Friday, June 17, 2005

BellSouth proposes timeline for fiber (not)

The title of this morning's Advertiser fiber article, "BellSouth proposes timeline for fiber," is pretty solidly misleading since the body of the story makes it clear that BellSouth is conspicuously NOT setting any timeline at all. In addition, what it is not setting a timeline for is not fiber in the sense that the term is commonly used—to mean fiber to the home—but to mean only "fiber to the curb." So a more accurate headline might read "BellSouth continues to refuse to set a timeline for its next generation hybrid fiber/copper technology." Of course, that's a little long. But it does have the virtue of not misleading the casual reader of the front page of the paper.

As Huval notes, this is all the same stuff that BellSouth has been trying to sell for awhile:
"What they are talking about now is the same thing they talked about in November of last year, as far as what type of infrastructure they're going to deploy," Huval said.
It's all the same story—down to John Williams repeating the discredited story that the FCC has declared fiber to the curb the "functional equivalent" of fiber to the home. This is simply a self-serving lie. Almost a decade of FCC policy was based on maintaining the difference between the two as a fundamental element of regulatory policy. When that policy changed, what is most noticeable about the decision is that the FCC did not accept this rationale (and did accept others) for making the change. For a thorough refutation of the underlying concep, please see, the "Slick Sam Slade" video. There is nothing new and nothing that would put Lafayette ahead of the rest of BellSouth's service area in the material that has been released to date.

The alert reader will note that Cox and BellSouth are not partners in this partnership venture. As has been pointed out many times on these pages the local alliance is one of necessity in the hopes of preventing the rise of a superior competitor, not an alliance of principle.

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