A [Really Short] Thanksgiving Gift List

The word on the street is that many of you like reading my insights, observations and recommendations on effective broadband strategies and policies. Cool deal! It’s great to be able to contribute valuable input to the national (and many local) discussion. I thank you for your continued readership and support.

I’ve also been getting feedback that some of you aren’t aware of what I do for a living, or how what I do can help your particular broadband project. <sigh> Another case of the cobbler’s kids having no shoes or smartphones or too many lights hidden under bushels or something.

Turkey Day inspired an idea. Though most of us are just becoming occupied with Christmas gift lists, what about Thanksgiving gifts? I know, probably no one’s dropped a subtle hint about what they’d like for T-day other than a Food Coma Recovery Couch. Being mindful of tight budgets and short tempers, here’s my Thanksgiving gift wish list.

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Outspent 60:1, Longmont Kicks Comcast’s Assets

Comcast and its allies spent $300,000 to unleash every trick and tactic in the campaign playbook to try to kill a measure that gives Longmont, CO citizens and businesses the right to pick their own best broadband solutions. Measure 2A supporters spent $5,000, if that.

Yea though we walk through the valley in the shadow of Comcast’s desire to annihilate our communities’ right to choose our best broadband solutions, we hold our fear in check and engage the foe because we believe it is possible for the underdog to win.   

I made that up last night as I headed out to prep one of my soccer teams for our biggest game of the season. I was feeling pumped after receiving the news that Longmont, CO’s Measure 2A was on its way to victory. The underdog had stood tall in the face of a huge corporation’s relentless efforts to buy a local election rather than compete in the free market. However, despite being outspent 60 to 1, Measure 2A won with 60% of the vote.

There are some valuable lessons for other communities to learn from Longmont’s duel with a corporate giant hell-bent on leveling all opposition in its path – and win. Some communities that have broadband dreams of their own, particularly those in Colorado, have watched the battle to gauge how things might turn out in their particular towns and counties. These elections are no walk in the park, but as we see, they are winnable.

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