US ranks 32nd globally for broadband affordability, study finds


An anonymous reader cited Techdirt’s report: A recent study found As the US It is currently ranked 32nd in the worldBehind countries like Russia, Lithuania and Bulgaria [on broadband affordability] (You can find the full list here. over hereBroadband Genie’s broadband expert Alex Tofts concluded: “Both the United States and Canada have high Internet costs. It’s driven by a lack of competition and large distances in connectivity. Populations are smaller than in other developed countries. But both have median wages in the top fifteen globally, which It covers the cost of the Internet.”

For decades, people (mostly the industry) have tried to point out that the problem is that America is so goddamn big. But note that China and Russia (ranked 25th and 17th respectively) still perform better. The data regularly shows that it is a reasonable price. A key barrier to accessOnly in the past few years have we begun to see this reality reflected in American policymaking. […] But again the cause of this problem is very clear: monopolization and consolidation, protected by corruption. Few US markets have a choice of more than one broadband service provider at next-generation speeds. And because federal and state legislatures are ridiculously corrupt, they allow AT&T, Comcast, Charter, or Verizon lobbyists to continually merge, stifle all competition, and then routinely write state or federal law and policy for decades.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. Decades of federal policy corruption and malpractice have created a strong, local, bipartisan grassroots movement for better broadband access. In countless cities and towns, municipalities, cooperatives, city-owned utilities and innovative new partnerships are building new open access fiber networks with competition and cost in mind. […] Still, in 2010, It’s ironic and terrifying that it’s 2023 and a self-proclaimed tech giant still can’t meaningfully curb equitable broadband access and affordability. And that telecom and media policy has become a boring afterthought in the “Big Tech” era. Ensuring fair access to an essential resource is too boring for most policy circles in 2023, much less the focus of today’s economy.

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