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FCC Proposal Would Cover the US With Public Wi-Fi 299

pigrabbitbear writes "Internet access is an essential need on par with education access, but at what point do regulators recognize that? When will government officials acknowledge that widespread, guaranteed access is essential to fostering growth in the country? Somewhat surprisingly, that time is now, as the FCC is now calling for nationwide free wi-fi networks to be opened up to the public. The FCC proposes buying back spectrum from TV stations that would allow for what the Washington Post is dubbing 'super wi-fi,' as the commission wants to cover the country with wide-ranging, highly-penetrative networks. Essentially, you can imagine the proposal as covering a majority of the country with open-access data networks, similar to cell networks now, that your car, tablet, or even phone could connect to. That means no one is ever disconnected, and some folks – especially light users and the poor – could likely ditch regular Internet and cell plans altogether."
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FCC Proposal Would Cover the US With Public Wi-Fi

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  • by junkfish ( 460683 ) on Monday February 04, 2013 @01:52PM (#42786963) Homepage

    Internet Access should be like Library Access.

    It is a little different because it is for knowledge, commerce, and entertainmnet.
    But it seems like a gevernment service that should provide for a populace to thrive.

  • by WillAdams ( 45638 ) on Monday February 04, 2013 @01:58PM (#42787021) Homepage

    Wasn't the intention of getting that spectrum which was used for analog TV to use it for such things? If it isn't suitable for such, why the change? If the new digital TV spectrum was suited for this, why was it sold?

  • Source? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by vlm ( 69642 ) on Monday February 04, 2013 @02:03PM (#42787067)

    What's the source? Its a /. post of a journalist story about a journalist story about a journalist story then I gave up trying to track back.

    I poked around and found almost nothing, so its either really old, really new, or really made up / out of context / unofficial daydream.

    I'm an old time reader of FCC part 97 (and others!) so don't try to scare me off with "we need non-technical journalists to translate into prole-speak" I'm quite sure I could handle the primary source... if it actually exists.

    Another thing is it won't be wifi although journalists confuse any wireless internet access with wifi. Lets say you get UHF tv channel 46 vacated and reassigned. That doesn't mean a magic firmware download, even to a SDR, will necessarily magically start working in that 662-668 MHz channel.

  • Uh No (Score:4, Interesting)

    by the eric conspiracy ( 20178 ) on Monday February 04, 2013 @02:15PM (#42787207)

    I don't want the Federal Government running some general public access internet. Very Bad Idea.

    I do want the FCC to open up existing infrastructure to alternative carriers. The current plan which allows carriers to exclude competitors is very bad.

    I do want the FCC to make available bandwidth to more carriers, and to open up more bandwidth to WiFi.

    I do want Congress to pass a law banning cable franchises by local and state governments.

    I do want laws specifically enabling municipal internet utilities, especially on this new bandwidth.

  • by SQLGuru ( 980662 ) on Monday February 04, 2013 @02:17PM (#42787223) Journal

    Who buys it when there's so much out there that's free?

  • by Feyshtey ( 1523799 ) on Monday February 04, 2013 @02:32PM (#42787349)
    ... what you think it means. "

    How can these jackasses continue to use words like "free" to make it sound like they are giving a gift to the nation when we are the ones they will damn well expect to pay for it with taxes? And why arent each and every one of you calling them out for it?

No problem is so large it can't be fit in somewhere.