Tuesday, May 15, 2007

here's another reason for the SB117 full frontal assault

DirecTV May Test Broadband over Powerline - News and Analysis by PC Magazine -- It seems that AT&T may be outflanked here, by just about everybody--the cable companies, the VoIP providers, the cellphone companies, the satellite providers, and now, to add insult to injury, our friend the electric company, and that more than likely accounts for AT&T's haste and desperation in ramming through the bad-for-everybody-but-them legislation known here in Ohio as SB117, sponsored by Lance Mason and Bob Spada.

If we can get broadband over our electrical power lines or through the air or over cable, and we can get VoIP over broadband, we don't really need all that legacy POTS that AT&T has held onto for years without improving, all the while charging premium prices for it. It seems that this is reckoning day for AT&T, and they're trying to dodge their demise by cozying up to our state legislators and trying to put their signature tin boxes on every treelawn between here and Cincinnati.

In the process, they're making us a technological laughingstock and pointing up our technological illiteracy and innumeracy as a community.

Remember, we don't owe AT&T anything. Let the market forces prevail. Let them fail. Do not let AT&T prove the sad old theorem we last heard from the open-source man, Bruce Perens: "If you can't innovate, legislate."


  1. No, we don't owe AT&T anything. But we also don't owe the city bureaucrats anything who are standing in the way of cable competition.

  2. This has nothing at all to do with competition--it has to do with preference being given to a carrier that did not keep up with the times, and now is scrambling to use the last of its influence dollars to lock in a life-saving deal at the state level. AT&T had the opportunity to compete for the city cable contracts years ago, and they didn't compete well or at all. I remember my own uncle's bringing in a competitive cable bid to Cleveland on the part of Frank Mavec's Royal American Management Company, back when Lee Howley was ingratiating himself; Royal American took a flyer at it, and played quite successfully. It didn't take much back then, before cable was an established "sure thing." AT&T biffed it then, and now's not the time to try to stage a comeback, with technology older and clunkier than what we currently have. If they at AT&T truly want to compete, they need to saturate the markets with bargain broadband and "cable" TV along the lines of EV-DO. Wires are obsolete as we speak. Cable is the next to go, and it won't take long. We cut the phone wires off the house and the office in 2005, and it felt good. Now, we have to get rid of the cable. Then, finally, the electrical.