Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Municipal Broadband Is Not a Public Utility

It apparently doesn’t matter that as a group, telephone, cable, satellite, and wireless companies have succeeded in getting broadband to more than 90 percent of the zip codes in the U.S. It doesn’t matter that the U.S. leads the world with 34 million wireline broadband connections, accounting for more than 20 percent of the worldwide total of 150 million broadband lines at the end of 2004. And it doesn’t matter that, in pure broadband numbers, the U.S. is well ahead of China, France, Germany, Japan, the U.K., and just about every other industrialized country with a land area larger than New Jersey.

Go to any municipal broadband Web site, such as lafayetteprofiber.com, tricitybroadband.com, or muniwireless.com, and you’ll find the discussion is focused solely on the size and virtues of the bandwidth pipe--with very little attention paid to the importance of a value proposition to the business plan.

Click on title for complete article

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