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Kansas To Nix Expansion of Google Fiber and Municipal Broadband

samzenpus posted about 2 months ago | from the not-in-my-state dept.

Google 430

symbolset writes: "Consumerist, among others, is reporting on a Kansas bill to restrict municipal support of broadband expansion. Purportedly to ensure a 'level playing field' to encourage commercial expansion in this area, these bills are usually referred to as oligopoly protection acts. Everywhere they have been implemented expansion of new broadband technology stops. In this specific case no municipal entity in Kansas will be able to enter the same sort of agreements that enabled Google Fiber. From the bill:
Except with regard to unserved areas, a municipality may not, directly or indirectly:
(1) Offer to provide to one or more subscribers, video, telecommunications or broadband service; or
(2) purchase, lease, construct, maintain or operate any facility for the purpose of enabling a private business or entity to offer, provide, carry, or deliver video, telecommunications or broadband service to one or more subscribers."

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430 comments

lab rat mutant monkeys to replace unchosens? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118855)

designed in our own image, http://rt.com/news/monkeys-customized-mutation-study-435/ we are now official fictional deities too. order you own personally customized mutant monkey(s) (limit 100,000) online; hymen: __yes __no, real eyes or glassholes __both (only choice), house trained: __yes __no __ what is this?, language spoken: __en__ (one choice again this is easy), genderous: __male __one of the hers __trysexual. .. plus loads of other 'options' when you log on to mutantmonkeysuncle.naz after jumping through some hoops almost anyone can qualify to be a customized mutant monkey keeper

mynutswon; you calling this unadvanced? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119101)

there's no accounting for deception? http://rt.com/business/us-unemployment-economy-crisis-assistance-006/

dark matters II the hogwash; aired on POT.. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119167)

(Personal Open Terminal). in this re-run (aren't they all now?) episode mutant crown royal dna is composted in the lhc. 'we're going to grow something here' was the official statement? viewers are feeling ill frequently... tbc

a round of applause for the unsung hero/victims of WMD on credit prosperitarism; http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=scott%20olsen&sm=3

results never vary so far; http://youtu.be/mk9mV8qBiEk

They don't deserve it anyway. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118859)

Perhaps if they pray really hard, God will create a super fast broadband network for them.

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118945)

Perhaps if they pray really hard, God will create a super fast broadband network for them.

They'll need to pray harder than the lobbyists who wrote this bill.

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118997)

Kansans mustn't have broadband, they might gain forbidden knowledge [wikipedia.org].

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119007)

Nope, no closed minded bigotry here....

Wacky thinking (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119139)

It is quite humourous that normally when people hold wacky beliefs - beliefs that have no evidence and defy common sense - are labeled "kooks"; but as soon as they identify themselves as "Christian", we have to treat those beliefs with respect.

Re:Wacky thinking (5, Insightful)

ILongForDarkness (1134931) | about 2 months ago | (#46119249)

Exactly. If someone had a few thousand followers now who claimed he could bring people back from the dead, create food out of nothing, his mother was a virgin etc etc. they'd be called a cult and laughed at. Point to an old book that claims the same thing and ... presto piety.

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119155)

No willful ignorance in order to maintain a vague sense of political correctness here. Please do try to convince the class why Kansas and other such places don't deserve the hard time they get for their high density of bible thumpers.

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119365)

No willful ignorance in order to maintain a vague sense of political correctness here. Please do try to convince the class why Kansas and other such places don't deserve the hard time they get for their high density of bible thumpers.

How about for the same reason that poor children in the inner cities don't deserve the "hard time" they get for their high density of gang bangers and drug dealers?

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119269)

Perhaps if they pray really hard, God will create a super fast broadband network for them.

I suspect God has bigger things to deal with than internet connections. But it doesnt hurt to try....

Re:They don't deserve it anyway. (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 2 months ago | (#46119385)

Perhaps if they pray really hard, God will create a super fast broadband network for them.

best not. someone might download porn or read about evil-ution if they have broadband.

The Invisible Hand (4, Insightful)

DarthVain (724186) | about 2 months ago | (#46119405)

of the market at work, not God! Except when it is not.

All these companies bleat and cry every time they might get regulated even a little, yet will lobby for these sort of laws to increase their profitability.

