As the Baby Bells falsely complain about how people aren't paying them for the internet, or whine about how it's unfair to expect them to compete against muni-broadband, there's something important to remember. For the last decade, those same telcos have made promise after promise to local governments concerning the delivery of truly open fiber optic connections to the home. In exchange, they've been granted all sorts of privileges and rate increases by the government, costing all of us money. And where did the money go? Not towards what was promised. Bruce Kushnick, who we've written about before is now coming out with a book that details how the telcos scammed approximately $200 billion from all of us (about $2,000 per household), promising fiber to every home with symmetric 45 Mbps speeds and an open access model that would allow anyone to offer competitive internet services over that connection. This is a promise that they have not kept... though, they have kept our money. That fiber was supposed to be delivered this year (earlier in other cases), but it's not coming. The fiber that telcos are finally starting to offer is much more expensive, much slower, and locked down. In fact, after all of these promises, remember that the telcos said they wouldn't offer fiber at all, unless the FCC promised not to require them to let others offer services on it. Yet, for all of this, there's been very little outcry, or very little discussion -- and the latest moves concerning network neutrality show that the telcos are looking to take more of our money and deliver less yet again. For more details, check out Kushnick's book, $200 Billion Broadband Scandal, and think about it next time the telcos whine about government interference.
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