Can We See The Actual FCC Data On Broadband Penetration?

from the that-would-be-nice dept

A few months ago, the General Accounting Office pointed out that the data the FCC was using to claim that broadband penetration in the US was very successful was actually very misleading. The FCC looked at whether or not a single household in each zipcode was able to access broadband, and then decided that everyone in that zipcode could therefore access broadband. That’s problematic for a variety of reasons. Now, one group is suing the FCC to get access to the underlying data to get a better picture of how widespread broadband access really is in the US, and how extensive the competition really is. There’s really no reason for the FCC not to release such data, unless it goes against what they’ve been saying all along.

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Comments on “Can We See The Actual FCC Data On Broadband Penetration?”

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MrScott says:

I can agree whole-heartedly. Just because someone in a particular zipcode can access broadband, not everyone in that zipcode actually *can* access broadband.

I used to live just inside the county line in a small town that had broadband through cable. While I had cable TV and internet through the same pipe, people that lived just over the county line (same zipcode, mind you) could *not* have cable. You’re saying..DUH! They’re in a different county! But keep in mind that they’re the same zipcode as I am, and they live only 1/4 mile from me. Follow me there?

So the report on broadband access is NOT factual. I think the numbers are way off.

Max says:

so, what's the point?

What seems to be missing in this story is, what’s the point? I don’t see who benefits by the claims that there is broader broadband saturation than there acutally is. The real story is in what is hoped to be gained by the FCC is fudging the data, or in the lawsuit by trying to debunk the data as false. Follow the money and look at who profits from this.

Perhaps a similar kind of story is the FCC’s relationship to homes that have HDTV service availability and how this relates to the timelines to obsolete conventional TV broadcast frequencies so the government and companies can make a huge profit from auctioning off the frequency ranges.

If you factor in the homes that have the potential to receive HD via cable or phone line services it speeds up that process. So it’s likely that biased data will be used to force obsoletion of standard TVs. There is a lot of money to be made in forcing little old ladies to buy new TV sets, and in selling adapters to allow HD conversion to old TV sets, and more in the auctions and use of the broadcaste spectrum.

I can’t think of much in the way of historical attempts to federally obselete a technology like this. Imagine if we were forced to give up conventional phone services and to use cell technology instead.

So,what’s the point in falsely claiming Broadband stats, and who stands to gain by this, or lose from it?

Sanguine Dream says:

Re: so, what's the point?

So,what’s the point in falsely claiming Broadband stats, and who stands to gain by this, or lose from it?

A false sense of security and to keep competition out. Most broadband providers have geographic monopolies. If they can claim an entire zip code (wheather or not everyone in the zip code can actually get the service) then they can keep competitors out. Claim one house and claim the entire zip code. Claim the entire zip code and no one else can come in and compete.

Lay Person says:

Re: so, what's the point?

The point is that if the government spends money on a study to determine if they should intervene on the competition of broadband markets, and they fudges the study…you tell us what the point alludes to.

It seems to me that if the FCC is lying, we ought to know who lied, why, and how. The FCC is supposed to serve as an official mediator for matters of communication. If they serve purposes other than the intersets of US Citizens, I, for one, am dying to know.

Lay Person says:

100 dollars says they refuse to divulge the study.

I’ll put 100 dollars US down that the FCC will fail to divulge it’s study.

They are lying, I just know they’re lying because they always lie to satisfy their own agenda. I know the state of broadband availability is nowhere near their claim. I live in San Diego, we’re not a huge city but we’re big enough. 1/4 of our county can’t even get DSL and if you want cable, you have to pay for the infrastucture (cable, poles, hours, etc.).

Remember this post

Lay Person says:

About the FCC...

My appologies for the previous post describing the role of the FCC…it is scant and misleading.

Here is the actual FCC mission statement:

“The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is an independent United States government agency, directly responsible to Congress. The FCC was established by the Communications Act of 1934 and is charged with regulating interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite and cable. The FCC’s jurisdiction covers the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. possessions.”

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