FCC's Trip Wire

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The Federal Communications Commission says it will do what it can to encourage electric utilities to offer broadband services over the wires they run into American homes.

The FCC is under the gun to come up with another competitor to the cable-Bell Company duopoly now emerging for broadband services. Broadband over power lines has been talked about for years, but no one knows if you can make any money selling it.

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  1. Is it the responsibility of the FCC to “come up” with competition? I mean, I’m all for the FCC allowing electric companies to offer broadband. (I’m concerned by the statement in the linked-to article that, “The FCC doesn’t have rules that specifically allow such systems”. So the industries that are under the jurisdiction of the FCC cannot do anything unless there are rules that specifically allow it?) But it seems to me the problem with the ’96 Telecom Act is that they tried to mandate competition, instead of merely allowing for entry in the market by new players and trying to offer a level playing field. The advent of resellers and the use of UNE-P has done nothing to promote real competition and has, absolutely, contributed to the decrease in spending on equipment by both the RBOCs and the CLECs. This is a major contributor to the slow roll out of broadband.

  2. These monopolies came about by the gov’t interference. So today they’ve decided they may not have come up with the best system for managing supply and demand. Hey… Here’s a thought, how about butting out. FCC closing up shop and let the comsumers and producers figure it out. Some thing crazy might happen. The world might still turn and the sun will still rise.
    As for the power-line cable idea. It seems pretty lame. So far they have tops 500K throughput and costs of deploying range from $300 to $700 per subscriber (cable and phone companies spend ~$300 per subscriber).

  3. You can’t have the government butt out! Next thing you know, we’ll be able to send our kids to whatever school we think best and even (horrors!) be able to do what we please within the confines of our own property.

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    DATE: 01/21/2004 05:22:32
    You get what anyone gets. You get a lifetime.

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