Muni network ownership and the Fourth

Elle Plato techgrrl at
Tue Jan 29 21:03:41 UTC 2013

> See, the Comcast's and AT&T of the world are right that governments
> shouldn't be ISP's, that should be left to the private sector.  I
> want a choice of ISP's offering different services, not a single
> monopoly.  In this case the technology can provide that, so it
> should be available.

It has been my experience that the incumbents largely give small
cities the finger until a muni steps in, and makes a profitable go of
it.  Then they are all about legislation to protect them from the
unfairness of it all.  The large incumbents are basically a duopoly as
it is, and general are not offering anything innovative until they are
forced to.

Running an ISP is hard, and most munis have no experience in it.  Then
only reason to do it, is because the incumbents refuse to provide
service.  I don't think munis running networks is any sort of threat
to free enterprise.  I see them more analogous to rural electric
cooperatives that provided electric service when incumbents refused
to.  Legislating that option away, just lets the duopolies serve the
dense urban areas and ignore the less dense areas.

Elle Plato

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