OBAMA AND CLINTON NEO-LIBERALS ALLOWED FURTHER CONSOLIDATION AND MONOPOLY BY GLOBAL TELECOM CORPORATIONS----SEVERELY DAMAGED OUR NATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY BY SELLING OUR PUBLIC AIRWAVES TO GLOBAL CORPORATIONS----AND EXPANDED GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY TO ASSURE THERE WILL BE NO ROOM ON THE INTERNET FOR WE THE PEOPLE AND SMALL BUSINESS.
What could Trump do worse than that? No doubt he will continue to merge our telecom into
ONE WORLD ONE GOVERNANCE ONE ENERGY/TELECOM CORPORATION AND GRID. Obama's FCC net neutrality ruling was left progressive posing---there is a need to allow foreign corporations in US cities deemed Foreign Economic Zones to access this high-speed internet and that is what Obama's net neutrality ruling did----it had nothing to do with the net neutrality for which 99% of citizens have been fighting.
'Accelerate 5G cellular deployment and other wireless advances by reallocating and repurposing spectrum, and use federal research funding for “Internet of Things” test beds and field trials'.
'Clinton also won an endorsement from Jim Cicconi, a longtime GOP supporter and senior executive VP at AT&T—a company that sued the FCC to stop the net neutrality rules'.
As the comment above crom Cicconi states----Hillary was as always LYING ABOUT NET NEUTRALITY FOR WE THE PEOPLE-----the Clinton's are Obama are global Wall Street wanting a ONE ENERGY/ONE TELECOM GRID just as Trump does.
So the issue on net neutrality is tied to whether global foreign corporations in US cities will access high-speed internet or not-----Hillary/Obama support global corporate net neutrality and so does Trump although he is POSING CONSERVATIVE by pretending he will protect high-speed access to US corporations.
Telecom and the White House --
Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump on broadband: She has a plan, he doesn’t
Clinton vows to defend net neutrality—Trump calls it “attack on the Internet."
Jon Brodkin - 10/10/2016, 8:30 AM
SAUL LOEB & ROBYN BECK AFP/Getty Images / Aurich
The 2016 presidential election is likely to have a major impact on how the US government tries to expand broadband deployment and how it regulates Internet service providers. But while we have a pretty good idea of how a President Hillary Clinton would approach the broadband industry, there’s very little to go on when predicting broadband policy under a President Donald Trump.
Clinton’s technology plan includes several initiatives designed to “deliver high-speed broadband to all Americans,” and it promises to defend network neutrality rules that prevent ISPs from discriminating against online services. There are questions about how Clinton would implement the plan and whether it's aggressive enough to achieve 100 percent broadband deployment, and her campaign has declined to provide more specifics. But the mere fact that Clinton has outlined some clear broadband goals sets the Democratic nominee apart from the other candidates.
Republican nominee Donald Trump doesn’t seem to have any plan for increasing access to broadband, and there are indications that he would not support new consumer protection regulations. He weighed in on net neutrality, but only in a November 2014 tweet:
The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation (ITIF), a public policy think tank, recently analyzed Clinton’s and Trump’s positions on technology. There were six broadband and telecommunications policy categories, and for five of them Trump was listed as having “no position” or having made no comment. Trump had no position on wireless spectrum and 5G; a Communications Act update; broadband and telecom subsidies; broadband adoption and digital literacy; and broadband competition and public-private partnerships.
Net neutrality was the one category where Trump had a position, but only because of the two-year-old tweet.
Besides "that one tweet from 2014 on net neutrality, it's pretty much radio silence from the Trump camp," ITIF telecommunications policy analyst Doug Brake told Ars.
Trump has finally just hired an aide to help him develop a telecom plan, Politico reported Friday. The aide, Jeffrey Eisenach of the American Enterprise Institute, is described by Politico as "a crusader against regulation" and is a staunch opponent of net neutrality rules. Eisenach's appointment suggests Trump might pursue a deregulatory telecommunications agenda, but the candidate still isn't talking publicly about specific policies.
