Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Take it to the bridge

As I wrote to clients at the end of last year (and countless times here), broadband is fast becoming a social and economic development issue, which makes it political, and therefore potentially explosive. Whoever might be "running their sliderules" (a favorite phrase of the UK financial press which must confuse anyone under the age of 40) over BT, I hope they're prepared to deal with the possible financial implications of big broadband delivered by people with a dramatically different agenda. A Palladium Club mega-uber value reader points me to the news of a fiber pilot just up the road in Shoreditch. As a community development initiative funded by Central Government, this seems to be a pretty clear repudiation of the free market solution to the UK's "broadband crisis," at least in areas of social deprivation. If it puts down roots and spreads elsewhere, a lot of people in Chelsea are going to be wondering why they're stuck with 2Mbps DSL connections...

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