Three years ago when I was a junior in high school, I explained my ideas for an Interplanetary Internet to a bunch of people in small groups in my AP Government class. They absolutely did not believe me when I explained how it might work. No one had an understanding of the terrestrial Internet or what “latency” even was.
Why did I bring that up in a high school AP Government class? Our teacher wanted us to write subset-style Constitution of settles of Mars. You can’t build a futuristic Constitution without mass communication and technology.
I don’t know how frequently the House agrees on any single thing in full. I don’t know, but statisically, I can’t believe it’s often based on my memory.
To that end, members of the House of Representatives – Democrats and Republicans – voted unanimously (397-0) against the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and the United Nations’ efforts to push “increased government control over the Internet.”
I don’t think any single country should have control over the Internet, and I don’t think a slow moving bureaucratic organization should have control over the Internet.
And no, I don’t think this is the end of the story, but a unanimous statement from half of one of branches of the American government is a decent message. It’s a start.
Yesterday I called CenturyLink, formerly Qwest, about our molasses Internet. It had been running at an atrocious 60 kilobits per second which might as well be dailup. Let’s just say, it was torture.
Today, a CenturyLink tech came out to inspect the lines. There was some problem with a bad splice somewhere. My house is a morass of wires so frightening that the mere sight would cause a headache.
He and I spent ten minutes hunting for the line itself in the basement. Once we found it, we proceeded to cut off the old splice and redo it. Of course, nothing is that easy and that splice wasn’t the problem – in fact, it wasn’t any different. Then we went back outside and discovered the last tech put in the Qwest box with a square head screw which isn’t apparently Qwest/CenturyLink sanctioned. Once we got the box off, I went back inside to look for a tugged line while he did the tugging. This worked, traced it and found another splice. He cut that off and made a new clean one. We tested the line, the retrain was quick, the down speed was back at 7168 and the phone was static free. Amazing.
So? Usually in this these of company buyouts and rebranding, you merge one great service with a slightly lesser service which dilutes the overall service making everyone sad. I was pleased to have a tech out that was smart and polite. He knew what he was doing. He said that technically he was done, but would be glad to put in a new line if I could help out. He explained things and I appreciate explanations because I like knowing things. I understand some customers don’t want to be involved and I can see the reluctance, but I think it’s better this way.
So, in short, thank you CenturyLink tech that did a fantastic job fixing my line and Internet and telling me about your impressions of the state of the telecom industry.