Brake didn’t endorse either candidate, but he said that when it comes to broadband, “Clinton at least has a plan. You can quibble with some of the details in it, but she has clearly thought hard about what the government’s role should be in promoting innovation and has policies that will work to promote innovation throughout the economy.” The ITIF describes itself as nonpartisan, but the group prefers a more conservative approach to telecommunications policy than the one chartered under President Obama and current FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler.
Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson has opposed net neutrality rules and Internet regulation in general, while Green Party nominee Jill Stein supports net neutrality rules. Stein has called for universal broadband access—but she also claimed that wireless Internet signals can damage children’s brains despite a lack of scientific evidence to support such concerns.
None of the four candidates has responded to our repeated requests for more details. So with the clock ticking toward November 8, we’ll have to settle for examining their public statements.
The Clinton broadband plan
Clinton’s tech agenda describes the nation’s broadband problems as follows: “Millions of American households, particularly in rural areas, still lack access to any fixed broadband provider, around 30 percent of households across America have not adopted broadband (with much higher levels in low-income communities), and American consumers pay more for high-speed plans than consumers in some other advanced nations.”
Clinton cited research from the FCC, which defines broadband as Internet access with speeds of at least 25Mbps downstream and 3Mbps upstream, but she is flexible on what speeds the nation should strive for. By 2020, she wants 100 percent of American households to have the option of buying affordable broadband at “speeds sufficient to meet families’ needs.”
This wouldn’t necessarily involve stringing fiber wires to every home. Clinton wants federal agencies to consider fiber, fixed wireless, and satellite technologies for bringing broadband to unserved areas. Here are some of her proposals:
- Continue investments in the Connect America Fund, the Rural Utilities Service program, the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP), and Lifeline.
- Use Lifeline to help people learn how to use the Internet and expand access to cheap devices.
- Create a competitive grant program encouraging local governments to reduce regulatory barriers to private investment; promote “dig once” programs that install fiber or fiber conduit during road construction projects; and develop public-private partnerships.
- Expand federal funding to bring free Wi-Fi and high-speed Internet to “recreation centers, public buildings like one-stop career centers, and transportation infrastructure such as train stations, airports, and mass transit systems.”
- Accelerate 5G cellular deployment and other wireless advances by reallocating and repurposing spectrum, and use federal research funding for “Internet of Things” test beds and field trials.
- Encourage state and local governments to relax rules that protect incumbents from new competitors, such as “local rules governing utility-pole access that restrain additional fiber and small cell broadband deployment.”
- Push federal agencies to identify anticompetitive practices “such as tying arrangements, price fixing, and exclusionary conduct,” and refer potential violations of antitrust law to the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission. (This proposal isn’t specific to broadband but could have an impact on ISPs.)
Clinton’s plan leaves out some of the specifics that will be needed to achieve her goals, and the plan proactively takes credit for 5G development that is likely to happen regardless of who wins the presidency. But that doesn’t seem to bother Harold Feld, senior VP of Public Knowledge, a consumer advocacy group that generally supports Wheeler’s broadband deployment and net neutrality policies.
“This is not the blueprint, this is the promise,” Feld said. “Once they get in, they're still going to have to do the blueprint, and that's when we'll see if they'll swing for the bleachers or just try to play it safe.”
As a campaign platform, what Clinton has proposed is “very good,” he said. 100 percent deployment probably won’t happen, but setting the goal at 100 percent makes it more likely that she’ll get to 95 percent or so, Feld said.
“The thing that worries me is this is a very incremental approach,” Feld said of Clinton’s plan. “It builds on what's out there now, it generally solidifies around basic points of agreement.” For example, Clinton hasn’t talked about whether the FCC should crack down on Internet data caps, but “those are not the kinds of things you put in a campaign platform,” Feld said.
A Clinton FCC seems likely to continue on a path similar to the one taken by Obama and Wheeler. Yet she is getting support from the same telecom industry that bitterly opposed Wheeler’s net neutrality plan and many of his other initiatives. Telecom services and equipment companies donated $640,247 to Clinton this year, while giving just $19,319 to Trump, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
Clinton also won an endorsement from Jim Cicconi, a longtime GOP supporter and senior executive VP at AT&T—a company that sued the FCC to stop the net neutrality rules.
“This year I think it’s vital to put our country’s well being ahead of party,” Cicconi said, according to The Wall Street Journal. “Hillary Clinton is experienced, qualified, and will make a fine president. The alternative, I fear, would set our nation on a very dark path.”
Brake said he is hopeful that Clinton would take a more “pragmatic” approach than Wheeler. Though Clinton supported Wheeler’s Title II net neutrality plan, Brake pointed to an interview Clinton gave last year in which she said net neutrality rules could alternatively have been imposed through an update of the Communications Act.
That statement “indicates to me that she gets that Title II isn't something to be desired in and of itself,” Brake said. It’s thus probably unlikely that a Clinton FCC would be more liberal than an Obama one, making things like network unbundling a long shot, Brake said.
Here we see in 2006 WIFI for the masses-----this was Bush era move to tier the internet and access to a global corporations vs 99% where all high-speed access goes to global corporations and WE THE PEOPLE are pushed to WIFI-ONLY as they make this WIFI sound just as good -----high-speed WIFI----but as people are already finding 10 years later WIFI is fast becoming LOWER-TIER internet access.
'The Community Broadband Act of 2005, still in committee, would "preserve and protect the ability of local governments to provide broadband capability and services." '
If US cities deemed Foreign Economic Zones are allowed to MOVE FORWARD Foreign Economic Zone building of global corporate campuses and global factories in these next few decades---they will get all access to high -speed and we will be priced off the internet except for global corporate campus public sites.
Below we see where many states have passed laws to protect telecom monopolies from any public attempt to build public access internet locally. These are really diehard far-right global Wall Street states----needless to say that Community Broadband Act of 2005 made to pretend global Wall Street pols were going to protect the 99% never happened.
'Lawmakers in Ohio, Virginia, Kansas, and Oregon, among others, have proposed legislation to keep local governments from building their own networks or at least make it more difficult for them to do so. Fourteen states, including Florida and Colorado, have already passed restrictions. "We have not supported a ban on municipal networks," says Verizon's Brian Blevins. "But we've felt where there's vibrant competition, the networks can undercut and disrupt a market that's working very well."'
This article is great in outing what was LEFT SOCIAL PROGRESSIVE POSING ----a community broadband access bill with no teeth.
Press Release: Tennessee Sends Broadband Accessibility Act of 2017 to Gov. Haslam's Desk
Wed, April 12, 2017 | Posted by Nick
Tennessee Legislature Passes Broadband Accessibility Act, Delivers Hollow "Victory"While Governor Haslam's Signature Legislation Sounds Great, AT&T Will Be Laughing all the Way to the Bank
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - Late yesterday, the Tennessee Legislature officially sent Governor Bill Haslam's signature legislation, the Broadband Accessibility Act of 2017, to his desk. Unfortunately, this bill is more about making taxpayer dollars accessible to AT&T than ensuring rural regions get modern Internet access.
"What we have on one side is a taxpayer-funded subsidy program, and on the other we have a subscriber-based model," says Christopher Mitchell, director of the Community Broadband Networks initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. "The tragic thing is, AT&T is a taxpayer subsidized monopoly in rural Tennessee that only has to provide a service far slower than the definition of broadband. Locally-rooted networks like Chattanooga's EPB not only offer nation-leading services but have tremendous community support."
With this bill's passage, the Tennessee General Assembly will likely not pass any other broadband legislation during this session. The Broadband Accessibility Act won't improve Tennessee's rating as 29th in Internet connectivity, but it will do a great job of lining AT&T's pockets. As we've tracked throughout the session, there are a number of bills worth supporting that would actually increase connectivity and allow municipalities to take part in their own broadband future.
