Will wholesale-only muni actually bring the boys to your yard?

david peahi davidpeahi at gmail.com
Wed Jan 30 18:20:25 UTC 2013

The Australian NBN plan evolved because, when the Australian government put
out the original RFP, the incumbent telcos wanted anti-competitive
commitments in exchange for their build-out efforts (sound familiar here in
the USA?). The Australian government deemed the original telco RFP replies
as "non-responsive", and withdrew the RFP, deciding that only the
Australian government could build out a national network with broadband
local loops to every residence and business. The Australian wholesale model
opens the NBN to competitive market forces, as the wholesaled bandwidth
costs are the same for all ISPs. So the plan is to make the ISPs compete on
customer service features, let the marketplace decide as it were,  as they
would all have the same wholesale bandwidth charges.

For those that argue that a national government plan would never work in
the USA, the interstate highway system, and the modern commercial Internet
itself refute that argument. The modern Internet was created by the Federal
High Speed Computing and Communications Act of 1991, and the original
build-out was directed by the National Science Foundation under the
management of the White House Office of Technology. Once the commercial
Internet was established, it was turned over to the telcos in 1993.
The Australian NBN also has plans to possibly turn the network over to
private hands once the build-out is established.

And the muni build-out model, where a hodge podge of local networks are
somehow coordinated such that all residences and businesses are connected,
nationwide, at the same price and speed, just will not work. Building from
the bottom up is not how today's commercial Internet backbone was created.


On Tue, Jan 29, 2013 at 4:39 PM, Jay Ashworth <jra at baylink.com> wrote:

> ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "Jean-Francois Mezei" <jfmezei_nanog at vaxination.ca>
> > It is in fact important for a government (municipal, state/privince or
> > federal) to stay at a last mile layer 2 service with no retail
> > offering. Wholesale only.
> >
> > Not only is the last mile competitively neutral because it is not
> > involved in retail, but it them invites competition by allowing many
> > service providers to provide retail services over the last mile
> > network.
> This, Jean-Francois, is the assertion I hear relatively frequently.
> It rings true to me, in general, and I would go that way... but there is
> a sting in that tail: Can I reasonably expect that Road Runner will in fact
> be technically equipped and inclined to meet me to get my residents as
> subscribers?  Especially if they're already built HFC in much to all of
> my municipality?
> Cheers,
> -- jra
> --
> Jay R. Ashworth                  Baylink
> jra at baylink.com
> Designer                     The Things I Think                       RFC
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