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Old 02-19-2013, 03:32 AM   #31
tubemonkey
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Personally, I think government should supply the pipes (cable, DSL, fiber, satellite, wireless, etc) and let private enterprise supply premium content.

A shakeup is needed in this industry and no one should be allowed to supply both content and internet. There's too much room for abuse.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:53 AM   #32
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Do you not have satellite TV available in your part of the world?
Yes. I was comparing cable companies trying to prevent municipalities from offering broadband to them trying to prevent municipalities from offering cable back in the '80's and early '90's. Now we have cable in the county and satellite service too. Back then satellite was a big dish and people used them to pirate HBO and other cable shows. I remember when HBO first started scrambling their signal to prevent this. Some of my relatives had them.
Our city wanted to put in a municipal cable company to compete and lower prices. We were paying more than twice what cities like Atlanta paid for less content. The cable company took them to court. When that failed they offered the local politicians a supposed deal that would eventually lower our cable bills. The city took the deal and, surprise surprise, our bills went down for one year and then back up.
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:58 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by tubemonkey View Post
Personally, I think government should supply the pipes (cable, DSL, fiber, satellite, wireless, etc) and let private enterprise supply premium content.

A shakeup is needed in this industry and no one should be allowed to supply both content and internet. There's too much room for abuse.
I think suitable way would be for government to build the core network(fiber all the the way) and have private enterprise provide the last mile. And the network should be open to everyone.
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:12 AM   #34
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...and have private enterprise provide the last mile.
Provide - as in forced to provide? The whole idea is to make internet access available to everyone at a reasonable cost, and not just those where it's profitable for some ISP.
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:29 AM   #35
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I think suitable way would be for government to build the core network(fiber all the the way) and have private enterprise provide the last mile. And the network should be open to everyone.
Sort of like how the government provides highways and airports but GM and Boeing provides cars and airplanes?
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Old 02-19-2013, 08:06 AM   #36
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I think suitable way would be for government to build the core network(fiber all the the way) and have private enterprise provide the last mile. And the network should be open to everyone.
The trouble is, the businesses aren't providing that last mile in all areas, but are trying to stop local governments from setting up their own last mile.
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Old 02-19-2013, 08:16 AM   #37
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Provide - as in forced to provide? The whole idea is to make internet access available to everyone at a reasonable cost, and not just those where it's profitable for some ISP.
The last mile is open to competition, or alternatively home-owners could start their own company and provide the connections at cost.
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Old 02-19-2013, 08:22 AM   #38
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The trouble is, the businesses aren't providing that last mile in all areas, but are trying to stop local governments from setting up their own last mile.
Exactly!
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Old 02-19-2013, 12:44 PM   #39
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Palo Alto's 'Fiber to the Home' project was a disaster.
1) it was 'Dark Fibre'
2) the connection fee was $10K and you had to provide your own terminal equipment. (they must smoke Woodside Whoopie Weed down at City Hall )
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:30 PM   #40
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Electricity, water, sewage, garbage collection, roads, and mail service are handled by the government in many jurisdictions. In other words, those government bureaucrats can be mighty effective.

The issue with private enterprise is pretty much as you suggested: they tackle the low hanging fruit, which leads to inequitable access to services and infrastructure. They also tend to ignore large scale projects because of the risks involved.

I'm not suggesting that government intervention is the best solution. The problem is that there are times when government intervention is the only solution.
True, there are times when a single provider is necessary. It is impractical
to have competing electric lines, water mains, sewer systems, and road
networks - to select from.

Garbage Collection can, and is, often provided on a competitive basis for
business customers even if residential collection is provided by the city.

Despite support by the government, (in many ways, not just financial),
the mail service continues to show itself as being unable to compete with
private service providers. Not to mention with e-mail.

As to "under-served" areas; first, they should be free to adopt whatever
lawful measures they can to address the problem, using their own resources.
Second, if there is a benefit to be had, that is worth the cost - for a larger
community, then it might make sense for that larger community to subsidize
providing the service to that "under-served" area". A big problem being that
there will be radical advocates and contract seekers making the case for a
subsidy under very suspect logic.

Luck;
Ken
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:34 PM   #41
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The Post Office is able to compete quite well with its private competitors, its problem is that it is being sabotaged. In 2006, a law was passed requiring the USPS to fully fund its retirement fund 70 years into the future, and do so within 10 years. The USPS is required to fund the retirement of employees who aren't even born yet. UPS and FedEx don't have to fund their retirement funds for even half that long. UPS and FedEx aren't going to deliver a letter for 46 cents.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:39 AM   #42
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True, there are times when a single provider is necessary. It is impractical
to have competing electric lines, water mains, sewer systems, and road
networks - to select from.
The electricity and gas markets are completely "open" in the UK. The local company provides the infrastructure, but you can buy your service from any company that you wish. It's been that way for many years now.

Also in the UK, the national telephone company, British Telecom, provides the ADSL broadband infrastructure, but, although they are an ISP themselves (the biggest ISP in the country, in fact), they are also required by law to act as a wholesaler and sell Internet bandwidth to all other ISPs at the same price they sell it to themselves at (ie "BT Wholesale" is legally a separate company from "BT Broadband").

It's very easy to separate the infrastructure provider from the service provider.
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Old 02-20-2013, 07:03 AM   #43
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@HarryT, btw, is VOIP still illegal in UK?
Similar in Belgium, electricity, gas, mobile phone markets are completely "open" - naturaly is only one state entity in the back.
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Old 02-20-2013, 07:13 AM   #44
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It's very easy to separate the infrastructure provider from the service provider.
Is the infrastructure provider allowed to charge the service providers for access and maintenance? The assumption in the US has always been that if you don't allow the infrastructure provider to charge for access, that the service providers will eventually lay their own infrastructure.

The result has always been a price war against the infrastructure provider, with only the infrastructure provider's customers paying for maintenance.
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Old 02-20-2013, 07:29 AM   #45
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@HarryT, btw, is VOIP still illegal in UK?
I wasn't aware that it had ever been illegal. Skype is very popular here, especially for people with family in other countries.
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