Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Free Press Documentary Series on Broadband Internet

Free Press went to North Carolina recently, and interviewed people in rural areas about how their lack of access to broadband internet service was hurting their economic opportunities and connection to the outside world.

Very interesting stuff, connected to the Internet for Everyone project, which advocates for broadband expansion as a necessary service, like water or telephony.


  1. Thanks for this link; I was impressed with how hard the interviewees have had to try to cope with their limited access, and I would be very aggravated if I was in their place. Their daily experiences trying to conduct business or do school work sound incredibly frustrating. It would have been interesting to hear from a school teacher or a librarian, though we did get to see inside a library (very small internet cluster that was not being used).

  2. I can relate to many of the stories, to a certain extent. I only started getting high-speed internet lest than a year ago, as I live in an internet dead zone in South Madison. I used to plan my studies based on where I was planning on being. If I had a lot of online research to do, I usually tried to wait until I was on campus, or I stayed on campus late. Reading and writing was done at home. Finally, I broke down and got Charter, the only option available.

    It makes me wonder about the Lumbee Tribe in Pembroke where high speed is available, but not affordable. That is how it is where I live, but probably to a lesser extent. Is there any competition in Pembroke? There isn't here, which drives the price up. Companies can have (although I am not sure is they are supposed to under Ma Bell, but I think that was slowly being repealed during the last administration) monopolies on phone lines, but not provide high speed. Therefore, another company that provides high speed via telephone lines cannot get the line to provide internet. In my case, AT&T has the monopoly but no internet service, so Verizon and TDS cannot get in, leaving Charter free and clear to do what they like. Like said, it makes me wonder about Pembroke. If more companies could get in there, perhaps the price would drop.