Photo: Bill Moyers/Screenshot
Americans tend to pay more money for high speed Internet access than some people in other countries. In an interview with Bill Moyers, Susan Crawford, a former special assistant to President Barack Obama for science, technology, and innovation, discussed how the U.S. government has let a few giant conglomerates to rig the rules, raise prices, and throttle competition.
“What’s happened is that these enormous telecommunications companies, Comcast and Time Warner on the wired side, Verizon and AT&T on wireless side, have divided up markets, put themselves in a position where they’re subject ot no competition, and no oversight from any regulatory authority and they’re charging us a lot for internet access and giving us second-class access,” Crawford says.
As Crawford notes, you can’t get an adequate education, apply for most jobs, and access government benefits adequately without Internet access. But a third of Americans don’t subscribe to a high speed Internet connection because often times, it’s too expensive.
“So the rich are getting gouged, the poor are very often left out,” Crawford says. “And this means that we’re creating yet again two Americas and deepening inequality through this communications inequality.”
But for now, these big companies’ profit motives don’t line up with the social needs of America, Crawford says.
“They’re not in the business of making sure that everybody has reasonably priced internet access,” Crawford says.”
Watch the full interview below, which we first spotted on Gizmodo: