HR 1542 [OT, anti-BS attempt, US]

Yes, and a number of us look at their "exclusive" agreements, with many
municiplaities, and have been asking why they are not a regulated monopoly.


Those contracts are as anti-competitive as it gets.

Roland, about which country are you holding this discussion? I am
located in the US and thought you were talking about the US.

If so, I am confused. What is exclusive about these agreements?
Can't you just file to become a CLEC, string fiber/copper on the poles
and complete directly with the cable companies? I haven't seen a
modern municipal cable contract yet that was exclusive and blocked
other providers of high speed Internet access, or even video.

Don't get me wrong, I am *very* much in favor of open access, have a
good business selling IP over cable plant and would love to do it over
Adlephia/TWAOL/AT&T plant, I just hate to see yet another bit 'o BS

BTW, if you spend much time with regulators and lawyers, you will be
aware that there is a major difference between the cable network and
the PSTN. After the mid-1930's, the PSTN was built by a company which
was guaranteed a specific, profitable rate of return. The cable
network was built by many small entrepreneurs who were not guaranteed
a profit nor even solvency. For that reason, the PSTN is more
arguably a public resource.

good luck,

Except that most of today's cable systems were built while municipalities
could, and did, grant exclusive franchises. Overbuilding an incumbant
cable operator is as expensive and risky as becoming a CLEC - probably the
reason that neither CLECs nor cable overbuilders are showing much
commercial success.

As to "small entrepreneurs" - that may have once been true, but I wouldn't
call AT&T/MediaOne/TCI, AOL/Time Warner, Adelphia, or Charter "small
entrepreneurs." These guys engage in monopoly tactics that rank right up
there with those of the ILECs.


Some areas still have both a contract with the local government, and tax
breaks and other services provided to them by the local government. This is
why the 'open access' arguement is raging fiercly in places like Northern
Virginia -- Fox Cable got millions in tax and right of access breaks from
the government over the years, but now claims that they own the cable and
shouldn't be required to resell access to competitors.

Governments need to write better contracts when they provide these tax
breaks, ala PG&E claiming they own the utility grid that California state
paid them to build.