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Monday, October 04, 2010

Sixth Report & Disorder

I am in full gripe mode this morning, so I thought I'd throw all my minor gripe about the Sixth Report & Order into one post. I've already posted my major gripes.

Again, I just want to make clear that as a whole, the 6th R&O improves the program. But the positive changes were all touted in the FCC press release, so I'll stick to the dark side.

  1. “As long as schools are in compliance with CIPA requirements, we leave specific policymaking decisions up to individual schools to address.” (footnote 76)
    So now that schools are offering Internet access to adult community members, do they now have to comply with the heinous CIPA rules that the Supreme Court came up with for libraries? That would mean turning off filtering for individuals who request unfiltered access….
  2. “we plan to include a box on the FCC Form 471 when we next revise this form for applicants to check if they are taking advantage of this rule change.” (paragraph 25)
    You know, I was just thinking that there aren’t enough checkboxes on the Form 471.
  3. “an eligible school or library may assess computer fees to help defray the cost of computers" (paragraph 26)
    Does a converse to the Free Services Advisory apply? Can my school charge $5/hour for computer use, and throw in Internet access for free, or will I have to do some cost allocation? Look for the blossoming of PTO-sponsored cybercafé fundraisers.
  4. “the cap for funding year 2010 will be increased to $2,270,250,000.” (paragraph 36)
    Well, at least it's in the right direction. At this rate, 40% schools will get some P2 funding around, say, Stardate 2542.7.
  5. “E-Rate Deployed Ubiquitously” (paragraphs 44-50)
    First off, kudos for using the word "ubiquitously." You just don't see that word often enough. But $10 million dollars to a “handful” of applicants who have already deployed off-campus wireless Internet access? Is there really a pool of schools and libraries that are spending $1 million/year or so on off-campus access? And who gets stuck evaluating the proposals?
  6. “we direct USAC to make available on its website and update on an ongoing basis a list of donation and recycling locations for communications equipment.” (paragraph 75)
    This is not how USAC should be spending USF funds. Remember the Eligible Services Database? I foresee cobwebs on this database.

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