Law may snag Philadelphia Wi-Fi rollout

Unless there is a direct financial tie-in, I cannot understand what Philadelphia’s and Verizon’s problem is. Granted, it appears to be a communication issue between two entities, but I think most of it is hog-wash.

Am I being unreasonable? I don’t think so. While I am not yet convinced that people who are so poor that Wi-Fi is inaccessible are going to benefit from this much, still, I feel that Verizon and company are being silly about this.

One provision of House Bill 30 (HB30), a wide-ranging telecommunications regulation bill that earned final approval by the state House and Senate on Friday, would prohibit a government or any entity it creates from offering broadband for a fee.

Philadelphia’s city government is studying plans to deploy Wi-Fi wireless LAN access points throughout the city, each offering IEEE 802.11b access and linked to others via a wireless mesh network, said Dinanah Neff, the city’s chief information officer. Deployment is set to begin in June 2005 and should be completed by June 2006.