When Verizon signed their franchise deal with New York City back in 2008, the company promised to deploy FiOS to "the entire city by mid-year 2014
." However, as I noted at the time
, leaks suggested their deal (negotiated entirely in secret and to this day not fully viewable by the public) came with a number of loopholes, phrasing and caveats guaranteeing that Verizon could either buy or wiggle their way out of their "entire city" promise.
As 2014 nears, people are remembering Verizon's promise, noticing that many New York City residents (even in affluent areas of Manhattan) still can't get service, leaving many NYC residents under the monopoly control of Time Warner Cable, despite the city's repeated professed dedication to cutting-edge technology.The Verge
takes a look at Verizon's progress, quite correctly noting it's good for Verizon that people are clammoring for their product (something confirmed by our user reviews
). However, it's this particular paragraph that perfectly encapsulates the transparent nature of the company's agreement with Bloomberg and the city, and both parties' willingness to effectively communicate it to the public:
"The city seems satisfied with how Verizon has held up its end of the bargain. When asked whether Verizon had met its contract obligations, the mayor's office first asked The Verge what Verizon had said, then referred us to DOITT, which actually has the contract. DOITT referred us to the mayor’s office. When told that the mayor wasn't commenting, DOITT suggested we speak with Verizon. When pressed, a spokesperson said, "We just don’t have anything to add here."
While some landlords certainly are incredibly difficult, Verizon has taken to blaming landlords
for not meeting promises the company knew would never be met in the first place. Meanwhile a shift in executives since the project started in 2008 has shifted Verizon's entire focus from fixed line to wireless, leaving those in cities (whether it's parts of NYC or all of Boston
) stuck on aging DSL that may never be upgraded.