

“What’s most remarkable about this initiative is that so large and diverse a group of organizations agreed not only on the terms of our call to action statement, but also to continue to work together to build consensus on the substance of a national broadband strategy,” Baller said in a statement.

He also said that the call to action commits its signatories “to continue to work together to address key issues and priorities and to hold an event to present more specific recommendations to President Obama, Congress and the American people.”

The “call to action” includes general principles about the need for advanced communications capabilities, highlights the fact that “too many Americans still do not have access to affordable broadband,” and sets five goals for a comprehensive government strategy that would promote broadband.

The five goals are that (a) every American home and institution should have access to broadband, (b) access to the Internet should be open to all users and content providers, (c) network operators “must have the right to manage their networks responsibly, pursuant to clear and workable guidelines and standards,” (d) the broadband marketplace “should be” competitive; and (e) U.S. broadband networks should have the performance and capacity necessary to allow this country to be competitive in the global marketplace.

The document then outlines policies to stimulate investment, policies to stimulate adoption and use, and measures for “a system for regular and timely collection and publication of data” on broadband deployment, adoption and use.

The meeting of the call to action for a national broadband strategy isn’t the only major broadband-related event being held in the coming week. On Thursday, the Massachusetts Broadband Institute is presenting a “Call for Solutions” in Northampton, Mass., on ways to enable broadband throughout western Massachusetts.  And on Saturday, the Internet for Everyone group, coordinated by Free Press and supported by Google, is hosting a “Town Hall Meeting” in Los Angeles designed to “kick-start the movement to make an internet connection a right of every American.”

And on Tuesday, December 9, BroadbandCensus.com is hosting the second of its five-part series, the Broadband Breakfast Club, on “How Broadband Applications and Mapping Harness Demand for High-Speed Internet” in Washington. The event will take place at the Old Ebbitt Grill from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m., and will feature speakers from App-Rising, the Public Technology Institute and Walt Disney.

Broadband Breakfast Club:

Editor’s Note: Join the next Broadband Breakfast Club on Tuesday, December 9, on how broadband applications – including telemedicine – can harness demand for high-speed internet services. Register at http://broadbandbreakfast.eventbrite.com

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