Before Net Neutrality’s repeal, nothing prevented cities and towns from building their own ISP, giving the residents more options and protecting them from the predatory nature of ISP monopolies.
Now that Net Neutrality has been repealed, suddenly localities are working on building their own ISPs to overcome the repeal. Of course, the folks who fought against Net Neutrality repeal are not bothering to slow down ask the question, why didn’t you do this even while Net Neutrality exists?
Fort Collins, Colorado, is planning to build its own internet service utility, trumping the Federal Communications Commission’s move last month to extinguish net neutrality.
Fort Collins joins a growing list of cities opting in to their own internet, and opting out of big telecom, much to the disdain of giants like Comcast. All told, big telecom and anti-net neutrality agencies spent nearly a million dollars trying to defeat the Fort Collins move.
In contrast, according to Christopher Mitchell, director of Community Broadband Networks at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, concerned citizens of Fort Collins organized on social media and coordinated “broadband and brews” events at local beer hot spots, spending a total of about $15,000.
Telecom spent an “unprecedented amount of money,” Mitchell says, “but the voters were not scared by the cable and telephone companies. The reason that’s important for the rest of the country is that local government needs to be more aggressive in creating local internet choice.”