I’ve rewritten the opening paragraph of this article four times, each time writing out different nightmarish situations I’ve dealt with thanks to Comcast, and I now realize that I don’t have to write it out, because EVERYONE who has Comcast as their provider probably has a similar story. (No choice in provider. Downtime. Waiting all day for technicians. Overpriced. Too slow. Intermittent Connectivity. Waiting on hold all day. Phantom billing changes. Technician no shows. Etc. Etc. ETC.)
To that I say, what do we have to do to get Comcast to get their shit together? (Unlikely.) Or, better yet, what do we have to do to get Google Fiber in our city? Pressure Rahm Emanuel into publicly campaigning for it? Pressure unions or local government, that may be holding up the process? Start getting celebrity endorsements in some sort of massive campaign video? Pledge to cut the chord with Comcast and direct the extra $75 or so a month towards using services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, etc?
Google’s official comment–that it chose these cities because they “are led by people who have been working hard to bring faster Internet speeds and the latest technologies to their residents.”
Any word on Chicago?
“Not for now,” said Google, adding it has a lot of work ahead with the cities it has chosen.
Supposedly, we’ve made steps to make Chicago one of the most connected cities in the world, so why no Google Fiber? Google even published a blog post telling cities what they can do to get bumped to the front of the proverbial line for Google Fiber. One of the key road blocks to getting fiber is the “dig once” policy. Otherwise known as, you have to rip up the roads and streets to lay the physical fiber, which leads me to wonder, why in a city that has so much construction, pot holes, and roads being ripped up at any one time, can’t we lay down some fiber while we’re at it?
Why can’t we streamline the construction permit process Rahm? I know you love partnering with those bastards at Comcast, and we know they love spending money on lobbying Democrats and Republicans, but if you truly are a high-tech Mayor, then why not get a plan in place to truly make Chicago one of the most connected cities, which will help spurn job creation, among other things, and commit to getting Google Fiber in this city? If we can waste 100 million on a shitty Olympic bid, certainly we can spend a few bucks to better our infrastructure?
I even found a link to the 2012 State of the State Adress by Governor Quinn from 2012 about challenging local companies to bring gigabit internet speeds to Illinois:
I’m also announcing a $6 million dollar statewide competition to build ultra-high speed broadband in neighborhoods across Illinois.
Through this challenge, we want our neighborhoods to become Gigabit communities with Internet connections more than 100 times faster than today!
Our goal is to build smart communities that will foster the job engines of the future…
So I have to ask… what else can we do?
Lobbying graphic source: http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/clientsum.php?id=D000000461