America’s Lagging Broadband Access
Educause. A Blueprint for Big Broadband. (.pdf) January 2008. America’s standing in global broadband access and speed continues to plummet, and American consumers continue to pay more per capita for slower and less available broadband. (See data from the Organisation for Economic Co‐operation and Development for more information.) Educause blames America’s position on this country’s lack of a national broadband policy. (Foreign Affairs magazine addressed this issue in late spring 2005.)
Educause commissioned a white paper paper that proposes creating a Universal Broadband Fund (UBF) that will provide “open, big broadband networks of at least 100 Mbps … to every home and business by 2012.” Educause estimates the cost for this effort will approach $100 billion, but the organization proposes a public‐private partnership approach followed in Canada.
Why is this important? Simply, without widely available broadband in the States, all measure of technological innovation gets hampered. Hampered technological development means a slower economy; a slower economy means fewer jobs; fewer jobs means more unemployment; more unemployment means … well, you get the idea.
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