Wireless Access: Fed-Up Cities Seek to Provide Net Access (LATimes)
Of all the monopolies, oligopolies and other arrangements that subvert progress merely to benefit the few, perhaps the most pernicious is the conspiracy by telephone and cable companies to exercise control over high-speed Internet access.
DSL and cable modem connections provided by these companies account for roughly 98% of all high-speed, or broadband, service in the country. But their success at discouraging competition has left them gorging on a pitifully small pie: In recent years, the U.S. has fallen from third place to 16th globally in the penetration rate of broadband service. (Chauvinists can take pride that we're still ahead of Portugal.)
It's unsurprising, therefore, that many local communities have taken matters into their own hands by building or contracting for their own municipal Internet systems. Generally these blanket an area with transmitters based on Wi-Fi wireless technology to bring Web access to residents and small businesses.
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