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Broadband's Impact

Citizens Against Public Waste Call Broadband a Luxury Not a Necessity

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 – Speaking in a webcast by the Broadband Policy Series this afternoon, David Williams of Citizens Against Public Waste said that there “wouldn’t be any circumstances in which government should step in” where community broadband is concerned. According to Williams, even when local governments step in, there tends to be a centralizing process by which one locality wants the same services as another locality, thus evolving the process to a Federal level.

Broadband Breakfast Staff

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WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 – Speaking in a webcast by the Broadband Policy Series this afternoon, David Williams of Citizens Against Public Waste said that there “wouldn’t be any circumstances in which government should step in” where community broadband is concerned. According to Williams, even when local governments step in, there tends to be a centralizing process by which one locality wants the same services as another locality, thus evolving the process to a Federal level.

“You get that spiraling ladder where everyone wants what everyone else has,” Williams said.

Williams also directly assailed one of the assumptions underlying the National Broadband Plan – namely, that broadband was required as a necessity in the modern economy. “Broadband is not a utility. It is a luxury, it is not a necessity for towns or households,” Williams said. “I would absolutely disagree [with the assessment of the National Broadband Plan].”

The comments, which came after a brief interview with Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), sparked a heated discussion among the panelists, most of whom disagreed with Williams’ position on universal access.

“The notion that broadband isn’t a necessity is not going to work anymore,” said Harold DePriest of Chattanooga Electric PoweR Board. “If we’re going to compete with the world, broadband is going to have to be a utility.”

Christopher Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance agreed. “I would echo the comments about this being a necessity. We can stipulate that there are people who do not need broadband. There are probably people who’d be fine without households. But for a community to succeed in this time, they need broadband. From a community perspective, it’s absolutely a necessity.”

Mitchell also dismissed concerns about public sector community broadband providers crowding out private sector competition. “How many millions of dollars have libraries robbed Borders and Barnes and Noble?” Mitchell asked.

Broadband Breakfast is a decade-old news organization based in Washington that is building a community of interest around broadband policy and internet technology, with a particular focus on better broadband infrastructure, the politics of privacy and the regulation of social media. Learn more about Broadband Breakfast.

Education

FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel Unveils Proposed Rules for Emergency Connectivity Fund

Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel on Friday released rules for the Emergency Connectivity Fund, answering many questions about the program.

Benjamin Kahn

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on

Photo of Jessica Rosenworcel from the FCC

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 – Speaking in a webcast by the Broadband Policy Series this afternoon, David Williams of Citizens Against Public Waste said that there “wouldn’t be any circumstances in which government should step in” where community broadband is concerned. According to Williams, even when local governments step in, there tends to be a centralizing process by which one locality wants the same services as another locality, thus evolving the process to a Federal level.

“You get that spiraling ladder where everyone wants what everyone else has,” Williams said.

Williams also directly assailed one of the assumptions underlying the National Broadband Plan – namely, that broadband was required as a necessity in the modern economy. “Broadband is not a utility. It is a luxury, it is not a necessity for towns or households,” Williams said. “I would absolutely disagree [with the assessment of the National Broadband Plan].”

The comments, which came after a brief interview with Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), sparked a heated discussion among the panelists, most of whom disagreed with Williams’ position on universal access.

“The notion that broadband isn’t a necessity is not going to work anymore,” said Harold DePriest of Chattanooga Electric PoweR Board. “If we’re going to compete with the world, broadband is going to have to be a utility.”

Christopher Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance agreed. “I would echo the comments about this being a necessity. We can stipulate that there are people who do not need broadband. There are probably people who’d be fine without households. But for a community to succeed in this time, they need broadband. From a community perspective, it’s absolutely a necessity.”

Mitchell also dismissed concerns about public sector community broadband providers crowding out private sector competition. “How many millions of dollars have libraries robbed Borders and Barnes and Noble?” Mitchell asked.

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Broadband's Impact

FCC Fines Company $4.1 Million for Slamming and Cramming Consumer Phone Lines

The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday fined Tele Circuit Network Corporation for switching consumers’ service providers.

Benjamin Kahn

Published

on

Photo of Geoffrey Starks by Amelia Holowaty Krales of the Verge

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 – Speaking in a webcast by the Broadband Policy Series this afternoon, David Williams of Citizens Against Public Waste said that there “wouldn’t be any circumstances in which government should step in” where community broadband is concerned. According to Williams, even when local governments step in, there tends to be a centralizing process by which one locality wants the same services as another locality, thus evolving the process to a Federal level.

“You get that spiraling ladder where everyone wants what everyone else has,” Williams said.

Williams also directly assailed one of the assumptions underlying the National Broadband Plan – namely, that broadband was required as a necessity in the modern economy. “Broadband is not a utility. It is a luxury, it is not a necessity for towns or households,” Williams said. “I would absolutely disagree [with the assessment of the National Broadband Plan].”

The comments, which came after a brief interview with Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), sparked a heated discussion among the panelists, most of whom disagreed with Williams’ position on universal access.

“The notion that broadband isn’t a necessity is not going to work anymore,” said Harold DePriest of Chattanooga Electric PoweR Board. “If we’re going to compete with the world, broadband is going to have to be a utility.”

Christopher Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance agreed. “I would echo the comments about this being a necessity. We can stipulate that there are people who do not need broadband. There are probably people who’d be fine without households. But for a community to succeed in this time, they need broadband. From a community perspective, it’s absolutely a necessity.”

Mitchell also dismissed concerns about public sector community broadband providers crowding out private sector competition. “How many millions of dollars have libraries robbed Borders and Barnes and Noble?” Mitchell asked.

Continue Reading

Digital Inclusion

Popularity Of Telework And Telehealth Presents Unique Opportunities For A Post-Pandemic World

A survey released earlier this month illustrates opportunities for remote work and care.

Benjamin Kahn

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on

Screenshot of Hernan Galperin via YouTube

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 – Speaking in a webcast by the Broadband Policy Series this afternoon, David Williams of Citizens Against Public Waste said that there “wouldn’t be any circumstances in which government should step in” where community broadband is concerned. According to Williams, even when local governments step in, there tends to be a centralizing process by which one locality wants the same services as another locality, thus evolving the process to a Federal level.

“You get that spiraling ladder where everyone wants what everyone else has,” Williams said.

Williams also directly assailed one of the assumptions underlying the National Broadband Plan – namely, that broadband was required as a necessity in the modern economy. “Broadband is not a utility. It is a luxury, it is not a necessity for towns or households,” Williams said. “I would absolutely disagree [with the assessment of the National Broadband Plan].”

The comments, which came after a brief interview with Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), sparked a heated discussion among the panelists, most of whom disagreed with Williams’ position on universal access.

“The notion that broadband isn’t a necessity is not going to work anymore,” said Harold DePriest of Chattanooga Electric PoweR Board. “If we’re going to compete with the world, broadband is going to have to be a utility.”

Christopher Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance agreed. “I would echo the comments about this being a necessity. We can stipulate that there are people who do not need broadband. There are probably people who’d be fine without households. But for a community to succeed in this time, they need broadband. From a community perspective, it’s absolutely a necessity.”

Mitchell also dismissed concerns about public sector community broadband providers crowding out private sector competition. “How many millions of dollars have libraries robbed Borders and Barnes and Noble?” Mitchell asked.

Continue Reading

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