Mitchell is deeply frustrated with this situation: "Chattanooga is the only city on this planet that has universal access to 10 Gigabit symmetrical Internet access. It is a stunning achievement and Tennessee taxpayers may subsidize AT&T to build DSL service to Chattanooga's neighbors rather than letting the Gig City expand its fiber to neighbors at no cost to taxpayers. Tennessee will literally be paying AT&T to provide a service 1000x slower than what Chattanooga could provide without subsidies."
Maybe next year.
If we notice COREY BOOKER pushes this community broadband act----look when he did it-----last month after Trump came to office in 2017. Booker didn't see the need to promote this during the Obama administration because Booker doesn't really want this ---he is left social progressive posing.
The national media will have Booker as a champion of the 99% with this bill------so the TN and NJ global Wall Street pols posing for voters pretending to fight for widespread high-speed internet. Notice how Obama campaigned in 2008 as Hillary did on this issue and worked to do just the opposite.
So, no one is looking out for net neutrality or widespread protection of high-speed broadband access-----
Press Release: U.S. Senator Booker Introduces 2017 Community Broadband Act
Thu, March 30, 2017 | Posted by Nick
Press Release: Legislation Introduced in the U.S. Senate to Promote Local Internet ChoiceThe "Community Broadband Act" is Boosted by Senators Concerned with Competition Contact:
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - Earlier this week, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced the Community Broadband Act alongside fellow Senators Edward Markey (D-MA), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Angus King (I-ME), Ron Wyden (D-OR.), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). We at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) applaud the effort to ensure communities have the freedom and authority to make local decisions in improving Internet access for local businesses and residents.
"We believe that the decisions about how to expand and improve Internet access are best made by local governments, who are most informed about their communities' needs and challenges," says Christopher Mitchell, director of the Community Broadband Networks initiative at ILSR. "We applaud these senators for their bill to ensure communities can decide for themselves if a partnership or an investment in network infrastructure is the right choice."
At a time when we are seeing fights over municipal broadband networks ramping up from Colorado to Tennessee to Virginia, we are glad to see many in D.C. recognize the value of local decision-making to improve economic development and ensure a high quality of life.
We are hearing these broadband air wave sales are geared toward SMART PHONES but the reality is this-----all that global technology business stated above---education/health care/NSA surveillance/Smart City -----all this will take all access to high - speed broadband and yes the smart phones. This air wave auction occurred in 2014 with absolutely no protest from Congress even though these sales place all US airwaves viable for national coverage in the hands of global telecommunication corporations mostly ATT and Verizon which all expect to merge as one national telecom as in Mexico.
Without any legal challenge to these sales----knowing net neutrality for the 99% can not occur with these global corporate campus goals all global Wall Street Clinton/Obama neo-liberals were POSING LEFT SOCIAL DEMOCRATIC all over the place. We even had a pretense from Baltimore City Hall pols pushing local community broadband sales knowing these small businesses will not be keeping those airwaves.
'alongside fellow Senators Edward Markey (D-MA), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Angus King (I-ME), Ron Wyden (D-OR.), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). We at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) applaud the effort to ensure communities have the freedom and authority to make local decisions in improving Internet access for local businesses and residents'.
“The clamoring for spectrum available in this auction,” he added, “should refocus our lawmakers’ attention on the value of this resource and the need to put it to use to meet the needs of the American public.”
When people were shouting Obama should have been impeached for treasonous acts against WE THE PEOPLE----from allowing global Wall Street frauds stay with those openly stealing tens of trillions of dollars ----to the selling of our national broadband airwaves----we have lots of attacks on national sovereignty these few decades.
Wall Street earns $24 billion in just a few weeks -----this is nothing for controlling all national high-speed broadband.
