Community Broadband Media Roundup - December 25


Connecting the Last Frontier By Anand Vadapalli, Multichannel News

High-speed internet to bring big change in remote Alaska By Rachel D’Oro, The Seattle Times



Net neutrality controversy could embolden Colorado efforts to build public internet infrastructure By Jack Queen, Summit Daily News

Mitchell argued that public broadband providers are less likely to throttle access to or jack up prices for certain sites and services because they're directly accountable to voters.

"Because of that accountability, local governments can typically deliver faster internet at a lower cost and with better customer service," he said. "If they were to suddenly raise prices or block off eliminate access to Netflix, voters could make them pay."

Municipal broadband—what Longmont did right By Theresa Rose, North Forty News



A Hawaiian Politician Is Introducing a Bill That Would Encourage Creation of Locally Owned Broadband Networks By Jason Koebler, Motherboard



Group works to start municipal internet in Dubuque following Net Neutrality repeal By Samantha Myers, KCRG News



What does net neutrality repeal mean for Massachusetts municipal internet providers -- or towns without broadband? By Patrick Johnson and Jim Kinney, Mass Live


North Carolina

News 13 Investigates: The disconnect of internet service in the NC Mountains by Jennifer Emert, WLOS News

“If you can get good speeds in the middle of the night, but not during the day, I think that's deceptive advertising to be suggesting to people that they can get those speeds,” said Christopher Mitchell, director of Community Broadband Networks at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance in Minnesota.

Mitchell says, companies shouldn't advertise what they can't offer.

“This is not something that is beyond the ability of the company to solve, this is a decision that they're making which is to market a service that they cannot deliver or are willing to deliver on reasonable terms,” said Mitchell.



Bland County broadband network expands By Millie Rothrock, SWVA Today



Proposed FCC Rules Could Threaten Local Broadband Competition By Dave Nyczepir, Route Fifty

Koch Brothers Are Cities' New Obstacle To Building Broadband By Susan Crawford, Wired

In the meantime, fed up with federal apathy and sick of being held back by lousy internet access controlled by local cable monopolies, scrappy cities around the US are working hard to find ways to get cheap, world-class fiber-optic connectivity. It’s always been an uphill climb, as the “incumbents”—giant carriers like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T—are constantly working behind the scenes to block competition. (Recently, Comcast spent nearly $1 million opposing a municipal-fiber vote in Fort Collins, Colorado. The company did not prevail, I’m happy to report.) But now there’s an additional obstacle: Powerful right-wing billionaires have joined the fight against municipal fiber efforts, using their deep pockets to fund efforts to block even the most commonsense of plans.

Twit Bits 4632: Sparking Competition With Municipal Networks By Fr. Robert Ballecer, CacheFly

The end of net neutrality benefits the rich and modern robber barons By John T. Reuter, Inlander

Earlier this month the Federal Communications Commission repealed net neutrality, which ensured people could freely share and access information online without interference. With the repeal of these rules, internet service providers can speed up access to some websites and internet applications while slowing down or blocking others — presumably based on who's willing and able to pay, limiting all of us to an internet selected by the rich.

In Protests of Net Neutrality Repeal, Teenage Voices Stood Out By Cecilia Kang, New York Times

The repeal of net neutrality has gotten many of these teens politically engaged for the first time, with fears that the dismantling of rules could open the door for broadband providers like AT&T and Comcast to distort the experience of accessing anything online with equal ease. For them, a dry issue that has often been hard to understand outside of policy circles in Washington has become a cause to rally around.

Motherboard & VICE Are Building a Community Internet Network By Jason Koebler, Motherboard

In order to preserve net neutrality and the free and open internet, we must end our reliance on monopolistic corporations and build something fundamentally different: internet infrastructure that is locally owned and operated and is dedicated to serving the people who connect to it.

Killing Net Neutrality Has Brought On A New Call For Public Broadband By Zaid Jilani, The Intercept

Christopher Mitchell, director of the Community Broadband Networks Initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, has studied the systems that have popped up all over the country. He pointed out to The Intercept that these systems have far greater incentive to maintain net neutrality and that local control has some benefits people may not immediately consider.

“One of the things that we’ve seen with a hundred examples of municipal broadband is not only do people get the benefit of non-discriminatory access, they typically pay less, they have better access, and if something does go wrong, they get much better customer service,” he told The Intercept.

What Can Cities and States Do About Net Neutrality? By Adam Sneed, CityLab

Grassroots internet offers hope for net neutrality advocates By Luke Barnes, Think Progress