Strange as it may seem, a lot of good things have come out of this battle in the NC Legislature. While the cable company rushed us with big lobbyist cannons, you good folks jumped up with armor aplenty. First, a big thank you to all of you.
I’ve crossed paths with some great people during this year’s battle. One of them is Craig Settles of Fierce Broadband Wireless. Settles knows technical jargon yet can craft a family of sentences that keep it interesting. I encourage you to check out his blog daily. Craig and I have not exchanged a single dollar. I just admire the guy and want you to see his work. Here’s a sample:
“Small town governments are not noted for having gobs of engineering resources or battalions of technology experts. Yet Wilson used mostly internal staff to design a network that’s 100 Mbps down and up. The staff built the network’s backbone. They retained a design firm mainly for guidance, and another firm to build out one element of the network. Wilson isn’t alone.
While incumbents are making grand proclamations announcing 100 Mbps services, which seem to be more hype than reality when you peel back press releases, Pulaski, Tenn., Lafayette, La., and UTOPIA also have built and launched 100 Mbps services. Forget for a minute the arguments some make about the business viability of muni networks.
Instead of spending all that money on lobbyists and public campaigns to stifle community efforts, Time Warner, et. al., should be flying their designers into these rural areas to find out how they’re pulling this off. The argument that you need to legislate a level playing field is ridiculous. You don’t have a 100 Mbps product to compete with and it’s not clear when you will. These towns with far fewer resources than private sector companies are delivering the service with satisfied customers now. Don’t kill these projects, figure out how to clone them! Or partner with them.”