Bidding in Government Auction of Airwaves Reaches $34 Billion
By EDWARD WYATTNOV. 22, 2014
A cell tower in California. Bidding for six blocks of airwaves to be used in mobile broadband has topped $34 billion, more than three times the reserve price set by the Federal Communications Commission. Credit Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
WASHINGTON — A government auction of airwaves for use in mobile broadband has blown through presale estimates, becoming the biggest auction in the Federal Communications Commission’s history and signaling that wireless companies expect demand for Internet access by smartphones to continue to soar.
And it’s not over yet.
Companies bid more than $34 billion as of Friday afternoon for six blocks of airwaves, totaling 65 megahertz of the electromagnetic spectrum, being sold by the F.C.C. That total is more than three times the $10.5 billion reserve price that the commission put on the sale, the first offering of previously unavailable airwaves in six years.
Prices are likely to rise further, because the auction has no definite end and could continue for days or weeks. The previous record was $18.9 billion raised in a 2008 sale of airwaves that, because of their lower frequency, are considered more attractive for wireless phone use than the current batch.
“It’s stunning,” said Preston Padden, executive director of the Expanding Opportunities for Broadcasters Coalition, a group representing broadcast television stations that are considering giving up their spectrum for sale in the F.C.C.’s next auction, scheduled for 2016. “Consumer demand for wireless broadband is on a growth curve that looks like a hockey stick, and carriers are desperate to keep up with that demand.”
Several factors appear to have contributed to the auction’s success, as the pent-up demand from years without an auction coincided with the explosive popularity of smartphones and mobile broadband. The response is more surprising given that the airwaves’ high frequency makes them less attractive for wireless use than those sold in the last auction or scheduled for the 2016 sale.
Coming soon after President Obama called for strong net neutrality regulations to be applied equally to wireless networks, the robust bidding also seems to indicate that mobile phone companies are not as reluctant to make new investments as they indicated they were when protesting the president’s recommendation.
The auction is a significant victory for the F.C.C. and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, the agency in the Commerce Department that oversees the nation’s communications systems. It makes it much likelier that broadcast stations might be willing to give up or move their positions on the spectrum to free up airwaves to be sold in the 2016 auction, because they will receive a portion of the proceeds as an incentive.
“Years of hard work paved the way” for the auction, “and ongoing bidding appears to signal considerable commercial interest in this spectrum,” the F.C.C. chairman, Tom Wheeler, and an assistant secretary of commerce, Lawrence E. Strickling, said in a joint statement on Friday.
About $7 billion of the proceeds will be used to finance the building of a nationwide public-safety communications network, known as FirstNet, with the remainder going to the Treasury.
A successful sale was anything but a foregone conclusion. The frequencies are currently occupied by government agencies, including branches of the military, which had to be cajoled to agree to move out or to share portions of them.
The relatively high position on the electromagnetic spectrum of the blocks being sold also cast doubt on their attractiveness. Higher-frequency waves generally have more trouble passing through buildings, making them less desirable for mobile phones, although they are able to carry lots of data, increasingly important to wireless broadband.
THAT'S BECAUSE THESE AIRWAVES ARE NOT FOR MOBILE PHONES----
Frequencies being sold include two blocks in the 1695-1710 megahertz band, and four paired sets of frequencies at 1755-1780 and 2155-2180 megahertz. The next scheduled broadcast spectrum auction, in 2016, involves frequencies in the 600 megahertz band.
The last such sale was in 2008, when the iPhone was barely a year old and demand for mobile broadband was at a relative trickle. Today, as consumers stream video and share photographs with many more phones, tablets and other devices, demand for bandwidth has exploded.
Some analysts have also speculated that because the auction of broadcast television bands currently scheduled for 2016 has already been delayed twice, buyers might be skeptical that those frequencies will come to market on schedule — giving them extra incentive to buy now rather than wait.
Still, the current spectrum, known as the AWS-3 bands, is also not likely to be available for use for some years. Government users will first have to move out of the bands, or buyers figure out how to share some of the airwaves with military operators.
