UK Community Gives Up Waiting For High Speed Broadband: Digs Its Own Fiber Trenches

from the nicely-done dept

Providers of high speed broadband love to talk about how they're providing private networks that shouldn't be regulated at all, but they tend to ignore the fact that they usually rely on government subsidies in the form of rights of way -- the legal ability to dig the trenches (or string cables on poles) to run the key infrastructure. Now, of course, we've heard of various muni-broadband projects, but one community in the UK apparently got so fed up with waiting for a big broadband provider to bring service to their village that they not only started setting up their own system, but they literally got dozens of residents to help them start digging the 51 mile-long trench where the fiber optic cable that connects them to the wider internet will lie. Talk about taking matters into your own hands...
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Filed Under: broadband, community, diy, fiber


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Thread


  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 10 Apr 2012 @ 1:47pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Let me add this. The incumbent businesses wouldn't be trying so hard to stop competing broadband efforts if they didn't think they could be successful. These businesses, like any business, are (by definition) profit driven and self interested. They are trying to use our legal system to block competition because they know very well that competition could be successful and bad for their profit margins.

    If incumbents knew ahead of time that these alternative broadband efforts would fail they would be glad to allow them to try it out, fail, and say "see, we told you so". They would have nothing to fear, they would have no reason to use the government to establish monopolies. They need the government to establish monopolies because they know very well that in the absence of their government established monopoly power competition will be detrimental to their profit margins and might even drive them out of business.

    Will every attempt to build competing broadband services be a success? Of course not, it takes experience to be able to do it efficiently. Early attempts to build broadband and phone lines and cable lines had their failures as well, heck, even now we complain about poor quality cable signals only to have cable companies come and 'fix' the problem and have their initial fix not work properly (for them to come again and fix it a second time before getting it right). But if we keep trying and learning we can eventually gain the experience that incumbents have and learn how to efficiently and effectively build competing services, provided the incumbent government-industrial complex doesn't get in the way in the form of anti-competitive laws.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Insider Shop - Show Your Support!

Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Recent Stories
.

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it
Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.