Friday, May 13, 2011

Battling over accuracy of broadband maps plays into hands of legacy providers

Readers of this blog know that I've long regarded so-called "broadband mapping" as well as as focusing on "broadband adoption" as strategies cooked up by the PR shops of the big legacy telco and cable companies to divert attention away from the lack of advanced telecom infrastructure. As long as people are battling over the accuracy of "broadband maps," they aren't taking matters into their own hands and money isn't being invested to construct fiber to the premises telecom infrastructure to fill in the availability gaps the mappers are attempting to document.

The Associated Press reports Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin is steamed that existing "broadband maps" -- probably including the useless National Broadband Map paid for by our federal tax dollars -- show his home near Putney, Vermont has DSL service. Not true, the guv says. So he's countered with his own state-run mapping program, BroadbandVT.org

Instead of trying to see who can most accurately map broadband black holes -- an exercise about as useful as mapping the celestial variety -- Vermonters should call upon their independent New England spirit and create cooperatives to build fiber to their homes and businesses. That spirit is apparently alive and well in western Massachusetts, where the Wired West announced this week that several towns voted in favor of moving forward to formalize creation of a municipal telecommunications cooperative to build sorely needed fiber to the premises telecom infrastructure.

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