The Book of Broken Promises:
$400 Billion Broadband Scandal & Free the Net
Together we can protect Net Neutrality
ISPs have claimed they should not be regulated by the Title II “common carrier” section of the Communications Act of 1934. A common carrier offers its services to the general public under license or authority provided by a regulatory body.
- Verizon is actually a State based utility just like gas, water and electricity. Verizon is pretending to not be a utility.
- Verizon’s entire FTTP (Fiber to the Premises), FiOS cable franchise networks, are all Title II, as they were filed with permission from state regulators, which allowed Verizon to charge customers for these ‘network upgrades’ by categorizing expenses into phone bills under the State utility.
What can we do?
We need to coordinate interested parties to appeal the FCC Net Neutrality order based on a structural flaw in the FCC’s analysis that we uncovered: the FCC is seemingly unaware of State based cable franchises of FTTP (fiber to the premises) for FiOS that were all Title II.
Send us your comments about how you can JOIN US NOW to act before it is too late.
Here are the details
On April 25, 2015, Comcast and Time Warner Cable announced that they would be halting any further attempts to push through their unpopular proposed merger. Weeks earlier, the FCC released its new Open Internet/Net Neutrality decision only to be greeted by an onslaught of legal challenges that will continue for years. The Book of Broken Promises emerges to expose the sad truth about communications services in America and to answer a fundamental question — How did we get into this mess and what can we do to fix it today?
Broken Promises is the third book in a trilogy spanning 18 years. Bruce Kushnick, author, senior telecom analyst and industry insider, lays out, in all of the gory details, how America paid over $400 billion to be the first fully fiber optic-based nation yet ended up 27th in the world for high-speed Internet (40th in upload speeds). But this is only a part of this story.
With over four million people filing with the FCC to ‘Free the Net’, one thing is abundantly clear — customers know something is terribly wrong. Every time you pay your bills you notice that the price of your services keeps going up, you don’t have a serious choice for Internet (ISP), broadband or cable service, much less competitors fighting for your business, or maybe you can’t even get very fast broadband service. Worse, over the last few years, America’s ISPs and cable companies have been rated “the most hated companies in America”.
While Net Neutrality concerns (detailed in Broken Promises) are important, the actions are only a first step and will most likely be tied up in court for the next few years. More importantly, it does not resolve most of the customer issues and there is nothing else on the horizon that will fix what’s broken.
Broken Promises documents the massive overcharging and failure to properly upgrade the networks, the deceptive billing practices, the harms caused from a lack of competition, the gaming and manipulating of the regulatory system, from the states to the FCC, and exposes the companies’ primary strategy:
— How much can we get away with? There has been little, if any, regard for the customers they serve.
But Don’t Take Our Word for Any of It. The Book of Broken Promises:
- Supplies new, never seen before data, including telco financials, and analysis that offers an alternative path to solve Net Neutrality and restructure communications.
- Broadband Scandal — Documents, in detail, the broken promises and failure to upgrade the networks even though customers paid over $400 billion in excess fees and phone charges for network upgrades since the 1990’s.
- Your State? — Supplies details of how AT&T, Verizon and Centurylink went state-to-state to change the laws to charge customers for a fiber optic future that never showed up.
- School Wiring Overcharging — Though it varies by state, we were all charged about 9 times by the phone & cable companies to wire America’s schools & libraries.
- Social Contract? Time Warner Cable & Comcast’s so-called “Social Contract” deal with the FCC was a plan to raise your cable rates.
- Mergers Harmed America — Broken Promises tells the complete history of the mergers and broken promises that created AT&T, Verizon and Centurylink – and why we need to stop the current proposed mergers, including the AT&T-DirecTV merger.
- The AT&T-Verizon “IP Transition” Con — Disguised as a technology improvement, the plan is designed to remove all regulations and oversight, not “free the net”.
- Fake Consumer Groups and Skunkworks — Details how the phone & cable companies keep control with fake consumer groups (astroturf), paid off politicians, corporate-funded stink tanks, co-opted non-profit organizations, massive skunkworks networks, and diss-information campaigns, including the ALEC/Corporate-sponsored deregulation bills from hell, and the anti-competitive barrier to entry for competing community/municipal infrastructure build outs, etc.
- Delivers Encyclopedic Coverage, with hundreds of links to reports and articles and covers everything, from the ‘made up’ charges on your bills, or the taxes applied, like the Universal Service Fund, (USF), to the municipalities rolling out broadband or what ever happened to the National Broadband Plan.
- Buzzwords Explained — Don’t worry; all of this jargon will be in plain English.
- Scandals Galore — Verizon claims Net Neutrality is bad because “Title II” harms investment, yet Verizon’s entire fiber networks are all based on “Title II”. AT&T’s U-Verse is a ‘copper-to-the-home’ service with fiber somewhere within ½ mile. Read about merger conditions written on toilet paper, the massive cross-subsidies charged to customers to fund other businesses going unchecked, or that whole state legislatures have been captured by the phone & cable company ‘trust’. You will be shocked at what you don’t know or were never told, and how much it has cost you, your family, your business, your city and America’s economy.
Solution: Take Action: It is time America takes a new path that includes audits, investigations and more importantly opens the networks to direct competition and finally separates the companies that took control of essential infrastructure, from the wires. Broken Promises provides the documentation and a proactive plan, a road-map on how states and cities can take advantage and leverage the companies’ failed broadband commitments and the companies’ questionable financial and business practices. The goal — Move America to an open, very fast, fiber optic-based, yet affordable, broadband, Internet, and cable service for everyone — since everyone paid for it over and over and over.
This is the third book of a trilogy that started in 1998.
- The Unauthorized Bio of the Baby Bells & Info-Scandal, with Foreword by Dr. Robert Metcalfe, tells the history of the break up of the original AT&T in 1984 through 1997. It also documents how the companies changed focus from local utility companies to international communication conglomerates, where the local customer and networks no longer mattered.
- Published as a paperback in 1998. Contained 508 pages, 664 footnotes
- On sale now as a PDF.
- $200 Billion Broadband Scandal, was first published in 2005 and starts with the rise of the “Information Superhighway” in the 1990’s, when the phone companies made commitments to rewire America with a fiber optic future if laws were changed to raise customers’ phone rates and give the companies massive tax perks. By 2004, over $200 billion had been collected, but the networks never materialized — it was all just a bait-and-switch. Bruce Kushnick and the information in this book were featured on Bill Moyer’s Emmy-nominated PBS special, “The Net at Risk”, in 2006.
- It was updated to $300 Billion Broadband Scandal in 2009. In 2012, author Bruce Kushnick and the research was center-stage in Pulitzer-Prize Winner and former New York Times reporter David Cay Johnston’s book, “The Fine Print”.
- The book has had over 730,000 downloads and counting. It is now on sale as a PDF.
About the Author: Bruce Kushnick is one of America’s leading telecommunications analysts and one of the most controversial.