Entries Matching: Mapping
Sometime back, I coined the term “Cassandrafreude.” A compound of “Cassandra” and “schadenfreude,” it means “the bitter pleasure derived from seeing someone else suffer in the way you predicted even though you are getting screwed yourself.”
After a couple of years of writing about Connected Nation, there's not much more to say. They do the bidding of the telephone and cable companies, presenting broadband deployment as those companies wish it to be presented. They hide behind non-disclosure agreements. They have so many caveats to their maps that the products are not useful for serious planning.
And our government just gave them $10 million, give or take. In announcing a batch of broadband mapping grants on Dec. 22, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) turned the shape of the broadband world over to the parties most interested in shaping the outcome.
Even before the state of Colorado released on Dec. 1 the results of a broadband mapping project conducted by a Connected Nation subsidiary, officials were preparing for a second round of mapping. The problem, according to the state Request for Proposals issued in early November, is that the first mapping product done by Connect Colorado “did not satisfy the requirements” of the federal broadband mapping program.
The first mapping project cost $300,000. The telecom industry contributed $60,000 of that total and the state paid for the rest.
Connected Nation, the big-telecom and cable front group, has won a lucrative broadband mapping contract in Florida by buying off the company that protested CN getting the contract.
When we last left Connected Nation near the end of August, the big-telecom and cable front group had won a big contract for the state of Florida, despite submitting the high bid while beating a bid half as expensive from a company based in Florida which did considerable business with the state.
That decision, issued in August by the Florida Dept. of Management Services (DMS), was challenged by The Sanborn Map Company, a Colorado Springs-based company that had its bid thrown out as non-responsive to the Request for Proposal before, and so was not scored by the state for a possible award as one of the final six bids considered. Sanborn, in its letter filed in August, gave five reasons why its proposal should have been considered.
Connected Nation is coming under increased pressure at its birthplace in Kentucky, with the cable industry and municipal utilities raising opposition to the telecom-based organization and Kentucky Gov. Steven Beshear (D) asking Connect Kentucky (CK) to respond to the municipal organization’s concerns about CK.
In a remarkable vote on Aug. 19, the Kentucky Cable Telecommunications Association (KCTA) board voted 8-2 not to endorse CK as the state-designated entity to map the state’s broadband assets, despite what sources said were three attempts by Connect Kentucky to gain the group’s endorsement.
Rene True, Connect Kentucky’s executive director, asked for the cable group’s endorsement, drafting a letter for the group’s signature that would be sent to Greg Haskamp, the state official in charge of broadband policy in the Finance and Administration cabinet.