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  • Jan 29th, 2015 @ 9:15am

    Telephone poles and Google concessions

    Hey guys, I enjoyed the show but I wanted to encourage you to dig a little deeper on this. Local governments cannot be blamed for the AT&T's or an electric company's refusal to work with a fiber deployer. The pole owner has broad discretion and local governments are not in the loop.

    As for Google's arrangements with cities, I always hear people talking about them in the abstract, nothing in the specific. From what I can tell, they aren't that outlandish though some of them I think are difficult tradeoffs, like letting Google refuse to serve some areas of town where demand is low. That is a tradeoff that is worth discussing. But Kansas City and others have said they will give those same deals to others. The trick is just that TWC, Comcast, AT&T, etc refuse to invest in that level of service.

    I'm not saying every local government has its act together on these matters. But the vast majority are doing what they can to encourage deployment. The big carriers previously claimed that statewide franchising was retarding investment so half the states eliminated it - but saw no change in investment patterns.

    If you want to encourage competition, you should studiously ignore suggestions from the biggest carriers.