If We Are Going to Break Up Big Tech, Do Not Forget Big Telecom

Senator Elizabeth Warren proposed breaking up tech giants Facebook, Google, and Amazon on Friday—but big telecom is in dire need of the same treatment.

by Karl Bode, Mar 8 2019 | Original Motherboard article here.


On March 8, Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren proposed breaking up Google, Amazon, and Facebook in a bid to crack down on anti-competitive tech giants. The proposal, which suggests ramping up antitrust enforcement and unwinding the sector’s most problematic mergers, is poised to be a cornerstone of Warren’s 2020 presidential campaign.

Senator Elizabeth Warren said:

“Today’s big tech companies have too much power — too much power over our economy, our society, and our democracy. They’ve bulldozed competition, used our private information for profit, and tilted the playing field against everyone else. And in the process, they have hurt small businesses and stifled innovation.”

The attention Warren’s proposal gives to breaking up big tech is welcome, and warranted, but it omits another major sector that is equally deserving of—and long overdue for—the same treatment: Big Telecom.

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NASA Is About to Test a Giant Solar Drone That Broadcasts 5G

The Hawk 30

By Victor Tangermann, Mar 8, 2018 | Original article here.

Japanese tech giant SoftBank partnered with NASA and U.S. aerospace company AeroVironment to build a massive solar-powered drone that can beam 5G connectivity down to practically anywhere in the world.

A maiden voyage of SoftBank’s Hawk 30 prototype could take place as soon as next week, according to a November Space Act Agreement with NASA. More test flights will follow within the next three months — an initiative that if successful could bring wireless connectivity to the most remote regions of the globe.

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New York Has Not Followed Order to Kick Charter Out of State

NY Gives Charter Another Extension as They Negotiate Over Broadband Commitments

By Jon Brodkin Mar 8, 2019 | Original ARS Technica here.

New York government officials still haven’t followed through on a July 2018 decision to kick Charter Communications out of the state. Negotiations between Charter and the state have dragged on for months past the original deadline, and the sides say they’re getting closer to an agreement that would allow Charter to remain in New York.

The state Public Service Commission (PSC) voted on July 27, 2018 to revoke its approval of Charter’s 2016 purchase of Time Warner Cable (TWC), after accusing Charter of failing to meet merger-related broadband expansion commitments. The PSC ordered Charter to sell the former TWC system and to file a transition plan within 60 days.

But Charter still hasn’t had to file that transition plan, and may never have to, because the PSC has repeatedly granted deadline extensions while Charter negotiates with the state. Charter requested yet another extension on Tuesday this week, and the PSC granted it on Wednesday, setting a new deadline of May 3, 2019.

Charter’s filing that asked for an extension said it and the PSC have made "considerable progress" toward a settlement.

Charter and the PSC have "exchanged term sheets and reached agreement on many key issues," Charter wrote. Charter said the sides are doing "further data analysis" on "certain passings," apparently referring to locations where Charter has deployed or will deploy broadband service. Charter said the latest extension "will allow the parties an opportunity to fully review the information exchanged, as well as to convert the term sheet into a fuller written agreement."

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Rosy Broadband Deployment Claims By Ajit Pai Based on Gigantic Error

FCC data boosted by ISP that falsely claimed to cover eight entire states.

By Jon Brodkin Mar 7, 2019 | Original ARS Technica article here.

Ajit Pai with at FCC with oversize coffee mug
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai with his oversized coffee mug in November 2017.

Ajit Pai’s latest claim that his deregulatory policies have increased broadband deployment may be based in part on a gigantic error.

Pai’s claim was questionable from the beginning, as we detailed last month. The Federal Communications Commission data cited by Chairman Pai merely showed that deployment continued at about the same rate seen during the Obama administration. Despite that, Pai claimed that new broadband deployed in 2017 was made possible by the FCC "removing barriers to infrastructure investment."

But even the modest gains cited by Pai rely partly on the implausible claims of one ISP that apparently submitted false broadband coverage data to the FCC, advocacy group Free Press told the FCC in a filing this week.

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Democrats Unveil New Bill to Fully Restore Net Neutrality

New proposal would enshrine the FCC’s 2015 rules into law, banning ISPs from behaving anti-competitively.

by Karl Bode, Mar 6 2019 | Original Motherboard article here.