WWJD? Pretty sure he would dickpunch the lot of them.

In capitalist America (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118865)

In capitalist America, the Government disconnects you!

But Kansas! (5, Funny)

N3tRunner (164483) | about 2 months ago | (#46118869)

Darn, I'm sure Google was excited by the prospect of providing broadband access to the tens of people who live in municipalities in Kansas.

Re:But Kansas! (5, Funny)

ryanmetcalf (898126) | about 2 months ago | (#46118931)

Hey, Kansas is more populus than 16 other states in the US. There's at least hundreds of us!

Re:But Kansas! (0)

j35ter (895427) | about 2 months ago | (#46119071)

Granpa probably meant the tens of people in Kansas municipalities who actually use a computer....

Re:But Kansas! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118973)

Isn't Kansas a 'red state'? I thought they were against regulations and in favor of free markets?

<Vinnie Barbarino> I'm so confused.

Re:But Kansas! (3, Informative)

Shavano (2541114) | about 2 months ago | (#46119051)

Colorado did the same stupid thing a few years back, after being bribed and or intimidated by the likes of Comcast and Qwest.

Re:But Kansas! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119355)

I'm in Colorado, but don't recall this. Did it pass? My understanding is the Longmont is working on just such a project, and facing major lobbying efforts.

Re:But Kansas! (3, Interesting)

Sique (173459) | about 2 months ago | (#46119199)

Kansas legislators will tell you that this law is actually about not regulating the market -- by locking out municipalities from supporting or providing broadband, they let the market decide, and the market decides that there is no necessity to ever have more than one broadband provider, and in some cases, even no broadband provider is sufficient.

Re:But Kansas! (4, Insightful)

thaylin (555395) | about 2 months ago | (#46119323)

That is the GOP for you, they are for no regulation unless that regulation benefits one of their members.

Freedom! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118881)

Freedom for Oligarchs. Higher prices for you.

Sounds like... (2)

wbr1 (2538558) | about 2 months ago | (#46118885)

Google needs to spend more time buying^h^h^h^h^h^h talking to legislators. It sucks that this is how it works nor, but government is for the people withe the most power and money, and with corporate personhood, this is how it rolls.

Re:Sounds like... (1)

SirGarlon (845873) | about 2 months ago | (#46118949)

Google needs to spend more time buying^h^h^h^h^h^h talking to legislators.

Be careful what you wish for.

Re:Sounds like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119065)

^h^h^h^h^h^h

You have lowercase control characters?! Devil worshiper!! May Satan fill the backspace in your backside, demon!

Re:Sounds like... (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about 2 months ago | (#46119425)

I once used an IRC client on a terminal connected via a not-very-well-configured serial line. The 'idiot, you just downed the network interface over SSH' port. Thus I am one of the few people to have done the 'embarassing backspace reveal' in recent years.

Everyone thought I was just joking with it.

backward (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118887)

They'd rather rely on pollution-enhancing technology like oil and gas production.

BWAHAHAHAHA! (5, Insightful)

smooth wombat (796938) | about 2 months ago | (#46118901)

I love subsection b of Section 2. Quote:

encourage the development and widespread use of technological advances in providing video, telecommunications and broadband services at competitive rates; and

That will never happen. Under no circumstances will people be able to get any of those services at competitive rates. What they will get are high prices for slow speeds.

Looks like Verizon/Comcast/whomever was successful in bribing Kansas State House members into bringing this bill up for consideration.

Gotta love fascism. Nothing like getting shafted by the government AND private industry.

Re:BWAHAHAHAHA! (5, Insightful)

riis138 (3020505) | about 2 months ago | (#46119009)

You speak the truth. In Michigan where I reside, Comcast and Verizon have a crushing monopoly in the home isp market using decades old technology. While our broadband speeds are not the slowest in the nation by any means, there is no competition for them to build and upgrade existing infrastructure. Something like Google fiber is one of the only hopes we have of getting some real competition in the area.

Re:BWAHAHAHAHA! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119341)

Just yesterday I got an email from my ISP. Previously I was on 768k/512k with a 600MB/day cap. Today I'm on 2Mbps/768k with a @GB/day cap. All for the low low price of $90/mo.

