Community Broadband Media Roundup - August

While we think they buried the lede (talking about cord-cutting and entertainment options when what we really need in this country is a locally accountable choice), the New York Times editorial board came out in support of local authority for municipal networks, in a roundabout sort of way.

Preparing for Life After Cable by Editorial Board of the New York Times

Although Americans now have more choices than ever for how they watch TV, about seven in 10 American households can only get broadband Internet service from one or two providers, usually cable and phone companies.

In other words, the big telecom companies will still have plenty of leverage. Some analysts predict that as customers desert cable TV packages for Internet-based services, the telecom giants like Charter and AT&T will simply charge more for Internet access, wiping out some or all of the savings consumers had hoped for.

That’s why it is important that Congress and the Federal Communications Commission push for more choices in the broadband market. Among other things, they should override laws some states have passed that make it difficult or impossible for municipalities to invest in broadband networks. State and local officials could also help by streamlining rules that make it hard for newer businesses to string fiber-optic cable on utility poles or below ground in order to compete with established cable and phone companies.

Community Broadband By State


Winter Park, Fraser will put broadband question to voters by Hank Shell, Sky Hi Daily News

Routt County broadband plan could be ready in less than three months by Teresa Ristow, Steamboat Today

Fort Collins, Loveland Will Have Broadband Vote On The 2015 Ballot by Jackie Fortier, KUNC



Rochester tentatively to begin looking at broadband service by Jeff Kiger, The Post Bulletin

Foundation funds broadband upgrades, study in Sherburne by Mitch LeClair, St. Cloud Times



After six-year push, rural Missouri still waits for high-speed Internet by Jeff West, Missourian

While mostly in metropolitan areas, fiber is arriving slowly to rural areas: In 2013, Co-Mo Connect, a subsidiary of Co-Mo Electric Cooperative, began laying fiber-optic lines that will eventually offer 1-gigabit service to 15 small mid-Missouri cities.

Co-Mo Connect serves Tipton, which posted the second-fastest download speed of any Missouri city in July, according to Ookla.

“You hear people in town asking each other, ‘Do you have it yet? Do you have it yet?’” said Marna Williams, Tipton’s deputy city clerk.


North Carolina

Bald Head Islanders to vote on $10 million broadband bond by Adam Wagner, Star News Online



City to examine new broadband Internet Options by Chris Teale, Alexandria Times

One issue that will likely present itself is the need to dig up city streets to install cables underground. But Wilson pointed to what he called a “dig once” policy adopted around the country as a way around it. With the city set for massive upgrades in its sewer system, he said that installing broadband service underground at the same time could prevent streets and pavements being under construction for too long.


General Broadband News

Want fiber Internet? That’ll be $383,500, ISP tells farm owner by Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica

Digital Inclusion Leadership Awards Encourage, Highlight City Broadband by Colin Wood, GovTech

FCC asks whether data caps and high prices hurt broadband access by Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica

“…the FCC yesterday passed a Notice of Inquiry that "seeks comment on whether to consider standards beyond speed when assessing broadband deployment, including latency and consistency of service," the commission said. "And it asks whether to consider factors beyond physical deployment, including pricing and data allowances, privacy, and broadband adoption."

Evaluating latency will help determine whether satellite Internet service should be considered broadband.

Sixth Circuit consolidates cases, sets new briefing schedule in appeals involving municipal broadband laws by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, Lexology

This Week On Bullish: The Digital Divide by Alex Wilhelm, Tech Crunch