Monday, December 29, 2008


The benefits of broadband

US Chamber of CommerceA loyal reader, frequent commenter and fellow eater of kippers for breakfast sent me a link to a release from the US Chamber of Commerce, describing two new major studies showing the economic benefits of delivering broadband to all consumers, especially senior citizens.

The papers recommend that the federal government should adopt policies to incent investment in broadband infrastructure.

The two reports, Network Effects: An Introduction to Broadband Technology & Regulation [ pdf 288K] and the first of 4 companion reports: The Impact of Broadband on Senior Citizens [ pdf 482K], provide a number of policy recommendations with a US focus but relevance for Canada. Other companion reports to be released will review the impact of broadband on telemedicine, people with special needs, and education.

These US Chamber of Commerce reports are worthwhile reading over the holiday period.

We will want to look at them further in the new year - especially in preparing for the CRTC's internet network management proceeding.Here is a sample of what the US Chamber has to say:
Network regulation would serve only to slow innovation and discourage continued network deployment by increasing regulatory uncertainty and decreasing financial incentives to deploy advanced infrastructure.
The Chamber also suggests some guiding principles for ensuring that all U.S. consumers have access to broadband and broadband-enabled tools. So far, Canadian initiatives have been provincial initiatives.

In recent months, we have seen 3 provinces announce universal broadband access plans: PEI, Saskatchewan and last week's announcement from New Brunswick.

What will be the role of the January federal budget in launching national broadband infrastructure initiatives? How will we create an effective, pro-competitive national broadband strategy for Canada?

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Throttled broadband will take consumers back to dial up days.

The only benefits will be to the ISPs.
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