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Comments on news posted 2005-07-15 13:31:23: The rural towns of Shutesbury and Leverett in Massachusetts are the kind of broadband black holes the FCC doesn't talk much about. ..


FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

3 edits

1 recommendation

Where Telcos won't upgrade; municipal BB ok

These towns are the prime examples of the abuse of power by the telcos who won't provide service claiming it is not profitable. But at the same time will spend more money fighting municipal broadband efforts than it would have cost them to wire up the town in the 1st place.

It all comes down to the telcos protecting their defacto monopoly power to the detriment of their own customers.

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Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1

1 recommendation

Re: Where Telcos won't upgrade; municipal BB ok

the towns should deploy no matter what the courts say. if the residents support a full Muni BB rollout then this country being one where the public is suppost to control the gov then well the public votes and that overrides the court imo.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports

Its Me Again

@170.190.x.x

Re: Where Telcos won't upgrade; municipal BB ok

nicely said

ptrowski
Got Helix?
Premium
join:2005-03-14
Putnam, CT
kudos:4
If only these towns were big enough to do a full muni rollout...we are not talking about Gotham here...
BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
said by FFH5:

These towns are the prime examples of the abuse of power by the telcos who won't provide service claiming it is not profitable. But at the same time will spend more money fighting municipal broadband efforts than it would have cost them to wire up the town in the 1st place.

It all comes down to the telcos protecting their defacto monopoly power to the detriment of their own customers.

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Join Red Room Forum
Bud. These towns are tiny. The problem is the area is not a money maker. I and a couple other design engineers tried to do studies about this exact area. Running even a wi fi company here is just to expensive. The area is almost all forest area. A few farms sprinkled in. Even a muni here would not pay off in 25 years.
--
"It's always funny until someone gets hurt......and then it's absolutely friggin' hysterical!"

xmb1121

@limstn01.de.comcast.

Re: Where Telcos won't upgrade; municipal BB ok

so what's your suggestion then? that they all move?
BosstonesOwn

join:2002-12-15
Wakefield, MA
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

Re: Where Telcos won't upgrade; municipal BB ok

said by xmb1121:

so what's your suggestion then? that they all move?
Stay where they are and deal with the problems themselves by spending their money to do it.

Never assume anything.
--
"It's always funny until someone gets hurt......and then it's absolutely friggin' hysterical!"

oliphant
I Have 8 Boobies
Premium
join:2004-11-26
Corona, CA

3 recommendations

Anyone wanting this...

...should have thought about that when they moved there.

People take many things into consideration when choosing a place to live...proximity to work and schools...freeways, shopping etc.

If broadband is that important, it should have made the list of priorities.

Incumbents aren't charities. They shouldn't be forced to lose money to service some residents.

ON THE OTHER HAND...this said, I also think these same residents/munis should have their right to deploy muni BB protected from these same incumbents who refuse to deploy and in turn sue to stop muni deployment.

Incumbents don't get it both ways. Sure...don't deploy if you don't want to...but then get the F outta the way when someone who is willing to goes and does it.
justinw76

join:2004-08-11

Re: Anyone wanting this...

I did check to make sure broadband was available when i bought my house. Verizon told me it was, my number qualified when i finished building. I placed the order, and then 3 weeks later they told me that it wasn't. They didn't tell me until I called after they missed 2 of their scheduled install/activation dates. Wouldn't tell me when it would be available either.

Topmounter
Sent By Grocery Clerks

join:2001-02-20
Evergreen, CO

Re: Anyone wanting this...

Ouch, that same thing happened to me with Qwest once.
justinw76

join:2004-08-11

Re: Anyone wanting this...

What's even worse is that I pay $90/month for an ISDN line.
PDXPLT

join:2003-12-04
Banks, OR

Re: Anyone wanting this...

quote:
Incumbents aren't charities. They shouldn't be forced to lose money to service some residents.
Who says they have to lose money? Call it "rural DSL" or "small town DSL" or some such, and charge $100 a month for it. They'll get plenty of takers in areas where satellite and ISDN are the only alternatives. But they should make it available in areas where it is technically feasible for them to do so.

Broadband is no longer a luxury. Most websites now are like Korean and Japanese websites were 5 years ago: they assume the viewer has broadband, and is painstakingly slow on dialup. Windows updates are now all but impossible on dialup, and these are critical to the security of one's machine and to the 'net at large.

oliphant
I Have 8 Boobies
Premium
join:2004-11-26
Corona, CA

Re: Anyone wanting this...