Things are very competitive around here. You can have that, satellite, or a cell phone that just a couple months ago went from 2G to 4G.

People that already have decent internet speeds probably don't care about the rest of the under/unserved areas of the country. The corporations aren't going to do it out of their own good will. Bills like this shit only serve to fuck the little guy.

Fiber optic cables are direct analogs to roads (5, Insightful)

xtal (49134) | about 2 months ago | (#46118903)

What's so hard to understand?

Municipalities should own infrastructure.

We have a situation where the roads of the future are privately owned, gated, and tolled. The rest of the world is preparing to steamroller over you.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Re:Fiber optic cables are direct analogs to roads (1)

gaudior (113467) | about 2 months ago | (#46119063)

We have a situation where the roads of the future are privately owned, gated, and tolled.

Snowcrash was a warning, not a blueprint.

munis are broke (-1, Flamebait)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46118905)

if google wants to lay its own fiber and charge customers for it, good for them... they can do it without leeching off rate & tax payers

Re:munis are broke (4, Informative)

FictionPimp (712802) | about 2 months ago | (#46118943)

Because AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, etc didn't get any government assistance to build their networks....http://voices.washingtonpost.com/posttech/2010/07/att_verizon_get_most_federal_a.html

Re:munis are broke (1, Troll)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46118979)

they probably did, but that doesn't make it right and doesn't mean that mistake should be repeated

is there any wonder why US public debt is so high?

Re:munis are broke (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119117)

they probably did, but that doesn't make it right and doesn't mean that mistake should be repeated

is there any wonder why US public debt is so high?

See the last two Wars by Bush for that one chief. Followed by the ridiculous amount of money dumped into bolstering the military for no reason.

Re:munis are broke (0)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46119129)

munis didn't fund wars... nice try though

Re:munis are broke (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119255)

munis didn't fund wars... nice try though

Why is the US dept so high then? I could have sworn you implied that was their fault. Now it isn't?

Re:munis are broke (1)

thaylin (555395) | about 2 months ago | (#46119371)

The US government is not a Municipality

municipality

noun

1.

a city or town that has corporate status and local government.

Re:munis are broke (4, Informative)

Stolpskott (2422670) | about 2 months ago | (#46119311)

munis didn't fund wars... nice try though

Maybe not... but spending by Munis is also not responsible for the vast majority of US public debt. As of 2012 (the latest year-end I can find data for without logging into Bloomberg and compiling the data):
US local government debt as a percentage of GDP was around 7-8%.
US state government debt as a percentage of GDP was around 19-20%.
US federal government debt as a percentage of GDP was a touch over 120%.

So, by far the biggest contributor to US public debt is the US Federal Government, and by far the biggest single-ticket item of its expenditure is military spending ($700 Billion per year in direct contract awards), with massive spending on the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The most thorough study that I can find public reference to is by Brown University, which puts the cost of troop deployments in Iraq, Afghanistan and logistical support in Pakistan, plus domestic spending on debt interest to service that cost, at something over $6 Trillion so far, and that is only since 2003.
The study itself does not seem to be publicly available on the interwebs - Crawford, Neta and Catherine Lutz. "Economic and Budgetary Costs of the Wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan to the United States: A Summary". Costs of War. Brown University.
But you can check out the Wikipedia article to get the basics: Financial cost of the Iraq War [wikipedia.org]

Seeing as the current US Federal Debt burden is somewhere between $17 and $17.5 Trillion, the "non-War" debt burden is still a not-inconsiderable $11 Trillion, but the annual Military Gravy Train in the US dwarfs the rest of the debt components.

Re:munis are broke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118967)

if google wants to lay its own fiber and charge customers for it, good for them... they can do it without leeching off rate & tax payers

Wow, how dense can you be? Enjoy your slow internet for top dollar rates from private companies that leech off anything they can.

Re:munis are broke (-1, Troll)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46119047)

Enjoy your slow internet for top dollar rates from private companies that leech off anything they can.

you dipshit... i'm arguing against private companies leeching off government

wake up

Re:munis are broke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119081)

You're the worst kind of idiotic, the holy crusader.

-Everyone listen to me, I know what's best for all of you!-

Give it a rest, you're just another rtard defending a bunch of monopolies already in place, for no other reason that better the devil you know that the one you don't.
That logic works on simpletons, lucky for you the world is full of them.

