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Media Alert – The Great Internet Rip-Off

March 18, 2010

The FCC just released its National Broadband Plan. Based on the gushing media response, you’d think that America’s Internet was sailing smoothly into the future.

Think again.

There are some good things in the plan, but it punts on the thorniest problems that Internet users face in America: astronomical prices, slow speeds and no real choices among providers.

The FCC plan is a promising start, but it’s short on action. And Comcast and Time Warner Cable are thumbing their noses at it — having just announced plans to jack up their Internet prices even higher.

That’s why we’re asking you to sign on to this letter telling FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski that we need real choices, lower prices, faster speeds and an open Internet in America. Nothing less.

The only way to keep down prices, and get the Internet we need, is for the FCC to follow through on our demands. We’re facing:

High Prices: Cable and phone companies jack up Internet prices simply because they can. People have too few options for world-class Internet connections, resulting in costs that are among the highest in the developed world.

Slow Speeds: Average U.S. broadband speeds are 20 times slower than speeds available to users in Japan, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Korea and Hong Kong.

Few Choices: Five percent of American households have no wireline providers; 13 percent of households have just one; and 78 percent have just two. In other words, 96 percent of the country has two or fewer choices for wired broadband.

The National Broadband Plan is our best chance to fix America’s Internet problem. But prices will not go down, and speeds will not increase without concrete action from the FCC.

It’s time we took a stand against the narrow corporate interests that have held America’s Internet captive for too long.

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