The issue comes to whether the PUC would permit that as they (the providers) are governed by the tariffs they have with the state which more often than not govern the price.
Skippy25

join:2000-09-13
Hazelwood, MO
Your nuts! Broadband is a luxury and will be until your actual life depends on it, not to better your life but your actual life. Services like water, sewer, electricity, telephone, cable, ability to go 1 mile to a local store or gas station, and trash service are all a luxury. We just take them for granted regardless of how we may think we can't live without them.

And dont start with the.... how can I improve my life if I can't get it or I'm being handicapped (or left out of the world) because I cant get it campaigns.

An10

@dixie-net.com

1 recommendation

Dare you to try it.

I dare to try that: Live without all those services for about six months. Take no showers (unless you live near a river or lake or pond), use the bathroom outside, and turn on not one light--no AC or heat either. Unhook all the phones and never turn on your TV. Oh, and the only stores you can go to have to be five miles or further away. And just dump your trash somewhere in your yard...probably near wherever you're using the bathroom would be best. See how well you do.

I picked that out 'cause its a total crock.

But while I'm here--someone explain how broadband companies are able to stop people from installing their own broadband service, and why they want to stop it. Am I missing something?
itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA
quote:
Windows updates are now all but impossible on dialup, and these are critical to the security of one's machine and to the 'net at large.
3 things wrong with that statement:
1) Smart businesses ditched Windows on the 'net long ago.
2) If you really care about security you don't use Windows. You use the better alternatives (Linux, Mac)
3) If you're on Dial-up, even if your PC is a zombie bot, you're not doing much work at all to "crash the net"

oliphant
I Have 8 Boobies
Premium
join:2004-11-26
Corona, CA

Re: Anyone wanting this...

Add to that, Microsoft offers updates via CD.

kontos
xyzzy

join:2001-10-04
West Henrietta, NY
quote:
Who says they have to lose money? Call it "rural DSL" or "small town DSL" or some such, and charge $100 a month for it. They'll get plenty of takers in areas where satellite and ISDN are the only alternatives. But they should make it available in areas where it is technically feasible for them to do so.
They don't really want broadband. They want cheap broadband. If broadband were truly a necessity, they could easily have T1 line installed to their homes in a couple of weeks. They want their three megaton DSL for 30 bucks, and that won't make them happy for long.

Jason Levine
Premium
join:2001-07-13
USA

1 recommendation

And what about people who have been living in the town since the pre-broadband era? Should they all move out and vacate the town because Verizon has declared it "unprofitable" to serve?

marigolds
Gainfully employed, finally
Premium,MVM
join:2002-05-13
Saint Louis, MO
kudos:2

1 recommendation

said by oliphant:

...should have thought about that when they moved there.
Except in many of these towns... people moved there well before broadband was even an option (like, oh, about the time they were born). And with the way home values have jumped, moving out requires turning into a renter.
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oliphant
I Have 8 Boobies
Premium
join:2004-11-26
Corona, CA

Re: Anyone wanting this...

Rather than pick and choose out of context statements...

said by oliphant:
...these same residents/munis should have their right to deploy muni BB protected from these same incumbents who refuse to deploy and in turn sue to stop muni deployment.
The latter is what happened were I live. We didn't have broadband and 2 neighbors got together and started a WISP, Unplugged Internet. Another started another Coastinet. Both continue to thrive despite recent deployment by both ATTBi in 2002 and Verizon in 2003.

Those people in such starved areas should take the initiative and lobby for muni deployment or take the initiative and start their own neighborhood service. If the problem is as what you claim then you are not alone and would have no problem getting subscribers as those in my neighborhood didn't.

Kommie
Premium
join:2003-05-13
united state
kudos:3
said by marigolds:

said by oliphant:

...should have thought about that when they moved there.
Except in many of these towns... people moved there well before broadband was even an option (like, oh, about the time they were born). And with the way home values have jumped, moving out requires turning into a renter.
The times they are a changing....

They are gonna have to make major changes.

P Ness
You'Ve Forgotten 9-11 Already
Premium
join:2001-08-29
way way out
Reviews:
·Comcast

Propose your own BB= You'll Get Verizon

All you have to do is propose your own wireless town funded wireless project...and the big telco's and cable companies will come out of the wood work to sware they were just about to invest 200 billion in your town to give you lightspeed internet....
--
www.stopfcc.comI do not think the government needs to restrict free speech especially on a device that has an off knob.

bent
and Inga
Premium
join:2004-10-04
Loveland, CO

1 recommendation

Re: Propose your own BB= You'll Get Verizon

No they won't. They'll spend 200 million on a smear campaign and court battle to stop you.
--
Pura Vida!

Loker
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Fargo, ND

1 edit

last year

we did not even have cable internet here until last summer or maybe the summer before either way it was only 1-2 years ago before that it was dial up for all...every time I go into my local office to pay my bill someone is picking up a starter kit so I do not see how verizon can deem us unserviceable we have 13,000 people in our town and a majority of them leaped at cable internet the second we could

en102
Canadian, eh?

join:2001-01-26
Valencia, CA

Re: last year

Sounds like the boonies in Canada. White River, Ontario (pop 1000 in the middle of nowhere), received cable (5Mbps/1Mbps) last year, and I can imagine that they have a high number of signups. The main thing that made it possible was that the local cable company (Shaw) has a fiber loop which runs cross country and happens to pass through town, and its only $37.95/month, without cable tv.

»www.vianet.ca/residential_cable.php

Loker
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Fargo, ND

Re: last year

the CO for my town is right next door basically lol so I could get those awesome speeds if they would just upgrade the CO to do DSL I know quite a few people in my town alone who have dropped verizon all together and went for VoIP because well you know verizon can not force them to keep phone service with ANY high speed plan around here because you know they do not offer them

ET TU
Its' Only Temp
Premium
join:2005-05-21
Belvidere, NJ

Give them the choice

Go to these ISP's tell them, We are going to wire the town ourselves you said it wont make you money heres your last chance. You have 90 days to start rolling out a high speed service or the people will roll out their own.Then when these ISP's go to court to stop it get their statements "it's not profitable service area" I don't see any reason it should be stopped they had abandoned the area for service the town reclaimed the area.Tell them we gave them a chance they didn't take it now they want it.Well start rolling it out then!!! The town gives you 6 months to start rolling it out. What's the problem?
--
Yes I am a Doctor and no you still must make an appointment Mors ultima linea rerum est stercus acciditQuando podeces te regi eorum fecerunt?

Loker
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Fargo, ND

Re: Give them the choice

you could always go to them have them sign a contract saying that they have failed to provide needed services so the community will provide them you have deemed the community unprofitable so please sign at the bottom acknowledging this and waving any right to file a lawsuit of course this contract will not be preventing you from providing services in this area but you will not be able to shut us down and keep in mind your unwillingness to serve us is what brought you competition in this area
The problem is the recent rash of state laws barring municipal networks from being initiated. With these laws, any ultimatum on broadband is ultimately not possible. The telcos can afford to fight the "problem" at the legislative level and therefore, don't even have to listen to ultimatums. People in rural areas need to get to their statehouse and call up legislators, not just their own, but ALL of them. Its no skin off of the back of a congressman from Worchester, MA if someone near Leverett can't get broadband internet service. Because the majority of Massachusetts is urban and because the majority of state reps are from urban areas, they will feel no sympathy for rural residents in search of broadband UNLESS you call and talk to them directly, regardless of if you have the power to deseat them. Politicians will listen if you talk to them one on one, even its simply to get you out of their hair and out of publicly ruining their campaign plans. I sure hope the McCain-Lautenberg bill passes. If this is a problem in Massachusetts, one of the most densely populated states, imagine what the problem is like for those in the Midwest. Anecdotal evidence will not pass here. You may live in a rural area and have broadband, but most in America who live there, don't. Its just like electricity 100 years ago.

ptrowski
Got Helix?
Premium
join:2005-03-14
Putnam, CT
kudos:4

Re: Give them the choice

Trust me Massachusetts in PARTS are densley populated, but not there...I grew up in Mass and that doesn't surprise me. My sister, who is not to far from a very decent sized city in central Mass cant even get broadband...

Re: Give them the choice

I'm from Massachusetts originally, Northampton actually, which is a neighbor of Shutesberry. It is rural, I am not saying its not there, however, most of Massachusetts is quite dense, especially compared to the rest of the country. In southern New Mexico, for example, you can drive two hundred miles from the Roswell/Carlsbad "city" area before hitting a real city. Now, if cities just outside of the largest university in the state are having trouble getting broadband because its too "rural" imagine what the vast majority of the midwest is dealing with.

