Open Media Boston

metro news from the ground up


Also see this post by Vint Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist at Google:
"Some have suggested metered pricing -- charging by the megabyte rather than flat fee plans -- as a solution to congestion, and prices could be adjusted at non-peak periods. These kinds of pricing plans, depending on how they are devised or implemented, could end up creating the wrong incentives for consumers to scale back their use of Internet applications over broadband networks."
Another timely and well written article. Love the title too.  The question is what can we the consumers do?
Sheepless in Seattle...

I'm glad you asked. When I spoke with Turner from Free Press, he strongly encouraged consumers to speak out to legislators and their ISPs. Here's his quote:
"Unfortunately, because our market really lacks meaningful competition, consumers can't really exercise power by choosing between service offered only by the cable company or phone company. In general, I think consumers need to speak up with their providers and legislators. If consumers demand what networks make available in other countries, then policy makers will have to listen to the consumers."

When he mentions other countries, Turner is talking about how countries like Japan and South Korea have broadband bandwidth orders of magnitude greater than we do in the states, for a fraction of what we're currently paying. Due to deregulation, there is little incentive for ISPs in the US to build out and upgrade their networks. Again, Turner:
"Comcast is only making the minimal investments they need to maximize their revenue. I certainly think they could do a lot more, and if the market was competitive, I expect they would. Comcast is definitely not a world leader in the progression of its network."

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