Re:munis are broke (-1, Troll)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46119107)

you're defending the biggest monopoly of them all... government

and eventually you will have to pay... one way or another

good luck with that, moron

Re:munis are broke (1)

C0R1D4N (970153) | about 2 months ago | (#46119343)

Why shouldn't the people of the municipality get to decide that for themselves. Why does the state government need to get involved? At the municipal level if you do not like a law being passed it is a minimal amount of effort to get it shut down before implementation. A few yard signs and talking to your neighbors.

Re:munis are broke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119439)

And, you're defending higher levels of government placing restrictions on local control. That's very big government of you.

Re:munis are broke (1)

xdor (1218206) | about 2 months ago | (#46119177)

Sorry man. You're acting the idiot. Maybe try re-reading what he actually wrote.

Re:munis are broke (2)

dywolf (2673597) | about 2 months ago | (#46118975)

And Google doing this is any different from any other company who demands and/or extracts concessions from the local municipality in exchange for opening a business there? Exemptions such as no taxes for the duration of its existence, exemptions to zoning laws, exemptions to local pollution standards, etc etc?

At least Google's concessions are largely unharmful to the local community, and the end result is actually fostering competition in an area that's normally a monopoly. Imagine that....local government fighting monopoly, by fostering competition.

After all...who does the government serve? The local monopolistic telco? Or the local citizens' public interest?

Re:munis are broke (0)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46119037)

largely unharmful to the local community

it costs money, which must be diverted from other community projects

the government shouldn't be giving any money to any corporate interests

it should maintain public works like roads, maybe collect rubbish, and that's it... if it must contract anything like that out, fair enough, but if its contracted out it probably means the government shouldn't be responsible for it and it should be privatized

electricity, water, sewerage etc are all privatized in australia and consumers can choose any distributor (separate from generators and transmission infrastructure owners) from a long list which keeps prices low. privatization works because capitalism rewards efficiency and value for money with increased revenue, whereas government has no such incentives

if there is really a market in kansas for google fiber (as opposed to some empty political promise), google will conduct its research and set up using its own resources. corporations only leech off government if the government allows it, and they only do it because its easy money.

Re: munis are broke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119285)

Internet access is the same as roads and that is the problem. It is not cost effective to serve the peons that are not densely packed together, hency the need for government to do some of it, since once you have more "roads" other good things follow.....

Car analogy (3, Insightful)

StripedCow (776465) | about 2 months ago | (#46118909)

Imagine every transport company building their own road system, and what that would do to competition, and prices.

In other words, companies should not be able to have direct control over basic infrastructure. That's what we (should) have a government for.

whoever controls the trade routes rules us (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118969)

see also; WMD on credit corepirate nazi genociders band of 85

Re:Car analogy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118993)

In other words, companies should not be able to have direct control over basic infrastructure. That's what we (should) have a government for.

But the government doesn't provide this "service". If they did it sure would make the NSA's a lot job easier.

The government doesn't provide for electricity, telephone, cable tv, etc either. Are you suggesting that no other companies should be allowed add services in areas that are already served by another provider?

Re:Car analogy (2)

Michael Casavant (2876793) | about 2 months ago | (#46119245)

On the car analogy... Imagine that same road system requires a specific type of car to drive on it.

Actually, many toll roads are privately owned (For example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I... [wikipedia.org] and to a lesser extent http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T... [wikipedia.org] ).
What's funny about the I-185 toll road is how absolutely bad things are:
1) There is almost no mileage/time savings vs the primary highways
2) The tolls have skyrocketed over the past few years because it's basically a useless road (It now costs $6 cash to go end-to-end to save no time and no miles)
3) They chose their own transponder system, not compatible with EZPass, so pretty much the only people who buy the passes are people who live right off the exits

Private roads at their finest.

Why? (1)

sosume (680416) | about 2 months ago | (#46118911)

Can someone explain me how this is possible and what the reasoning is behind this law? I mean, lawmakers are chosen by the people, for the people, land of the free, etc, how can that lead to a law forbidding the people to self-organise? It seems a bit paradoxal, one would expect that these lawmakers will be removed after the next election.