House and Senate Democrats Wednesday morning introduced a new three-page bill that would restore the FCC’s 2015 net neutrality rules. Dubbed the Save the Internet Act, the proposal would also restore FCC authority over internet service providers, stripped away in the wake of last year’s controversial repeal.

The original FCC rules prohibited ISPs from unfairly throttling or blocking websites or services they compete with. It also required that ISPs be entirely transparent with consumers about just what kind of broadband connection they’re buying.

“The Save the Internet Act would enact true net neutrality protections by codifying the FCC’s 2015 Open Internet Order as a new, free-standing section of law,” Congressman Mike Doyle told attendees of a morning press conference (you can view the video here).

“We are on the right side of history, and we will not give up this fight,” Senator Ed Markey noted. “It begins today, and this coalition will not stop until we win.”

A full markup of the bill and accompanying hearings are expected within the next several weeks.

ISPs have a rich history of trying to use their role as internet gatekeepers both to nickel and dime consumers—and to disadvantage competitors.

Rep. Doyle Unveils Bill to Restore Net Neutrality Protection

Mar 6, 2019 | Original Press Release here.

Doyle speaks at press conference announcing Net Neutrality bill

Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Mike Doyle (PA-18) unveiled legislation to restore Net Neutrality at a press conference this morning with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA-12), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA).

Congressman Doyle said at the press conference.

“The Save the Internet Act would enact true net neutrality protections by codifying the FCC’s 2015 Open Internet Order, as a new free-standing section of law that would ensure the Internet remain an open platform for innovation and competition.”

The Save the Internet Act would do the following:

  • prohibit internet service providers from blocking, throttling, or engaging in paid prioritization;
  • close loopholes by empowering the FCC to stop unjust, unreasonable, and discriminatory practices;
  • foster innovation and competition by ensuring fair and equal access to broadband for start-ups, small businesses, and entrepreneurs; and
  • promote deployment and access to broadband for consumers and businesses in rural, suburban, and urban areas across America.


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Democrat Net Neutrality Bill Would Restore 2015 FCC Rules

Democrats’ bill has good chance in House but faces tough odds in Senate.

By Jon Brodkin, Mar 6, 2019 | Original ARS Technica article here.

Pelosi-Schumer-Net Neutrality-Bill

WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 16: Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY), with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) looking on, speaks at a press conference at the Capitol Building on May 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. The Senate voted and passed a Resolution of Disapproval to undo President Trump and FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s repeal of net neutrality rules.

Democrats in Congress today introduced a net neutrality bill that would fully restore the 2015 FCC rules that were repealed by the FCC’s current Republican majority.

The "Save the Internet Act" is just three pages long. Instead of writing a new set of net neutrality rules, the bill would nullify FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s December 2017 repeal of the FCC order passed in February 2015 and forbid the FCC from repealing the rules in the future.

"A full 86 percent of Americans opposed the Trump assault on net neutrality, including 82 percent of Republicans. That’s hopeful," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said at a press conference announcing the bill today. "With the Save the Internet Act, the Democrats are honoring the will of the people."

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FCC Accounting Rules Are Frozen to the Year 2000 — Why?

Then, in Dec 2018, the FCC voted to extend this Accounting “FREEZE” until 2024 — without any audits or investigations. Again . . . we need to know why.

Adapted from an article by Bruce Kushnick, Feb 28, 2019 | Original Medium article here.

In the year 2000, before there was high-speed streaming or broadband on cell phones, the FCC, influenced by lobbyists from AT&T, Verizon and CenturyLink, froze the accounting rules that determine the percentage of expenses that each separate telecom line of business (POTS, DSL, Broadband, Special Access, Wireless and others) would pay for the use of the shared Wireline infrastructure (both copper and fiber optic wires).

Most do not know that there are still State Public Telecommunications Utility companies (SPTUs), such as Verizon-NY and AT&T-CA, or Centurylink-CO. Most, including our legislators and regulators, have been told that these SPTUs represent just the aging, switched, legacy copper lines, for Plain-Old-Telephone Service (POTS) or landlines.

