Thursday, March 03, 2005

Socialized Wireless Internet

Texas and a few other states are debating whether to allow cities to compete with private industry by offering "free" wireless networks to their residents. The primary dispute is between (1) the policy of not using government power to compete with private industry and (2) the potential "educational" benefits of a more wired community.

I have to wonder what the service quality of networks like this will be once the competition is destroyed. I've rarely had problems with subscriber broadband, but the free internet access provided at Gonzaga is deactivated fairly regularly for "maintenance" purposes. When a problem occurs on a weekend, it doesn't get fixed until Monday. With private competition out of the picture, will entire cities - as captive audiences - be subject to low-quality, Monday to Friday, 9 to 5 service?

1 comment:

April said...

Our servers are constantly going down at work or need to be fixed. Most of the IT staff doesn't work Friday's so we will often have the whole system down with no way to have it fixed until the next Monday. I wouldn't trust the government for internet access at home. And when I did have internet problems at home I was able to go to a company with better service.