Home » Broadband Speed »CenturyLink »Community Networks »Competition »Editorial & Site News »Public Policy & Gov't »Rural Broadband » Currently Reading:

CenturyLink Concedes Publicly-Owned Broadband Networks Offer Better Service Than They Do

CenturyLinkA CenturyLink official made a remarkable concession in the state of Minnesota last week when he admitted the state’s community-owned broadband networks are better equipped to deliver 21st century broadband speeds that CenturyLink simply cannot provide.

Duane Ring, midwest region president for CenturyLink publicly told an audience at a Minnesota High Tech Association-sponsored discussion in Minneapolis that community-owned networks don’t have to meet shareholder demands for return on investment and other corporate metrics that have left CenturyLink broadband customers with far lower speeds than municipal broadband customers. Minnesota Public Radio was on hand:

Noting that CenturyLink wants every customer it can find, Ring pointed out that the company nonetheless needs a return on investment that satisfies shareholders and meets the demands of larger commitments and fiduciary responsibilities.

The small phone companies that have laid high-speed fiber networks, some of whom are cooperatives whose customers are the owners “can make decisions that maybe the economic return is 25 years,” Ring said. “They can do that.”

CenturyLink admits they offer better speeds over a superior network.

CenturyLink concedes Paul Bunyan offers better speeds over a superior network.

Only 62 percent of Minnesotans can today purchase what qualifies as broadband service. Those lucky enough to be served by public providers like Paul Bunyan in the Bemidji area and Farmers Mutual Telephone in western Minnesota benefit from some of the fastest broadband speeds in the state. That is because those cooperatives and public ventures laid fiber optic cables connected to individual homes. Those in rural Minnesota served by CenturyLink or Frontier get much less from slow speed, copper-based DSL, if they can get broadband at all.

CenturyLink has proven itself an obstacle for community broadband, opposing the construction of improved networks in areas they already service, condemning rural customers to substandard broadband speeds indefinitely. While the company says it is not opposed to public-private partnerships, any attempt to bypass them will result in a hornet’s nest of legal protests and blocking actions.

While community-owned networks struggle for financing and approval in a hostile atmosphere created by incumbent providers, the government is handing out money to companies like CenturyLink to get them to extend their slow speed DSL network. CenturyLink is spending $11 million in Connect America funds in Minnesota alone.

In other areas, residents have no interest in waiting around for single digit DSL speeds. In Lac qui Parle County in western Minnesota, local officials have joined Farmers Mutual Telephone to build a fiber network.

CenturyLink’s admission proves it answers first to shareholders, much later to customers.

Share






Search This Site:

Contributions:

Recent Comments:

  • baceba jones: I know I went through the whole circus of used car salesmen posing as "technicians". I don't know why the Comcast marketers think that if you lie lou...
  • baceba jones: I know I went through the whole circus of used car salesmen posing as "technicians" myself. I don't know why the Comcast marketers think that if you ...
  • Tasha: This is absurd that we have to pay additional for service. I only have Internet at my house & my bill with fees is $70 a month for 10mps. This is...
  • Romy Parker: I live in Joe's district...Time Warner services the Greater Rochester area (and the word "service" is a euphemism). I know I'm not the only one who ha...
  • michele perez: This may be two years late in coming but I think getting charged $20 on $2 and $6 balances (mind you, nobody came to the door - the most I'd get is an...
  • michele perez: And whoever said it's price gouging is absolutely right. One day this will no longer be the case - I can't wait!...
  • michele perez: I am a former Brighthouse customer of something like 12 years. Our last few years were riddled with enormous late fees incurred from every minor rate ...
  • Powers: It was also in a situation in which you are expected to present your own ideas and thoughts in your own words, for the purpose of educating you to do ...
  • BobInIllinois: I would have been given an F in my high school for that amount of plagiarism, and also put on academic probation. But, that was in the 70's, when pub...
  • txpatriot: I agree this doesn't look good. Clyburn has been the Commissioner most supportive of consumer issues since Michael Copps left. I doubt if Copps woul...
  • Duffin: I just love how Comcast claims it's too expensive to build out infrastructure to give everyone faster speeds which many foreign countries already have...
  • txpatriot: Tax policy is designed (theoretically) encourage those things we want (tax breaks) and discourage those things we don't want (additional taxes or pena...

Your Account: