FCC releases National Broadband Strategy

On March 16, the Federal Communications Commission released its national broadband strategy, a year in the making. The document is as inspiring as it is broad-reaching--envisioning a dramatic nationwide expansion of truly high-speed (gigabit) Internet access, the world's best wireless broadband systems, and completing next-generation networks supporting health care, public safety and community institutions as well as business and government.

The FCC's plan is being praised widely (read more for an initial response from the Media & Democracy Coalition, of which Reclaim the Media is a member). But their job isn't done yet. The FCC will continue to gather public input about the strategy; key policy battles such as net neutrality remain unresolved; and many urban and rural communities are still working at the local level to expand affordable access.

Statement from the :

Today, the Federal Communications Commission took the first of many important steps in bringing the promise of broadband to all U.S. consumers by releasing a summary of the National Broadband Plan. The Commission set ambitious goals in the Plan to spur deployment of broadband infrastructure, as well as empower consumers with information, training and tools to make use of the Internet.

We are particularly pleased to see the Commission recommend changes to the Universal Service Fund that will re-allocate its resources to broadband deployment and adoption. We also look forward to hearing more on how the Commission will free up additional spectrum for unlicensed use, an idea MDC members have long pushed.

Given the important role local government has played in spurring broadband deployment, the Commission’s affirmation in support of the deployment of municipal networks in encouraging.

The Media and Democracy Coalition also applauds the Commission for recommending connecting anchor institutions such as schools, libraries and hospitals to high-capacity broadband, which provide critical community access points.

Details of the recommendations in the Plan will be closely scrutinized by MDC members and allies in the public interest community over the coming months. We will continue to be aggressive advocates for rules needed to put in the hands of every U.S. consumer a high quality, affordable and open Internet.”

The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey