Published on March 8th, 2013 | by Staff Writer2
Georgia Moves Forward with the Anti-Broadband Bill
CenturyLink, Windstream, and AT&T are currently getting their way in their attempt to ban Georgian communities in wiring themselves with a broadband connection. This controversial bill is moving forward, despite the criticism that it is receiving from the state residents and the industry itself. The bill indicates that any city or town in Georgia can’t deploy a broadband service if only one user has a line that can handle a 1.5 Mbps bandwidth. Huge companies like Google and Alcatel Lucent have joined the public in their outcry against the monopoly.
The subcommittees of House Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications have successfully passed the bill onto congress. And all they did is to simply made a few tweaks to it. The agency tried to increase the broadband speed bar from 1.5Mbs to 3Mbps. Furthermore, they have exempted towns and cities that generate its own power.
However, many locals and a lot of private companies are still looking at the bill to be nothing else but a protection mechanism to the bigger players in the industry. The big three do want to monopolize broadband services in the area and the proofs are evident.
Local residents are at a rage about the developments because after all, they can’t expect of a better service from the big three broadband providers and yet they are actually prohibiting them from trying something else or doing something about it. The even sadder part is that AT&T is disconnecting DSL lines in certain unprofitable areas in and around the state while Windstream is stopping all network upgrades because there is no competitor in this particular area anyway. Given these facts, it is very interesting to know how legislators would react to the bill once they discuss it on the floor. It’s a big question if they’ll vote for the monopoly or against it.