March 17, 2010

Scope of National Broadband Plan is commendable

The National Broadband Plan unveiled Tuesday by the FCC is a far-reaching 376-page proposal that has considerable merit and laudable goals.

The plan, mandated by Congress, would span 10 years and would reshape the country’s technology priorities. At its core, the proposal would attempt to increase high-speed Internet access across the country -- and increase the speed by which it’s delivered ten or twenty fold -- lowering costs to households and making broadband affordable to rural communities. A byproduct of those goals would position the U.S. as a world leader in broadband infrastructure, which would create jobs and businesses along the way.

As I said, it’s ambitious. And it’s sure to get caught in the crossfire of lobbyists from both the television and telecommunication industries, not to mention -- regardless of your politic leanings -- it is likely to get bogged down in the morass of Washington over the next decade.

But perhaps two of the plan’s key goals will help the business and political worlds unite.

The first of those is the objective for digital literacy for every child in America. The Internet is our present and future medium and few would argue otherwise.

The second is the creation of a nationwide safety network for first responders like fire and police departments.

The country has a long list of infrastructure needs, but for those two reasons alone, adopting the broadband plan should rank as a high priority.

What the FCC is trying to achieve with its plan {PaidContent}

Effort to widen U.S. Internet access sets up battle {N.Y. Times}

FCC questioned on its far-reaching plan {N.Y. Times}

FCC broadband plan: Reactions pour in {}

National Broadband Plan {Broadband.Gov}

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