Kansas Bill Proposes Banning Further Expansion of Google Fiber

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Google Fiber is the broadband Internet and TV service provided by Google at Gigabit speeds. Internet alone would cost you $70/month with additional TV would be priced at $120/month. When the idea was announced in early 2010, over 1,100 communities applied to be the first recipient of Google Fiber by creating creative applications. In early 2011, Kansas City, Kansas was announced to be the first receiver of this service. From then on, the service has expanded to 17 communities in Kansas and Missouri.

Fast-forward to Jan 27, 2014, a bill was submitted in the Kansas state legislature on behalf of Kansas Cable telecommunications Association (KCTA) to prevent municipalities in the state from developing their own broadband Internet. Officially known as the “Municipal Communications Network and Private Telecommunications Investment Safeguards Act,” it aims to allow fair and square competition in its cities. The act seeks to prevent any unfair competition or discriminatory treatment of one corporation over another. Moreover, lawmakers claim that it is going to “encourage tech development and competition.” Since Google Fiber is a service that is expanding in Kansas through municipalities, it would be affected by this piece of legislature.

Upon looking further into this issue, 71.4% of citizens in Kansas live in a rural area. Telecoms have sorted to provide minimal service in these areas because of low population count. Thus, these cities have to go on their way to establish their own private telecommunications service.

As a teen sitting here in IL dreaming of the days that Google Fiber might come to Chicago, I am extremely frustrated at this bill. Attempting to ban a new innovation, that helps communities nonetheless, just shows how the lobbyists are just corrupted pieces of bulls***. How does preventing municipalities to set up their own broadband internet service hinder competition? I’d say it lights fire on the asses of AT&T and One Cable (major ISPs in Kansas) to provide better and faster Internet services. I mean… this is like proposing a bill back in the 1950s banning telephone companies claiming that they’ll put Postage companies out of business. It comes back to the idea of “survival of the fittest.” If you are living like a king in an area and a competitor rolls in and eats up your prey, you simply die. That is just how this world works and that is how the U.S. has advanced to the current state that we are in. At this point, why are we being like this?

Anyways, what do you geeks think of this? Is there any potential advantages to this bill other than the fact that the current ISPs will keep eating the money of local communities while the people are going unserved? Please leave your thoughts below. I have not yet found anything that outsiders can do to prevent this bill.


Jerin Saji

Certified in A+, Net+, and MTA for Networking Fundamentals. Have 500+ hours of Internship experience in IT. Studying for a BS in IT & MS in Software Engineering. Contact: jerinsaji209@gmail.com

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