Rethinking Broadband Internet Connectivity


Potential discussion topic(s) for VONCamp at Spring VON.x 2008.  Initiated by Brough Turner (see picture & info on speed dating page).

 

Broadband Internet Connectivity

 

Japan tops the world for high speed, low cost Internet connectivity.  Many other countries (Korea) or specific regions (greater Stockholm) are now far ahead of the US or the majority of Europe.  It's been well established that Internet connectivity provides disproportionate economic advantage.  Yet few are looking at the problem with a clean slate.  Instead, the discussion is limited to incremental changes to current business and regulatory practices.

 

Let's start from a clean slate, even if it's only for a day.  Perhaps the conclusions will suggest a better way to deal with current political realities.

 

Here's something to think about:

 

Notes:

 

I argue that major changes in laws and regulations take decades based on the US experience, where the FCC's Computer I and Computer II decisions were 15 years apart, where the Bell System breakup (in 1983) grew out of a 15+ year set of court battles, and where there's been remarkably little regulatory change since Judge Green got out of supervising the 1983 breakup.  (I regard the 1996 Telecom act as ineffective).

 

Dark fiber is likely to remain functional for more than 50 years, but newer fibers have wider usable bandwidths and tighter bending radii, so at some point fiber may be replaced even though it is still functional.  Also, when one purchases dark fiber on a condominium or coop basis, one is usually purchasing and a 20 year IRU (Indefeasibly Right to Use), so the individual fiber owner is depreciating it over 20 years.