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Old 05-24-2011, 10:29 AM   #1
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Default FCC's Section 706 Advanced Services Inquiry

The FCC released its inquiry into whether "advanced telecommunications capability" is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion. Advanced telecommunications capability is the availability of high-speed, switched, broadband telecommunications that enables users to originate and receive high-quality voice, data, graphics, and video using any technology.

Last year, the FCC’s National Broadband Plan reported:
Quote:
290 million Americans—95% of the U.S. populationlive in housing units with access to terrestrial, fixed broadband infrastructure capable of supporting actual download speeds of at least 4 Mbps.
Last year, the FCC gave this impressive private sector effort – an F.

So let us move to this year:
Quote:
98% of U.S. Census tracts have at least one broadband provider, and 85% of U.S. Census tracts have access to at least two (including wireless).
Again, the FCC gives this an F!?

The reason being:
Quote:
approximately 26 million Americans, mostly in rural communities located in every region of the country, are denied access to the jobs and economic opportunity made possible by broadband.
and
Quote:
The Report finds the problem especially acute among low-income Americans, African-Americans, Hispanics, seniors, and residents of Tribal areas.

So because 2% of the population does not have access to broadband (I'm sure they don't have access to running water either), the FCC claims that the public-sector broadband system is failing, and using this as means to justify their exsitence.

Can we use this same set of standards against the public schools and and justify the public sector's need to take them over?
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Old 05-24-2011, 10:33 AM   #2
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here's the official statement:

Quote:
FCC FINDS 14 TO 24 MILLION AMERICANS LACK ACCESS TO BROADBAND
Underscores Need to Pursue Recommendations of National Broadband Plan

Washington, D.C. – In response to a Congressional directive to inquire whether broadband “is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion,” the FCC concluded in its Sixth Broadband Deployment Report that between 14 and 24 million Americans still lack access to broadband, and the immediate prospects for deployment to them are bleak. This report underscores the need for comprehensive reform of the Universal Service Fund, innovative approaches to unleashing new spectrum, and removal of barriers to infrastructure investment.

In an era when broadband has become essential for U.S. jobs, economic growth, global competitiveness, and democratic engagement, millions of Americans live in areas without broadband. Many of these Americans are poor or live in rural areas that will remain unserved without reform of the universal service program and other changes to U.S. broadband policy that spur investment in broadband networks by lowering the cost of deployment.

The report concludes that the goal of universal availability – deployment to all Americans – is not being met in a timely way, and proposes to address key recommendations from the FCC’s National Broadband Plan to connect all Americans as quickly as possible, including:
  • Reforming the FCC’s universal service programs to support broadband through public-private partnerships;
  • Unleashing spectrum for mobile broadband;
  • Reducing barriers to infrastructure investment, including delays in access to poles and rights-of-way;
  • Collecting better broadband data to assist policymakers and consumers.
The report also takes the long-overdue step of updating a key standard – speed – used to determine whether households are served by broadband. It upgrades the standard from 200 kilobits per second downstream, a standard set over a decade ago when web pages were largely text-based, to 4 megabits per second (Mbps) downstream and 1 Mbps upstream. This is a minimum speed generally required for using today’s video-rich broadband applications and services, while retaining sufficient capacity for basic web browsing and e-mail. The Commission’s standard will evolve over time.

Commonly known as the “706 Report,” the report includes for the first time a comprehensive list of unserved areas, compiled from data not previously available to the FCC. Future reports will benefit from continued improvements in broadband data.
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