Wireless Major

@adelphia.net

Re: Give them the choice

I used to live in New Mexico, is the biggest "real" city there was (Albuquerque) and I know exacty what you're talking about. But, its the desert, clear skies, etc. Would be the perfect place to deploy wireless.

viperpa33s
Why Me?
Premium
join:2002-12-20
Bradenton, FL

1 recommendation

I don't understand how the Telco's or the cable can say it's not profitable when we all pay that money into the Universal Fund. The Universal Fund is suppose to be used for that purpose and the many other purposes. This is from the FTC site:

High-Cost. This program provides financial support to companies that provide telecommunications services in areas of America where the cost of providing service is high.

So where is all that Universal Fund tax money that we pay on our bills every month going to?

•••••••

Phil
Rojo Sol
Premium
join:2001-06-11
Downers Grove, IL
kudos:2

Looked up on Google Maps...

...and these places are in the boonies. I can see why Verizon doesn't feel the need to install there, but they should at least allow these cities to go muni.
--
fRiTz+Nomad+ -- N|fRiTz

•••
drbadass

join:2003-05-29
Philadelphia, PA

Ultimatums don't work

As long as the FCC is ruling for the cable and teclo monopoly and those companies have fingers in politician's pockets, they have nothing to worry about. They may lose a battle here or there, but the war will be won with the tactics they are currently employing. The only chance citizens have is a shift in policy by the government and the FCC regarding the way they collect and report broadband penetration, as well as who is favored in the ongoing battle, the citizens or the corporations. Not to be political, but judging by the current administration, I'd say we'll be waiting until at least 2008 to see any of this change.

Tomek
Premium
join:2002-01-30
Valley Stream, NY

Co-Op/ Muni

They should still be able to solve problem themselves. If demand is high enough they may provide their own broadband and government should offer some incentives due to the fact that Telcos refuse to offer services.
--
Semper Fi

•••
Eric Martin

join:2005-06-19
66308

Satellite not used properly

They have great bandwidth .

So why the hell aren't they being used.

Because the gov corrupted the airwaves by selling them off to corporate america.

If a community would put up 1 big dish and just hook it up to fiber to each house then you have a solution.

Of course you need spectrum. There will be a slight lag but great transmission speed.

renfr0

@optonline.net

Re: Satellite not used properly

sattelites = high latency

sirsloop
Premium
join:2004-02-18
New York, NY

BLIMPBAND!

»Blimpband



BWAAHAHAHAHAH!

hayabusa3303
Over 200 mph
Premium
join:2005-06-29
kudos:1

Re: BLIMPBAND!

put one of those up few miles in the air and people moving in the area would think twice...lol

Goes to show you how stupid the telcos are... Voip rules..
my three pennys anyway.
wombatclov

join:2002-10-16
Easthampton, MA

About Time!

Massachusetts is well known for it's innovation and technology, among other things, right? Well why is it that we can't provide every citizen (high tax paying citizens that is)with broadband?

One of the sick realities is that lawmakers and many that live in Mass don't know that anything or anybody exists west of Worcester. That is one reason I am glad to see this article. Those two small towns are in one the most beautiful areas of Mass.

I am hoping this is an effective way to get someone to notice and take action!

I saw some comments here that "the people chose to live there". Well, some residents have been living there for more than 30 years, and while technology has been built up and advanced in the the eastern part of Mass, NOTHING has been done in the western part of the state. In the town my parents live in, the entire town and 3 surrounding it can't even get cable TV! What is wrong with that picture?

Now, before people start flaming me, I also have some understanding of WHY broadband providers won't come into the rural areas. I know it is expensive to upgrade an infrastructure that is quite old, and of course thee is the limitation of the DSL technology itself. I do think Verizon should allow the extended distances, if the customer signs ann agreement about the QOS.

thisismyname1

join:2004-07-26
00000

This is NEWS?!

Seriously tell me something I DON'T KNOW.

I live in Chicago, IL and unless you live within 5 miles from the Sears Tower you can forget DSL.

It is quite unbelieveable that my only provider is a Cable company called Comcast that treats their customers like crap. If you get 100Kbps or higher out of their 4Mbps tier or 300Kbps from their 6Mbps you are within range according to them.

I moved 3 miles from an area where I could get 6Mbps DSL to an area where their is no DSL provided although the population density in this city is through the roof. It is insane how picky DSL providers are so frankly I am not surprise Verizon denies these cities service.
--
Freedom of expression should not be hampered by the unwillingness of others to accept things.-NinjaMaster
MADx

join:2005-05-25
Richmond, IN

Richmond, IN.

Richmond Indiana is not a very large place maybe 49,000 tops, but we have both choices of Verizon DSL 3 down 768 up for $30 a month $19 three month special and Insight Cable 4 down 384 up for $45 a month $10 off if you have digital cable. Insight also offers a plus tier 6 down 524 up for $35 extra.

ninjaturtle1

join:2003-10-21
Fremont, CA

Money talks.

If you want it so badly, just pay to have it done.

300 residents x $500 = $150,000.

Wave $150,000 around and you'll have some bids.
damox
Premium
join:2002-01-07
Olympia, WA

That's what capitolism is all about!

Now in communist countries, this would never happen . . . well at least in theory. Even China has it's haves and have nots! The way I look at it, if ain't profitable, the telcos and cable companies should NOT do it, as it doesn't make good business sense. I always considered living out in the woods, to be a luxury, except in Kentucky and certain portions of Pennsylvania where it's more of a way of life. My brother used to brag about how great life was out in the boonies. He'd joke when it saw 3 or 4 cars on his morning drive, calling it a traffic jam! On the other hand, he'd complain about being stuck with dial-up. I envied him for living in such a peaceful place, and would have swapped places with him in a moment. Some people just expect the best of both worlds.
--
DAMOX Proud to be a member of Team Discovery
Josh7289

join:2005-04-06
Milford, NJ

I live in a similar town.

Can't get DSL, can't get two-way cable. I can, however, get one-way cable, which is cable to download and dial-up to upload. It's a helluva lot better than dial-up, but it still disgusts me how these providers operate. I highly doubt America outside of cities will ever have complete broadband coverage, or at least for a LONG time. This government is corrupt and these providers are corrupt. Broadband provides a much higher quality of life, and the first to enjoy that are the Japanese, Koreans and other Asian countries where the governments realize how important broadband really is. We will not get this kind of service for AT LEAST ten years, as we are lagging by five years now, it the lag keeps getting larger and larger as the rest of the world advances. At least luckily for me, I'll be moving to Japan within ten years and most likely less for personal reasons when the "time is right" for me. I feel terribly bad for everyone who can't get broadband, including myself to a degree, and almost the entire population of the country who doesn't live in a city, as all we can really do is wait.

MHX5

join:2000-05-24
Los Angeles, CA

Local gated community did it themselves

My friend lives in a gated community in ritzy Bel-Air (Los Angeles area)

Verizon wouldn't provide DSL, so they pulled multiple T-1 lines to the community recreation center and established a wireless network that covers the whole development. Since it's in hills and canyons, they needed repeaters, but apparently everything works out very well.

People pay about $50/month for about a megabit up and down. Why don't people in other unserved areas do the same thing?

i1me2ao
Premium
join:2001-03-03
TEXAS

without either

i post again we still have thousands of people without dsl or any type of cable connection tv or Internet..
--
upset a liberal, get a job and be happy

Aron1

@comcast.net

NOT a dollars and cents issue

I am the Chair of the Shutesbury-Leverett Broadband Committee (www.slbc.us). Thanks you all for your thoughtful and encouraging comments. I was at a wedding this weekend or I would have been participating more.

That "It just doesn't make business sense" argument drives me crazy. These days, it is so easy for anyone to say "If it were up to me, I'd give you guys what you want, but we have shareholders to answer to." People are so scared to appear opposed to market-based approaches to anything that they don't dare inquire further. The reality is (and this is common knowledge in the industry) that VZ loses money on every single DSL subscriber. It's strategy is to undersell the competition (cable cos) in order to retain market share. This is obviously not sustainable, but the telecom industry is converging and the marketplace is very uncertain. Verizon has an antiquated copper network, and until it can replace it with fiber (nationally, not just a couple high profile towns), VZ has got to compensate for inferior services with loss-leading pricing, hard-nosed anti-community lobbying, and reliance on their customers' blind faith in the incumbent provider.

A little good PR would make a big difference (and we've been trying hard for years to give them some), but we now have enough pathetic examples of VZ bumbling that we are now convinced that it not just strategy, but largely corporate dysfunction, that explains why VZ won't even acknowledge us. We can only do so much to help them rationalize.

Thanks again, all.