I agree with you but...
Not all Muni Projects are being designed under that model. Some intent is
actually legitimately help the expansion of broadband to those in need, and
help the growth of local providers. Our job, whether we signed up for the
role or not, is to incourage that the Muni projects get launched under the
preferred social/political models. Thats the beauty of this country, we have
the right to protest and be heard, and more important influence change.
Personally, I think the biggest risk in Muni broadband is the Big Brother
thing. I don't want any single entity, in this case the government,
controlling all Americans' communications. Its amazing what can be done
with a Sniffer from a NOC. It gives to much control to violate things like
Freedom of Speech or privacy issues. Not that I'm making any accusation
against current administration, I'm proud of our government in general. But
my view is that when a mechanism exists for the taking, its just a matter of
time before its exploited. Its sorta like leaving a bottle of Wisky on the
table in front of an Alcholoc thats been on the wagon. Will he take a
drink, when its right in its face? Can the temptation be beat?
I believe the Governement's role in Broadband should be to gather census,
and give grants, to help make sure the playing field stays level for private
industry. Thats about it.
However, its not about what I think. Its about reality of what is happening
in the industry. Muni is going to be a part of it, whether we like it or
not. We no longer can just be ISPs, we have no choice but to also be
polititions, if we want to keep our industry.
I used to think that many people with tech skills prematurely got into
business not realizing that they did not have all the skills needed for
success. Maybe it was accounting, maybe it was sales, maybe it was
management. Now we have to add knowledge of Politics to the list of
necessary expertise. Its all part of the package required for success.
There are some exceptions to what I possibly might support. And I think the
question one must ask oneself is.... Did the Muni Project add some value of
greater good that could not have been accomplished any other way, without
leveraging the cooperative effort of all the area's citizens? I think it
can also be beautiful when a group of people come togeather for a greater
common good. Even if it is somewhat communistic in the mentality, it still
could benefit americans. An example is the All Fiber Muni roll out on a
wholesale model, discussed at some of the ISPCONs. Was it Oregon, I forget?
But the point was that it was not cost effective for any ISP to install the
fiber, based on finance requirements, looking at just subscriber revenue
profits that would be obtained. So the government installed it, leveraging
the Volume of the Tax dollar payers, and considering the "economic
development" benefit that may justify expendatures and equating ROI,
compared to just the subscriber revenue ROI. And there is a clear cost
saving by donating government easements and ride of ways for Fiber
deployments. Then through in the application possibilties when you got
Gigabyte Fiber (or possibly up to 80 GB) going to every home. Think of the
applications that could exist for the common good.
However, wireless is a completely different animal. Based on the low cost of
wireless gear, there is rarely a finance problem to the scale that the only
option is to leverage wide scale tax dollars. Fiber might have a 20 year
ROI. Wireless has been proven to have an ROI as soon as 1 year, in many
cases. It doesn't needs everyone's contribution to work! Everyone's
contribution actually hurts, as the technology is not capable to serve
everyone, based on limited spectrum and speed capacities. And then, what is
the real need? What benefits require you to need Internet access on the
street? Can't you wait five minutes to get to your office where the computer
is to do your Internet work? Unless, the government plans on inserting
chips in everyone's arms, to monitor where we go every second of the day.
Sure I can see the benefits to UPS, for mobile broadband, but not sure I
consumers should foot their bill. My feeling is that broadband is not
everywhere because everyone doesn;t jsutify paying for it. So if its not
worth paying for, why should such an effort be made to give it away. You are
giving something away that the people getting the benefits from don't have a
high value for. Just wait to hear the explosion when all the people
demanding support are disatisfied.
This is the scenario I see happening... A young impoverished resident has
decided to take online courses using distant learning. A report is due by
end of day, BAM Internet goes down due to interference. Nobody has any idea
how or when the service will be repaired. Person fails the class because of
work could not be complete on schedule, because of it. "Internet down" then
becomes the pathetic excuse like "the dog ate it". User is screwed because
an ISP offering QOS won't come deploy because to much market share lost to
competition from FREE wifi.
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband
----- Original Message -----
From: "George" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "WISPA General List" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Tuesday, April 25, 2006 5:13 AM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Pioneering Wi-Fi City Sees Startup Woes
Travis Johnson wrote:
You guys are all missing the point. If they contract with the local WISP,
they don't get to "create new jobs" for the muni... instead, they are
just helping a local business grow with local tax money.
Welcome to politics in the wireless arena. :(
Exactly Travis, it's a socialist dream.
I wasn't aware of this until last week when I read an article about Salem
The City has been running open.org which is a full facilities based ISP
with dial up, web hosting, DSL and wifi hot spots.
They charge 12.00 per month for dial up. Anybody can sell 12.00 dial up,
nothing special here.
I'm not sure about the other "businesspeople" on this list, but I have a
hard time accepting that our government ought to be in *any* business.
Never mind competing against the private sector.
Salem Oregon is not a small town with nobody servicing it, it's the State
Capital and either the 2nd or 3rd largest city in the state. I don't buy
that they provided these services because others wouldn't or couldn't, I
believe it's just what it is, state run industry.
I thought that we went to war in Korea, Vietnam, Central America and
almost with Russia to end communism and socialism and to further our
So why should any government local or state decide to take over an
industry and compete against business after what this country has stood
for the entire 20th century?
This is where I find Muni anything to be appalling.
You hit it square on the head, it's politics and I don't believe any of us
"businesspeople" want to include politics as part of our business.
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