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"Should cities be ISPs?"


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#1 KoanYorel

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Posted 27 June 2005 - 03:25 AM

"Should cities be ISPs?"

Published: June 23, 2005, 4:00 AM PDT
By Declan McCullagh and Anne Broache
Staff Writer, CNET News.com

"WASHINGTON--When Philadelphia's city government decided to sell wireless access to downtown residents last year, a furious political fight in the state capital erupted.

Verizon stridently opposed the plan, liberal advocacy groups just as emphatically endorsed it, and politicians in Harrisburg ended up approving a compromise bill that effectively let the city of brotherly love do what it wanted.

Now this politechnical dispute is bubbling up from states to Washington, D.C., where lobbyists are pressuring Congress to resolve the question of whether governments or private companies do a better job as Internet service providers."

Read more on this controversy here


What do you think about government at any level operating as Internet service providers?
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#2 yano

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Posted 27 June 2005 - 01:40 PM

First of all I don't think the government should be an ISP.

I just don't think the government should all of a sudden start taking control of everything like this. Then they would add a bleep load of taxes on it. The connection would probably suck.

And also I think the only reason they would want to do this is because of those bleepers who are using Bittorrent and P2P for music and what not (other illegal activities). Just because you got some people haring some illegal bleep doesn't mean that the rest of us have to suffer...

And plus if the government knows all then why haven't they shut-down and captured all the people who are using P2P and BT for illegal purposes. I mean if they have the technology of the future, then why aren't they using it?

#3 ~overkill~

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Posted 19 July 2005 - 10:44 PM

what, theyre not?

#4 Globe Roamer Jeff

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 02:21 AM

I recommend the book '1984' (haven't seen the movie) written by George Orwell many, many years ago.

The book details a time when society is totally controlled in every respect. Orwell pretty much says it all regarding these sorts of topics. Why, there is even a Government administered Internet connection peering into and watching each and every household in the nation.

Scary stuff.

GRJ :thumbsup:

#5 locally pwned

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 05:05 AM

GRJ, I hardly think a city-run ISP is comparable to the Ministry of Truth. :flowers:

In Portland, as in many other cities, wireless networks are being built. Free w/ads, or 20 bucks a month w/out. This does not sound sinister to me.

Personally, corporate monopoly is far more annoying. Comcast, for example, owns all cable services in the Portland Metro area. In some places, there's no DSL; thus Comcast has an effective monopoly, since I think we can all agree that dial-up is hardly a comparable product.

And guess what? When Comcast first appeared after taking over the former provider, AT&T, they raised the rates. What a surprise.

If anything, cheap wireless network will create competition and may drive prices down. Many folks use the internet for email, a bit of surfing, ect; they donít need to pay Comcast $53 a month for cableís bandwidth when they can surf with ease for $20 on the cityís network.

Anyway, I have always found it interesting that people are so afraid of their governments while at the same time are so content to watch corporate monopoly/oligopoly control so many aspects of their lives.



Oh, and on a side note, what corrupts government in the first place? Could it be...corporate interests? :thumbsup:

And also I think the only reason they would want to do this is because of those bleepers who are using Bittorrent and P2P for music and what not (other illegal activities).



Why would they give a flying dingo's kidney if they weren't pandering, again, to corporate interest?
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#6 fozzie

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 05:26 AM

As far as I am concerned this whole 1984 theory is allready happening. People who think they can do whatever they want on the internet will get a surprise of their lives soon. Governement, both local and country, allready have a lot of information on the behavior of people. Momentarily this data is not linked but it is not long before that is going to happen.

They know what we are buying, how and where. , not in great detail but enough to get a grip on what we are doing. In holland we have a socalled social security number and more and more data is being linked together. They are now contemplating to make a "1 in all "card which contains all personal data and where you also have to do your purchases with.

I am not in the least worried about this, since I have nothing to hide. In today's world with present days technology you shuld be aware "that Big Brother is watching you ".

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Edited by fozzie, 11 March 2007 - 05:27 AM.


#7 DSTM

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 06:09 AM

Agree with what your saying,Fozzie.If anyone thinks this is about as bad as it can get,they better think again.
I have noticed an erosion in our privacy since the early 1980's.
Our Government is bringing in a National ID Card shortly,and is planned to be implimented at about the same time as the US,within the next 2 yrs.
I am very concerned for our future,and where all this is heading.















