BellSouth Points Out The Unfair Legislation For Which They Lobbied
from the might-not-want-to-highlight-that dept
Back in November 2005, we wrote about how Tropos was powering a WiFi mesh network in the devastated city of New Orleans, and commented that despite reservations about the applicability of WiFi to Wide Area deployments, the nature of the emergency was such that a mesh network was the best choice possible to get the city re-connected ASAP. Today, an estimated 15,000 users connect to the muni network in a city where a third of the inhabitants still can’t access a working phone line. We also commented on how the mesh network was providing service up to 512Kbps, which went against a state law limiting municipal services to 128Kbps or less. Well, the time has come for BellSouth to declare the ‘hurricane honeymoon’ over, and at a time when their public relations are not particularly great, are pulling the telecom equivalent of telling jokes about the deceased at a funeral, or jokes about the bride’s fidelity at a wedding: The telco lobbyists are seeking enforcement of the legislation they probably wrote in the first place, and seeking to shut down the muni WiFi in the Big Easy. The New Orleans mayor and CIO say they will not comply with an order to shut off the network – preferring jail to disconnecting their citizens. Noble, perhaps, yet where were they when these questionable laws were getting put on the books?