The Federal Communications Commission today in their monthly meeting voted narrowly to move forward with two high-profile, contentious proposals. One is formally adopting a plan to modernize the Lifeline program, and the other is to start considering how to apply stronger consumer privacy protections to ISPs.
There’s a reason they call this century the information age: everything is data, data, data. And today, the FCC announced a proposal that would regulate how ISPs — over which all that data flows — have to get your permission to collect and share all that juicy, valuable information.
It’s a pretty basic tenet of American commerce: if someone advertises something to you at a certain price, they actually have to provide you that thing at that price. Like, for example, a broadband internet connection: if a company like Verizon, Cablevision, or Time Warner Cable says it will give you a connection of a certain speed, it’s supposed to make good. But in one sate, the top legal office thinks the ISPs may not be making good on their claims, and wants to know what’s up.
Charlottesville, Virginia is home to the University of Virginia, and also to Blue Ridge InternetWorks, an independent Internet service provider that has been working to fiber up the college town with gigabit Internet access. Ting, a company that we know as a discount mobile carrier, announced this week that it will buy the small ISP to enter the gigabit-capable broadband biz. [More]
As items in our mailbox go, April’s story is pretty mundane. She returned her broadband modem to her Internet service provider five months ago, and they caught up with her and…sent her to a collection company. No one believed April that she had returned the modem. What could she do? Write to the CEO, that’s what. [More]
As a child, how were you at sharing your toys with other kids, friends and strangers alike? If you rent Xfinity equipment from Comcast, you’re going to have to share your toys–and by “toys” we mean “wireless router”–with everyone in Kabletown. Understandably, some people do not like this idea. [More]
If you’ve ever felt like cable company ads are leaving something out––so, if you have a functioning brain––this parody ad is for you. At least we assume it’s a parody ad.
Internet service providers take your money and promise to send you speeding along an information superhighway, dangling the carrot of fast connection times to get your business. And according to an annual report card by the Federal Communications Commission, while Verizon and Cablevision are the leaders in providing advertised speeds, it seems most ISPs are getting better at being more consistent on delivering the goods as well.
Three hours. That’s how long Nate’s Internet connection goes out for, every day except Saturday. He has no idea why. His Internet service provider, Charter, has no idea why. All Charter is able to do is send technician after technician to check out the problem, replace hardware, and ultimately not solve the problem.
Helpful and supportive person that she is, Isis is a co-signer on her goddaughter’s Comcast account so her goddaughter wouldn’t have to pay a deposit. Normally this wouldn’t be a problem unless the youngster defaulted on her payments or ran off with a half-dozen cable boxes. The problem is that the act somehow tied together her account and Isis’s, and a $435 payment was applied to the goddaughter’s account by mistake. This has led to biweekly disconnections, fruitless promises by Comcast employees to take care of the situation, and an existential question: does Isis have two accounts, or only one?
Liam lives in England and has a cat. As all people owned by cats know, warm, feline-posterior-sized electronic devices are irresistible to cats worldwide, and the DSL modem/router thingy provided by his Internet service provider, Be, is no exception. The problem is that this particular router doesn’t work very well with a cat on top of it. He made a joking forum post that featured a photo of his cat communing with the router and pleaded for a decoy router so he could keep his cat happy but also have functional Internet. Astonishingly…. the company complied. But only if he sent them more pictures of his cat.
It’s all very green and forward-thinking of Mediacom to offer a $1 credit for customers who use paperless billing, but Tim wonders why they had to mail him a paper statement informing him that he is getting this discount.
Leon liked Verizon’s FiOS service when he had it. It wasn’t until he moved and sent his equipment back that he had any problems with them. He sent his router and CableCard back via UPS, and the card was taped to the side of the router. Verizon received the router, but the CableCard is still missing. “I have visions of the router at some new customer’s house with the cablecard still taped to it,” he writes.
Gerald would like something very simple: he would like to connect to an FTP server. He knows that it’s not completely blacklisted: he can get to it using an AT&T business-class connection. He’s even narrowed down precisely what the problem is. He just can’t find anyone at the company capable of helping him, and he’s found the online help groups to be an utter waste of time.
In the six years she’s lived in her current apartment, Kate hasn’t had any major problems with Time Warner. Now Her Internet access has been out since the beginning of September, despite a modem replacement. They’re sort of giving her a whole decade’s worth of major problems all in one go. When Kate mentioned that she needs Internet access to look for jobs, one rep helpfully suggested that she change providers.