“Carriers throw their weight around towns”

The outrageous situation of the state of Pennsylvania handing over the right to make infrastructure decisions to transnational corporations has led to at least some reporting on the issue of municipal provision of telecom. CNet does a good job of summarizing the larger story even if does, IMHO, give too much play to for-purchase conservative think tank “reports” and no attention at all to actual, actually objective, academic studies. (For instance, see this actually academic study, Broadband Open Access: Lessons from Municipal Network Case Studies, which to my knowledge no reporter has ever bothered to dig up. It’s too bad academics don’t do press releases.)

Summarizing its summary the story lets you know:

What’s new:

Baby Bells and cable companies are teaming up to block cities from building their own broadband Internet services.

Bottom line:

Cities with broadband ambitions should expect a no-holds battle from incumbent providers trying to protect their turf.”

‘Course it’s not new and not news that incumbents will fight dirty to folks who’ve been on the front lines as we have been here in Lafayette—but it is nice to know that someone is noticing.

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