Friday, May 29, 2015

FCC may be hindering hardware investment with its Network Neutrality rules, but wants phone subsidies to cover broadband for poor


Chrisopher D. Coursen, with an op-ed in the Conservative Washington Times, argues that FCC neutrality rules, treating telecomm companies as utilities, will hinder investment by companies like Verizon in new FIOS hardware.  Coursen points to the Verizon purchase of AOL as non-productive by comparison, in this op-ed. He also compares today’s world to that of a few decades ago when ATT was a “regulated monopoly”. 

The Dallas Morning News reports that the FCC wants to expand Reagan-era phone subsidies to poor to broadband (apparently ground) Internet, story here.


Sunday, May 10, 2015

Epix network seems not to be available with some cable companies, making content inaccessible to some viewers (film "Deep Web")


An important independent film, “Deep Web”, by Alex Winter, which will deal with topics like bitcoin and the “Silk Road” (as well as, I hope, some aspects of the online reputation issue) is produced and distributed in part by the Epix network.
  
I checked and it seem that Comast XFinity doesn’t carry it.  Cox apparently does, as does Verizon FIOS and mainly dish (DirectTV).  Epix came about, I understand, as a result of a past business dispute resulting in restructuring and spinoff.  But the end result seems to be that Comcast apparently believes the channel is redundant.
  
But Comcast customers do need it if Epix carries content not on any other cable or satellite network.  It’s not practical to switch over one channel, but it seems Xfinity is not being considerate of customer service needs, putting business politics ahead of customers.  Indeed, I just checked and I don’t find Comcast or Xfinity on the “Get Epix” list here.  Also, look at this user forum link.  I do see Time Warner on the Epix list, so if the merger had gone through with Comcast, maybe I could get the movie, to be shown May 31. 
    
I emailed the film distributor Bond360 to ask about alternate availability (like DVD, for openers).  In the meantime, the best I can to for visitors want to learn about this important film is to link to a Hollywood Reporter review (from SXSW in Austin TX), here. Sorry, I didn't see that it was at the Maryland Film Festival in Baltimore (just concluded) in time.  I just missed it.  


Monday, May 04, 2015

Mark Zuckerberg defends Internet.org, says he promotes net neutrality


Today, Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook has a video in which he supports network neutrality as essential to allow the 4 billion people around the world who do not yet have Internet access to acquire it.
   
I could not find a way to embed his video, so the URL is the best I could do, here
  
Zuckerberg talked about Facebook’s internet.org   The “likes” outnumbered the “unlikes” by about 7 to 1.  
  
   

Note: I found the headquarters for CTIA, the Wireless Association, on 16th St in Washington DC, near the First Baptist Church in which I grew up, and also near HRC.  It's curious that I stumbled across this after going to the marriage equality gathering at the Supreme Court.