back to article The latest FCC plan to boost US broadband? Prevent competition in apartment blocks

America's broadband watchdog, the FCC, has unveiled its latest harebrained effort to boost the availability of internet access across the nation: restrict competition. In a memo penned this week by the regulator's chairman Ajit Pai, the former Verizon lawyer said he would introduce a new proposal for "multiple tenant …

  1. Shadow Systems Silver badge

    I think I'm going to be sick.

    I'd like to puke all over Pai.

  2. beast666

    Awesome

    Pai rocks.

    1. Kane Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Awesome

      Invoking Poe's Law.

  3. chuckufarley Silver badge
    Alert

    I love the USA...

    ...Because there is no other place in the world where a person can gain unerring knowledge, logic, and wisdom simply by becoming a Corporate Tool. If you think Mr. Pai is wrong then simply ask him about it. He will tell you just how right he is.

    1. hplasm
      Facepalm

      Re: I love the USA...

      The tools have taken over the shed...

    2. Fatman
      Joke

      Re: I love the USA...

      <quote>...Because there is no other place in the world where a person can gain unerring knowledge, logic, and wisdom simply by becoming a Corporate TFool.</quote>

      Umm,

      FTFY

  4. Sven Coenye
    Unhappy

    ISPs be required to add all their own cabling

    Not at all: developer cables building, owner leases said cables exclusively to the ISP offering the highest kickback. Win-win. Repeat at end of lease, until building EOL. The residents? They can always move if they disagree.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: ISPs be required to add all their own cabling

      "developer cables building,"

      But that's an added cost for the developer.

      Trump is a developer.

      Please note that I am simply making two unrelated comments and am not inferring anything by using them in such close proximity nor implying any form of syllogism.

  5. Kev99

    Why doesn't Idjit Pai do what a couple dozen other Drumpf appointees have done and bug out? I'm sure he could get a hellacious comp package from one of the telcos.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Because he's almost unique in having no personal or professional scandals. He's too cozy with the cable companies, but that's pretty much par for the course regardless of administration. Obama's head of the FCC was a former cable lobbyist.

      When Pai starts taking private jets for personal vacations, spends $30,000 on a desk or is accused of abusing his wife only then would he be on the same level as others Trump had or still has in his cabinet. By comparison he's the paragon of virtue, why would Trump get rid of his least controversial guy?

    2. jelabarre59 Silver badge

      Why doesn't Idjit Pai do what a couple dozen other Drumpf appointees have done and bug out? I'm sure he could get a hellacious comp package from one of the telcos.

      Because he's *already* working for the telcos, perhaps? He's their "inside man", so they can't have him leaving only to be replaced by someone who isn't beholden to them.

  6. ecofeco Silver badge

    Had this for years already

    See title. Same with cable TV.

    1. jelabarre59 Silver badge

      Re: Had this for years already

      See title. Same with cable TV.

      There's the problem with the whole "Cable-TV" infrastructure, isn't it? Back when cable-tv was first being rolled out in the late 70's-early/mid 80's, communities and counties granted *exclusive* coverage contracts to one and only one company. The smart thing would have been to grant contracts to at minimum TWO companies. So too bad if you couldn't have one company kicking back bribes to government officials, too bad if they couldn't build such outrageous profit margins that they could overrun the entire entertainment industry.

      Seems Ajit Pai and his masters in the cable/telco industries miss their heyday of beligerent monopolism, and want to do all they can to bring it back. They just might do it, and destroy the internet in the process.

      1. nematoad Silver badge

        Re: Had this for years already

        "...and destroy the internet in the process."

        I think that will find that the internet is a bit more robust that you imagine. It was after all developed from a system designed to survive a nuclear war. (Arpanet)

        In any case I think that your UScentic view is misplaced. There is a lot more to the internet than the FCC and the US.

        1. jelabarre59 Silver badge

          Re: Had this for years already

          I think that will find that the internet is a bit more robust that you imagine. It was after all developed from a system designed to survive a nuclear war. (Arpanet)

          I think you severely missed the point. Doesn't matter whether the physical infrastructure survives, the a=content thereof is well on it's way to being destroyed, and anti-consumer regulation will contribute to that.

          In any case I think that your UScentic view is misplaced. There is a lot more to the internet than the FCC and the US.

          Yeah, we'll see how Article13 plays out for you folks...

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Had this for years already

            You invoked the "whataboutism" insecure Americans(*) do when they feel a foreigner is picking on the good ole' USA.

            Please stop.

            (*) i.e. not all, just the ones that are insecure.. Fortunately there aren't too many of then here.

    2. chuckufarley Silver badge

      Re: Had this for years already

      There is a very big difference between telecom companies agreeing not to compete and the US Federal Government telling them they cannot compete.

