27 January 2009

Stifling Progress: The US Senate Does it Again

UPDATE: 12:10 PM EST - I spelled "stifling" incorrectly. I blame George Bush, and Internet Explorer 6.

The US Senate passed a bill yesterday to delay the digital TV switch. It was originally scheduled for February 17th. However, it has now been switched to June 12th of this year. Huge issues with the coupon program are partly to blame for the delay. There is also a fear that the poor and those in rural areas will be without TV come February.

The more likely reason: Telecom lobbyists in Washington are pushing for a delay so AT&T and Verizon will have longer licenses on the airwaves they bought at auction last year. Other lobbyists were against the delay. Hmm...

I warned of how bad the transition was going to be back in December. I couldn't believe the wait for my coupons. I requested them in early December, and didn't receive them until last week.

The problem with this delay is that it also delays the possibility of seeing rural wireless broadband access any time soon. Many Americans are "left in the dark" when it comes to high speed internet access.

Obama supports this delay, so there's no chance of a veto...

No comments: