As we continue to cover the growing movement of rural electric cooperatives to bring high quality Internet networks to their members, we wanted to bring Alyssa Clemsen-Roberts back on the show. Alyssa was last on the show for episode 109 and has since moved from the Utilities Telecom Council to Pedernales Electric Co-op in Texas.Though Pedernales is not considering a major broadband investment, Alyssa's insights from her years working with many electric utilities are valuable in understanding what electric co-ops have to consider before making a network investment. We start off by discussing the recent legislation in Tennessee that finally allows electric co-ops to offer Internet access before we move on to the real considerations a general manager has to examine before getting into telecom. We also talk quite a bit about the interplay between rural electric co-ops and telecommunications companies.Read the transcript of the show.We want your feedback and suggestions for the show-please e-mail us or leave a comment below.This show is 32 minutes long and can be played on this page or via iTunes or the tool of your choice using this feed.You can download this mp3 file directly from here. Listen to other episodes here or view all episodes in our index.Thanks to Break the Bans for the music. The song is Escape and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license.
If you think the United States cannot afford to take a fiber optic cable to just about every home in the country, you might be surprised to find out that we have already paid for it. We just haven't received it. Our first podcast guest in 2013, Bruce Kushnick of the New Networks Institute, explains the $300 billion ripoff.
Bruce and I discuss how the big telephone companies promised to build a fiber optic Internet in return for being allowed to increase their prices. This brings us to Kushnick's Law: “A regulated company will always renege on promises to provide public benefits tomorrow in exchange for regulatory and financial benefits today.”
The telephone companies raised their prices, but decided to give the proceeds out to shareholders rather than invest in the promised networks. We got higher prices and DSL rather than the fiber optic networks we were promised. Our regulators largely failed us, in part because the only people who pay attention to Public Utility Commissions are the industries regulated by them and the occasional underfunded consumer advocate.
This is a very good introduction to why we all pay far too much for services that are too slow and insufficiently reliable.
Read the transcript from this episode here.
We want your feedback and suggestions for the show – please e-mail us or leave a comment below. Also, feel free to suggest other guests, topics, or questions you want us to address.
This show is 26 minutes long and can be played below on this page or subscribe via iTunes or via the tool of your choice using this feed. Search for us in iTunes and leave a positive comment!
Listen to previous episodes here. You can download the Mp3 file of this episode directly from here.
Find more episodes in our podcast index.
Thanks to mojo monkeys for the music, licensed using Creative Commons.