#8 GrouchoMarx

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 07:35 AM

I could not agree with you more locally pwned!

No one should be able to debate the fact that wlan ntwork throughout a city would be a good idea.... who ever the isp is!

the fact is that todays lobbyism is tomorrows government...

give it a few more years... it won't be the Ministry of Truth we will be governed by, but the Coca Cola Syndicat.... Macdonalds Board of Burger-flippers.... Microsoft....
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#9 cowsgonemadd3

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 08:14 AM

If anything, cheap wireless network will create competition and may drive prices down.


Trust me they are low enough already. I have looked into starting a wisp in my area and the local companies are maybe taking a loss just to drive out competition.

I wouldnt mind a wireless network I could pay for or get free in a city park but as far as them knowing more of what I do, no sorry.

They need to stay out of our lives and do what they are supposed to. Protect and defend us. They want to know something they can ask and if we dont want them to know then they leave us alone. I mean unless its a threat to security what we are doing.

But our browsing habits and such is none of their buisness.

#10 BlackSpyder

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 06:52 PM

no there arte more than enough ISP's out there currently with very good pricing. however if they wished to create a wireless hotspot in downtown for business people it should be free and and unregulated if not well we'll end up like China.

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#11 Darthy

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 08:35 PM

The net is a powerful tool.
The great majority of news in the media are censored and if we want to know something about what happening on the world we have to search in the net.
That's why all Governments are trying to control it.
If it was not internet, how can we would know about the suspicions in 9/11 events, the death of Bin Laden, the murder of JFK, and so on?
I think, the Net is the only thing, on planet, organized at a global level like New World Order and that's why all Governments are afraid of.
Regards,
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Εν οίδα οτι ουδέν οίδα - Socrates
Thanks John

#12 jgweed

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 08:48 PM

Quite frankly, if I were to trust any entity, it would be competitive businesses rather than a branch of government, which is open to vast temptations to use it for the "best" of reasons and For Our Good, and which does not understand the internet very well at all.
Governments are designed by nature to control.
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#13 boopme

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 10:33 PM

I also feel it should be privately run. It is more efficient and competitive that way.
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#14 cowsgonemadd3

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 10:43 AM

Making a hot spot for free doesnt make sense. It costs money for the internet that goes through it and the system. You would have to charge something. Like coffee shops charge nothing because all it takes is a router,and the internet an then it brings them more customers that might buy something.

People even cities dont just pop it out and say "free internet" without it expecting to make anything.

#15 locally pwned

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 07:43 PM

Making a hot spot for free doesnt make sense. It costs money for the internet that goes through it and the system.

People even cities dont just pop it out and say "free internet" without it expecting to make anything.


It's not free, per say. The "free" version has advertisements, and the non-ad version costs 20 dollars a month. but around here, cable is over $50, and DSL is at least $30 + the cost of a phone line, so it's well over 50 as well. The point being, broadband is relatively expensive and this service provides wireless for much cheaper than it would normally cost in the home.

If a lot of people ditch Cable and DSL service for the cheaper city-run ISP, perhaps the other providers will lower their rates. Stranger things have happened...

And yes, you can always head to Starbucks...the quad-venti-mocha will cost you 5 bucks but at least the use of their wifi will be free. :thumbsup:

Quite frankly, if I were to trust any entity, it would be competitive businesses rather than a branch of government, which is open to vast temptations to use it for the "best" of reasons and For Our Good, and which does not understand the internet very well at all.



The key word is "competitive." The unfortunate word that actually goes in it's place is "monopoly."

At least with the government, you can get rid of officials you don't like by voting them out. Last time I checked, Portland General Electric didn't ask the public (who naturally has no other competing companies to buy electricity from) to vote on a new CEO.

But hey, I am always heartened to hear about the bloated executive salaries my rate-hikes fund; I am always thrilled to watch prime-time TV commercials, also paid for by my rates, from a company I have no choice but to do business with in the first place.

Oh, and again, most of the time it's lobbyists from "competitive business" that steer government officials away from the public good; granted, "public good" may be hard to define, but I am willing to argue that it rarely jibes with "corporate good."

Edited by locally pwned, 13 March 2007 - 07:44 PM.

"The whole of science is nothing more than a refinement of everyday thinking." - Albert Einstein

"The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion." - Thomas Paine

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands." - Douglas Adams




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