February 24, 2005

Libraries Look Safe but Efforts Continue

Everybody thought it was absurd the state would try to ban free wi-fi in public places like libraries and parks. An article in yesterday's Quorum Report quotes Rep. Phil King saying these are not the target. The article says Rep. King has promised new language to protect them.

We welcome the chairman's move on this issue, but point out that the HB 789 problem goes beyond parks and libraries. We continue to call for a complete removal of the language that prevents cities and towns from leveraging broadband networks to secure jobs, promote economic development, and bridge the digital divide.

Posted by chip at February 24, 2005 08:55 AM


| America's Digital Divide
| Programming Note

PBS airdate: Friday 25 February 2005, 9:00 p.m.

(Check local listings at http://www.pbs.org/now/sched.html.)

Should the telecom giants be able to decide if poor neighborhoods get access to high-speed Internet?

The information revolution is making high-speed Internet access an essential element of success in America, but there's a growing divide between the techno-haves and have-nots that's keeping some poorer neighborhoods, schools, and businesses in the digital dark. On Friday, February 25, 2005 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings), NOW goes inside the battle for high-speed Internet in two communities where local governments want to build their own systems to provide affordable access to underserved neighborhoods, but are being challenged by the telecom giants that want to maintain their dominance in local markets. Also on the program, the former Governor of Maine Angus King, who led an initiative to provide laptop computers to every middle school student in his state, talks to David Brancaccio about the role of government in providing training and infrastructure for the jobs of the future.

Posted by: at February 25, 2005 10:57 AM