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About Christopher

Christopher Mitchell is the Director of the Telecommunications as Commons Initiative with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. He runs MuniNetworks.org as part of ILSR’s effort to ensure broadband networks are directly accountable to the communities that depend upon them. More

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american-enterprise-institute-scholar-calls-dsl-obsolete
Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | 1 Comment | Updated on Apr 16, 2014

DSL Described as “Obsolete” by the American Enterprise Institute

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/dsl-described-as-obsolete/

“The vast majority of Europeans still only have DSL service available, which we in the United States consider really almost an obsolete technology now.” – Jeffrey Eisenbach, Director of the Center for Internet, Communications, and Technology Policy, American Enterprise Institute. For the second time this year, one of the major defenders of the cable and… Continue reading

advice-for-starting-a-community-network-community-broadband-bits-episode-94
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Apr 15, 2014

Advice for Starting a Community Network – Community Broadband Bits Episode #94

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/advice-starting-community-network-community-broadband-bits-episode-94

The Community Broadband Bits podcast this week focuses on what people can do to start building a grassroots effort for a network in their community. John St Julien of Lafayette, Louisiana, returns to the show to discuss what they did and ideas for others to follow. John was last on the show for episode 19,… Continue reading

diffraction-analysis-offers-free-webinar-on-ftth-april-15th-11-a-m-central-2
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Apr 14, 2014

Diffraction Analysis Offers Free Webinar on FTTH, April 15th, 11 a.m. Central

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/diffraction-analysis-offers-free-webinar-ftth-april-15th-11-am-central

On April 15th, Benoit Felten and his organization, Diffraction Analysis, will host a free webinar to discuss results from their latest study. The study, Why Consumers Love FTTH – The FTTH Consumer Experience Study, delves into the fiber experience in Sweden. Here are some preliminary findings from the report: In Sweden a huge majority FTTH… Continue reading

network-progressing-in-sugartown-michigan
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Apr 10, 2014

Network Progressing in “Sugartown” Michigan

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/network-progressing-sugartown-michigan

Last summer we reported on Sebewaing, the community of 1,700 in the tip of the “thumb” in Michigan. At the time, Sebewaing Light and Water (SLW) was exploring the possibilities of deploying its own FTTH network. Like other small communities, Sebewaing could not get the service it needed from large corporate providers. We recently caught… Continue reading

benefits-of-increased-broadband-utilization-community-broadband-bits-podcast-93
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Apr 8, 2014

Benefits of Increased Broadband Utilization – Community Broadband Bits Podcast #93

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/benefits-increased-broadband-utilization-community-broadband-bits-podcast-93

While in Iowa for the Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities telecom conference, I had a chance to interview Michael Curri, the Founder and President of Strategic Networks Group – SNG. He and I have long had great discussions at events around the country and I attempted to recreate some of the key points in this… Continue reading

understanding-the-georgia-communications-cooperative-community-broadband-bits-podcast-92
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Apr 1, 2014

Understanding the Georgia Communications Cooperative – Community Broadband Bits Podcast #92

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/understanding-georgia-communications-cooperative-community-broadband-bits-podcast-92

While at the SEATOA Conference in Raleigh last week, I met Mike Foor, the President and CEO of the Georgia Communications Cooperative (GCC). Given the important role GCC is playing in expanding great Internet access in rural Georgia, we wanted to interview him for Community Broadband Bits. Back in episode 46, we spoke with Paul… Continue reading

to-overbuild-or-underbuild-a-rural-policy-conundrum-community-broadband-bits-podcast-91
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Mar 25, 2014

To Overbuild or Underbuild? A Rural Policy Conundrum – Community Broadband Bits Podcast #91

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/overbuild-or-underbuild-rural-policy-conundrum-community-broadband-bits-podcast-91

Lisa Gonzalez and I, Christopher Mitchell, are back in studio for a short conversation about the implications of a municipal network or a coop receiving subsidies from government to engage in overbuilding, where it builds a fiber network in an area already served by slow DSL and cable networks. This has become an important issue… Continue reading

exploring-santa-monicas-incremental-fiber-approach-community-broadband-bits-episode-90
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Mar 18, 2014

Exploring Santa Monica’s Incremental Fiber Approach – Community Broadband Bits Episode 90

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/exploring-santa-monicas-incremental-fiber-approach-community-broadband-bits-episode-90

Just a few weeks after releasing our case study of Santa Monica’s City Net, we have an opportunity to interview Jory Wolf, CIO of Santa Monica, and the chief driver of City Net. This is episode #90 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. We talk about how City Net got its start with a smart… Continue reading

history-of-the-quickly-subverted-1996-telecommunications-act-community-broadband-bits-episode-89
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Mar 11, 2014

History of the Quickly Subverted 1996 Telecommunications Act – Community Broadband Bits Episode 89

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/history-quickly-subverted-1996-telecommunications-act-community-broadband-bits-episode-89

If all had gone according to the plan behind the 1996 Telecommunications Act, we would have lots of competition among Internet service providers, not just cable and DSL but other technologies as well. Alas, the competing technologies never really appeared and various incarnations of the FCC effectively gutted the common carriage requirements at the heart… Continue reading

overview-of-stockholms-stokab-community-broadband-bits-episode-88
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Mar 4, 2014

Overview of Stockholm’s Stokab – Community Broadband Bits Episode #88

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/overview-stockholms-stokab-community-broadband-bits-episode-88

Having just returned from a short trip to Sweden, Lisa Gonzalez and I discuss what I learned and how Stockholm has become one of the most connected cities on the planet. We talk about how Stockholm built a massive dark fiber network that has enabled competition at the service layer, the status of telecommunications in… Continue reading