The FCC has long subsidized access to land lines in rural areas, but will vote Tuesday to possibly shift the funding toward high-speed internet access.
The AP reports that the government agency will consider ways to change the $4 billion-a-year subsidy program, called the Universal Service Fund, from phone lines to broadband. If the change occurs, cable companies would get more of the money while rural phone companies would lose out.
It’s all about the march of progress, says the FCC chairman:
“Broadband serves the same role in the 21st Century that telephone service served in the 20th Century. So we need to modernize this program.”
FCC to update phone subsidy program for broadband [AP via MSNBC]