look who is stealing your internet

United States
September 11, 2009 1:20pm CST
An interesting program by Bill Moyers this week on PBS on the subject of network neutrality which until 2005 had been protected by law but now the big telcos are pressuring Congress to give them greater control over the internet and how they charge for access to it. This is very worrying and I'd like to know your views or experiences connected to the debate. Also what was discussed is the fact that the big telcos promised in the 90s to take the country to a fiber optic infrastructure in exchange for big tax breaks. They got the tax breaks but did NOTHING to make good on their promise. We are now 100* slower in the average household than Japan and many other countries for internet access as a result. Nobody is holding the big telcos accountable. Thoughts please.
1 response
@Taskr36 (13923)
• United States
11 Sep 09
The big telcos are pretty crappy, no doubt about that. Comcast is the worst, but Cablevision and Time Warner are really trying to take that crown. That said, your numbers are so far off it's ridiculous. The average internet connection speed in Japan is 15.8 mbps while the US is 5.1 mbps. So they're about 3 times as fast. The fastest connection speeds in the WORLD are in South Korea where they are exactly 4 times as fast as the US. There's certainly room for improvement, but don't make up absurd figures just to make a point. http://tech.yahoo.com/news/afp/20090825/tc_afp/ustelecombroadbanditinternet_20090825230334 You can't really compare us to Japan with regards to connection speeds. Japan is a smaller and much more densely populated country than the US. In a country that small it takes much less time and money to build that infrastructure. We are in the 4th largest country in the world. Our average internet connection speed is low because there are some desolate areas in places like Alaska and Montana that alone are larger than the entire nation of Japan. If you look at the more densely populated parts of the US in the Northeast, you'll see much better speeds available.
• United States
11 Sep 09
You've done your research and that's appreciated. The numbers I've given are based on what was mentioned in the program I watched in which it was pointed out that Japan AND North Korea (and other countries) have already upgraded the majority if not all their users to an optical fiber network whereas that has not happened here in the US despite promises made by the baby bells in the 90s. Here we still rely on 19th century technology ie copper wire albeit heavily optimized to perform as best it can. I'll check those numbers- thanks for providing them and putting me straight on that.
• United States
11 Sep 09
I just found the clip giving MY numbers on the web. Since I can;t give you the actual link, you can find it if you want on pbs.org under Moyers on America (or Bill Moyers Journal) and you'd search for 'Net at Risk'. The clip is called US in world connectivity perspective. Now what I have noticed is that the doc was first aired in November 2007 and so the numbers are probably out-of-date now but they did say at the time that the average American is paying $40 pcm for 1Mbit each way whilst average Japanese consumer is paying that for around 100 Mbit connectivity. Your report is much more up-to-date and since it has CWA behind it I find your numbers more credible today.