The astonishing FCC victory last Thursday created not just one but two victories for the public. Despite the well heeled and completely selfish concerns of the American Cable industry, headquartered here in Pittsburgh of all places, the redefinition of Internet services under Title II is a tremendous public good and was shockingly not only the best decision for the general welfare but for ensuring that the greatest engine for American Capitalism continues that way.
But that wasn’t the only victory for the public. The other decision that the FCC made allows them to override state bans on municipal broadband. These bans were totally put in place by bribing the usual public officials in Harrisburg and in other states, period. But now cities can go ahead and build out. Yet cities have to make a formal request and they need a broadband plan in place.
What are the three big ramifications of a city based Pittsburgh broadband?
One.) City broadband services are the fastest in the world. And the only American services that are competitive with the fastest broadband speeds that the world has to offer. President Obama explains all of this in a handy video here.
Two.) This would be essential in recruiting and keeping high tech firms in the city. One of the things that you notice if you’re a Facebook friend of the Mayor’s is that he and the city are doing a lot to recruit Googlers en masse. I often walk through and to the city’s East Liberty area and almost all of that high end development, from housing to this planned theater district, is being built to recruit this high tech class. However, the thing that would really bring and keep high class firms in the city is world class broadband speeds. You can make it happen Mayor Peduto. Don’t forget you’re also competing with Philadelphia broadband, which can now move with their efforts.
Three.) Your citizens would be thankful for cutting their broadband costs by possibly up to a half. We would not only be getting faster speeds but probably a better cable package as well. Yes this is a completely selfish reason for wanting this but voters remember this kind of thing. President Obama was asking why kids don’t vote in a recent town hall and I wanted to teleport myself into that event and tell him “You didn’t give them a reason to.” Reasons that might get young Latino kids, or any kids, off the couch would include cutting my broadband costs in half or getting a 15 dollar an hour job with a trillion dollar transportation bill. The Mayor can do nothing about the latter but he can do something about the former.
Please make it so.
Related: Nice roundup as to why Net Neutrality won and why its great news for consumers and competitive capitalism. Not Related: Will be writing more things about Gidas Flowers in the future.