Seventy companies were approved to bid in the auction, but the high bidders will not be identified until after the auction is completed. New owners will then have to engineer their devices to work with the high-frequency spectrum, although the biggest companies, like AT&T and Verizon Wireless, already use similar, adjacent frequencies, so that is not likely to be too onerous.
Verizon Wireless and AT&T are assumed to be among the big bidders in the sale. But Philip Cusick, a financial analyst at J.P. Morgan, wrote in a note to clients on Thursday that “the continued rapid rise in bids is a sign that there is a third, or perhaps fourth, large bidder in the auction.”
One of those could be Dish Network, the satellite company, which already owns some nearby frequencies. Dish Network’s share price rose 13 percent last week as investors realized the aggressive bidding meant Dish’s holdings were probably undervalued.
Shares of Verizon and AT&T, for their part, fell slightly, as analysts noted that the companies might be spending more than they expected.
Some prices are truly eye-popping. The price for licenses in a 20-megahertz block of paired frequencies covering New York and Long Island and portions of adjacent states stood at $1.96 billion Friday afternoon. In the bidding round that starts Monday morning, the minimum bid is more than $2 billion.
The results of the yet-to-be-completed auction have some parties calling for Congress to pave the way for more sales, and soon. “Companies are clamoring to give the federal government money,” Vince Jesaitis, vice president for government affairs at the Information Technology Industry Council, a trade group, wrote on the group’s blog last week.
“The clamoring for spectrum available in this auction,” he added, “should refocus our lawmakers’ attention on the value of this resource and the need to put it to use to meet the needs of the American public.”
All global Wall Street pols and players knew what Obama's FCC was doing----they knew it would take all control of our telecomm and place it unregulated and monopolized into the hands of global telecoms which will merge to one-----leaving 99% of people with no access or ability to control vital national, state, and local internet and phone communications.
'Consumer groups are leery that this deal will benefit their constituents, with Mark Cooper
— research director of the Consumer Federation of America — saying in an interview, “This is the end of the world'!
'VZ and ATT get wireless;
cable gets wires; consumers are stuck'.
AND WE ARE WORRIED ABOUT WHAT TRUMP WILL DO?
I didn't have time to format-----
Verizon’s spectrum deal with
cable is the end of
The spectrum deal Verizon signed
with Comcast, Time Warner
Cable and Bright House Networks
Friday, in which the nation’s
largest wireless operator would buy the unused airwaves from
the nation’s top cable providers,
signals the moment that the
consumer benefits of the convergence of voice, video and data hit
the wall. It’s a deal that’s great for Verizon, an acknowledgment
of reality for the cable folks and a bummer for AT&T and
Under the terms of the deal, Verizon will acquire AWS spectrum
that Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks
had purchased during the AWS auctions under the SpectrumCo name in 2006.
Verizon is paying a $1.2 billion premium for the
airwaves and will get 20 MHz in cities across the continental
U.S., giving it up to 60 MHz for its Long Term Evolution (LTE)
network in certain markets. And fo
r mobile players, having a lot
of spectrum is essential to meeting demand.
But as part of the deal, Verizon and the cable companies have
signed undisclosed “agreements” that indicate how the two
companies will combine their products and create partnerships
around bundling wireless, voice, data and television. Verizon
didn’t explain much, but Kevin Fitchard, my colleague writes:
The most obvious result of that deal would be to allow the
cable operators to become MVNOs on Verizon’s network, but
it may also hold the possibility of Verizon becoming a kind of
cable virtual operator or agent outside of its traditional
wireline territory, selling home broadband, TV and phone
services out of its stores.
In a blog post today Neil Sm
it, President of Comcast Cable
that Comcast will wait four years before it can provide a mobile
offering with itself acting as mo
bile virtual network operator. He
said Time Warner Cable and Bright House had similar
agreements. However, the tenor of those agreements is essential
in determining how this deal will affect the U.S.’ broadband
competition in both wireless and wireline.
The hope of a new wireless player shrinks
Verizon and the cable guys are hanging up their gloves.
Consumer groups are leery that this deal will benefit their
constituents, with Mark Cooper
— research director of the
Consumer Federation of America — saying in an interview, “This is the end of the world!
“Verizon was supposed to be our
competitor for Comcast in the
wireline space and SpectrumCo was supposed to be a competitor
to Verizon and AT&T in the wireless, and now that’s all gone,” he
said. Indeed, it’s looking unlikely that the cable guys will
continue to act as any sort of co
mpetition, especially given that
Cnet is reporting
they will halt their agreement to resell WiMax
with Clearwire. This leaves the wireless world pretty much stuck
with AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and
T-Mobile, with smaller dollops
of competition provided by Leap Wireless and MetroPCS. The
two smaller carriers may even get a tiny boost if the
Verizon to sell off any spectrum assets
as part of approving the
Despite the potential of a small spectrum divestiture, Cooper
notes that in the last 10 years, AT&T and Verizon have managed
to buy 75 percent of the spectrum
that was put on auction, and
about 90 percent of the spectrum
auctioned in the last decade is
in the hands of the Big Four carriers. Given that spectrum is one
of the barriers to entry for anyo
ne planning a wireless network,
and that getting the stuff approved for a mobile broadband
network is daunting and expensive,
it’s pretty clear U.S. policy
hasn’t helped spread that wealth.
Where there’s wireline there’s hope. Or there was.
Yet aside from the wireless impl
ications, the deal has a huge
potential impact on wireless broadband competition. Verizon
had hinted it might resell its FiOS TV service over-the-top to
folks outside the FiOS service area. Since TV can be a collection
of bits delivered over the Intern
et, the traditional cable packages
could become obsolete if the content companies and channels
could figure out ways to license their content in new ways.
TV will be affected too.
Given that Verizon has both a broadband and a pay TV business,
it had one of the best chances to
push such a radical change in
the pay TV business model. But now that it has some mysterious
“agreements” with the cable guys, it’s unlikely that Verizon
would try to infringe on their
content businesses with its own
over-the-top offering. That’s a bummer for consumers who might
prefer a Verizon package over one
from their local cable provider,
but it’s also indicative of Verizon ceding the wireline market to
As Verizon has rolled out its fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) offerings,
it has sold off many elements of its older DSL businesses, and is
now positioning its
LTE wireless service as a competitor to DSL
This is bad news for Frontier,
CenturyLink and AT&T’s markets th
at don’t have U-verse, but it
won’t bother cable providers, whic
h have or are in the midst of
upgrading their networks to
faster DOCSIS 3.0 systems
that can deliver 100 Mbps service.
Cable companies are already
taking over at the nation’s primary
people dump DSL lines in droves
. The problem is that for many
consumers a choice between DSL, LTE or cable isn’t really much
of a choice at all. Cable networ
ks upgraded to DOCSIS 3 can be
much faster than DSL or LTE, and it’s hard to imagine a
consumer seeing the options as equal. The best hope for a better
competitor to cable is FTTH (not
even AT&T’s fiber-to-the-node
technology that U-verse offers), and it’s possible that Verizon no
longer has much reason to roll
out fiber further so it doesn’t
upset its new partners. This is
why both AT&T and consumers
are on the losing end of this agreement.
Susan Crawford, an influential policy wonk and a professor at
Cardozo Law School in New York City agrees.
She emailed me the following:
“This is the crystalline moment when the division of the
marketplace becomes completely
clear, even to people who
haven’t been paying attention. VZ and ATT get wireless;
cable gets wires; consumers are stuck. Wireless, like wired
high-speed access already wholly dominated by the cable
companies, is a natural monopoly service at this point, with
incredibly high barriers to entry – so high that even current
players, like T-Mo, are having trouble making it. Clearwire
has nowhere to go at this point. So we have the worst of all
worlds: no competition, and no regulatory oversight.”