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Town Square

Is our local cable franchise threatened by Congress?

Original post made by Natalie Fisher, Midtown, on Jun 11, 2006

This is a news item I picked up.

This story contains 182 words.

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Comments

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Posted by Jeff Hoel
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 11, 2006 at 5:32 pm

"Network neutrality" doesn't mean Internet access would be free or universal, but it does mean that it would be non-discriminatory. So far, in its consideration of telecom legislation this year, Congress has voted against including a network neutrality requirement. Representative Anna Eshoo offered an amendment to protect network neutrality, but it was defeated.

If Congress replaces local franchises with national franchises, Palo Alto would indeed lose control over franchising any TV providers, including Comcast and AT&T. How many PEG channels TV providers had to provide would be up to the feds.

The California Legislature is considering a bill, AB 2987, that would replace local franchises with statewide franchises. If it were to pass, Palo Alto would lose control over franchising any TV providers, including Comcast and AT&T. How many PEG channels TV providers had to provide would be up to the state. Assemblymember Ira Ruskin and Senator Joe Simitian have both voted for this bill. If you wish they hadn't, please let them know.


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Posted by John
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 11, 2006 at 5:40 pm

The telecomm giants say that net neutrality would choke-off innovation. The truth is that, if they get their way, we'll go back to the bad-old days of near monopoly and no impetus for innovation.

Remember when AT&T controlled everything and the only company that made legal phones was the AT&T-owned Western Electric? In those days it was even illegal to hook-up an answering machine to your phone because AT&T didn't make one.

Eventually, AT&T was broken-up and real innovation started. Now, the so-called "Baby Bells" are reassembling and regaining political power.

The current innovations happen BECAUSE OF net neutrality.

This issue is vital and very few people are even aware of it.