But Wait, Wasn't Muni-Fiber Supposed To Take Away Incentive For Private Fiber?

from the caught-in-a-lie dept

Over the past few years, there have been numerous lawsuits by telcos against various municipalities that have decided to launch municipal fiber broadband projects. Most of these lawsuits have failed -- but the main argument from the telcos is that it's unfair to have to compete against the government, and it would take away incentives for the telcos to actually invest in infrastructure to provide for those towns. Of course, that doesn't make much sense. That would mean that any competition would decrease incentives to invest. One of the nastier legal battles took place in Monticello, Minnesota, where the local telco TDS fought hard (and lost) its battle to stop muni-fiber from showing up. But, now, suddenly TDS is announcing its own fiber broadband, giving people 50 Mbps service for $50/month. What's the likelihood that TDS would have done this if it didn't have competition from muni-fiber? The reason municipalities look to muni-fiber is because there isn't enough competition and the telcos aren't investing in infrastructure (or really serving customer needs). So the end result here is that by introducing more competition, consumers and citizens are better served. So what's the problem with it again?

Filed Under: broadband, competition, muni-fiber
Companies: tds


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  1. icon
    Brendan (profile), 30 Oct 2009 @ 3:22pm

    It's perfectly fair, they just don't want to

    It's not "unfair" to introduce new competition, but of course the incumbents want to maintain their death grip. If people get a taste of real broadband (not this garbage we get sold here in most of Canada and the US) then the telco will be forced to invest a chunk of change to stay in the game. They'd rather not, of course, so they trump up these lies about unfair government competition. It's pretty rich, considering how many of these companies achieved their current monopoly by the privatization of a state-built and state-owned network.

    Personally I love muni-fiber, and think its a great way for cities fed up with the majors to change the rules of the game.

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