But This Old, Tired Story is Simply Not True

In the state of New York, Verizon-NY also includes the fiber optic wires for “FiOS”, the fiber to the home service, the fiber for the backhaul used by Verizon Wireless (and other Wireless Carriers), and even the wires, copper and fiber, for Business Data Services — collectively, the Title II-regulated Wireline infrastructure.

  • In 2000, Local Service, the basic copper phone lines, brought in 65% of the revenues for Verizon-NY

  • In 2000, Local Service also paid 65% of the expenses of Verizon-NY

That made sense — back in the year 2000.

But, now let's fast-forward to 2017:

  • In 2017, Local Service brought in 21% of the revenues for Verizon-NY, about $1.1 billion in revenues

  • But, in 2017, Local Service paid 62% of the expenses of Verizon-NY Corporate Operations expenses, about $1.8 billion, to cover the costs of the lawyers, lobbyists, and executive pay. How can this be?

  • Answer: The FCC Accounting ‘FREEZE’. Local Service has paid 65% of all expenses for 19 years — irrespective of Local Service revenues, creating artificial losses and huge tax benefits for Telecom companies for nearly two decades.

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5G Will Use the Same Frequencies as Pain-Inflicting Military Weapon

Feb 27, 2018 | Original article here

What do . . .

  • The installation of extreme density 4G and 5G Close Proximity Microwave
    Radiation Antennas
    on light poles, utility poles, and other street furniture in the public rights-of-way in our communities . . . and

  • A Radio-Frequency Electromagnetic Microwave Radiation (RF-EMR) weapon developed by the military

. . . have in common?

The Department of Defense has developed a RF-EMR crowd-control weapon called the Active Denial System (ADS). The ADS works by firing a high-powered beam of 95 GHz waves at people — that is, a millimeter wavelength weapon — similar to millimeter waves being used for new 5G installations:

The Panoply of RF-EMR Frequencies and Wavelengths in a 4G/5G World

  • 5G: 600 MHz = waves 20 inches long
  • 4G: 700 MHz = waves 17 inches long
  • 3G/4G: 800 MHz = waves 15 inches long
  • 3G/4G: 900 MHz = waves 13 inches long
  • 3G/4G: 1800 MHz = waves 7 inches long
  • 3G/4G: 2100 MHz = waves 6 inches long
  • Wi-Fi: 2450 MHz = waves 5 inches long (unlicensed)
  • 5G: 3100 MHz to 3550 MHz = waves 3.8 to 3.3 inches long
  • 5G: 3550 MHz to 3700 MHz = waves 3.3 to 3.2 inches long
  • 5G: 3700 MHz to 4200 MHz = waves 3.2 to 2.8 inches long
  • 5G: 4200 to 4900 MHz = waves 2.8 to 2.4 inches long
  • Wi-Fi: 5800 MHz = waves 2.0 inches long (unlicensed)
  • 5G: 24,250 to 24,450 MHz = waves 0.5 inch long
  • 5G: 25,050 to 25,250 MHz = waves 0.5 inch long
  • 5G: 25,250 to 27,500 MHz = waves 0.4 inch long
  • 5G: 27,500 to 29,500 MHz = waves 0.4 inch long
  • 5G: 31,800 to 33,400 MHz = waves 0.4 inch long
  • 5G: 37,000 to 40,000 MHz = waves 0.3 inch long
  • 5G: 42,000 to 42,500 MHz = waves 0.3 inch long
  • 5G: 57,000 to 64,500 MHz = waves 0.3 inch long (unlicensed)
  • 5G: 64,000 to 71,000 MHz = waves 0.2 inch long
  • 5G: 71,000 to 76,000 MHz = waves 0.2 inch long
  • 5G: 81,000 to 86,000 MHz = waves 0.1 inch long

Anyone caught in the RF-EMR beam will feel like their skin is intensely burning. The burning sensation stops once the target leaves the beam. This weapon operates on 95GHz waves and 5G will operate on the very similar frequencies (see above).

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Microsoft Announced HoloLens 2

A Wireless Headworn Computer . . . what could go wrong?

Introducing Microsoft HoloLens 2

How About This: Trends in High Grade Glioma Brain Cancer?

Alasdair Philips then took the Swedish Cancer Registry data and divided the cases into two groups: those among ≥ 60 year-olds and those below 60. He plotted the trends for men and women separately:

Swedish Glioma

Source: Alasdair Philips for Microwave News