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Call to Action: AT&T and ALEC Still Pushing to Banish Community Broadband in S.C.

Broadband Backwater: Don't let AT&T and ALEC keep South Carolina broadband down.

AT&T and the corporate-funded front group American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) are making progress banning community broadband in South Carolina with the second reading of H.3508, the AT&T Profit Protection Act.

This bill has been debated in the state legislature since early last year, and despite protestations from local community leaders in broadband-impoverished areas of the state, AT&T’s money and lobbyists can buy a lot of support.  South Carolina cannot afford to have its broadband options limited. It remains among the worst states in the country for broadband adoption, with just a tad over half of all households hooked up to the Internet. The rest either cannot afford the prices incumbent providers charge, or in many cases, nobody is willing to provide the service.

With the passage of H.3508, South Carolina’s broadband future will effectively be left in the hands of Time Warner Cable, which has some presence in larger cities, and the former BellSouth, which is now AT&T. But unless you live in greater Charleston, Columbia, or Greenville, AT&T’s investment in your future has been limited to smatterings of slow speed DSL.

Despite claims that the “private sector” will provide, South Carolina remains a broadband afterthought for telecommunications companies in the state, especially outside of major cities. H.3508 stops communities from electing to drain the broadband backwater they are forced to endure and build better service other companies simply won’t provide.

You can’t discourage investment from providers who won’t invest in South Carolina’s broadband in the first place.

Use this tool to find your state senator and take a few minutes to call their office and let them know you oppose H.3508 and what it represents — broadband stagnation and corporate protectionism. Let them know you want broadband decisions for your community made in your community, not by a lobbyist for AT&T or the cable industry. Ask why any legislator would want to support a measure that would allow an out of state corporation to dictate what South Carolina can do about its own telecommunications future.

Ask them to stand up for you as a constituent and do the right thing.  AT&T, a multi-billion dollar corporation does not need their help. Broadband in South Carolina does!

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  • Mike The Great: All I can say is LOL!...
  • Dave: Please post your references for your assertion that ATT made a $70,000 donation. All google searches just link back to you for this....
  • Phillip Dampier: That is a relief. I have WH-DVR service here, mostly so I can watch MSNBC Morning Joe and get annoyed by the always mercurial Joe Scarborough, which i...
  • hillary clinton: if you need a set top box on each tv for $7 my price will go up for that also unless I use a roku stick. $7 x $4 is $28 TWC I only use 1 hd box a...
  • James R Curry: It's also worth noting that in Maxx areas, 50/5 is the same price as 15/1 in non-Maxx areas. So without the Charter buy out, you would have eventuall...
  • Ricardo S: The DVR is treated as an umbrella charge. For example: customer wants 4 DVR's so cost would be 4.99 a piece and one 19.99 DVR service fee. Modem cost ...
  • John: My rates went up so I dropped my cable with the intention of signing up for a streaming service. However, dropping cable caused my 50mbs service to g...
  • Phillip Dampier: You missed my point. Many customers prefer a lower price over faster speed. You started with 50/5Mbps. Most TWC customers choose to pay for 15/1Mbps b...
  • Jk: The article is misleading. You compare the price of 15/1 internet to the price of Charter 60? I have 50/5 from a TW non max area, but I'm paying close...
  • Charles Dennett: Regarding the modem, from what I've heard, Charter includes the price of the modem rental in the price of the Internet access. They don't break it ou...
  • Derpson: Interesting, I have only seen 4megabits/sec advertised as the upload speed. They should be forced to show the upload speed in their advertisements, t...
  • Andy: Thought maybe AT&T and Verizon would consolidate all the land lines in the U.S. at one point. With Verizon shedding systems year after year, I gue...

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