Robert Berger has finally revealed the dirty little secret of the world’s supposedly most innovative tech community, Silicon Valley. Robert lives in Saratoga, which is home to a lot of entrepreneurs, and says that there is no broadband. None. His startup’s office is in Mountain View, home to companies such as Google and the only “high speed” service they could get is 1.5Mbps down / 512Kbps up ADSL.
Robert says it’s time for re-divestiture: the physical plant (fiber, rights of way, conduits, utility poles) are community owned. I agree with him. I posted an Open Letter to President-Elect Obama urging the government to open the incumbents’ networks to all competitors, forcing the incumbents to separate their service and network businesses, and building fiber networks that are owned by the city, county or state (open to all service providers).
Read Robert Berger’s post on the US national broadband shame (it shows the top 10 broadband countries – guess which one isn’t on the list?).
The US government’s policy on broadband, which is to leave it to the “free” market, on the belief that the “free”market will sort things out and bring us true competition (lower rates, higher bandwidth), has utterly failed, just like its unfettered belief that light regulation of banks and hedge funds will make the financial markets stronger.