Re:Why? (0)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46118953)

lawmakers are chosen by the people to represent the people, not special interests like google

this seems to be about limiting taxpayer and ratepayer funds being funnelled into corporate pockets to encourage them into setting up shop in a municipality, which is literally bribery and is as reprehensible as using taxpayer funds to bail out corporations

google ron paul and peter schiff

Re:Why? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119035)

lawmakers are chosen by the people to represent the people, not special interests like google

this seems to be about limiting taxpayer and ratepayer funds being funnelled into corporate pockets to encourage them into setting up shop in a municipality, which is literally bribery and is as reprehensible as using taxpayer funds to bail out corporations

google ron paul and peter schiff

Who do you think backed this bill? Who has a vested interest in keeping google out? Verizon, Comcast, At&t already receive tax monies and payouts for selling out the people they provide to anyways. Why are you so headstrong in defending them? I smell a rat.

FYI, Ron Paul is a tool, and a worthless one at that.

Re:Why? (-1, Flamebait)

crutchy (1949900) | about 2 months ago | (#46119089)

Who has a vested interest in keeping google out? Verizon, Comcast, At&t already receive tax monies and payouts for selling out the people they provide to anyways

verizon and comcast are lobbying government to keep google out of the public purse, and that is their right (just as it is google's right to lobby)... they didn't make the public purse available in the first place (if a child whinges for lollies, do you give in to them? no, and the government shouldn't give in to corporate lobbyists either)

the government should stop subsidising all of them... yesterday

FYI, Ron Paul is a tool, and a worthless one at that.

way to admit that you're an ignorant fool... go drown in debt then asshole

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119173)

Who has a vested interest in keeping google out? Verizon, Comcast, At&t already receive tax monies and payouts for selling out the people they provide to anyways

verizon and comcast are lobbying government to keep google out of the public purse, and that is their right (just as it is google's right to lobby)... they didn't make the public purse available in the first place (if a child whinges for lollies, do you give in to them? no, and the government shouldn't give in to corporate lobbyists either)

the government should stop subsidising all of them... yesterday

FYI, Ron Paul is a tool, and a worthless one at that.

way to admit that you're an ignorant fool... go drown in debt then asshole

Your example missed the part where years ago the previous monopolies already took the whole candy bowl, they just let you think you're in charge though.
America the joke should be you're new slogan.

You and your government bends over and grabs their ankles for Comcast, Verizon, and any other corporate monopoly.

I live in Germany, my country is doing fine. Keep kicking yourselves into the ground though. It's making the euro look better everyday.

Re:Why? (1)

mscalora (226843) | about 2 months ago | (#46119061)

It sounds more like state legislators (who have received political donations form the cable/phone incumbent internet monopolies) want to protect the markets from stupid (unbribed) city officials who obviously don't have the intelligence (incumbent cable/phone bribes) to make wise choices for their cities. It's too late, monopolies have already been setup, this is just about the early guys protecting their turf. There's no doubt in my mind that phone/cable monopoly money is behind this bill.

Where is capitalism when you need it? (5, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | about 2 months ago | (#46118927)

Communism and Capitalism both have some things in common. Not only do they both begin with the letter C, but they are both "great ideas" and neither ever actually happen.

Every time I see a story about a municipality taking their lack of development and progress into their own hands, some previously uninterested party steps in and says, "This is my territory and you can't build where we don't want to build." On its face it's ridiculous. They want to cherry pick -- to invest in the markets which offer the best returns. We all get that. But to deny anyone else the opportunity to operate in less favored zones is 100% anti-competitive and 100% anti-capitalist. Trying to keep other parties from participating in the marketplace takes the free out of free markets.

I think it's about time there were some public hearings on the situation so that we can get them to say things they don't mean and can later be held to account on.

Re:Where is capitalism when you need it? (1)

wompa (656355) | about 2 months ago | (#46119413)

Communism and Capitalism both have some things in common. Not only do they both begin with the letter C, but they are both "great ideas" and neither ever actually happen.

A truer sentence was never written. That is perfect.

A little misleading (4, Informative)

swillden (191260) | about 2 months ago | (#46118929)

I think the bill is a bad idea, but I don't think it would stop Google from deploying fiber elsewhere in Kansas. It doesn't do anything to prevent deployments, it just prevents municipalities from offering the special treatment that helped get KC selected as the first city out of 1100 candidates.

Re:A little misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119145)

Any implementation of new broadband requires some form of assistance by the local municipality... most notably use of municipal easment and right of way. Without access to that (which established providers had access to) implementation becomes prohibitively expensive.

Re:A little misleading (1)

fscking_coward_2001 (236799) | about 2 months ago | (#46119351)

IANAL, but I don't think granting easements and the like would be included in those activities prohibited by (b). But it's (a) that I dislike the most. Why prohibit a municipality from offering services? I live in Kansas, and as far as I can tell, many state legislators have wet-dream fantasies about local governments having control over their own business. This seems inconsistent.

Re:A little misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119183)

It's only "special treatment" when your competitors get it. When Comcast digs up roads or re-wires the poles, that's a level playing field.

Re:A little misleading (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 2 months ago | (#46119275)

So what do you do when you are in an area that isn't going to be high profit and already has an incumbent with no interest in providing good and reasonably priced service? Providing incentives for other companies to come in and build infrastructure and create competition sounds like a good way to fix that. Otherwise it's minimum speed minimum cap ADSL forever.

they must protect ignorance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118933)

If politicians don't protect their citizen's ignorance, they might start losing elections.

VoIP, Jabber, Skype, etc, now prohibited (3d)!! (4, Informative)

dyfet (154716) | about 2 months ago | (#46118957)

The law of unintended consequences... While Section 3b, in regards to "video services", makes clear reference to "through wireline facilities located at least in part in the public rights-of-way", and clearly is about cable tv (no thread to netflicks for example), 3d is a very different animal:

(d) "Telecommunications service" means the two-way transmission of
signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, messages, data or other
information of any nature by wire, radio, light waves or other
electromagnetic means, offered to the public generally.

Hmm...does not seem to be based on actual broadband service providers or any specific limitations. The way it is written would seem to exclude any form of VoIP or chat "service" (jabber, skype, etc)!!!! WTF?! Way to go Kansas!

Re:VoIP, Jabber, Skype, etc, now prohibited (3d)!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119005)

What is a web site, but writing, images, sounds, and data. Kansas has been officially disconnected from the Internet.

Re:VoIP, Jabber, Skype, etc, now prohibited (3d)!! (3, Interesting)

swillden (191260) | about 2 months ago | (#46119041)

What is a web site, but writing, images, sounds, and data. Kansas has been officially disconnected from the Internet.

Not disconnected, but it sounds like municipal web sites may be verboten.

Re:"two way" services (1)

dyfet (154716) | about 2 months ago | (#46119131)

This I think does not apply to "publishing" as written (web sites). But certainly it could as written also cover file sharing, too....

Let's Disconnect 'em! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119133)

The way it is written would seem to exclude any form of VoIP or chat "service" (jabber, skype, etc)!!!! WTF?! Way to go Kansas!

Let's just disconnect Kansas and raise the aggregate IQ of the rest of the Internet by a large margin.

Re:VoIP, Jabber, Skype, etc, now prohibited (3d)!! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119189)

Yup. This is about TV network profits dropping like lead weights. I get a few calls a month from my ISP (also cable provider) about great TV deals going on.

"So? I have no time for TV, and if I did, I would call you about it and sign up. I do have your number!"

They're just now starting to realize they should have gotten ahead of this 5 years ago, and backpedaling as fast as possible. How? Easiest way, to them, seems to be stifle and stagnate innovation with legislation, while still making profit hand over fist as the strongest nation in the world, lags in Internet access across the board.

The media cartels in this country need to be drawn and quartered. Either that, or Internet access needs to be determined a public utility, and implemented accordingly.

...On a mattress stuffed with $100s (1)

pla (258480) | about 2 months ago | (#46118961)

I don't have any doubt about the real motivations behind this, but I have to wonder...

How do the politicians pushing bills like this present them as anything but pure greed and cronyism with a straight face? I mean, I really can't come up with even a plausible cover story to make this more palatable. Even the old standby of "protecting jobs" doesn't fly, because someone still needs to run the networks, and seriously, how do you sell "We don't care. We don't have to. We're the Phone Company" as a private entity worth protecting?

Then again, maybe the politicians just don't even bother trying to have a cover story anymore, because they know we already consider them all nothing but self-serving asshats, yet the majority will still vote them back into office again and again and again.

Re:...On a mattress stuffed with $100s (4, Interesting)

gaudior (113467) | about 2 months ago | (#46119103)

Then again, maybe the politicians just don't even bother trying to have a cover story anymore, because they know we already consider them all nothing but self-serving asshats, yet the majority will still vote them back into office again and again and again.

The only way things will change is to always vote out the incumbent. Every time. Even if you agree with 100% of their positions and votes. Lets spend a few election cycles churning up the sludge. Maybe some of them will get the hint, and maybe some better people will see that they have a shot at getting in, once the old-boy network has been rattled to pieces.

Re:...On a mattress stuffed with $100s (2)

wbr1 (2538558) | about 2 months ago | (#46119111)

Then again, maybe the politicians just don't even bother trying to have a cover story anymore, because they know we already consider them all nothing but self-serving asshats, yet the majority will still vote them back into office again and again and again.

This... most people think 'their' representative(s) are not that bad, it's the others that suck, so they vote theirs in again. All a politician has to do is sell himself to his constituents on a few issues, say look at what I have done for you (if an incumbent or holder of other political positions), and smear everyone else into oblivion. It gets lapped up, and the cycle repeats ad nauseum.

Honest name (2)

onyxruby (118189) | about 2 months ago | (#46118983)

Let's give this an honest name shall we. Why don't we call these bills Protect Oligopoly Results Kineticly act - or PORK acts. The only thing these bills do is protect the business model of existing oligopolies and prevent competition. They are inherently anti-capitalist and have no place in the US (or anywhere else in my opinion).

Competition is a wonderful thing and those countries that have competition have much better service for much better prices and their companies still make quite a bit of money.

Re:Honest name (2)

jodido (1052890) | about 2 months ago | (#46119193)

Actually the countries that have the fastest internet don't have it as a result of competition, but rather as a result of major government intervention. S. Korea, for example. The other model, where the govt stands aside, is what you get in the US. Does anyone think that the Interstate Highway System (an analogy, maybe not the best, for the Internet) would have been built through "competition"? What you got through competition was the chaos of 19th century railroads.

Look at how the law defines "Existing Service" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46118989)

Effectively, anywhere you can get a cell signal already has existing service. That's a pretty low bar for broadband, with a pretty high price.

Privatize The Interstate (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119011)

While they are at it, they should privatize the Interstate highway system. We could then expect 3 or 4 twisty little roads to one straight one. Oh, my, what an Adventure!

Re:Privatize The Interstate (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119113)

Oh, boo hoo. Someone doesn't like competition for a service that has no equivalency to roads or highways? The roads are owned and maintained by some form of government. When necessary they are "upgraded".

These lazy assed, we don't want to have to provide quality service for our customer hostages, 'communication' companies who already got their tax breaks - and monopolies - from the government decades ago don't want competition that would force them to provide better service for a more reasonable rate.

Those who live in Kansas (3, Informative)

portwojc (201398) | about 2 months ago | (#46119029)

The bill is by "The committee on commerce" which looks to be... http://www.kslegislature.org/li/b2013_14/committees/ctte_s_cmrce_1/

You might want to contact them. We all know where / how this bill got it's start. You need to voice your opinion and remind them who they really serve.

No need to worry. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119043)

If g0d wanted broadband, he would have given Kansans broadband.

Re:No need to worry. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119231)

Maybe you don't understand how this works. G0d is trying to give them broadband. This is like that guy on his roof in the storm.

We Are Many; They Are Few. (3, Interesting)

resistant (221968) | about 2 months ago | (#46119059)

I've been observing this sort of greedy corporatism for years. We seriously need to first set up a nationally recognized, "voluntary" standard that at least four competing broadband providers should be available in each jurisdiction and then start a national nonprofit organization that relentlessly pressures non-compliant local and state governments into abolishing laws and regulations that discourage or outright prevent this kind of minimum coverage. Constant lawsuits that dig up dirt about payoffs to politicians and expose semi-monopolies would be an excellent idea as well. It may be a little early to truly establish the idea that universal access to low-cost, high-speed Internet communications is a basic human right, but it's a good propaganda tool.

I'm a dreaming fanatic about free markets, but we don't have free markets for broadband Internet access. We have utterly corrupt corporatism. It's high time to savagely fight back against the greedy parasites at Time Warner and Cox and the rest who absolutely hate the idea of having to give up their bloated, government-protected profits.

Re:We Are Many; They Are Few. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119433)

I'm a dreaming fanatic about free markets, but we don't have free markets for broadband Internet access. We have utterly corrupt corporatism. It's high time to savagely fight back against the greedy parasites at Time Warner and Cox and the rest who absolutely hate the idea of having to give up their bloated, government-protected profits.

By giving the rights and government-protected profits to the world's largest parasite. Clearly.

If any other company at all was involved, Slashdot would be jumping for goddamned joy right now.

Dark fiber (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119147)

Wasn't this unused dark fiber that Google obtained from the local government in exchange for providing internet connectivity for free to the local government as well as giving affordable internet connectivity to the citizens? How is that a bad thing?

Google fiber (0)

LookIntoTheFuture (3480731) | about 2 months ago | (#46119163)

I'm all for faster internet connections, and I feel sorry for those who deal with shit connections but, do we really want one of the largest advertising companies in the world owning "the roads"? I would hate to see google buying out and taking over other ISPs. Not everyone is cool with the way they make money and this is their wet dream. Faster, but at what cost?

Re:Google fiber (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119347)

I don't think Google wants to be in the biz of being an ISP either. They are doing it to shame the big telcos and spur innovation, to mild success.

Surprise surprise... GOP led anti-free market... (0)

Assmasher (456699) | about 2 months ago | (#46119241)

...obstructionism.

The bill description says it all "investment protection." LOL.

I remember when I voted for Bush Sr. - Damn it was a long time ago when you could vote Republican. The only reason I could understand someone voting Replublican now would be for anti-abortion issues. The rest of their caucus seems flat out ridiculous or flat out bullsh*t.

The worst part is, the f***ing Dems have gotten just as bad - Karl Rove used to be the most loathsome political creature on the planet, well congratulations Ms. Pelosi, you've knocked him off his perch.

Please Colin Powell, run for President somehow...

I bet I know the source of this (1)

nucrash (549705) | about 2 months ago | (#46119277)

If this wasn't some punk from Time Warner or Cox or even Suddenlink, I can almost best this is from someone butt hurt in Overland Park who screwed themselves out of Google Fiber because they weren't smart enough to accept Google's Terms.

Basically negotiations went like this,
Google) Hey we are going to give you blazing fast internet if you agree to these terms.
OP) That's all nice and dandy, by how about you give us a few concessions?
Google) We are Google, and giving you fast internet at low prices if you give us some specials on using your utilities.
OP) But what about we get a Kickback?
Google) Negotiations over, see you
OP) Wait, wait, I love you! Come back!!
Google) So sorry, but you waited too long.

you know.. (1)

buddyglass (925859) | about 2 months ago | (#46119317)

I'd be fine with this bill if it were more general purpose and forbade other types of subsidies as well. For instance, no incentives to attract movie production companies. No property tax breaks to attract large corporations. And, the big one, no municipal bonds to cover the construction of sporting venues.

All bow down to our corporate overlords! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#46119391)

Never mind that nearly everywhere in the US, let alone Kansas, either a local cable company or telco have locked-in a monopoly on the delivery of wired broadband, and that wireless is dominated by a small circle of big companies (like Sprint or Verizon) from their number. The smaller operators are all resellers, mere administrators, who are completely dependent on their upstream providers. Unless one of the big boys finds it profitable, there simply will be no service (never mind that wireless broadband is still incredibly unreliable in many places). Preventing government from going into the sector will result in service being out of the reach, either physically or financially, of most citizens -- despite the fact that the Internet itself is developed and maintained in part at taxpayer's expense, as well as the cooperative efforts of thousands of private entities, both non profit and for profit. It's the greed of our politicians, so far down into the pockets of the big communications and entertainment monopolilies that it's hard to see how they come up for air, not their sense of "fair play", that drives this kind of legislation.

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