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Telecom Heroics in Somalia

Internet service in and around Mogadishu, Somalia suffered a crippling blow recently as the East African Submarine System (EASSy) cable, which provides service to the area, was cut by the anchor of a passing ship. The government of Somalia estimated that the impact of the submarine cable cut was US$10 million per day and detained the MSC Alice, the cargo vessel that reportedly caused the damage. more»

Nation Scale Internet Filtering — Do's and Don'ts

If a national government wants to prevent certain kinds of Internet communication inside its borders, the costs can be extreme and success will never be more than partial. VPN and tunnel technologies will keep improving as long as there is demand, and filtering or blocking out every such technology will be a never-ending game of one-upmanship. Everyone knows and will always know that determined Internet users will find a way to get to what they want, but sometimes the symbolic message is more important than the operational results. more»

"Net Neutrality" Protects New Monopolies from Old

Over the next decade which companies do you think will be better able to exercise monopoly power? Amazon, T&T, Comcast, Facebook, Google, Regional phone companies, or Verizon? If you'd asked me this question in 2000, I would've picked AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, and regional phone companies. They are part of local duopolies for wired infrastructure. more»

What Does Trump's Cuba Policy Memorandum Say About the Internet?

I recently reviewed Trump's Cuban policy speech and its implications for the Internet. The speech was accompanied by a national security memorandum on strengthening US-Cuba policy, which was sent to the Vice President, Cabinet Secretaries, and heads of various departments. The first thing that struck me about the memorandum was that it was a "national security" memorandum. Does Trump think Cuba poses a threat to our national security? more»

Telcos Players in the U.S. Set to Become Even Lazier

With all of the current turbulence in the American society, it is no wonder that its telecommunications market is also under severe pressure. In his election campaign, Trump promised his American supporters to make changes to what he called the Washington swamp, but it has become clear that the opposite is happening. While in previous Administrations lobbyists were at least somewhat separated from the politicians, now many of these lobbyists are actually part of the Trump Administration. more»

Is the Passion Over Net Neutrality Misguided? A New Paper Offers a Fresh Technical Approach

"Net neutrality" is implicitly framed as a debate over how to deliver an equitable ration of quality to each broadband user and application. This is the wrong debate to have, since it is both technically impossible and economically unfair. We should instead be discussing how to create a transparent market for quality that is both achievable and fair. In this paper I propose an alternative approach that (potentially) meets the needs of both consumer advocates and free market proponents. more»

Three Reasons Why Broadband Is So Unreliable

We all take the predictability and reliability of other utilities for granted. So why is broadband such a frustrating exception? Why do our Skype calls fail mid-way? What makes Netflix buffer like crazy? How come our gaming sessions are so laggy? Imagine if the design of your electrical supply was optimised to apply the biggest possible voltage and current to anything that was plugged in. That would clearly be ridiculous! more»

Cloud Computing and Digital Divide 2.0

Internet connectivity is the great enabler of the 21st century global economy. Studies worldwide unequivocally link increases in Internet penetration rates and expansion of Internet infrastructure to improved education, employment rates, and overall GDP development. Over the next decade, the Internet will reinvent itself yet again in ways we can only imagine today, and cloud computing will be the primary operating platform of this revolution. more»

Trump's Cuba Policy and Its Impact on the Cuban Internet

On June 12th, I speculated on Trump's forthcoming Cuba policy and its impact on the Internet. He outlined his policy in a June 16th speech and the Treasury Department published a FAQ on forthcoming regulation changes. It looks like my (safe) predictions were accurate. I predicted he would attack President Obama, brag about what he had done, make relatively minor changes that would not upset businesses like cruise lines, airlines, and telecommunication and hotel companies. more»

Questions About Cuba's 3G Mobile Expansion

ETECSA, Cuba's telecom provider and sole operator of fixed telephony, mobile, and data in the country, is rolling out 3G mobile service in Havana and elsewhere in the country. Telegeography reports there are now 229 3G base stations in Cuba... ETECSA says 3G coverage is available in all of Havana, provincial capitals and tourist resorts. AT&T says there is GSM/GPRS coverage for 85% of national territory. more»

Experience is Paramount at the 2017 ANGA COM

Right as May turned into June, we joined thousands of attendees at the latest edition of ANGA COM in Cologne, Germany. Over the course of three days, I had the opportunity to listen and gain insights on the challenges faced today in the industry. As we're already aware, data consumption and demand continue to march upwards. This is further evident by the sheer amount of FTTx-related vendors and solutions present at the show. Cable service providers can look at DOCSIS 3.1 or tilt their HFC towards FTTx. more»

Speculation on Trump's Forthcoming Cuba Policy Speech and Its Impact on the Cuban Internet

Trump has a dilemma. He has to take some executive action that will allow him to ridicule President Obama and show that he is punishing Cuba for its human rights violations and the confiscation of businesses and property after the revolution, but not harm US telephone companies, hotel chains, airlines and cruise lines. Trump is expected to announce his Cuba policy next Friday in Miami. There can be little doubt that he will reverse some of President Obama's executive orders... more»

June 8 Deadline for Survey on Recommendations for Future of the Internet

What do you think must be done to ensure the development of an open, trusted, accessible, and global Internet in the future? As part of the Internet Society's "Internet Futures" project, we'd like your input on recommendations for Internet leaders and policy makers. For more background, please read "Help Shape the Future of the Internet" by my colleague Constance Bommelaer, or browse through the Internet Futures pages. more»

Hidden in Plain Sight: FCC Chairman Pai's Strategy to Consolidate the U.S. Wireless Marketplace

While couched in noble terms of promoting competition, innovation and freedom, the FCC soon will combine two initiatives that will enhance the likelihood that Sprint and T-Mobile will stop operating as separate companies within 18 months. In the same manner at the regulatory approval of airline mergers, the FCC will make all sorts of conclusions sorely lacking empirical evidence and common sense. more»

Why Not Connect Cuba's Gaspar Social Streetnet to the Internet?

I've been covering Cuban streetnets (local area networks with independent users that are not connected to the Internet) for some time. Reader Doug Madory told me about Gaspar Social, a new streetnet in Gaspar, a small town in central Cuba. Gaspar Social opened to the public last October and has grown quickly -- about 500 of Gaspar's 7,500 residents are now users. Streetnets are illegal in Cuba and the government has ignored some and cracked down on others... more»

News Briefs

Somalia's Extended Internet Outage Results in Millions of Dollars of Loss per Day, Says Government

Over 190 Internet Engineers, Pioneers, Technologists File Comments with FCC on Net Neutrality

EFF: Internet Went All Out in Support of Net Neutrality

Cloud Leak Exposes at least 14 Million Verizon Subscribers, Phone Numbers and Account PINs Included

Complete Internet Shutdown Reported in Syria

China Clamps Down on VPNs, Carriers Told to Block Access by Feb. 1

Mozilla, National Science Foundation Offer $2M Prize for a Decentralized Web

Net Neutrality Is a Smashing Success by FCC's Preferred Metric, Reports Free Press Researcher

Seattle Restores ISP Privacy Rules. Could be First of Many Cities to Defeat FCC's Privacy Roll Back

Over 800 Startups Send Letter to Pai: Focus Instead on Policies for Stronger Internet for Everyone

Fierce Political Battle Expected as FCC Chair Elaborated on Plan to Reverse 'Net Neutrality' Rules

Cuba Getting Faster YouTube Access in Next 24 Hours, Thanks to Deal Signed in December

Canada's Telecom Regulator to Uphold and Strengthen Commitment to Net Neutrality

FCC Chairman Plans Fast-Track Repeal of Net Neutrality

Major U.S. ISPs Say They Will Not Sell Customer Browsing Histories

San Francisco Supervisor Working on Plan for Citywide High-Speed Internet

FCC Blocks Stricter Broadband Privacy Rules

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai: Net Neutrality "A Mistake", Planning on Much Lighter Style Regulation

FCC Rolls Back Net Neutrality Transparency Rules for Smaller ISPs

Report on Why Cameroon Has Blocked the Internet

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