      1. LDS Silver badge

        "between telecom companies agreeing not to compete "

        Not so much. It's the very definition of a cartel. Something antitrust regulators should investigate and break. If they don't, a Pai is the likely outcome - cartels run the government.

    3. Fatman

      Re: Had this for years already

      I discussed this issue this morning with a near retirement age former colleague of mine, who is currently working as a property manager for an office building.

      The issue is not that simple when you get to multi story buildings - its communications `backbone` so to speak. His specific building is over 35 years old, and has only the basic communications capability - land line telephones. The only way to get any internet access above dial up rates is through DSL. His employer will not pay to wire up the building, and nor are any local ISPs willing to run service into the building, drilling through fire walls and fire stopped floors to reach a tenant on an upper floor, unless the tenant pays for those installation costs, or sign on to a fixed term contract that provides for termination fees in the event of early cancellation (recovering those `costs`).

      His employer is adamant - `We won't pay for that.`, and they wonder why once tenants' leases are up, they move on; resulting ever increasing vacancy ratios. He, despite his age, recognizes that 21st century communications infrastructure is an absolute must. And they have seen it every year as more and more tenants depart. He can't wait to retire, he just hopes that there is still a company to retire from, and not be put out of work because the company went bankrupt. And that is exactly what the ownership is doing.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Had this for years already

        >The only way to get any internet access above dial up rates is through DSL. His employer will not pay to wire up the building ... drilling through fire walls and fire stopped floors to reach a tenant on an upper floor ...

        You can (rules & regulations permitting) installl cabling on the outside of a building. In todays world you could probably install a line-of-sight link between ground floor and upper floors - technically not cabling/wiring...

      2. The_Idiot

        Re: Had this for years already

        @Fatman

        Sadly (for you at least), I can tell you don't live in a decent sized (for audience pool) condo in Toronto. Where I live, the building was originally established with cable. The cable's still there if you're mad enough to want it. However, at least two companies are now also in the building offering fiber to the apartment. Both of them came in at their own expense and established infrastructure as needed. If Apartment A has Company 1 fiber, and Apartment B next door has Company 2? Well, no big - two strands of string down the hall in the ceiling voidspace. I know at least one of those companies does not require a fixed term contract, because I'm with them - 250 Mbs symetric uncapped, for C$50 a month. I could have 1Gbps for C$100 if I needed it. Oh - and because I asked, they give me a naked transducer so I can run my own firewall/ routing. If I wanted to get really paranoid I could have both of them run a line to me and have failover.

        Ah yes. But that's Canada - so behind them times compared to the US, right?

  7. JohnFen Silver badge

    Someday

    Someday, I hope we can have an FCC that is actually interested in doing the job it's tasked with rather than actively working solely to enrich and empower the major telecoms.

    1. jonathan keith Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Someday

      Only when USA stands for United Socialist America.

      1. Halfmad Silver badge

        Re: Someday

        The land of the free, but you can't even choose the ISP you use.

        1. Drew Scriver Silver badge

          Re: Someday

          Somewhere in history the definition of "free" has been changed. The idea behind "land of the free" isn't about having the ability to pick whichever company you want to so you can binge-watch your favorite show.

          The pursuit of happiness is about having the option to pursue it, not a right to a government-supplied happiness. And that's without even getting into the what the founders meant by happiness.

          1. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: Someday

            There is a whole lot more to the concept of freedom than "the right to pursue happiness".

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I like the US...

    You guys make me laugh.

    I like the way you passively watch as corporate greed and money corrupts every part of your society, from politics, to law and religion.

    Have you thought of growing a spine?

    1. Warm Braw Silver badge

      Re: I like the US...

      The US is hardly unique in that respect. But it is the only country I know of that describes it as "freedom".

    2. Jonathon Green
      Thumb Up

      Re: I like the US...

      Damn. I was just about to put up my obligatory “I like Americans, they’re funny...” post, but someone got theirs in first...

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

        Re: I like the US...

        We in the UK are in no position to gloat. And with the ERG wanting to strip our rights to align with American business interests, and our moronic citizens voting for it...

        And the tory members prefering a UK break-up than damaging their party (though how they think their party would survive a breakup is beyond me)

        Pai is a horrible corporate tool, but I'd rather crappy internet to the things that wll happen to us if brexit isn't stopped.

  9. steviebuk Silver badge

    The sooner..

    ...Pai goes the better. Someone needs to find a genuine scandal on the knob. Although with Trump in charge of everything another knob will no doubt be appointed.

    1. Fatman

      Re: The sooner..

      I await the day when Pai is dragged out kicking and screaming. Hopefully, that day will come in 2021, not later.

    2. Fungus Bob

      Re: The sooner..

      Won't happen until the FCC installs a Pai-hole.

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

  10. Rich 2 Silver badge

    Pai is a twat

    I'm quite surprised nobody has tried to assassinate Pai yet. The man is a complete cockwomble

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